A Guide to UK UCAT Medical Schools

Choosing which UK UCAT medical schools to apply to can be daunting. Find out which UK medical schools require the UCAT and how they'll use your UCAT score.

Author: Rob Needleman

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Selecting which UCAT universities to apply to is not an easy decision. 

To complicate matters, depending on which schools you choose, there are two different aptitude tests:

The good thing about choosing to take the UCAT is that over 30 UK medical schools accept it, so you’re giving yourself the most options. You’ll also know your score before you send off your UCAS application.

In this article, we outline the information you need to help choose your medical schools and we cover a complete list of all UK UCAT medical schools and how they use the UCAT. 

How Do Universities Use the UCAT?

If you have decided to apply to UCAT universities, then it’s important to understand how medical schools interpret your results. We have outlined how UK medical schools use your scores below

Some UCAT medical schools have strict UCAT cut-offs for certain sections or overall totals for the UCAT. For example, the University of Glasgow Medicine Degree has a minimum UCAT score for Interview selection of around 2680.

Some universities don’t have a cut-off score at all but will view your results in accordance with the rest of your application, such as the University of Bristol. Other universities pay very close attention to certain sections like the Situational Judgement and some will ignore it completely. 

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How to Choose your UCAT Medical Schools

It can be difficult to know how to choose from the massive list of UCAT universities. Especially when they all view your results in a slightly different way. You may decide to choose a school that accepts lower UCAT scores such as Cardiff or Bristol. Find out more about UCAT scores in our guides on Low UCAT score medical schools and What is a good UCAT score?

It is a good idea to have an idea of the type of medical school that you would like to attend (i.e. traditional, integrated, or PBL). Then to shortlist the universities that offer courses of this type. Here’s a handy checklist to follow to help with the process:

What are the UCAT medical schools?

Use the list below to find the medical schools you are interested in applying to and see how they use the UCAT.

UCAT Medical School List

Students’ UCAT scores are considered in the selection for an interview along with actual and predicted academic achievement. A minimum UCAT cut-off score is NOT used.

A score is allocated based on the applicant’s overall performance in the UCAT compared with all other applicants. This includes verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning and decision making. The SJT is not included but may be used in offer making when there are candidates with similar scores.

Applicants to Aberdeen offer a broad range of UCAT scores. For 2020 entry the lowest total score for an applicant invited to interview was 2460 and the highest 3510.

Use of UCAT consideration is the same for Dentistry too: (Academic – 60%, UCAT – 40%).

Students must meet the Anglia Ruskin academic criteria:

  • Grades AAA at A level taken within two academic years prior to the year of entry to include Chemistry or Biology; and one of either Biology, Chemistry, Maths or Physics, plus one other.
  • 5 GCSEs at grade A*-B (9-6), including English Language, Maths and two science subjects.

Those who meet the criteria will then be ranked on their total UCAT score and those who score the highest will then be invited to an interview. Over the last two years, students who were invited to interviews achieved an average UCAT score of 2615 and the lowest score to be invited to interviews was 2451.

Aston University applicants are reviewed on their school grades and UCAT score. Students are then ranked on these factors and applicants who rank the highest will receive an interview invitation. 

Aston does not provide specific score requirements for the UCAT. Therefore there is no lower cut-off score for the UCAT or the Situational Judgment Test. 

  • Normal A-level requirements are a minimum of AAA with Chemistry and Biology being compulsory.
  • GCSE (or equivalent) qualifications: normal requirements are a minimum of five GCSEs/IGCSEs at grade B / grade 6 or above, which must include English Language, Mathematics, Chemistry, Biology or Double Science (or international equivalent).

Students will receive an overall score for their application which is the sum of weighted scores for each of the academic and UCAT components (academic – 70%; UCAT – 30%). Applicants are ranked according to this score. There is no minimum UCAT cut-off score.

The number of interview places determines the threshold application score so it is not possible to determine the threshold score in advance.

Personal Statements are not scored but a decision will also be based on ensuring that an applicant provides sufficient evidence of commitment, motivation and relevant personal qualities.

Bristol University combines UCAT scores from all subtests (excluding Situational Judgement) to select which applicants to interview. Applicants with a UCAT score of 2690 or more are usually invited to interview but this threshold will vary each year.

From 2021 onwards, Bristol will no longer use the applicant’s Personal Statement as a selection factor for interviews, the main factor is now the UCAT.

Work experience is not a requirement for this course, but it is encouraged.

For 2023/24 entry, Brunel Medical School is planning to include UCAT in the Medicine MBBS selection process. They will release more information in the future so make sure you check their website. 

Cardiff University does not place emphasis on the UCAT as part of their selection process. They usually place more importance on GCSEs and A-level grades or the equivalent and then rank applicants with a points system such as at A-level, an A* = 3 points and A = 2 points. At GCSEs 9, 8, A* = 3 points and 7, A = 2 points.

A typical A-level offer is AAA and must include Biology and Chemistry. Graduates will need to complete the GAMSAT and there is no minimum UCAT or GAMSAT minimum threshold score.

Dundee University ranks their applicants on their school grades and total UCAT Score. Usually, school grades are a 60% weighting of the medicine application using GCSEs and achieved or predicted A-levels. As the UCAT makes up 40%, a low score can be supported with good grades and vice versa.

As Dundee University has stopped displaying a lot of detail about UCAT scores on their website, we will include 2018 entry information which saw an average UCAT score of 2590 so it is best to score as highly as possible to compete with fellow applicants.

Situational Judgement is usually not used but has been included in previous decision making.

Edge Hill University requires the UCAT. Applicants that meet the threshold academic requirements (e.g AAA A-levels or AAA Scottish Advanced) will be ranked on their UCAT score. Like other universities, the threshold UCAT cut-off will fluctuate each year but it has been around 2450.

University of Edinburgh has only recently started interviewing students (2020 was the first year). Interview selection is based on UCAT scores, school grades and the Situational Judgement bands. Interviews are also scored so this will be added to the previous selection criteria to finalise offers.

The weighting of selection criteria is 25% school grades, 17.5% UCAT score, 7.5% SItuational Judgement band, 50% assessment data scores. Personal Statement is not used to assess applicants but can come up on the assessment day.

There is not a specific UCAT cut-off score that will reject applicants but the average has been around 2680 so scoring highly is important.

Exeter University selects students to interview from their school grades and UCAT Score. The GAMSAT is required for graduates.

It is rare for applicants who score less than 2500 on the UCAT to be invited for an interview so although you need a good academic profile (all students with A*A*A* prediction automatically get an interview), you still need a good UCAT score.

Glasgow University selects applicants to interview by using academic and non-academic criteria such as UCAT, school grades, Personal Statement and reference.

This process occurs through ensuing only students who meet the minimum grades can be considered and then the Personal Statement and reference are used to indicate a student’s suitability for studying medicine.

The minimum UCAT score to be selected for interviews tends to be around 2680 and the Situational Judgement section is not included.

Hull York Medical School will reject any applicants that achieve a Situational Judgement band of 4. Those with a higher band will be set a score from points based on the UCAT score and points from other entry criteria such as GCSEs.

The average UCAT score for applicants who were selected for interviews is around 2500-2600 but this will vary year to year. The Personal Statement is not used in scoring but still considered as part of a successful application.

Keele University has a UCAT cut-off which is relatively low compared to other universities. The threshold is above 2280 and band 4 on the Situational Judgement. If an applicant fails to meet these, they will not be invited to interview.

There is another criteria section that you must fulfil which is completing the ‘Roles and Responsibilities’ form. This assesses the applicant’s suitability to study medicine. This will also be used to select students to interview.

Applicants to Kent and Medway Medical School must meet the minimum academic requirements such as AAB in Chemistry or Biology and meet the UCAT threshold to be selected for interviews.

The UCAT threshold is dependent on your circumstances (school-leaver/graduate or international student). For example, for A-level applicants, the threshold tends to be around 2400 and band 3 for Situational Judgement.

King’s College London applicants must meet the minimum academic requirements such as A*AB in Chemistry and Biology and meet the UCAT threshold to be selected for interviews. GCSEs and Personal Statement are also included in applicant shortlisting.

King’s College London does not have a specific UCAT threshold score. The overall UCAT score averaged across the four subtests is given more consideration than the individual subtest scores and Situational Judgement is also taken into account when shortlisting. However, we can still look at the usual UCAT average score for successful applicants which is around 2800.

Leicester University selection is based on a 50/50 approach. 50% comes from an applicant’s academics (AAA at A-levels and GCSE performance) and 50% comes from the UCAT (total UCAT score in the top 5 deciles with a Situational Judgement band 1-3).

As your academics take up 50% of criteria weighting, there is no official UCAT threshold. The lowest score accepted has been 587.5 so this shows that you can support a lower UCAT score with strong academics.

Liverpool University admissions process is split into three sections. The first section includes your grades at school and these are scored with points such as 3 points per A*/8/9 on your top 9 GCSEs. The minimum points are usually 15 to reach the next section.

You will then be ranked on your UCAT score. If you score 3200 or above, you will receive the maximum points of 27. The candidates that score the most points will be invited to the third section of admissions which is the interview. Situational Judgment band 4 is usually not considered.

Lincoln follows the exact same application process as Nottingham but is less competitive. There is no fixed UCAT threshold score when selecting for Interview. However, Lincoln does not accept applicants who achieve Band 4 on the Situational Judgement Test.

Generally, the average UCAT score to be invited to interviews is usually between 2500 to 2600. Remember that this score fluctuates year on year.

Manchester University state that if you meet the UCAT threshold (which has been around 2600-2670 for the last few years) and you achieve Band 1 or 2 in the Situational Judgement, you will likely be invited to interview as long as you meet the minimum academic requirements (for example, at least seven GCSEs at grade A (7) or A* (8+) and predicted grades).

Manchester also requires applicants to undertake some relevant work experience prior to application to gain some insight into what the role of a doctor involves.

Newcastle University accepts students based on their academic results and the UCAT. Applicants will need to achieve minimum academic results (AAA A-levels) to be considered and pass the interview section to receive an offer.

There is a UCAT cut-off which is used to select applicants to interview. These will vary each year but the threshold is usually 2700+. Newcastle does not accept applicants with a Situational Judgement band of 4.

Nottingham University does not use predicted A level grades as part of their selection process but applicants will need to achieve AAA to be accepted. Minimum GCSE grades are required which are 6 GCSEs at Level 7 (A). Work experience is also usually expected.

There is not a fixed UCAT threshold for interview selection however applicants who achieve band 4 on the Situational Judgement are not accepted.

Each UCAT section is awarded points based on the score achieved. For example, a UCAT Section Score of 801-900 = 9 points and 701-800 = 8 points. Situational Judgement bands are also awarded points such as Band 1 = 4 points and Band 2 = 2 points. All sections are weighted evenly and added to the points given for GCSE grades.

Norwich does not have a UCAT cut-off score. Whilst a high UCAT score may be advantageous, a low score in an otherwise strong application, will not automatically disqualify an applicant from consideration.

The University uses all subsection scores to rank the applicants for interview invitation (including Situational Judgement) and the average UCAT score to be invited to interviews is usually between 2550 to 2600.

Personal Statements are not scored but will be brought up during Interviews.

Plymouth University applicants are selected for interviews from their academic results and then ranked with their UCAT score. A UCAT cut-off score is used to select applicants for interviews which is usually around 2400. The threshold will vary each year depending on the number and quality of applications.

The GAMSAT is also used for graduates to be invited for interviews.

All applicants for medicine at Queen Mary University are required to take the UCAT. UCAT scores are used to select applicants for interviews combined with academic performance (A*AA A-level grades). Queen Mary uses the UCAT and the UCAS Tariff scores of undergraduate candidates in a 50/50 weighting.

Usually, the top and bottom UCAT scores for applicants that receive offers for interviews are 3280 and 2300.

Queen’s University selects their applicants for interviews from their academic results and overall UCAT score. The students are given points for their UCAT score and school grades.

For example, you will receive 4 points for an A* (9) and 1 point for a C (5) with a maximum score of 36 from your highest scoring 9 GCSEs. The highest points you can be awarded for a UCAT score is 6 points for 2900-3600 and 2 points for 2100-2299.

The threshold score to be invited to an interview is usually around 30-35 points.

Sheffield University requires their applicants to fulfil the minimum academic requirements which are then combined with the UCAT score and given a ranked score.

The minimum grades for GCSEs are 5 GCSEs at grade A (7) and B (6) which includes Maths and Science. A-level entry requirement is AAA including Chemistry and Biology.

The threshold to be considered for medicine is 2420 but applicants have to meet both academic requirements and UCAT entry requirements. Situational Judgement is only considered for applicants who are invited to attend an MMI.

Southampton University requires applicants to take the UCAT. Applicants are ranked on UCAT score to be selected for interviews also known as Selection Day.

Candidates are screened against the medical school’s academic criteria. The Situational Judgement Test is not used. The lowest scoring UCAT score to be invited to an interview is usually around 2550 up to 2600.

St Andrews have a limited number of interview places so candidates must have great school grades, a good reference and relevant work experience. 

Those that meet the minimum academic requirements and rank in the top 400 students are then ranked on their UCAT score. The lowest UCAT score for applicants invited to interview at St Andrews is usually around 2400.

The Situational Judgement Test is used in the interview process as the score is incorporated into the interview score.

Applicants to St George’s need to meet the minimum academic requirement (AAA A-level and 5 subjects graded B (6)) to be invited for an interview. 

There are UCAT section score thresholds (minimum 500) and overall UCAT score thresholds (around 2650). The Situational Judgement section is not used but can be used in consideration in some circumstances. 

Sunderland University requires applicants to take the UCAT. Scores must be within the top 8 deciles of the cohort and the Situational Judgement Test must be within bands 1-3. 

All applicants who meet the minimum admissions requirements will be issued with a Roles and Responsibilities form. The form is used to identify evidence of commitment to work experience, voluntary work and the level of responsibility taken.

The lowest UCAT score for an applicant with an undergraduate degree who was invited to Selection Centre was 2,670 for 2021 entry 2,600 for 2020 entry, 2,570 for 2019 entry, 2,650 for 2018 entry. Warwick also considers the Situational Judgement section of the test.

Warwick uses the UCAT verbal reasoning scores a predictor of success in certain examinations at medical school. So their first round of selection identifies those with a verbal reasoning score at or above the national mean for the cohort sitting UCAT in the year of application.

For those applying for 2022 entry, the minimum verbal reasoning score was 570. 

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Getting into Medical School is incredibly competitive, we know you don’t need reminding but it always helps to have an edge over your fellow applicants. Especially on your UCAT but also on your Personal Statement and in your Interviews.

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