The BMAT (BioMedical Admissions Test) used to be required by a handful of Medical, Dental and Veterinary schools. However, it’s now been fully discontinued. Most universities that used the BMAT will use the UCAT from 2024 onwards. See our comprehensive UCAT guide.

What Is BMAT?

BMAT is a two-hour admissions test that assesses a combination of aptitude and knowledge. It tests a broad range of skills across three sections:

  • Section 1 tests your skills in problem-solving, understanding arguments, and data analysis and inference. You’ll answer 32 multiple-choice questions in 60 minutes.
  • Section 2 examines your ability to apply scientific knowledge that is typically covered in school Science and Mathematics by the age of 16. You’ll answer 27 multiple-choice questions in 30 minutes.
  • Section 3 assesses your ability to select, develop and organise ideas, and to communicate them concisely and effectively in writing. You’ll produce an essay on one of three questions that you choose, and you get 30 minutes to do this.

The BMAT is a tough exam because you can’t use a calculator or dictionary, there’s a lot of time pressure, and it tests such a broad range of skills. Many scientifically-minded students specifically view the essay-writing component with trepidation.


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Future BMAT Changes

In 2023, the BMAT exam will run as normal. However, it has been announced that the BMAT will be discontinued from 2024 onwards.

This means that BMAT universities will be putting alternative arrangements in place for the future. Some of them may become UCAT universities or introduce their own university-specific admissions tests. The University of Leeds, a former BMAT university, has already made changes and switched to the UCAT this year.

Find out more about the cancellation of the BMAT in this blog.

Who Should Sit The BMAT Test?

If you want to apply to any BMAT universities, you’ll need to sit this exam. If you don’t sit the exam, you won’t be considered by this select group of Medical Schools and will only be able to apply to UCAT unis.

Some people choose not to apply to BMAT unis because they want to focus on UCAT only – but others understand that by doing both tests, you’ll be able to apply to a wider variety of Medical Schools, allowing you to be more strategic with your UCAS choices.

Which Universities Require BMAT?

Six UK universities currently require the BMAT. Discover which ones – and how they’ll use your BMAT score – in our guide to BMAT universities.


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How Is BMAT Scored?

For sections 1 and 2, you’ll get a score (to one decimal place) on a nine-point scale.

Section 3 is scored very differently: your quality of content will be scored on a scale from one to five, and your quality of English will be scored on a scale from A to E.

Importance Of BMAT Scores

BMAT scores are more important than ever before. The increasing numbers of Medicine applicants with competitive grades means a high BMAT score is one of the few ways you can really stand out as a candidate.

Furthermore, your score is really important to make sure you get invited to Med School interviews. BMAT universities will either set a cut-off score that you need to beat, rank candidates by score, or use it alongside the Personal Statement when shortlisting candidates.

Find out more about how it works in our BMAT Scores guide.

How Do I Prepare For BMAT?

We recommend that the best BMAT preparation should include:

BMAT Preparation Tips


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