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UCAT Abstract Reasoning

What is UCAT Abstract Reasoning?

UCAT Abstract Reasoning assesses spatial awareness and reasoning. In the questions, there are both static and dynamic shapes and you have to identify the patterns among distracting material. This page will provide an overview of the section, as well as our UCAT Abstract Reasoning tips.

As a doctor, you will be faced with both reliable and unreliable information, and you’ll need to make judgements about possible diagnoses from test results – so UCAT Abstract Reasoning (previously UKCAT Abstract Reasoning) is designed to assess your ability to evaluate and generate hypotheses, as well as your critical thinking.

Please note that UCAT was renamed from UKCAT in 2019. However, the UCAT Consortium has stated that the test content between UKCAT Abstract Reasoning and UCAT Abstract Reasoning will be the same. Read more about the UKCAT to UCAT changeover here.

Looking for more Abstract Reasoning tips? Visit our UCAT Tips page!

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What is the UCAT Abstract Reasoning Format?

FormatAbstract Reasoning
Questions55
Timing 13 minutes
Question TypeMultiple choice

What was the average UKCAT Abstract Reasoning score in 2018?

The average UKCAT Abstract Reasoning score in 2018 was 637. Want to find out more about how the exam is scored and average results? Visit our UCAT Scores page.

What are UCAT Abstract Reasoning Question Types?

There are four types of Abstract Reasoning question in the UCAT:

  1. Type 1

You are presented with two ‘sets’ of shapes (Set A and Set B) followed by five ‘test shapes’. You need to decide if the ‘test shape’ fits into Set A, Set B or neither set A nor set B.

  1. Type 2

You are presented with a series of shapes, alternating form one box to the next. You need to say which of four shapes would come next in the sequence.

  1. Type 3

You are presented with a ‘statement’ of two sets of shapes – where changes have been applied to one set of shapes to create a new one. You must then apply the same changes to a set of test shapes and choose which of four options comes next.

  1. Type 4

A  variation on Type 1 questions, but instead of five sequential ‘tests shapes’ you are presented with four ‘test shapes’ simultaneously and have to decide which one of the four belongs to either Set A or B.

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UCAT Abstract Reasoning Tips

Complete practice questions

This is one of our top UCAT Abstract Reasoning tips. The Abstract Reasoning section tests your ability to recognise patterns. The best way to prepare for this is by completing practice questions, as this will enable you to recognise the kinds of patterns that commonly feature in the exam.

Familiarise yourself with looking at different examples and asking yourself questions: how many shapes are there in each box and does the tile fit this format? Do the shapes or patterns rotate clockwise or anti-clockwise? With Abstract Reasoning, practice makes perfect.

Most Popular UCAT Abstract Reasoning Blogs

You can read a selection of our most popular UCAT Abstract Reasoning (UKCAT Abstract Reasoning) blogs below.

UCAT Abstract Reasoning Tips in 60 Seconds

Preparing for Abstract Reasoning and want The Medic Portal’s top tips? Watch Allen’s tips in 60 seconds below!

Please note that test content between UKCAT Abstract Reasoning and UCAT Abstract Reasoning is the same.


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