VALUABLE UCAT PREP, Medical Observer (22 June 2007)

Tuition for UCAT develops students’ skills in logical reasoning, critical thinking, problem solving, abstract reasoning and interpersonal skills. How can anyone claim that teaching such valuable life skills undermines UCAT? (MedObs, 8 June 2007, p13).

If UCAT coaching is considered unfair, then it must follow that the following must also be considered exploitative:

    • Private schools charging parents up to $20,000 per year and profiting from their anxiety to get high year 12 scores for their children
    • Universities profiting from students anxiety to obtain degrees (by charging $40,000 per year for a full fee place in medicine)
    • Coaching organizations profiting from students anxiety to get into selective schools or obtain private school scholarships
    • Organizations profiting from people’s anxiety to get a job (by offering training in CV preparation, interview training etc).

UCAT coaching is no different to coaching for GAMSAT (entry test for graduate medicine). Equity and access issues are inevitable, whatever criteria is used. In fact, since GAMSAT and year 12 exams are knowledge-based tests, being coached for them is less useful than coaching for UCAT, which tests generic skills that students can take with them for life

The Australian Medical Students Association’s own survey showed that 70% of medical students felt UCAT coaching helped. Our surveys consistently show that over 99% of students felt our UCAT tuition was useful.

MedEntry runs workshops in rural centres and offers substantial discounts for students who are financially or socially disadvantaged.