About BMAT

The BioMedical Admissions Test (BMAT) is a two-hour pen and paper aptitude test required by a handful of medical, dental and veterinary schools. This page provides the headline information on the BMAT exam, including how BMAT universities use your BMAT scores.


BMAT tests your ability to apply scientific and mathematical knowledge, as well as problem solving, critical thinking and written communication skills that are essential to university-level study.



What does BMAT involve

There are three sections as follows:

Section 1: Aptitude and Skills: 35 multiple choice questions in 60 minutes  
Generic skills in problem solving, understanding arguments, and data analysis and inference.

Section 2: Scientific Knowledge: 27 MCQs, 30 minutes
The ability to apply scientific knowledge typically covered in school Science and Mathematics by the age of 16 (for example, GCSE in the UK and IGCSE internationally).

Section 3: Writing Task: choose 1 from 3 essay topics – 30 minutes to write
The ability to select, develop and organise ideas, and to communicate them in writing, concisely and effectively.


How does bmat scoring work

In Section 1 and Section 2, each question is worth one mark.  Answers are marked on a computer read answer sheet. The raw score is then placed on a scale of 1 (low) to 9 (high) – it’s worth noting that there’s no pass or fail threshold. The scores follow a normal distribution with the average student scoring around 5.0. The best candidates score 6.0 and exceptional candidates score 7.0 or above.


Section 3 is the essay section which is marked by two examiners> They will give you an alphabetical score for your use of written English as well as a numerical score for the content of your essay. This is scored in the following ways: 


Section 3: Written English (scored A, C or E)


          Band A: Good use of English – clear, fluent, good use of grammar and vocabulary

  • fluent
  • good sentence structure
  • good use of vocabulary
  • sound use of grammar
  • good spelling and punctuation
  • few slips or errors 


          Band C: Reasonably clear use of English – reasonably fluent, some errors

  • reasonably fluent/not difficult to read
  • simple/unambiguous sentence structure
  • fair range and appropriate use of vocabulary
  • acceptable grammar
  • reasonable spelling and punctuation
  • some slips/errors 

          Band E: Rather weak use of English – not easy to follow, faulty grammar

  • hesitant fluency/not easy to follow at times
  • some flawed sentence structure/paragraphing
  • limited range of vocabulary
  • faulty grammar
  • regular spelling/punctuation errors
  • regular and frequent slips or errors 

Where candidates have crossed out sections or added information, the essay should be judged on the quality of the resulting use of English (i.e. crossed out text ignored, and inserted text read as if it were originally in place). An essay that is judged to be below the level of an E will receive an X.


Section 3: Quality of Content (scored from 1 to 5)

          Score 1: the essay has some bearing on the question but does not address it fully

          Score 2: addresses most of the question, but has significant elements of confusion

          Score 3: reasonably well-argued, may have weakness in the argument

          Score 4: good answer with few weaknesses, all aspects of the question are addressed

          Score 5: excellent answer with no significant weaknesses. 


Combining the scores for Section 3: If the two marks for content are the same or no more than one mark apart, the candidate gets the average of the two marks. If the two marks for written English are the same or no more than one mark apart, the scores are combined like this: AA = A, AC = B, CC = C, CE = D and EE = E.

For example, a writing task given a 4C by one examiner and 4A by the other will get a final score of 4B. A writing task given 3C by one examiner and 2C by the other will receive a mark of 2.5C. 

If there is a larger discrepancy in the marks, the writing tasks are marked for a third time, and the final mark is checked by the Senior Assessment Manager.


BMAT universities

The BMAT exam is required by an increasing number of universities to study Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. You can see this list below – as well as the results they accept:

BMAT Universities


Do they accept BMAT September or November results?

Brighton and Sussex Medical School

A100 Medicine

September or November


A100 Medicine
A109 Graduate Medicine

September or November

Lancaster University

A100 Medicine & Surgery
A900 Foundation Year for Medicine & Surgery

September or November

University College London (UCL)

A100 Medicine

September or November

University of Cambridge

A100 Medicine

September or November

University of Manchester

A106 MBChB Medicine and A104 MBChB Medicine (with foundation year)

International students only. September or November

University of Leeds

A100 Medicine
A200 Dentistry

September or November

University of Oxford

A100 Medicine

November only (although Graduate Medicine Entry A101 is September or November)


A100 Medicine

NOTE: Keele requires ONLY international students to sit the BMAT. September or Novembe