BMAT 2021: What is the BMAT?


Mohil Shah

Medic Mind Founder

BMAT 2021: Introduction

The BioMedical Admissions Test, or BMAT 2021 as it is more commonly known, is one of the admissions tests that some universities use for your application to medical and health-related courses. 

It is separate from the UCAT and tests different skills. The BMAT tests your ability to apply scientific and mathematical knowledge, as well as critical thinking, problem solving and written communication in the form of a short essay. 

BMAT 2021 Sections

Section 1: Aptitude and Skills

This BMAT section tests your skills in problem solving, data analysis and inference, and understanding arguments. It consists of 35 multiple choice questions and you are given 60 minutes to complete this section. 

Section 2: Scientific Knowledge and Applications

In this BMAT section your ability to apply scientific knowledge is tested. Section 2 consists of 6-7 questions on each of biology, chemistry, physics and maths. The level of science is usually covered in school by the age of 16 (GCSE or IGCSE level equivalent). For this section there are 27 multiple choice questions, and you have 30 minutes to complete them.

BMAT Section 2
BMAT Biology Question

Section 3: Writing Task

In the final section of the exam, you will be tested on your ability to select, develop and organise ideas, and your ability to communicate them in writing concisely and effectively. For this task you are to answer one question from a choice of three questions, and you have 30 minutes to complete your answer. 

BMAT Essay
BMAT Essay Plan

What are the BMAT Universities?

Name of BMAT UniversityCourses requiring BMAT .
Brighton and Sussex A100 Medicine
CambridgeA100 Medicine
Imperial College LondonA100 Medicine
LancasterA100 Medicine & Surgery
A104 Medicine & Surgery with a Gateway Year
LeedsA100 Medicine
A101 Gateway Year to Medicine
A200 Dentistry
ManchesterA106 MBChB Medicine
A104 MBChB Medicine (with foundation year)
(International Applicants Only)
OxfordA100 Medicine
A101 Graduate Medicine Entry
BC98 Biomedical Sciences
Keele A100 Medicine
(International Applicants Only)
UCLA100 Medicine
BMAT Universities 2021

Key Dates for BMAT Universities 2021

There are usually multiple sittings of the BMAT, with the two UK test dates being in September and November, and further dates for international medical schools. However due to disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic only the November 2021 BMAT will go ahead. Every UK BMAT university will require you to take the exam on this date. Make sure to check if the universities you are applying to need the BMAT as you will need to be registered and pay the associated costs for your exam prior to sitting.

As soon as the registration dates for BMAT 2021 become available we’ll update the information below. The dates below are for the 2021 exam, but should give you a rough idea of the rough BMAT timeline.

  • Registration for November Exam: 1 September – 15 October 2021
  • Test Dates: 3 November 2021
  • Results for November Exam: 26th November 2022

When do I sit the BMAT 2021?

For 2021, every candidate will sit the BMAT in November. This is different as usually there is a choice of two test dates. There are pros and cons for each of the BMAT test dates, and it’s worth considering which would suit you better if you’re given a choice. We go into this further in another article which you can find here. However, this isn’t applicable for 2021 candidates as there is not a choice of sittings.

How is the BMAT 2021 Scored?

BMAT Section 2

As with Section 1, each question carries a single mark. No marks deducted for giving an incorrect answer. Your total raw mark is converted to a score between 1 (low) and 9 (high). The median score tends to be around 5.0 and normally corresponds to roughly half marks. 6.0 or more is an excellent score, achieved by around 10% of test-takers, and very few candidates score more than 7.0. Even so, you can get a few questions wrong and still achieve a perfect 9.0!

BMAT Section 3

Your essay will be marked by two examiners and who will each give you a separate score. They will be scoring you on two main aspects – one is for content (on a scale of 0 to 5). This is based on how well you’ve put your argument across, the number of examples you’ve used and more. The other score is all about the quality of language and is scored from A-E. This assesses your English grammar and sentence structure.

These two BMAT examiners’ scores will be averaged with 5A being the best score. In 2019, 3 was the commonest score for content and 5% of applicants scored 4 or more.

You can find out more here in our Section 3 Guide

How do I Prepare for the BMAT 2021?

BMAT Section 2

The most important thing you can do for Section 2 is download the official specification as this will tell you exactly which topics will be covered. In our experience, Physics tends to be the biggest obstacle course for most however it’s vital to remember that only 25% of the content will be on Physics. Take a look at our BMAT Physics guide for more tips.

We recommend visiting our past paper compilations where we’ve put together a list of questions which come up most frequently and provided explanations for each question.

BMAT Section 3

This can be the trickiest part of the exam for most but the best thing you should do is write lots of practice essays. Practice writing these on the specimen paper so you can get used to the test conditions. You should also aim to try and get someone to read over it if you can. You should aim to write essay plans for all the previous essay titles to help you get into the swing of things.

It goes without saying that you should be doing lots of wider reading on topics like current affairs, science and ethics. Start doing this early to avoid cramming at the last minute. Take a look at our section 3 guide for more tips.

Is the BMAT 2021 online?

Due to delays caused by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the September BMAT is cancelled and all candidates will sit the exam in November. You cannot take the exam at home and must take the test at a centre that is authorised.

What is a good BMAT score 2021?

Usually the average BMAT score is around 5.0, which equates to roughly half marks. The best 10% candidates will score around 6.0, and very few exceptional candidates will score over 7.0

Will there be a September BMAT 2021?

Due to delays caused by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the September BMAT is cancelled and all candidates will sit the exam in November. This means that no candidate will know their BMAT score before submitting their UCAS application.

⚖️ Is the BMAT harder than the UCAT 2021?

The answer to this question relies on your own personal strengths and weaknesses. The UCAT and BMAT test different skills, so different students will find different parts of each exam more challenging. The BMAT requires GCSE science knowledge and includes essay writing so may be more suited to students with strong scientific reasoning. The UCAT relies on more cognitive skills such as abstract reasoning and doesn’t require any science knowledge.

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Post as “Anonymous”


AnonymousMedic Mind Tutor

19 August 2021

Is the BMAT November 2021 exam online at a test centre or on paper? Thanks.


AnonMedic Mind Tutor

7 September 2021


AnonymousMedic Mind Tutor

24 October 2021

will data analysis be in 2021 bmat?

AnonymousMedic Mind Tutor

1 November 2021

will be given any paper for rough work as the question paper is online this year?