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UMAT 2015 news!

December 2, 2014

UMAT 2015 registrations are now open.

UMAT 2015 Information Booklet is also available from the umat.acer.edu.au website.

UMAT 2015 Preparation Courses available from nie.edu.au

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UMAT Interviews Preparation and Training – www.nie.edu.au/umat-interview

October 18, 2014

NIE UMAT Interviews and Effective Communication Workshop.

DO I NEED TO PREPARE FOR THE UMAT INTERVIEW?

Yes, you do!!! – The main reason some universities advise against interview preparation for UMAT is because they would like to dissuade you from attending a course run by unqualified presenters, jeopardising your true chance of success in the interview. This is a common occurrence with workshops and teachers where typical interview questions are rehearsed and rote answers are spoon fed to students. Be assured, your UMAT interviewers will be able to identify this impersonal behaviour. Furthermore, at the opposite end of the spectrum, universities are concerned that unsuitable applicants will become well trained and progress successfully through the interview process unhindered.

Neither of the above will happen at the NIE Interview and Effective Communication Workshop. Firstly, our workshops are run by qualified health specialists and educators, who are professionally and personally dedicated to seeing the right people get the right job. This is why we explicitly request that unless you are 100% certain that a medical career is your own innate desire and dream, do not sign up to our workshop, as we will not train you to show the commitment that ensures your success. We work with those know where they want to go, and we will hold your hand and walk you to that door. We will certainly not spoon feed you or push you through that door!

Secondly, rehearsing interview answers is one of the riskiest and least effective methods for preparing for an interview of this caliber. At the NIE workshop, we will look at some typical UMAT questions, but we will not rehearse anything by rote. Our workshop is about teaching you the anatomy of an interview and giving you an in-depth understanding of the whole process. We will teach you effective communication techniques and prepare you to make an impact in the interview room. We will help you become memorable. We will encourage you to dig deep, to be real, and discover your own self with your best attributes, all the while being aware of what they are looking for. An interview is a presentation process. You need to know the product (which is you!) in order to present it effectively and rise above the rest. And of course, there are some social and psychological basics to be explored that will help you glide comfortably and confidently through the most challenging interview of your life.

The workshop will be a value-packed, full day event where lunch and refreshments will be provided to all participants. The day will be filled with fun activities, interaction, practical tools, and lots of self-analysis.

To enrol visit http://www.nie.edu.au and select ‘UMAT Interviews Workshop’ under the UMAT Interviews main menu tab.

All mixed sections UMAT approach strategy.

April 14, 2014

Up until year 2013 there were always 3 separate sections in the UMAT where students had to finish each section in particular given time. Students were not allowed to go back to the previous section once the time for the section was up. The styles of questions for UMAT 2014 are still covering Logical Reasoning and Problem Solving, Understanding People and Non-verbal Reasoning skills. However, questions are no longer divided into three timed sections. Just like UMAT 2013, this year UMAT 2014 will also be a 3 hour test consisting of 134 randomly mixed questions, there are no rest breaks, and students will be given 10 minutes reading time. Students can answer questions in any order they want.

In our understanding the relatively new “all-mixed’ UMAT approach can work both ways, to students’ advantage as well as disadvantage. Students can spend a little extra time on the areas of the test that they are confident in, and hopefully score extra marks by answering more questions correctly. However, students need to be very careful as to how they are spending their time by going through the questions that are difficult or unfamiliar to them. Naturally, when students find a particular question difficult, they tend to spend more time trying to figure it out, but is this the right test-taking strategy for the UMAT?? Students will need to be extra careful with how they spend their time answering questions and ensure that they do not leave too many unattempted questions towards the end. Once again, we cannot stress enough, that with so many thousands of students sitting the test, every extra question answered correctly can make a very big difference at the end. Students need to practice their test-taking skills and follow through with developed strategies during the actual test.

The UMAT Preparation Goals and the Study Plan

March 30, 2014

Before one can master UMAT strategies, it is important to know exactly what you are dealing with. Let us start with the basics. UMAT, among other things, is a test comprising three sections of questions designed to measure personal qualities. The questions do not test academic knowledge and do not require any special understanding of science or mathematics.  It consists of 180 minutes (three hours) of 134 multiple choice format questions with either 4 or 5 response alternatives from which you are asked to choose what you consider to be the most appropriate answer. All questions are of equal value, but will vary in difficulty.  Marks will not be deducted for incorrect answers and you should be aware that not all individuals will complete all questions or do equally well in each section.

The test itself is sat on the same day worldwide. Only if very special circumstances exist, candidates could be given a permission to sit the test on a different date. Due to the largely increasing number of students sitting UMAT each year, it is becoming more and more difficult for ACER to accommodate all of the candidates in one venue in each state. For that reason, students will be given either morning or afternoon session. 

UMAT can be a grueling experience, so if you cannot approach it with confidence and stamina, you may lose your composure. That is why it is important to take control. Preparation does work and in most cases is a must. Visit www.nie.edu.au for UMAT preparation Courses, UMAT Books, UMAT one-on-one tuition and workshops.

The test consists of the questions covering Logical Reasoning and Problem Solving, Understanding People, and Non-verbal Reasoning. The questions are mixed up and are no longer grouped into individual sections. All 134 questions are presented in one test book and there are no rest breaks. Students will be allowed to attempt questions in any order they want. 

The way that you plan and prepare is just as important as what you are preparing for. Think carefully about what the universities require and how important each component is. Entry for most of these courses follows three distinct steps:

  • Ranking in the top X% of year 12 (depending on course cut-offs).
  • Ranking in the top 10% of UMAT candidates (or higher depending on course cut-offs).
  • Excelling at an oral interview.

Once you know what the universities require you will be more able to plan out your preparation. Always remember though, in most cases a year 12 score of even 99.9 will not be sufficient without the required UMAT score!

Taking the above into consideration, your basic study plan should be as follows:

  • Prioritise and maintain an excellent and consistent general study ethic to maximise your Year 12 scores.
  • Start UMAT Prep as early as possible. Identify your strengths and weaknesses, prioritise and peak your preparation for the UMAT test closer to the test date.
  • Strictly limit interview preparation to before the commencement of year 12 and until after the UMAT or until you are notified of any invitations for interviews.

Of course, there are courses that fall outside the above guide (but not many). Also, the ways in which the UMAT results are used can be virtually different for various universities. Finally, the universities can change their selection criteria at any time, and hence, students should check the university website for any information updates.

The point being, if you understand what each university is after, then you will be in a far better position to prepare and apply, catering for their specific requirements.

UMAT Interviews

October 31, 2013

Revolutionary UMAT Interview Training

The UMAT is now over and it is time for those who have performed to the required standard, to cross the final hurdle on the way to starting their studies in the medical field. We are of course, referring to the medical school interview process, which will be offered to the lucky few.

One-on-One UMAT Interview Training
NIE has been conducting personalised one-on-one interview workshops for over 13 years, and with a very high success rate! The one-on-one interview is catered to each student’s individual and specific needs, based on things like their past life experiences; family, cultural and social background; past study experience; and finally, the university for which they are preparing for. This is a very intense interview session, which places the interviewee in the interview hot seat before they attend the real interview. Unlike other interview workshops, our aim is not to rehearse the questions. Because the reality is that no one really knows, which questions will be asked at the real interview. Instead, we closely study each individual’s demeanour and their style of answering questions, communication skills and general logics. The interview aims at fine-tuning and polishing ones understanding of the interview process and how they should tackle different styles of questions. Once these skills have been mastered, no question will come as a surprise. Furthermore, based on each individual’s performance during the mock interview, each interviewee will be given extra homework that they will have to complete and follow through during the real interview.
The places for the one-on-one interviews are very limited as they are conducted by the core academic staff of NIE. Therefore, we strongly urge those who have been given an interview offer to not risk going unprepared to the interview and take advantage of our one-on-one interview training session. Please note, that for the one-on-one training we will not take any bookings unless you have been given an interview offer.

Workshop UMAT Interview Training
NIE also offers an Interview Workshop, which is a full day event conducted in a group setting. This workshop is entirely structured and based on some of the models that are taught during our one-on-one session. This workshop will allow each and every attendee to sharpen their communication skills as well as experience the proverbial “Hot Chair”, they will also gain an in-depth understanding of the interview process of various universities. This workshop is not only imperative for those who have been offered or expecting an interview offer, but it is also important for ones future career and studies. It will be a concentrated, but fun and exciting day filled with intense learning through role plays, group activities, self-reflection and of course written theory.
Click here to express your interest in attending either one-on-one revolutionary UMAT interview training session, the workshop, or both.

UMAT Interview Preparation Book
Finally, if you have not completed one of our UMAT preparation courses, you will need to purchase the Interview Techniques manual prior to undertaking the interview training session.

Our NIE UMAT Interview Techniques hardcopy book is an intensive training aid covering all aspects of successful interview preparation. This book includes developmental exercises for constructing a relevant personal interview profile, invaluable advice on researching strategic information, professional tips on interview etiquette, creating lasting impressions, managing nerves, and confidently answering questions. And most importantly over 120 real Medical School questions and scenarios with advice on how to practice and answer them. Click here to purchase NIE UMAT Interview Techniques book.

Please note, for your convenience during this busy UMAT interview training period NIE office will be open 7 days a week, 8.00am till late.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

NIE Team
http://www.nie.edu.au
1300 974 187

UMAT 2013 Changes

April 30, 2013

The National Institute of Education for UMAT preparation aims to keep students informed of any news and changes to the UMAT that we become aware of as the UMAT date approaches.

Also, as always NIE aims to provide the highest quality of preparation resources and communication with teachers and students. This is evident in NIE’s unique approach of providing hardcopy books and resources, as well as 7 days a week 12 hours a day online UMAT chat support with our expert UMAT advice representatives, available via http://www.nie.edu.au to all teachers, students and parents. A lot of prospective UMAT candidates are already using our free UMAT live chat support line. Come online and say hello to us too 🙂

Important Dates

The registration line for the UMAT 2013 is already open. The deadline for UMAT registration is 5.00 pm, 7th of June 2013. Late registrations will incur a $65 penalty and this option will close on the 21st of June at 5.00 pm. The UMAT date is 31st of July.

UMAT Changes for 2013

Unlike last year, this year there are no extra questions, nor there will be any extra time added to the test. However, there is one major change, and this change is reflected in the Book 8 UMAT NIE 2013 Practice Tests and Book 7 UMAT NIE Update Pack, which are both available from http://www.nie.edu.au

In all previous years, there were always 3 separate sections in the UMAT, where students had to finish each section in a particular given time. Students were not allowed to go back to the previous section past the allocated time. The styles of questions for UMAT 2013 are still the same, covering logical reasoning, understanding people and non-verbal reasoning skills. However, questions are no longer divided into three timed sections. UMAT 2013 will be a 3 hour test consisting of 134 questions, the test is NO LONGER divided into sections and there are no rest breaks. Students can answer questions in any order they want.

In our understanding this can work both ways, to the students’ advantage, as well as disadvantage. Students can spend a little extra time on the areas of the test that they are confident in, and hopefully score extra marks by answering more questions correctly. However, students need to be very careful as to how they are spending their time by going through the questions that are difficult or unfamiliar to them. Naturally, when students find a particular question difficult, they tend to spend more time in attempting to solve it, but is this the right test-taking strategy for the UMAT? With this new timing structure, where the time constraints for each section have been removed, students will need to be extra careful with how they spend their time answering questions and ensure that they do not leave too many questions unanswered. Once again, we cannot stress enough, that with so many thousands of students sitting the test, every extra question answered correctly can make a very big difference at the end. Students need to practice their test-taking skills and follow through with developed strategies during the actual test.

UMAT and Negative Marking

April 30, 2013

Please note the following, as stated in the 2013 ACER Information Booklet.

All questions have the same value; therefore, by attempting as many questions as possible, you stand the best chance of maximising your score.

No marks are deducted for a wrong answer.

If you mark more than one answer to a question, it will be considered wrong.

Answers should be marked directly onto the answer sheet, not in the test book.

You may do rough work in the margins of your test book. Scrap paper is not allowed.

What does NIE think about the above ACER info?

Yes, there has been a lot of confusion when it comes to UMAT and negative marking. According to AECR, you will NOT have 1 mark deducted per incorrect answer choice. In saying that, it does not mean that it is a 50/50 chance that ACER might be using a formula to rank the scores where some negative marking scheme is applied to standardise thousands of UMAT candidate scores. Once again, ACER keeps the information as to how they mark the test confidential, and no one knows how it is done, so we cannot conclude if there is negative marking or not. However! Negative marking does not mean that for every incorrect answer you will have one mark deducted from your final score.

Understanding People UMAT Construct (section 2) ‘Quick Tip’

April 30, 2013

Whenever you are watching a movie, or reading a book, in scenarios where deep emotion is experienced, ask yourself how individual characters feel in each situation, and what is the emotion overall in that situation. How do emotions change? Section 2 is all about being able to interpret the emotions, rather than simply read the literature.

Even watching the daily news is good, and asking yourself the same questions, but try to use the UMAT jargon. Examine the meaning of empathy, sympathy, jealousy, envy, compassion, concern, etc. in those situations. Finally ask yourself, how do you feel towards the characters in the given situation? Are you feeling sympathetic, or maybe empathetic? It is important to develop understanding of what such words mean, as often these terms can be confused and used incorrectly when attempting the UMAT.

Practice reading newspaper articles, health journals, TIMES magazine within say 1 minute – 2 minutes initially – close your book and verbalise the key points without looking.

When is the best time to start preparing for the UMAT?

April 30, 2013

If you are in year 10 or 11 and studying for UMAT – well done! You are in much better competitive position than those who started preparation later. Take it easy and develop yourself a steady study routine, where you don’t over-study and become tired of it. Because you will have ups and downs with the preparation, it can get difficult to stay motivated when there is no one to push you. The main advice is not to spend too much time on understanding the content of the questions when you are looking as to where you went wrong, but rather, try to see where your thought process went wrong and understand the strategy of test techniques, rather than understanding the concepts of the stimulus material. Because in the actual UMAT, as you know, you will never have an identical question to what you attempted through practice, but questions similar in their testing style. The biggest mistake students can do is to get stuck on trying to understand a certain question for an entire day, as someone else will just skip it move on and do another 20 questions that day.

UMAT ACER Practice Tests

April 30, 2013

You will be provided with a free UMAT practice ACER booklet upon your registration for the UMAT 2013. You can also buy extra practice booklets from their website.

NIE advice:

Do attempt ACER practice questions to ensure that you are not leaving anything to chance.

However, things that ACER does not tell you:

ACER booklets do not have explanations to the questions, just answers (A, B, C, D…), which proves useless if you are trying to use these test for study purposes.
UMAT is a physical book test, and from this year, ACER practice questions are online. Hence, practicing their questions makes it a very different experience to what UMAT will be like in real life (especially section 3 requires you to make notes about the puzzles on paper, which is not possible to do when questions are on the computer screen)

ACER practice questions are the same questions that were used 10 years ago. Even then students used to say that ACER booklets were much easier than the real UMAT. Ten years on, the UMAT difficulty level grew immensely, but it seems like ACER did not bother to change the difficulty of their practice question, so please, be cautious about this.