How Hard is GAMSAT?
The GAMSAT is difficult because it’s the longest medical school admissions test in the world. Three hours of science, two hours of humanities reasoning and a sprint to write two 500-word essays in one hour? Most students don’t finish this section at all, so having speed, autonomy and strategy on the exam is very important for success.
GAMSAT requires a lot of hard work and dedication in order to do well. However, it is certainly possible to get a good score on the exam with the right GAMSAT preparation.
Applying to medical school is obviously a stressful endeavour, and for many people, the most challenging part of the process is the Graduate Australian Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT).
Everyone sooner or later will ask the question of how hard is GAMSAT, and implicitly knows that the GAMSAT is a difficult test, but how hard is GAMSAT, exactly? It’s important to have a good understanding of how hard the GAMSAT is so you can decide on an effective approach to prepare for this exam.
There are strategies that can help you prepare and improve your chances of getting into medical school. It's no surprise that many applicants are daunted by it due to the question that often runs through many prospective students mind - how hard is GAMSAT!.
This article will help you understand why the GAMSAT is so challenging, so you'll be better equipped to tackle its challenges instead of being immobilized by fear.
So Is GAMSAT Hard?
Here are a few things that make GAMSAT difficult:
- The breadth of material covered. GAMSAT covers a huge range of topics, from science to essay writing. This can be daunting for students who are used to focusing on one particular area of study.
- The time pressure. Students have just three hours to complete the entire exam, which is a lot shorter than most other exams. This can be tough to manage, especially when there are so many different sections to complete.
GAMSAT is not a test of how smart you are—it's a test of how well you can apply what you know.
The GAMSAT examiners know that everyone who sits the GAMSAT has studied hard and deserves to do well, so they do not expect candidates to be perfect at everything in the syllabus. Instead, they want to see whether or not you have the skills required for medical study: namely, critical analysis and ability to think quickly under pressure.
If there's one thing I wish people knew about GAMSAT before sitting it, it's this: don't stress out! Your score doesn't reflect how good a doctor you'll be; instead it shows if your mind works in ways suitable for study at graduate level.
The Difficulty of GAMSAT Questions
GAMSAT questions are designed to be challenging, and they can be difficult to understand at first glance. This can be frustrating for students who are used to getting straight-forward questions on exams.
However, there are also a few things that make GAMSAT harder than other exams:
- The ability to use a calculator. Students are not allowed to use a calculator on the exam, which isn't helpful for doing calculations quickly.
- The use of multiple choice format. Some sections of the exam are in multiple choice format, which can be easier than other formats such as essay or short answer.
- The chance to guess. On some sections of the exam, students are given the opportunity to guess the answer if they don't know it. This can be a good way to boost your score, but it also means that you need to be careful not to guess too much.
What Does the GAMSAT assess?
Beyond the obvious, the GAMSAT assesses your ability to think critically and reason analytically. It's also a test of general knowledge, general intelligence and general ability.
This is how the Australian Medical Student Journal describes it:
"The GAMSAT is designed to measure your academic potential for medicine."
"It does this by testing four key areas: verbal reasoning, physical sciences (chemistry), biological sciences (biology) and sociology/anthropology. The total score is calculated on the basis that there are no right or wrong answers."
How to prepare for a Hard Exam Like GAMSAT
- Practice test. Undertake a GAMSAT practice test and find out how you perform on the exam. This will allow you to identify your strengths and weaknesses, which can then be used to develop an effective study plan.
- Study plan. Create a study plan to ensure that you are using your time wisely while still making progress towards the end goal of passing GAMSAT. The more prepared and organized you are before beginning study, the better off your chances will be of achieving success!
- Study group. Start a study group with other students who are also preparing for their GAMSAT exam so that you can help each other learn and grow as individuals together as well!
Check out some of our other articles on the best GAMSAT preparation resources that you might find useful.
How hard is GAMSAT Section 3 Science?
GAMSAT Section 3 science is one of the hardest sections. You have to be able to understand, apply and explain science in a way that is easy for the GAMSAT examiners to understand.
The GAMSAT Section 3 science questions are not always straightforward. They can be vague and difficult to interpret.
If you want to do well in GAMSAT science, you need practice questions that are similar in difficulty level as those on the actual exam.
This will give you confidence and teach you how best to approach these types of questions so when it comes time for your real GAMSAT, it won't come as such a shock or surprise!
How hard is the GAMSAT Section 2 Essay Writing?
GAMSAT Section 2 is the essay writing section of the GAMSAT. This means that this is where you'll be doing your best to convince an examiner that you have what it takes to study medicine in Australia, United Kingdom or New Zealand.
The GAMSAT essay writing section is different from other tests like the SAT, ACT, and GRE because it's not just about critical thinking, but also communication skills and understanding sentence structure.
There are no fill-in-the-blank questions here; instead, you'll be given a passage on a topic relating to worldy event and asked to create an essay on it.
How hard is the GAMSAT Section 1 ?
You’ll need to spend a lot of time working on the GAMSAT Section 1 reasoning in humanities and social sciences, as this is the part of the test where you can really make or break your score.
The reasoning section will ask you to find relationships between different concepts, either within paragraphs or between paragraphs. The questions will be quite varied – some are straightforward, while others can be more complex.
There are no negative marking for wrong answers on this section of GAMSAT – so don’t worry if you don’t know how to answer a question correctly and just guess!
How long does it take to get a good score in the GAMSAT?
The GAMSAT is a difficult exam and takes a lot of time to prepare for. It also requires a lot of hard work and dedication, so you will need to be focused on your studies throughout the year, at least 8 hours per day on average.
In order to get a good score on the GAMSAT, you will have to do more than just study: you'll need to practice too! The question of how hard is GAMSAT is really underscored by the amount of preparation you do.
Our GAMSAT practice tests are designed with this in mind; they contain questions that are based on past exams, with step-by-step explanations for each answer choice so that you can learn from your mistakes and improve your performance over time.
Is there a way to improve your GAMSAT score fast?
GAMSAT is a test of your general knowledge and ability to apply that knowledge. There is no way to improve your score fast, but you can improve it by studying and practising.
Studying means reading the text books, doing questions from past papers and answering them in practice tests, then going through the answers you got wrong or missed questions and working out why you got them wrong or missed them.
Practising means doing as many simulated exams as possible until the time comes for you to sit for real on GAMSAT day. Try out our GAMSAT preparation courses to help you on your journey.
Hopefully, we've answered the question of - "how hard is GAMSAT". We know that studying for the GAMSAT can be overwhelming, but remember that you aren't alone. Thousands of students apply to medical school every year.
Overall, GAMSAT is a difficult exam but it is possible to do well if you are prepared. Make sure you understand the format of the exam and familiarise yourself with the types of questions that will be asked. With the right preparation, you can achieve a great score on GAMSAT.
We hope this article has given you a good idea of how hard the GAMSAT is and what it involves. We also hope it helps with understanding what types of questions might appear on test day so that you’ll be ready when they do!