UCAT SJT Question Bank

Advice & Insight From UCAT Specialists

If you are looking for questions and worked examples like those found on the SJT subtest then carry-on reading

As well as looking at this question bank and past questions you may find it useful to familiarise yourself with the Good Medical Practice document created by the GMC. The GMC is the governing body of doctors and their guidance provides advice for how to deal with certain situations and what behaviour is expected of medical students in and out of the clinical environment.

In total there are 69 questions in the SJT subtest based upon 22 scenarios. There are 3 question formats you should be aware of which we will provide examples for:

  • Appropriateness – You are given a scenario and need to assess if actions are very appropriate, appropriate but not ideal, inappropriate but not awful, a very inappropriate thing to do.
  • Appropriateness rank – choose the 2 most appropriate responses out of 3.
  • Importance – Assess if different factors are: Very important, important, of minor importance, not important at all.

Appropriateness Questions:

Scenario 1 : A fifth year medical student is apologising to a patient due to an admissions error they have made. The patient becomes extremely angry and begins to physically confront the patient.

Response: Remove yourself from the situation and prioritise your own safety.

Answer: A very appropriate thing to do.

Reasoning: Doctors are justified to end consultations in accordance with the NHS non-physical assault policy if they feel that the patient’s behaviour is escalating. If a conversation begins to escalate the doctor should position themselves near the door and leave if necessary. 


Scenario 2: A receptionist informs you a doctor completing your specialty training that they smelt alcohol on the breath of their consultant. Yesterday the doctor wrongly administered a patient’s medication, and you are increasingly concerned they may be putting patients at risk. 


Response: Report to the consultant to the GMC


Answer: Appropriate but not ideal

Reasoning: In this scenario the best approach is to consultant advice from the GMC without disclosing the personal information and inform the Primary Care Trust. The GMC will provide confidential advice. This response would prioritise patient safety, however the complaint should be handled locally by the Primary Care Trust where the doctors’ employers can decide on their fitness to practice. This can then be escalated to the GMC by this body if necessary.


Scenario 3: You are a fourth year Medical Student consulting alone in General Practice. The patient explains how their medication has terrible side effects. When discussing potential treatment plan options, the patient asks you if you would stop taking the lifesaving medication they are on if you were in their position?


Response: Tell the patient not to stop the treatment as doctors should consider non-maleficence as part of their decision making.


Answer: A very inappropriate thing to do

Reasoning: For a capacitated patient to make consent refusal decisions they must not be coerced. As a medical student you should explain to the patient that you cannot make the decision for them, but your role is to help and advise them.

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Appropriateness ranking

Scenario: You are a medical student, a 15-year-old discloses to you that she has had a positive pregnancy test following unprotected sex with a 19-year-old. They explain that you are the only person they have told as they were under the influence of alcohol and are worried about getting in trouble. They ask you to not disclose this information to the GP you are working with as they are scared, the GP will disclose the information to their parents.


Response 1: Decide not to tell anyone about the concerns, respecting the patient’s confidentiality?

Response 2: Tell Sarah you will keep her information confidential to prevent damage to your relationship, but subsequently escalate this when she has left.

Response 3: Inform Sarah about why you will have to disclose this information and tell the consultant.


Answer: Most Appropriate: Inform Sarah about why you will have to disclose this information and tell the consultant.


Least Appropriate: Decide not to tell anyone about the concerns, respecting the patient’s confidentiality?


Reasons: Confidently is not absolute and as a medical student you have a duty of care to protect the patient. You should escalate this situation so that the medical team can protect the child from potential harm, abuse or neglect. Medical students should act with integrity and be honest with their patients. If the GP needs to escalate this situation it will be impossible to do so without disclosing the lie you have told and potentially further damaging the doctor-patient relationship.

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Importance Question

Scenario: You are a medical student, and your friend asks you to sign them into a lecture which they will have to miss as they forgot about a hockey fixture.


They are usually very studious and rarely miss lectures.

Not important at all- the past behaviour of your colleague should not impact whether you act with honesty and integrity. If they are a very dedicated individual, it is likely that there will be no negative repercussions from them missing the lecture provided, they report their absence

That they will miss out on a required teaching session.

Very Important – The reason medical schools use registration is to keep a note of student attendance so that they have an awareness of who has and has not received teaching on a particular topic. Medical schools monitor the commitment and wellbeing of their student. If your friend misses the lecture, they may miss out on information they require to deliver safe and effective patient care in the future.

They are captain of the hockey team.

Not relevant at all – Although you should listen to the reasoning of your friend for why they are missing the lecture this should not impact your decision making.  

If you say no, they will ask someone else

Of minor importance – although the consequence will be same for your friend you should not let this impact your decision making.

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