UCAT Time Per Question

Advice & Insight From UCAT Specialists

One of the key factors that can help you optimise your UCAT score is knowing how much time you have available for each question in each section of the exam and practising your time management skills in advance of sitting the actual exam. You don’t want to miss questions out because you have run out of time; those could be important marks that could help you achieve your optimum score. Being aware of the time allocation for each section of the UCAT will help you manage your time more effectively. Since all questions are weighted equally, it is important not to spend too much time on perceived tougher questions especially if it prevents you from answering questions that take less time.

Subsection time allocation

You have two hours in total to complete the five sections of the UCAT which run consecutively. At the start of each section, you have one minute of instructions. Here are the timings for each subsection:

Verbal Reasoning

Time allowed

Number of questions

Time suggested for each passage/set of 4 questions

21 minutes

11 sets of 4 = 44

2 minutes

Here, you should note that you need to divide up your time between reading the passages and answering the questions. Here is one way that could work for you, but ultimately you will develop your own optimum pace:

Time suggested for reading each passage

Time suggested for each question

45 – 60 seconds

15 seconds

Decision Making

Time allowed

Number of questions

Time for each question

31 minutes


64 seconds

Quantitative Reasoning

Time allowed

Number of questions

Time for each question

24 minutes


40 seconds

Abstract Reasoning

Time allowed

Number of questions

Time for each question

13 minutes


12 seconds*

*Completing questions at this pace would take you 11 minutes in total.

How many questions are in UCAT Situational Judgement?

There are 69 questions in the Situational Judgement section. Since you are allowed 26 minutes, this means that you have approximately 22 seconds for each question.

Know your timescales

Knowing these timescales will certainly allow you to develop a pace of working that suits you and gives you confidence to maximise the number of questions you can answer, which in turn will help to increase your UCAT score. When doing practice questions, you should aim to do them under exam conditions and time yourself so that you get used to the timings as much as possible.

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