Looking to boost your UCAT VR score?
VR is generally considered to be the hardest section of the UCAT. Students tend to get the lowest marks and therefore it is where you have most to gain from targeted practice.
For this reason, we created a new VR Inference Skills Trainer, included free with all UCAT packages. Identifying inferences quickly is an absolutely key skill for VR.
The Skills Trainer is designed to drill your inference speed reading skills, over and over, under timed conditions, with points awarded based on correct answers and the level of difficulty. This microskill allows you to answer real test questions more effectively. By the time you get to the exam, inference scanning should be a reflex.
Keep in mind, inference questions make up around 20-25% of your total VR score - that’s up to one question per set! Mastering inference can be the difference between getting into your chosen university and falling short.
So what is inference, exactly?
There are four types of connection between the text and the question in the VR test, inference is just one of these.
Statement: Skype is owned by Microsoft
Text: ‘Bill Gates, chairman of Microsoft, recently signed off on a multibillion-dollar deal to acquire the technology firm ‘Skype’’.
Statement: Australopithecus share a gene with modern humans
Text: Australopithecus possessed two of three duplicated genes derived from SRGAP2 roughly 3.4 and 2.4 million years ago (SRGAP2B and SRGAP2C), the second of which contributed to the increase in number and migration of neurons in the human brain.
Statement: The Spanish colonised Rio de la Plata in the late fifteen hundreds.
Text: The Inca Empire expanded to the northwest of what is now Argentina in Pre-Columbian times. The country has its roots in Spanish colonization of the region during the 16th century. Argentina rose as the successor state of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, a Spanish overseas viceroyalty founded in 1776.
Statement: The occidental hemisphere is also known as “the Old World”
Text: The Eastern Hemisphere is a geographical term for the half of Earth which is east of the prime meridian (which crosses Greenwich, London, United Kingdom) and west of the antimeridian (which crosses the Pacific Ocean and relatively little land from pole to pole). The Eastern Hemisphere may also be called the "Oriental Hemisphere". In addition, it may be used in a cultural or geopolitical sense as a synonym for the "Old World".
‘Manchester School of Medicine is undeniably popular. With its incredible facilities - including a simulation clinic - and world-class lecturers, it is often considered to be a dream medical school’
Statement: Manchester medical school is one of the best universities in the country.
The answer is: Can’t tell. Manchester could indeed be ‘one of the best’, but there is not enough evidence to infer this.
When the text is long and complicated, as it is in the UCAT, this process becomes considerably more difficult. Not to mention when under the stress of the exam time conditions.
Improve your inference skills: