What is the HPAT?
The Health Professions Admission Test (HPAT) is an admissions test, taken by candidates who want to study medicine in Ireland. Similarly, to the UCAT (taken by medical school candidates in the UK) the HPAT assess abstract skills that are necessary for successful study and practice of medicine. Different to standard tests, the HPAT focuses on testing problem solving and logical reasoning skills, as opposed to testing knowledge studied across an academic year. Candidates looking to study Medicine in Ireland must first register with the Central Applications Office (CAO) to obtain a CAO number, necessary for sitting the HPAT exam. Candidates are then able to create a HPAT account, where an account can be made for the appropriate ID. HPAT test sites are across Ireland, including Cork, Dublin, Galway, Limerick, Sligo and Waterford. For candidates sitting the HPAT it is useful to consider the personal and professional skills that are necessary for becoming a professional medical practitioner, some of these skills include critical and analytical thinking, logical and reasoning communication skills, adaptability to fast changing environments and a strong sense of empathy for others. These skills are the main content for the HPAT, testing candidate’s general suitability to the Medical field and also their independent personalities, strengths and weaknesses.
What does the HPAT assess?
The HPAT is a 2.5-hour test, split into three sections of multiple-choice style questions.
Section 1: Section 1 of the HPAT consists of 44 questions, with 65 minutes allocated for these questions to be completed. Evaluating candidate’s ability to apply logical reasoning to solving problems, the questions in this section are formatted as pieces of text and graphs and require candidates to read data, coming to reasonable conclusions.
Section 2: Section 2 of the HPAT consists of 36 questions, with 45 minutes allocated for these questions to be complete. Evaluating candidate’s ability to apply empathy and understanding of patient’s emotions and behaviours, this section of the HPAT requires candidates to channel their ability to communicate clearly, establishing patient problems and finding reasonable solutions/ care.
Section 3: Section 3 of the HPAT consists of 30 questions, with 40 minutes allocated for these questions to be completed. Evaluating candidate’s ability to approach and find solutions to abstract problems, presenting these problems using visual aids such as abstract shapes. Testing non-verbal reasoning, this section challenges candidates on their abstract thinking skills.
What score should I be aiming to achieve?
The recommended average HPAT score that candidates should aim for is 170, with the maximum score for candidates to achieve a 300. The HPAT score is ranked on a scale from 0 to 300, with each section within the HPAT ranking from 0 to 100. Candidates that sit the HPAT will receive scores for each section as well as an overall score, with the overall percentile ranking indicating how well a candidate has done in relation to other candidates.
Medical Schools in Ireland requiring the HPAT:
+ National University of Ireland, Galway
+ Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI)
+ Trinity College Dublin
+ University College Cork
+ University College Dublin
+ University of Limerick
How do I prepare for the HPAT?
Reviewing and practicing using online past papers can be beneficial as they enable one to effectively manage time keeping, whilst also adjusting to the wording of questions and the varying levels of difficulty. Self-assessment of your general areas where you could develop your knowledge further will enable you to be self-aware in your studies, supplementing what you need to practice more and strengthening your pre-existing strengths. Reviewing the HPAT resources and content windows will enable you to narrow down your revision to a refined and purposeful selection of materials. It is important to remember that the content in the HPAT will not be related to specific knowledge content that can be revised, so familiarising oneself with question formatting and past papers is the advised course of action. Ultimately, the more time you spend practicing, the more confident and prepared you are likely to feel when taking your HPAT, a feeling which should be reflected in your score outcome. Online and in-person tutoring can enable you to receive one on one, specially tailored support, enabling you to feel supported in your endeavours and to receive individualised resources and sessions that can develop your knowledge and expand your strengths.
HPAT Tuition and Tutors London
Mayfair Consultants offers at home, one-on-one HPAT tuition to clients living across the London area, who are hoping to study medicine in Ireland. Our fully qualified HPAT tutors are highly skilled specialists, with many holding postgraduate degrees. They offer clear, concise explanations and stimulating approaches, helping to support the need of every student. If you would like to arrange private lessons, or have any questions about our tuition services please call us on Tel: +44 (0) 207 665 6606 or you can send us an email via our contact form.