What is the IMAT exam?
The IMAT exam was developed by the IMUR (The Italian Ministry of Education, University, and Research) and Cambridge Assessment's Admissions Testing Service, based on the university exam administered in Italy. Students who are willing to apply to departments such as medicine and dentistry are obligated to take the IMAT Exam. These departments are open to Italian and foreign students and the language of instruction is English.
When is the IMAT exam?
The IMAT exam is held in September every year. The exam date is announced each year by the Italian Ministry of Education.
What are the contents of IMAT exam?
The IMAT exam is a pen and paper test and it consists of 4 sections. There are 60 questions in the exam and its duration is 100 minutes. The 4 sections of the exam are:
Section 1: Logical Reasoning and General Knowledge
This section of the test assesses the generic skills in problem solving, understanding argument, data analysis and inference along with general knowledge. 10 of them being Logical Reasoning and 12 of them being General Knowledge questions, this section of the exam consists of 22 multiple choice questions in total.
Logical Reasoning questions evaluate students thinking skills, reasoning skills and analytical skills, especially the ability to follow the logical steps in different contexts, to recognise fallacies in the argument, to solve problems, and to discern relevant from irrelevant information.
More specifically, there are two types of logical reasoning questions:
- Critical thinking: questions that involve reasoning using everyday written language.
Questions focus on the skills involved in understanding and evaluating arguments.
- Problem Solving: questions that involve reasoning using numerical and spatial skills.
General Knowledge questions may address a range of cultural topics, including aspects of literary, historical, philosophical, social and political culture. These questions are not based on any specific part of school curricula, rather their aim is to test the students interest and knowledge in a wide variety of fields. Students with a keen extra-curricular interest in current events who regularly keep up to date with national and international news will be better prepared to answer this type of question.
Critical Thinking questions can be 7 different specific types. These types are:
- Summarising the main conclusion
- Drawing a conclusion
- Identifying an assumption
- Assessing the impact of additional evidence
- Detecting reasoning errors
- Identifying parallel reasoning
- Applying principles
Problem Solving questions can be 3 different specific types. These types are:
- Relevant Selection
- Finding Procedures
- Identifying Similarity
Although most questions fall into only one category, some questions fit into more than one of the categories.
Sections 2,3,4: Scientific Knowledge
These sections of the test investigates the ability to apply scientific knowledge from school science: Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths. This section of the exam consists of 38 multiple choice questions; 18 of them being Biology, 12 of them Chemistry and 8 of them on Physics and Mathematics subjects.
Section 2, Biology questions cover the below subjects:
- The chemistry of living things
- The cell as the basis of life
- Reproduction and inheritance
- Inheritance and environment
- Anatomy and physiology of animals and humans
Section 3, Chemistry questions cover the below subjects:
- The composition of matter
- Atomic structure
- The periodic table of the elements
- The chemical bond
- Fundamentals of inorganic chemistry
- Chemical reactions and stoichiometry
- Oxidation and reduction
- Acids and bases
- Fundamentals of organic chemistry
Section 4, Physics & Mathematics questions cover the below subjects:
- Fluid mechanics
- Electrostatic and electrodynamics
- Algebra and numerical sets
- Probability and statistics
What do I need to bring with me on the day of the IMAT exam?
You must bring the following documents/items with you on the day of the test:
- Both of the confirmation emails that you received during the registration and payment process.
- If the payment receipt is not accompanied by the online registration receipt, students may not be admitted to the test.
- A photographic form of identification. This must be an original document that is valid and matches the details you entered on UniversItaly.
- Proof of confirmation from your first‐choice university that any access arrangements required have been approved by them. (Note: this is only applicable to candidates who have requested access arrangements.)
- Black pens – outside Italy only. If you are taking IMAT in Italy, do not bring pens; they will be provided by the university.
Students are prohibited from bringing photographic ID’s to their desk. If their photographic ID is displayed on their desk, they will be disqualified. Also, students are prohibited from bringing any electronic items such as calculators, mobile phones, smart watches, digital sound recorders, MP3 players, cameras, etc. into the test room or they will be disqualified.
Where do I need to go on the IMAT exam day, and when?
If students is taking the test outside Italy, their test centre will contact them in August with details of the venue address and when to arrive. If they are taking the test in Italy, the venue details will be published on the UniversItaly and university websites.
What will happen on the day of the IMAT exam?
The instructions for taking the test are quite complicated and it is the students responsibility to ensure that they have the correct papers. Before the test, students will be given an envelope containing their test documents which should be carefully examined to make sure they have received the right papers, when instructed.
Students may be required to remain in the test venue for up to four hours from the start of the test.
How are the results of IMAT exam calculated?
A students total score is calculated using the following formula:
- 1.5 points for each correct answer
- -0.4 points for each wrong answer
- 0 points for each question not answered.
An overall total score will be reported, together with a score on each section.