Abstract: The UKCAT was introduced in 2006 as an additional intelligence test for medical and dental school applicants. It was widely taken up and has become increasingly used by 25 medical and 9 dental schools. The research potential of this resource was obvious but it has taken some years to overcome related practical and governance issues. Now, however, Dundee plays host to the database holding application information on 150 000 applicants and there is enthusiasm to increase access for research purposes. Data includes socioeconomic, prior school achievement, application outcome and increasingly on course performance and progression information. The first pilot linkage into postgraduate years has just been completed.
A number of novel studies have been conducted revealing some unexpected results I will present, but much more awaits and this presentation hopes to generate interest in the opportunities this resource offers for education researchers to exploit. Access for approved studies is currently free!
Biography: I was appointed as Admissions Convener in 2006 and immediately took an academic interest in the area, as it was clearly ripe for attention. The UKCAT has offered a fascinating new opportunity and I became Chair of the Research Panel in 2009 when it floundered over Data Protection Act concerns. Through this initiative I have had the privilege to be involved in some key studies and am currently working with the GMC and Medical Schools Council to try and roll on the process to enable large scale follow up into postgraduate practice. Locally I am perhaps better known for a related innovation, the first Multi Mini Interview in the UK, now also used by many others. So I would like to highlight that it is sometimes possible to make a significant academic contribution from an essentially administrative role