Ari Horesh University of Pavia, Italy18th of October, 2023
Just as the IMAT 2023 came to a close, I decided to dive straight into analyzing it. Why? Well, I’ve been helping students tackle this beast for over 4 years now. That’s hundreds of students and countless hours breaking down these papers. So yeah, I’ve seen a thing or two.
In this article, I’ll break down the 2023 exam and see how it stacks up against previous ones. We’re keeping it casual here – think of it as chatting with a mate who’s been in the IMAT game for a while.
And if by the end you’re thinking, “Hey, I wanna know more about this”, then hop over to my course at entermedschool.com. It’s packed with all the insights and tips you’ll need.
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IMAT 2023 Past Paper PDF
You’re in luck! Below, I’ve provided the IMAT 2023 past paper in PDF format for you to download and comb through at your leisure.
Psst.. I know you are curious about it – but might want to consider waiting with using the past IMAT papers if you are studying for the IMAT of 2024! Why? Because these papers will be used as simlulators later on, closer to the exam.
A quick heads-up: This is an ‘A form’ paper. That means all the answers in this particular paper are marked as ‘A’. Keep that in mind as you work through the questions.
In a Nutshell: The New IMAT IS DIFFERENT!
Let’s chat about the elephant in the room. If you’ve been gearing up for the IMAT thinking it’s going to be all “Cambridge” style, brace yourself for a curveball. The landscape’s shifted, and from the looks of the IMAT 2023, it seems it’s veering more towards the TOLC and ‘test di medicina’ style.
Here’s the lowdown:
- Simplicity in Questions: The intricate, layered questions typical of the Cambridge style? Yeah, those are taking a backseat. The 2023 paper showcased a trend of more straightforward questions.
- Math & Physics Stay Challenging: Don’t think it’s all going to be a breeze, though. The math and physics sections? They’re still throwing punches. They kept their reputation of being as challenging as in the TOLC, and truth be told, they reminded me a bit of the previous IMATs too.
My gut tells me this trend isn’t a one-off. We might see more of this in the coming years. Adjust your prep strategy accordingly, folks. The tides are changing, and it’s best to ride the wave rather than get caught in the undertow.
The New IMAT Logic Section
Let’s cut to the chase: the Logic section this year threw us for a loop, but not in the way you might think.
Remember all that talk about a potential text comprehension component? Yeah, that didn’t quite materialize. Instead, the IMAT 2023 dished out:
- Four general knowledge questions that were pretty standard fare.
- Five problem-solving and logic questions that were more straightforward than we’ve seen in the past.
Here’s our take on it:
- Stick to the Classics: While the presentation may have changed a tad, the core of the questions remains the same. Your old study material – the TSA past papers, BMAT, and golden old IMATs – are still your best friends here. Don’t toss them aside just yet.
- Our Course is Still Spot-On: A slight curveball doesn’t mean our course material is out of the game. On the contrary, it’s still bang on target, geared to help you navigate through this section.
- Easier, But Not a Cakewalk: This year’s logic questions, especially in problem solving, centered around probability and statistics. A breath of fresh air, right? These topics are generally more manageable for most test-takers. But don’t get too comfy – always expect the unexpected!
The only new question we noticed however, is the one above! It seems to be fairly easy question type that asks you to find the correct statement from the text itself.
In a nutshell: adapt, but don’t overhaul your prep strategy. The IMAT may have tossed in a few changes, but your trusted tools and resources (like our course) are still very much in the game.
IMAT 2023 Biology Analysis
Moving on to the Biology section of the IMAT 2023, there’s good news for bio enthusiasts. This year, the section was quite reasonable and seemed to align closely with what we’ve seen in the past ‘test di medicina’ and TOLC.
Here’s what stood out:
- Cellular Biology Foundations: A solid grounding in basic cellular biology was essential.
- Metabolism: As always, metabolism took center stage in a chunk of the questions.
- Genetics: Unsurprisingly, genetics made its usual appearance, reinforcing its importance.
- Dipping into Physiology: While not as dominant as other topics, there were still a few questions touching on physiology that required attention.
Now, while the questions weren’t particularly tricky, they were a bit…verbose. Picture long-winded questions where you need to sift through the excess to find the core information that’s actually relevant. They were more about testing your comprehension and patience rather than throwing impossible curveballs. The key? Understanding the essence of the question to solve it efficiently.
But here’s the kicker – there were a whopping 23 questions in the biology section! That’s a delightful surprise, making the 2023 IMAT arguably more approachable than some previous iterations.
The biology question above is an example to a question that has a lot of text, but could be solve just by reading the very first and last part of it – for example, if you know DMD is X-link recessive, then women are less like to have it because they have 2 X chromosomes – everything else in the question is useless, and it seems to be a repeating pattern.
IMAT 2023 Chemistry Analysis
For those who’ve always had a soft spot for chemistry, there’s a bit to unpack from this year’s IMAT.
On the whole, the chemistry section in IMAT 2023 was, dare I say, on the friendlier side. But, as with any test, there were a few areas that got a bit more spotlight:
- Redox Reactions: These reactions made a notable appearance. If you’ve been glossing over redox in the past, it might be time to give it another look.
- Organic Chemistry: The organic chem section seemed to be more emphasized this year. From alkanes to alkenes and everything in between, there was a decent spread of questions here.
- Acids and Bases: The classic topic of acids and bases was not left behind, with a few questions testing the depths of your knowledge.
What’s interesting is that these topics aren’t just IMAT favorites. If you’ve got your eyes on the TOLC or past ‘test di medicina’, you’ll know these areas get quite a bit of attention there as well. A little inside tip: the emphasis on these subjects might be because they align with the high school curriculum in Italy. It seems examiners have a penchant for testing foundational concepts taught in local schools.
With this in mind, if you’re gearing up for IMAT 2024, I’d definitely double down on these topics. It’s always a smart move to be prepared for the subjects that consistently make an appearance.
The questions above are a classic example of what we saw on past IMATs as well – gas laws, stochiometry, and atoms are the subjects you learn on the very first part of the study planner we share here for free on the website. Question number 34 for example is another classic Cambridge trick (which seems to be a trick on the new exam as well!) – You must convert the units from C to K, otherwise, you get the wrong answer.
IMAT 2023 Math and Physics Analysis
Navigating the choppy waters of the IMAT’s Math and Physics section can be a challenge, especially when the ticking clock is a constant reminder of the limited time available after wading through the other sections. This year was no exception.
The sheer volume of math and physics questions posed a time-management challenge. But within the complexity, there were rays of light:
- Kinematics: A staple in the IMAT, kinematics made its predictable appearance, and the questions were quite approachable for those familiar with the topic.
- Statistics: This seems to be a recurring theme, with statistics-based questions popping up again this year. A thorough understanding of this topic can snag you some crucial points.
- Algebra: Basic algebraic principles were tested, reaffirming the importance of having a strong grasp on foundational math concepts.
What’s the takeaway here? Well, while some areas in math and physics are predictably challenging, there are also recurring subjects that can be your “low-hanging fruits” if you prepare well for them. If you’re just embarking on your IMAT study journey, especially in the math and physics arena, my advice is to zero in on kinematics, statistics, and algebra first. Nailing these topics can give you a leg up and boost your confidence for the tougher challenges that lie ahead.
The example above is to show you that some questions are fairly easy and straight forward to solve if you know basic algebra and the terminology!
And even many Kinematics questions!
Conclusions – How To Use IMAT 2023 To Study for IMAT 2024?
The dust from IMAT 2023 has settled, and as we look towards IMAT 2024, it’s crucial to decipher the lessons from this year to strategize for the next. So, here’s a roundup based on the trends and shifts we observed:
- Old is Gold: Despite the changing terrain, the older study materials and planners have not lost their sheen. They remain instrumental in preparing for the IMAT, echoing the fundamental concepts that the exam continually probes.
- Diversify with “Test di Medicina” and “TOLC”: To get a handle on the evolving style and to anticipate possible question formats, sprinkle in some “Test di Medicina” and past “TOLC” papers into your study mix.
- Biology Deep Dive: The biology section’s emphasis remains steady with a focus on cell biology, metabolism, genetics, and physiology. However, this year hinted at the need for a deeper dive into physiology. The questions had a slightly more specific edge to them. Consider tapping into detailed resources, like my free biology book, to ensure you’re covered.
- Chemistry’s New Flair: While the core topics remain vital, we noticed a tilt towards acids and bases, organic chemistry, and redox reactions. But don’t sideline the essentials! Stoichiometry, gas laws, and atomic periodic trends are still very much in play.
- Math & Physics Starting Points: If you’re feeling overwhelmed by where to begin, let probability and statistics, coupled with kinematics, be your starting blocks. These areas not only lay a strong foundation but also regularly make appearances in the exam.
The IMAT may evolve, but its essence remains rooted in testing foundational knowledge and applied understanding. Stay adaptable, focus on the fundamentals, and remember that every past paper provides clues for the next challenge.