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The Complete Guide to the IMAT Test Explained From Start to Finish

Table of Contents

The IMAT (International Medical Admissions Test) is a test used by many universities in Italy to assess the readiness of candidates for admittance into medical school. Here, you will find everything you need to know about the test structure, what topics are covered, registration details and tips on how to prepare for the IMAT.

Everywhere around the world, entry into medical school is competitive. Italy is no different. The day aspiring doctors receive an admission letter from their preferred university is cause for celebration.

However, Italian medical schools are unique. Many offer students from any country access to study medicine in Italy via an English language medical education at the undergraduate level. Participating universities include the University of Bologna, Humanitas University (which uses the HUMAT), the University of Milan, and many others. The conferred degree is internationally accredited and can be completed at a lower cost than a degree secured via the standard university entry route. Places are limited to a few hundred per year and there are thousands of applicants.

There is only one entry criteria – the grade achieved on the International Medical Admissions Test (IMAT) or test medicina in inglese. The IMAT is tough. The questions themselves are challenging. It is a ‘pen and paper’ test meaning you cannot use any aids such as calculators and periodic tables. It tests seven areas of knowledge. The number of applicants has grown, and the standard of applicants has improved over the years. That means the qualifying grade has risen considerably.

IMAT Buddy is intimately familiar with the test di medicina in lingua inglese or IMAT, including the online registration process, best methods of study, and the IMAT exam itself. IMAT tutoring is our business. We can help you get the grade, and we do this in a way that is accessible to the average medical student. Rather than charging you thousands of Euros for a few dozen hours of tutoring, we have prerecorded the highest yield lessons and offer the largest collection of video lessons covering the IMAT topics. This not only means you have the benefits of private tutoring at your own pace but also that you will save tremendously on cost. Unlike our competition, we don’t just offer a small recorded crash course either. Our lessons are long, detailed and very in-depth. Our focus is to cover the things that you are unlikely to find with free resources, such as the secret knowledge you need for each topic so that you will be able to stand out from the average applicant. The IMAT covers a huge range of topics, but there are things the IMAT specifically likes to ask about, and certain things you need to learn that you likely will not find in a textbook or on a YouTube video. We have you covered on these things!

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the IMAT entrance exam and the service we offer.

What is the IMAT?

The International Medical Admissions Test (IMAT) is an admission test used by various Italian universities to offer places into English language medical school (as well as dental school). The test itself is entirely in English and can be taken once per year (usually in September) in a variety of countries around the world.

Why Take the IMAT?

Italian medical schools are unique in the sense that they offer students across the world access to an internationally accredited medical education, at a comparably lower cost, and with a significantly simpler application process. 

Most medical schools around the world will require competitive high school grades, stressful interviews, impressive extracurricular activities, as well as a considerably expensive tuition fee. For many Italian medical schools offering their medical degree in English, you can get the same quality education for a considerably cheaper price (often even for free) and with only one admission criteria… a passing score on the IMAT test. 

Sounds too good to be true right? Well, unfortunately, a lot of people have started to notice this golden opportunity, and there are now thousands of applicants per year competing for just a few hundred places, which has meant that securing a place in medical school has required a higher IMAT score each year.

But don’t worry, that is where IMAT Buddy comes in. We know how this test works in and out, we know what topics you need to learn, what type of questions the IMAT asks, and have special tricks that often can result in you getting guaranteed correct answers for certain question types if you apply a certain method. For now, though, let’s focus on explaining how the actual test is organized. 

What Can You Bring to the IMAT?

The IMAT is quite tough in the sense that you will not be given the tools that you are used to using for the topics that are assessed by the test. For instance, you will not be allowed to have a calculator, meaning any calculations will need to be done with just a pen, paper and your brain. You will also not be given a periodic table, meaning that the chemistry section will be a bit harder than what you are probably used to. But do not worry, we will explain what you need to do later in this article for these sections.

As for the test itself, you will need to bring an ID Document (the same one you used to book the IMAT), the payment receipt, the confirmation emails you received when booking the IMAT, as well as black pens (unless you take the IMAT in Italy where the pens will be provided for you).

Resources, Online Simulators, IMAT Past Papers, The Best Way to Study?

For each section of the IMAT, we will cover exactly what resources you need. IMAT Buddy will cover almost everything you need, but for some areas, we recommend studying from textbooks to complement your knowledge. This is because it often helps you learn when studying from different angles and using different resources. 

Once you have learned everything you should then start trying IMAT Papers, I STRONGLY recommend that you print off past papers and do them under timed conditions so as to best replicate the conditions you will be under during the exam. Do NOT use online simulators for past papers, you will be taking the exam on paper, so you want to get used to doing it on paper. And do NOT just attempt portions of the IMAT at a time, past papers are some of your most useful resources for simulating the IMAT and working out what kind of score you can realistically expect, so you do not want to waste these precious resources. 

Once you have finished a past paper you will remember the answers, so you will not be able to realistically simulate taking the IMAT again from that past paper as you will already know what many of the answers will be. So do NOT waste past papers! Take them all under the same conditions you would in the actual exam, and then take a look at what score you get. I also recommend that you leave some past papers close to the exam. Taking a past paper 1 week before the exam will give you a good indication on what kind of grade you can expect. 

How The IMAT Works

The IMAT is made up of four official sections, however, practically speaking we can consider there to be seven separate sections that each test you on a different set of topics

  1. Critical Thinking
  2. Problem Solving
  3. General Knowledge
  4. Biology
  5. Chemistry
  6. Physics
  7. Mathematics

In total the entire exam consists of 60 questions. Each question provides 1.5 marks if answered correctly, -0.4 marks if answered incorrectly, and 0 marks if unanswered. That means the possible scores range from -24 to 90. In total, you have 100 minutes to complete the test, but don’t worry, you do not actually need to answer every question in order to get a fantastic score on the IMAT. 

What score do you need to secure a place at your university of choice? Well, this depends on a few factors…

  1. Are you an EU or a non-EU citizen? 
  2. Are you applying to a competitive university?
  3. How many students are applying?
  4. How well will everyone else score?

Let’s break down the above factors individually…

EU or Non-EU citizens

Every medical school that uses the IMAT will offer a certain number of places for EU candidates and another amount for non-EU candidates. This can change each year and is worth paying attention to, for example, in 2021 the University of Turin offered 70 places for EU students and 32 for non-EU candidates. Basically, as an EU candidate, you would need to be in the top 70 of all EU applicants who would accept an offer to the University of Turin, and as a non-EU candidate, you would need to be in the top 32.

There is no way to be sure how many EU and non-EU applicants there will be in the year that you choose to apply, however as a general trend it can be said that there are more EU candidates per year than non-EU. This is however balanced by the fact that every university offers more places to EU candidates than to non-EU candidates. 

To further complicate things, EU candidates can apply to as many medical schools offering the IMAT as they want and can feasibly get offered places at any of them. While technically a non-EU student can apply to as many choices as they want as well, they will only be considered for a place in their first choice. So, if you are a non-EU candidate you should be EXTRA careful in choosing your first choice, as even if you get a score high enough for one of your other choices, you will not be offered a place there. 

Who is an EU student and who is a non-EU student? To put it simply, any passport holder of any EU country is considered an EU applicant. There are some non-EU passport holders (such as Norway, Ireland, Switzerland) who will still count as EU candidates for IMAT purposes. If you hold both an EU and a non-EU passport, your EU passport will take priority. There may be other special circumstances (such as having lived in an EU country for a certain period of time) that will make you eligible for EU status. If you are in doubt, or your particular case is more complicated, send an email to the international student’s desk at your first choice university, they will be able to determine whether you are an EU or non-EU candidate.

Whatever you do, do not try to lie about being EU or non-EU to try and optimise your situation for the IMAT score requirement. When it comes time to enrol you will need to provide your university with many personal documents and details, and if they find out that you applied under the wrong category you may lose your place. 

Are you applying to a competitive university?

Some universities are more competitive than others, meaning they in general have a higher IMAT score requirement in order to secure a place. As a general trend, universities in the north of Italy tend to have higher cut-offs than southern universities.

The previous scores required for each university for 2020 can be found below and can give you an indication of which university is more competitive, but be warned that this can change year to year. We have ordered the universities by their competitiveness concerning the first round entry scores for EU candidates. As you can see the most competitive university in 2020 for EU students in the first round was the University of Milan. Basically, that means if you wanted to get in straight away then this would be the most competitive university. But if we look at the final round (which took place in late February) we can see the hardest university to get into was actually the University of Bologna for EU candidates. For non-EU students, the most competitive university was the University of Milan (remember, non-EU candidates, get only one choice and have no rounds!).

IMAT Past Entry Scores
UniversityEu 1st roundEu final roundNon-EU
IMS Milan57.84549.2
Napoli Federico II56.44231.7
Pavia Harvey54.545.341.8
Rome Sapienza53.746.742.3
Rome Tor Vergata52.942.134
Napoli/ Campania51.940.330.8
Siena (dental school)51.239.441

As an EU candidate, competitiveness is not that big of a deal when it comes to choosing universities, you will be considered for a place in all the universities you apply for, so just choose the university you would most like to go to as your first choice. As a non-EU student, you need to be more careful, as mentioned you only get one choice! So here you need to be honest with yourself and predict how high of an IMAT score you can realistically get. If you think you are able to get a great score, then applying for a highly competitive university is a perfectly okay thing to do. However, if you do not consider yourself likely to score well enough for these universities, you may be better off applying for a less competitive university.

How many students are applying?

As mentioned before, there are usually a few thousand applicants each year and just a few hundred places offered. What’s worse is that medical school in Italy is growing in popularity so there tends to be an increase each year in the number of students that apply. This is bad news because as the number of applicants grows the competition grows. 

What can you do about this? Well, you can’t stop people from applying, but you can make yourself more competitive by learning the IMAT secrets offered to you by IMAT Buddy. This will give you all the secrets needed to crush the IMAT and give you the edge needed to stand out from your competition. 

How well will everyone else score?

This might seem like a stupid question, but it is actually quite easy to answer, at least when speaking holistically. The trend shows that students are on average scoring higher each year, which means that each year the scores needed to get into each university tend to increase. This is due to reasons such as more study material being available and a general better understanding of how the IMAT works by students as time goes on.

This is bad news for you as it means that IMAT score requirements can be expected to rise from previous years. This is all the more reason why you need something that your competition doesn’t have. IMAT Buddy is that secret weapon!

This covers how the IMAT works. Now let’s take a look at what you need to know for each section of the IMAT in some more detail…

Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is actually not an official section of the IMAT, it is part of the Logical Reasoning section. However, it is for our purposes its own section since it contains a unique set of question types. Ever since 2019, there have been a total of 5 critical thinking questions in each test, which means that this section is worth 7.5 marks.

Critical thinking is actually quite simple, the question will provide you with a short passage that you need to read, a standard question that you need to answer (this can be one of 7 types of questions) and then of course some multiple choice answers that you need to select from.

Here is the beautiful part, critical thinking requires no previous study and no prior background knowledge. Best of all, there are only 7 types of questions the IMAT can ask you, and each of these 7 questions has a unique method which you can learn. If you learn this method and learn how to apply it correctly, you are pretty much guaranteed to get all the questions correct for critical thinking. Most IMAT applicants do not even realise this, so if you learn these methods you can pretty much secure yourself 7.5 marks. Where can you learn these specific methods? At IMAT buddy we explain all 7 to you in the clearest and simplest way, so that you can be sure that critical thinking will be a breeze come IMAT time. Check out the video below for a taste of what we offer…

IMAT test – Section 1 – Critical Thinking – Introduction
IMAT test – Section 1 – Critical Thinking – Summarizing the Main Conclusion

If we break down all the previous IMAT papers from 2021 back, then the following analysis shows how many times each of the 7 question types has been asked (see below). As you can see the most frequently asked type is the “Summarising the Main Conclusion” type, and the least asked is the “Identifying parallel reasoning” type. However, it will not take you long to prepare for all 7 question types, they all involve a simple method that works every time. Therefore, you should definitely not waste such easy marks, make sure to learn all 7 methods perfectly, you can learn these methods on IMAT Buddy. 

Now that you’ve watched the video, why not try an IMAT style critical thinking question written by us at IMAT Buddy. Just make sure you have watched the video carefully before you attempt the question, and make sure you learn the method for this type of critical thinking question. 

Click here to try our Free IMAT Test Quiz on Summarizing the Main Conclusion


1. Numerous studies have shown the immense benefits that competitive sports can have on children’s lives. There are of course the health benefits of exercise, but it is far more than just getting active that rewards the competing youth. Students who compete and achieve success in sporting tournaments are likely to secure scholarships at university, greatly boost their confidence, and may even be able to secure a career in professional sport. However, it is important not to forget that competition, pressure and stress are something that should not be introduced too early in a child’s life. Childhood is the one period where we can as people enjoy life without the burden of needing to succeed in everything we do. We should thus ensure that these types of sporting events are not introduced at too early an age. Our children will most definitely thank us for this in the long run. 

Which of the following best expresses the main conclusion of the above argument?

a. Children will eventually thank their parents for prohibiting competitive sporting tournaments at an early age

b. Competitive sporting events should not be introduced to children who are too young

c. There are both benefits and costs associated with children’s competitive sports

d. We should not forget that pressure and stress may be increased when children compete in sports

e. The benefits of sport do not outweigh the costs

Explanation: Remember the method for this type of question. We first want to read the question and realise that we are dealing with a “Summarising the Main Conclusion” type question. We then read the passage and look for the sentence that is the strongest opinion of the author, the reason the author wrote the passage, and the essence of the passage. If we can find any of the conclusion indicator words then that will also be helpful.

Hopefully, you realise that “We should thus ensure that these types of sporting events are not introduced at too early an age” is the conclusion. This is the strongest opinion the author has in the passage, it is also what the author wants us to do or believe in so it must also be the reason for the author writing the passage. The fact that the word “thus” is used as well is a good indicator that we have the conclusion. Now that we have the conclusion, we just need to match it with the most similar answer, which is of course option B. 

This is all you need to do for these types of questions, but we will explain why the other options are NOT correct. 

  • Option A: Option A might be tempting because this corresponds to the final sentence of the passage, but remember, just because the sentence is the last sentence does not mean it is necessarily the conclusion. Saying that our children will thank us in the future is not something that the author is trying to convince us to do or believe, it is also not the reason the author wrote the passage. It is simply backing up the main opinion of the author (which is that we should not introduce competitive sports to children who are too young)
  • Option C: Saying that there are both benefits and costs to children’s competitive sports may be true, but it is not what the author is trying to convince us of. The author is trying to convince us that we should not introduce these sports at an early age. 
  • Option D: This is also true, but it is not the conclusion, this is just a fact the author has brought up to justify the conclusion
  • Option E: This is not necessarily even true, the author has not said that sports in general do not have more benefits than costs. The passage is talking about competitive sports for kids, not about whether the benefits of sport in general are greater than the costs or not. 

Problem Solving

Just like Critical Thinking, we can treat problem-solving as its own section within the Logical Reasoning subsection, and it too since 2019 consists of 5 questions (7.5 marks).

Problem-solving aims to test you on questions that you are oftentimes not prepared for, meaning they will not test you on things that you actively study for. They involve some basic mathematics but besides that, you need no prior knowledge. 

While these questions are not as preparable for as the Critical Thinking questions, there are some question types that tend to repeat year after year. We will focus on these and teach you how to solve them. Aside from that, the best way to get good with problem-solving is to practice past papers. 

IMAT Test – Section 1 – Introduction to Problem Solving
IMAT test – Section 1 – Problem Solving – Age Ration Problems

Now that you’ve got a taste of how problem-solving works, let’s take a look at a problem-solving question with the same style as the one in the video. 

Click here to try our free IMAT Test Quiz on Age Ratio Problems


1. My car was four times as old as Mario’s in 2016. As of today, his car is half as old as mine. If the current year is 2021, then what is the combined value of the cars ages as of now?

a. 22.5

b. 15

c. 30.

d. 28

e. 42

Explanation: set up the question the same way as described in the video

YearAge of Mario’s carAge of my car
2021X + 52(X + 5)

We know my car’s age in 2021 can also be written as 4X + 5, so we now equate that to 2(X + 5) and solve for X. X is 2.5 which means the age of Mario’s car in 2016 is 2.5 years. Now remember we want the combined value of the ages in 2021, so we sub in X=2.5 in the year 2021 and we get (2.5 + 5) + 2(2.5 + 5) = 22.5. This is answer A. 

General Knowledge

General Knowledge is probably the topic that confuses the most applicants. This is most likely due to the fact that general knowledge covers such a broad scope of fields that it almost seems impossible to study for this section. However, you definitely can and should study for this section, as it makes up 12 questions, that is 18 marks. Within general knowledge, there are many topics that are often assessed by the IMAT. These include certain academic fields (such as literature, history, art etc) as well as some other unique topics that are frequently assessed by the IMAT (such as knowledge on the European Union, certain international organisations, and so on). What these topics are, and what exactly you need to learn for each of them will be covered in the IMAT Buddy General Knowledge section.

Below is an analysis of the various topics that have been assessed in all past IMAT papers as of 2021. As you can see the IMAT has a tendency to focus on certain topics in particular, and there is a way to study efficiently for all these topics (as we will see in the IMAT Buddy General Knowledge section). 

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*Note: Some questions in the IMAT assess you on more than one topic in one question and thus are included in more than one section above.

The way you study general knowledge is a bit different to how you would study for other sections. You should not try to learn absolutely everything there is to know about all the fields within General Knowledge, that would take far too much time and would be an example of over-studying (you do not want to waste your time when you have other sections that require your attention). The way to study will vary depending on the topic, below is an example of how to study for the literature section as well as an introduction to how General Knowledge works. Check it out!

IMAT Test – Section 1 – Introduction to General Knowledge
IMAT test – Section 1 – General Knowledge – Literature

Now that you understand how general knowledge works, let’s apply this to some typical IMAT style general knowledge questions regarding literature…

Click here to try our free IMAT Test Practice Quiz on Literature


1. Who wrote the novel Jane Eyre? 

a. Charlotte Bronte 

b. William Shakespeare

c. Harper Lee

d. Leo Tolstoy

e. Mark Twain

Explanation: This question requires you to know that Charlotte Bronte is the author of Jane Eyre. This might seem like a very difficult question to study for since it seems completely random. However, Charlotte Bronte is one of history’s most famous authors, and Jane Eyre is one of her most famous books. Thus, if you study the most high yield authors you will most likely cover this novel. Take a look at the list of authors in the literature section of 

2. Which of the following books was written first?

a. War and Peace

b. Candide

c. The Art of War

d. The Devine Comedy

e. Beowulf

Explanation: This question might seem hard at first, but again it just requires you to know when roughly the authors of each book lived. All the books listed are written by very famous authors that you could have easily prepared for, so preparing for this type of question is not as hard as it seems, since the authors are fairly easy to predict. The exception here is Beowulf, as the author of the book is unknown but since it is a very famous book you can learn something about it as well. 

The Art of War was written by Sun Tzu, who lived far earlier than all the other authors of the books listed, so C must be the correct answer. 


Biology is the most important topic in the IMAT. It consists of 18 questions which means it is worth 27 marks, by far the most of any section. This is therefore also the section that will require the most of your study time. Below you will find an introductory video that includes the syllabus for this section. Make sure to only study material from this syllabus! A lot of other IMAT courses will waste your time by advising you to study other topics that are not assessed in the IMAT, this is a tremendous waste of time and can damage your score in the test. You do not want to waste precious study time on topics that are not even going to show up in the exam. 

The biology syllabus is quite extensive, but not all sections of the syllabus are as frequently asked about. Below is a breakdown of how many times the IMAT has asked a question about a certain topic. Keep in mind that some questions can ask about more than one topic in one question, so they will be counted as two or more topics below…

Be careful how you interpret the above results! Anatomy and Physiology is by far the largest topic assessed, but this in itself is a huge topic that covers many organ systems, which will take a lot of study time. Biological molecules however are frequently asked about and will take you much less time to study for, so we can consider this a high yield topic. 

The IMAT writers know that aspiring medical students are generally quite good at biology, so they will try to make this section difficult by including some very tricky types of questions. This is designed to truly separate between the exceptional and the average students. But have no fear! At IMAT Buddy we know exactly what types of questions the IMAT asks, and how you can actually study specifically for these types of questions. The way to study for biology in the IMAT is quite different as compared to what you are likely used to, so textbooks and online videos are likely not going to be enough in order to really distinguish yourself in this section. That’s where we come in!

IMAT Test – Section 2 – Introduction to Biology
IMAT test – Section 2 – Biology – Eukaryotic Cells: Part 1

Now that you have watched the introductory video and the first lesson on eukaryotic cells, let’s attempt some IMAT style questions regarding eukaryotic cells.

Click here to take the free IMAT Test Practice Quiz on Eukaryotic Cells


1. A protozoan was examined, and some biological analyses were performed. Which of the following would one be able to find in the sample?

I: 70s ribosomes

II: 80s ribosomes

III: Linear DNA

a. I only

b. I and II only

c. I, II and III

d. II and III only

e. I and III only

Explanation: This is quite a short question so it may seem simple, but it actually tests you on quite a few things, and you need to remember all those things if you are going to get any marks for this question. First of all, you need to know that a protozoan is a eukaryote, which means it has organelles. We know that mitochondria are organelles and that they contain 70s ribosomes, so I) must be true. We also know that the ribosomes in the cytosol of eukaryotes are 80s, so II) must also be true. Finally, we also know that eukaryotes have a nucleus, and the nucleus contains linear DNA so III) is true. Thus, the answer is C.

What’s difficult about these types of questions is that the IMAT is an all or nothing type exam, you cannot get any marks for knowing almost everything in the question, you have to know everything if you are going to get the question correct and get any marks. So, as you can see, you need to get into the details if you are going to be competitive in the IMAT.

2. A cell was studied in a laboratory. After finding one certain cellular component, the biologist in charge was able to classify with certainty that the cell was a prokaryote. Which of the following items could have been the basis for the biologist’s decision?

a. 70s ribosome

b. circular DNA

c. cell wall

d. more than one option is correct

e. no option is correct

This question demonstrates how tricky the IMAT can be, both A), B) and C) are typical of prokaryotes. We might therefore be tempted to think the answer is D). But reading the question carefully, it says the biologist was able to determine that the presence of just one of these items meant that the cell was for sure a prokaryote. 

Eukaryotes have mitochondria, and mitochondria have 70s ribosomes and circular DNA, so the presence of either of these items in a sample does not with certainty mean we have a prokaryote (as the 70s ribosomes and circular DNA could come from the mitochondria of a eukaryote). Prokaryotes have cell walls, but so do plants, so just because a cell wall was found does not mean we are necessarily dealing with a prokaryote.  Thus, no option is correct and the answer is E).


Chemistry is tied with General Knowledge as the second most important topic, as it accounts for 12 questions and thus 18 marks. However, as chemistry is more preparable for, this section should receive more attention than General Knowledge. Just like for the biology section there is a specific syllabus to follow, you can find it in the video below. Make sure you only study the topics listed on this syllabus! Furthermore, it might help to know what parts of the syllabus are most commonly asked in past IMAT exams, below, you can find the breakdown…

The IMAT writers are aware that most medical school aspirants are quite good at chemistry, so they will throw in some trick questions to try to throw you off. What also makes this section challenging is that you will not have access to a periodic table or a calculator. This means you will need to memorize certain portions of the periodic table (we will tell you exactly what you need to memorize) and will also need to get comfortable with some mental maths. 

IMAT Test – Section 3 – Introduction to Chemistry
IMAT test – Section 3 – Chemistry – Stoichiometry Part 1

Now that you’ve watched the introductory video and the video on stoichiometry, let’s do a stoichiometry question that resembles the type of questions the IMAT likes to ask. 


1. 20 grams of calcium is burned in excess oxygen. What is the mass of calcium oxide that is produced?

Ar [Ca = 40 O = 16]

A) 28 g

B) 21 g

C) 19 g

D) 85 g

E) 96 g

Explanation: This question requires us to know some basic stoichiometry, how to write specific reaction formulas, and also to have memorised certain portions of the periodic table. If you are unsure about any of these things, we will cover it all in our video course. 

We need to first write down a reaction formula. We have a metal (Ca) that is reacting with oxygen gas to form a metal oxide and that results in the reaction below…


*if you do not know how to derive this formula do not worry, we will explain it in our chemistry video course

We now have the ratio between Ca and CaO. Remember we want to find the MASS of CaO

First, we get the number of moles of Ca, which will be the number of moles of CaO since their ratio is 1:1). We use the formula M = m/n for this…

40 = 20/n

n= 0.5

Since we now have n for Ca we also have it for CaO. We also have M for CaO since that will just be the summed values of M for Ca and M for O which we have been given in the question. We can now use M=m/n for CaO to work out m

56 = m/0.5

m = 28 g

Click here to take the free IMAT test Practice Quiz on Stoichiometry


Maths like physics is quite an unimportant topic due to it only consisting of 4 questions, so 6 marks. Nevertheless, most high school students will have studied the maths assessed in the IMAT syllabus, so it won’t require you to learn many new concepts. You will instead have to refresh what you already know, the only hard part is that you won’t have a formula sheet and you won’t have a calculator. 

The breakdown below illustrates how many maths questions from each topic have been asked across all IMAT exams. As you can see, algebra gets the most questions. However, you should be careful about interpreting these results. Algebra is a huge topic to study, compare that to exponents which is a rather small and easy topic yet a topic that is frequently asked about in the IMAT. This makes exponents a very high yield maths topic to study for. Check out our video on exponents to see what you should learn for the IMAT.

In the video below you can see the full syllabus, as well as another video covering the first topic we will cover in our video series. This video will teach you about the important things you need to learn regarding mental maths. 

IMAT Test – Section 4 – Introduction to Mathematics
IMAT test – Section 4 – Mathematics – Mental Maths

Now that you’ve watched the video, try some IMAT style questions from this topic, remember, you should not do these with a calculator!


1. Which of the below options is closest to twice the value of 0.88888888888888 divided by (8⁄3 x 90.5)

a. 1⁄11

b. 1⁄9

c. 2⁄9

d. 4⁄3

e. 3⁄4

Explanation: Start by solving the brackets first. This will give you 8⁄3 x √9 = 8. 

Now solve 0.88888888888888 divided by 8. This gives us 0.11111111… which if you remember your decimal to fraction conversion is very close to 1⁄9. 

Now we want to get twice this value which is just  2⁄9. This corresponds to answer C.

As you can see the maths was not particularly difficult, but you need to remember your decimal to fraction conversions and you need to get good at working without a calculator. 

2. what is the product of the summed value of the first 3 prime numbers and the summed value of the 3 prime numbers following?

a. 574

b. 138

c. 434

d. 1071

e. 931

Explanation: Make sure you read the question carefully so you know what to solve for. We want the summed value of the first 3 prime numbers, and we want to multiply this by the summed value of the next 3 prime numbers.

The first three prime numbers are 2, 5 and 7 which summed together form 14. The next three prime numbers are 11, 13 and 17 which summed together form 41. Now we need to multiply 41 by 14.

To save time looking at the answers, we know that 41 multiplied by 10 is 410, so we know the answer is going to be bigger than this. We can then logically rule out B) but also C) as 434 is too close to 410. We can also rule out D and E as these are both too large. This means the only possible answer is 574, which is option A. 

If you think like this, you will avoid needing to do the whole multiplication which will save you time in the exam.

Click here to take the free IMAT exam Practice Quiz on Mental Maths


Physics is one of the least important sections as it ties with Mathematics at 4 questions or 6 marks. This can make physics a low yield subject to study for some students, especially those that have never taken physics before or just plainly do not enjoy it. However, if you are good at physics or are willing to learn, this can be quite an easy section.

The physics questions in the IMAT are actually not that difficult, they assess quite a basic level of understanding. However, you do not have a formula sheet and you do not have a calculator, so you will need to remember a lot of formulas and will need to get good at mental maths if you want to attempt this section. Some questions are also non-quantitative so you will also need to learn some physics theory to be fully prepared. 

Physics is considered quite low yield study because as you can see from the syllabus there is a lot to study and memorise but only 4 questions, meaning that a lot of the material you study will not show up in the exam. This can make studying physics a bit of a time-waster, especially if you are short on study time. One thing that could be helpful for those of you not wanting to study the entire subject is that every year they have asked a question regarding electricity. So, if you study only this topic, you can be almost sure that you will get a question on it when you take the exam. 

Regarding the other topics, we have as usual looked at all the past IMAT papers and analysed how many questions in total have been asked, sorted by what topic in physics they were concerned with. Again, you should be careful how you interpret the results. Vectors and scalars for instance have only been asked about once, so it might not seem like an important topic to study. But learning all the physical quantities that are vectors and all that are scalars is something that can be done very quickly, so it may potentially be a very high yield topic to study for. 

IMAT Test – Section 4 – Introduction to Physics
IMAT test – Section 4 – Physics – SI Units

Now that you have watched the first video, let’s do some IMAT style questions concerning the topic of SI units. 


1. Arrange the following from smallest to largest

I. 410,000 pm       II: 15,000 mm           III: 16,500 um          IV: 0.0041 dam

a. I, II, III, IV

b. II, IV, III, I

c. IV, I, III, II

d. III, I, IV, II

e. I, III, IV, II

Explanation: here you just need to remember your SI units, if you know what all of the multiples/submultiples correspond to, then you can easily convert each one into meters and then order them from smallest to largest. 

  • 1 picometer is 10-12 m so 410,000 pm is 4.1×10-7 m
  • 1 millimetre is 10-3 m so 15,000 mm is 15 meters
  • 1 micrometer is 10-6 m so 16,500 um is 0.0165 m
  • 1 decameter is 10 m so 0.0041 dm is 0.41 m

2. Which of the following represents the correct units for power?

a. kg⋅m2⋅s3

b. kg⋅m2⋅s−3

c. J/kg⋅s

d. J/N

e. V/N⋅m

Explanation: here you need to remember the physical quantities and their units. Power has the watt unit. Watts are given in joules per second (so J/s)

A joule is the unit of work or energy, which is given in newton meters (so N⋅m).

Newtons are the units of force which is mass ⋅ acceleration. Mass is given in kg and acceleration as meters per second squared (so kg⋅m⋅s−2 ).

Multiply the units of the newton by metes to get the units of the joule, this gives us kg⋅m2⋅s−2

Divide this value by seconds to get the unit of the watt, this gives us kg⋅m2⋅s−3

We now have the SI units of the watt, which is the unit of power, thus the answer is B.

Click here to take the free IMAT exam Practice Quiz on Si Units


Achieving a high grade on the IMAT can be assisted by being totally familiar with the nature and format of the IMAT exam, the types of questions asked, and the best way to study for it. IMAT Buddy can help in all these areas, and more. We have worked with many students over the years and have helped these aspiring doctors gain entry to their preferred Italian medical school.

As the IMAT Buddy is the world’s best IMAT preparation course, we can identify the topics on which you need to focus, the type of questions asked, and the strategies to adopt in answering, or not answering, the questions. We have IMAT mock tests and can guide you through the detailed IMAT exam syllabus for each section.

The fields of knowledge covered can be grouped into four broad groups

• Logical Reasoning & General Knowledge

• Biology

• Chemistry

• Physics & Mathematics

There are a total of 60 questions in the IMAT admission test and the time allowed is 100 minutes. The marking system is different to that of most other exams and makes it important to think carefully about the strategy you adopt in dealing with questions to which you are unsure of the answer. It also means that you do not need to answer every question to get a great grade.

Logical reasoning consists of 10 questions, 15 marks, and for most students is relatively simple if you have learned the methods we teach you. Most students are best advised to allocate proportionately less time in studying for this section.

The general knowledge section confuses most applicants. They feel they cannot prepare for it. This is a mistake. You can and should study for this section because it has 12 questions, 18 marks. IMAT Buddy can show you the best way to prepare for this part of the exam, and tell you exactly what you should and should not study.

Biology has 18 questions, 27 marks. It carries the most marks and we recommend you allocate most of your study time to it. There is a specific syllabus you can follow. The difficulty is that there are many different topics covered with only one or two questions per topic. This means you need to spend a lot of time preparing.

Chemistry 12 questions, 18 marks. Again, there is a specific syllabus to follow, a lot of topics, and only one or two questions per topic.

Physics and mathematics have only 8 questions, 12 marks. The maths questions tend to be from topics most high school students are familiar with, but the physics section has an issue where there are lots of topics to study and only a few marks possible.

Not all universities are equal. Some have a higher IMAT score requirement. Non-EU citizens need to think carefully about the university they apply to enter into, as they only have one opportunity to gain entry. If they do not make the grade to enter their nominated university, their selection process ends. This is not an issue for EU applicants since they can apply to multiple universities.

IMAT Buddy has tutored many students taking the IMAT (International Medical Admissions Test). We have developed many study strategies that can help lift your performance. Please feel welcome to contact us for more details.

The world’s best IMAT preparation course, created by IMAT Buddy, is available as a series of 100+ videos with 22+ hours of video content and several hundreds of practice questions with worked solutions. IMAT Buddy offers more hours of content and more videos covering each section than our competitors, ensuring you have the edge over your peers. We’ve cut out all the filler and focused on teaching solely what you need to know to be competitive and to maximise your marks.

We’re so confident in our course that should you miss securing a seat, we’ll renew your subscription: free of charge!

To study medicine in Europe and ace the IMAT test, check out our full IMAT Preparation Course outline and sign up today to help you achieve your dream of becoming a doctor.

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ImatBuddy is probably one of the best course available out there. The course is well organized with the most important topics and it provides a lot of tips and tricks of what is really necessary to study for the IMAT. My personal experience is that through ImatBuddy I was able to raise my points in a short period of time. Especially the scientific section has very well made explanatory videos and for the first section there is also a lot of material with how to prepare best and efficiently.
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IMAT 2024 Date

The IMAT Date has finally been announced! The IMAT will officially be conducted on the 17th of September 2024 as confirmed by MUR. This will be on a Tuesday.

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