NemesisRider
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Welcome to the Oxford PAT 2020 thread. This is the place to discuss, post problems, or ask any questions you may have regarding the exam.

What is the PAT?
The PAT (Physics Aptitude Test) is a pre-interview assessment required by the University of Oxford for any variant of physics, engineering or materials science. The exam is 2 hours long and consists of mixed maths and physics questions, featuring both multiple-choice and long answer questions. Calculators are allowed.

Dates
Registration deadline: 15 October, 2020
Exam: 5 November, 2020 (new date due to COVID-19, correct as of 29/8/20)

Registration
You can find the details here: https://www.admissionstesting.org/fo...w-to-register/

Official resources
Past papers - https://www2.physics.ox.ac.uk/study-...at-past-papers
Syllabus - https://www2.physics.ox.ac.uk/study-...t/pat-syllabus (Calculator specification is also on this page)

Other resources

Mark schemes
Oxford do not offer an official mark scheme for the PAT, but there's several worked solutions published online.

Tips
The challenge of the PAT mainly lies in applying your knowledge to unfamiliar situations. The best way to improve at this is to do lots of practice! I would suggest completing all the available past papers, ideally under timed conditions. You can supplement practising on these with some of the other resources I've listed.

In the exam, you can be marked on your workings out so make sure you explain your thought processes clearly to help you obtain the best score! This exam is tricky; in previous years the cut-off marks have been mostly around 50-60, so don't get disheartened if 100% feels like an impossible task!

If you want more in-depth ideas about how to prepare, I'd refer to the post I wrote about the PAT or my Oxcentric videos on the subject (which include most of the main points from the post).

If we have any other successful Oxford folk who have additional insight to provide, your advice is much appreciated!
Last edited by NemesisRider; 1 month ago
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Ryan-1704
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Am planning to sit this in November so am just leaving a comment so I get notifs.

I've just finished covering the additional A2 content that is needed and intend to start doing some of the older past papers from next week to get a feel for what it's like (obviously saving the newer ones for nearer the exam)
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OliverClarke
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Leaving comment for notification, good luck all!
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WorwryydStudent
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Does anyone know all the equations needed for PAT? I'm making a list/poster of them so I can memorise them, so I wanted to know if I was missing any. Or is it better if I just learn all of the A2 equations?
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Ryan-1704
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(Original post by WorwryydStudent)
Does anyone know all the equations needed for PAT? I'm making a list/poster of them so I can memorise them, so I wanted to know if I was missing any. Or is it better if I just learn all of the A2 equations?
You don't need the nuclear or magnetic field equations but I guess knowing the further mechanics and gravitational/electric fields/capacitors would be useful. The PAT isn't about memorising equations too much, I'd work through some past papers and if there's any equations you needed to solve a question that you haven't memorised then memorise (a lot can be derived from other simpler equations)
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Ryan-1704
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Just an update: the PAT will now be taking place on Thursday 5th November as the admissions test have been split over two days to minimise how many students are sitting a test on each day.

It is still going ahead as normal though, just a day later
https://www.admissionstesting.org/fo...pat/about-pat/
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NemesisRider
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^ Thanks for the heads-up, edited the original post. Interesting to see they’re doing so, it’s going to be an interesting year for the PAT...
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GCSE2019help
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Just leaving a comment for notifications as well. good luck everyone 👍
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tande33
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Hi, I have seen quite a few people recommending practicing for the PAT by looking at the BPhO questions. I was wondering specifically which papers they were looking, at for example year 13 challenge or round 1? And also, would you suggest sitting the whole paper, or answering individual questions in exam conditions? I have looked at most of the PAT papers (mainly the more recent ones) and was wondering if it is worth looking at the older ones as they seem to be very different and easier too?
Many thanks!
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PhysicsMathsTut
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Hi, just to let you know that I recently solved the 2019 paper, it's on this page: https://www.physicsandmathstutor.com...olutions-2019/
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PhysicsMathsTut
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(Original post by tande33)
Hi, I have seen quite a few people recommending practicing for the PAT by looking at the BPhO questions. I was wondering specifically which papers they were looking, at for example year 13 challenge or round 1? And also, would you suggest sitting the whole paper, or answering individual questions in exam conditions? I have looked at most of the PAT papers (mainly the more recent ones) and was wondering if it is worth looking at the older ones as they seem to be very different and easier too?
Many thanks!
I'd say year 12 and year 13 challenges are the closest in terms of difficulty of questions. Year 13 challenge has topics that are not in the PAT syllabus, so you'd need to be aware of that. PAT has some questions at the level of round 1, but as a whole round 1 is a more difficult paper.
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tande33
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(Original post by PhysicsMathsTut)
I'd say year 12 and year 13 challenges are the closest in terms of difficulty of questions. Year 13 challenge has topics that are not in the PAT syllabus, so you'd need to be aware of that. PAT has some questions at the level of round 1, but as a whole round 1 is a more difficult paper.
Thanks that's helpful!
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lege-lego
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Are PAT exams usually held in the morning or afternoons?
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asraaaaa
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this might be a stupid question but i'm paranoid; do PAT test results only go to Oxford because thats the only uni I'm applying for that needs them, the others dont, but since I'm doing the PAT, will they get it?
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lege-lego
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(Original post by asraaaaa)
this might be a stupid question but i'm paranoid; do PAT test results only go to Oxford because thats the only uni I'm applying for that needs them, the others dont, but since I'm doing the PAT, will they get it?
I don't see why they would. The universities you apply to do not know what other unis you've applied to.
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tande33
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Hi, I was having a look/trying to do the PAT from 2017 (not specimen) and was a bit confused by the questions of capacitors and parametric equations... I managed to do the parametric equation one (with a bit of luck and logic I guess) but had to guess for the capacitors question. From my knowledge are these not both year 2 content? I haven't covered either yet and was wondering if its worth trying to learn the basics of some A2 topics... But that feels kinda strange tbh... Many thanks!

Edit: Just seen that capacitors are on the spec! Does anyone know of any resources that would be useful for learning about them?
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lege-lego
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I know that for the PAT exams Casio fx83GT plus and fx85GT plus are recommended, but since the GT plus range is now being discontinued and replaced with the GTX range would one of the GTX's be alright for the exam?
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dav2020
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(Original post by lege-lego)
I know that for the PAT exams Casio fx83GT plus and fx85GT plus are recommended, but since the GT plus range is now being discontinued and replaced with the GTX range would one of the GTX's be alright for the exam?
I looked up the calculator specification on the Physics Dept. website, under the PAT section, it gives the GTX's as examples that meet the specifications.
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lege-lego
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(Original post by dav2020)
I looked up the calculator specification on the Physics Dept. website, under the PAT section, it gives the GTX's as examples that meet the specifications.
Thank you!
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ollie.kirby57
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Posted for notifications.
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