What is OAT test?
OAT stands for Optometry Admission Test. It is a standardized exam for applicants seeking admission in Doctor of Optometry (O.D) programs. The OAT examinations are conducted by the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO). This test assesses the general academic skills and specific knowledge in areas of science that are considered important for success in optometry schools.
The OAT is managed throughout the year at test centers run by Prometric Test Centers. Every school and college of optometry in the United States, and Canada consider it mandatory to take the OAT. These optometry schools are mainly hunting for candidates who have an all-round personality. Besides having good academic knowledge, these candidates should also be upcoming and motivated.
The OAT is a multiple-choice format test conducted on a computer. The duration of the test is 247 minutes and in administered in English. The format of the test is standardized and disclosed only before the test. The OAT test consists of 4 different types of subjects:
Survey of Natural Sciences: This section of the OAT test consists of 100 questions on subsections Biology, General Chemistry, and Organic Chemistry. The Biology subsection consists of 40 questions on molecular biology, life diversity, vertebrate anatomy and physiology, developmental biology, genetics, evolution, ecology and behavior. The General Chemistry subsection has 30 questions on general chemistry topics. The Organic Chemistry subsection is made of up 30 questions on mechanism, stereo-chemistry and other related topics.
Reading Comprehension Test: This section contains passages on scientific information followed by 40 related questions. The passages are similar to the topics encountered in the first year of optometry course.
Physics Test: This section covers 40 questions on topics such as units and vectors, linear kinematics, statics, dynamics and others.
Quantitative Reasoning Test: This section of the OAT consists of 40 questions on math problems and quantitative material restricting the use of calculators. Areas of math such as algebra, numerical calculations, probability, stats and others are included.
The eligibility and requirements for the examinees of the test is that they must have atleast one year of college education in biology, general and organic chemistry, and physics. This must be completed by the candidate before participating in the OAT.
The examinees can apply for the OAT through OAT Electronic Application. However, the Electronic Notification of OAT Eligibility depends on the processing of the examinees OAT application. The examinees will receive an e-mail notification or a letter of eligibility for testing with the instructions for scheduling an appointment.
Prior to scheduling your OAT test, you must receive an electronic notification of application to this test. The OAT tests are administered all round the year at the Prometric Test Centers in the United States, and its territories include Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S Virgin Islands, and Canada. The OAT test has to be scheduled atleast 60 to 90 days before the desired testing date.
Prepare a time table before sitting with your OAT books. Maintain a notebook about your preparation stating what you have studied. Collect all the relevant study materials, sample test questions from reliable sources. Do not go for poor quality material. Take practice tests regularly online and study hard. Taking the help of study guides is helpful too. Advices taken from ex-candidates will make your work easier in preparation. Revise properly and make sure you haven't missed out on anything.
A raw score is produced when an examine takes the OAT test. This score equals the number of correct answers. This raw score is converted into a standard score so that an examinees performance can be compared to other examinees' performance. The OAT test score ranges from 200 to 400 with an approximate mean of 300 which is also the minimum qualifying score.