IMAT Exam Explained Pass & Study in Italy

Have you ever dreamt of studying medicine in the vibrant culture of Italy? The International Medical Admissions Test (IMAT) could be your gateway to prestigious medical schools offering English-taught programs. Everything you need to know about the IMAT, from registration to test day, is covered in this extensive guide.

What is the IMAT?

The IMAT is a standardized test assessing your aptitude and knowledge in subjects crucial for success in Italian medical universities. Passing the IMAT is a mandatory requirement for international students seeking to pursue an English-taught medical program in Italy.


The IMAT requires a high school degree as a minimum. There's no upper age limit for applying for medical school in Italy, so students of all ages can pursue their medical dreams. However, enrolling in an Italian university is mandatory. This typically translates to 12 years of formal education, but any missing years from high school can be fulfilled through university credits.

IMAT Exam Format

The IMAT is a pen-and-paper exam administered yearly, typically around September or November (IMAT test dates). There's no IMAT online option, so plan accordingly. The specific test centres for the current year are announced in an official decree by the Italian Ministry of Education (MIUR) each June.

The 100-minute exam consists of 60 multiple-choice questions (MCQs) with five answer options each. It evaluates your knowledge across various domains:

Logical Reasoning and General Knowledge (4 questions): Sharpens your critical thinking and analytical skills.

  • Visual reasoning
  • Relevant selection
  • Finding procedures
  • Percentages

Biology (23 questions): Tests your understanding of other biological concepts.

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Cytology
  • Genetics
  • Biomolecules
  • The central dogma of molecular biology
  • Bioenergies

Chemistry (15 questions): Demonstrate your proficiency in fundamental chemical principles.

  • Organic chemistry
  • Solutions 
  • Stoichiometry
  • Bonds and molecular geometry 
  • Period table

Mathematics and Physics (13 questions): Evaluate your problem-solving abilities.

  • Geometry 
  • Probability and statistics
  • Equations and disequations 
  • Thermodynamics
  • Kinematics 
  • Dynamics

The IMAT is typically administered once a year, around September or November. The specific procedures and content are defined by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MUR) and published in a decree by summer.

IMAT Scores & Evaluation: 

The IMAT throws a unique scoring twist at you. Here's what you need to know to develop an IMAT scoring strategy and reach the coveted IMAT minimum score. All sections of the IMAT are treated equally, and each question carries the same weight. This means strategic answering is critical.

Marking system:

  • Right Answer: A correct answer gets you a reward of 1.5 points!
  • Wrong Answer: Be careful – a wrong answer deducts 0.4 points, so avoid careless guesses.
  • Unanswered Question: Leaving a question blank results in no points gained or lost.

Knowing when to take an educated guess can boost your IMAT score. A guess might be worthwhile if you need more clarification, but you can narrow down the options. However, if you need help, it's best to leave the question blank to avoid the penalty. The IMAT minimum score is a moving target, changing yearly based on test difficulty.

  • IMAT 2022: The minimum score was 32.8 points.
  • IMAT 2023: With limited seats remaining at the end of January 2024, the minimum score sits around 33.9 points.

The Score Spectrum: Top Score in IMAT 2023, the top scorer achieved an impressive 79.4 points. A perfect score of 90 points is possible if you answer every question correctly. This score, however, is infrequent. Remember, a strategic approach to answering and maximizing correct responses is crucial for a high IMAT score. By understanding the scoring system and utilizing strategic guessing, you can put yourself in a better position to conquer the exam.



The IMAT exam fee varies by currency (approxIMATely £114.00, €130.00, $164.00) and is payable during the online registration.

Available Seats and Universities for IMAT 2024 

The number of available seats has increased compared to 2022. Below is a breakdown of all available places for the academic year 2023/2024:

  • EU Medicine and Surgery: This category boasts a significant increase of 208 seats, bringing the total to 879.
  • Non-EU Medicine and Surgery: An increase of 53 seats, for a total of 425 available positions, also benefits non-EU students.
  • Participating Universities: Here's a list of the Italian public medical schools that require the IMAT for admission:
  1. The University of Bari
  2. The University of Bologna
  3. The University of Catania
  4. The University of Messina
  5. The University of Milan
  6. The University of Milan Bicocca (located in Bergamo)
  7. The University of Naples “Federico II” etc

By understanding the available seats on the IMAT and the participating universities, With careful planning, you can improve your chances of getting into the medical school of your dreams in Italy.

IMAT Registration:

The registration window for the IMAT is typically open from April to June (IMAT exam registration). Here's a step-by-step breakdown:

  • University Account Creation: Submit your application to the official university website and create an account. This will be your gateway to the registration process.
  • IMAT Registration and Payment: Once logged in, complete the online IMAT registration. Remember, an associated IMAT cost (around €130.00) can be conveniently paid online using various currencies.
  • Choosing Your Test Center: Choose your preferred test center from the available options worldwide. If Italy is your desired location, ensure you pick your first-choice centre, as this selection is final for Italian test centres.
  • University Preference List: Submit your application along with your university preferences. Rank your choices in order of priority, with your dream school at the top. You can modify your preferences (except your first choice) until the deadline.
  • English Language Requirements: While not explicitly mentioned as a requirement for registration, some universities might request proof of English language proficiency. Check with your chosen universities and provide any necessary documentation (e.g., English language certificate) during the application process.
  • Confirmation Emails: Once everything is confirmed, you'll receive two important emails: one for successful registration and another for successful payment. These emails will contain crucial details like your exam date, location, and chosen test centre. Keep them safe for reference.

Exam Day:

  • Bring confirmation emails (registration & payment), valid ID, and black pens to the exam.
  • The exam is held in person at designated IMAT test centres worldwide (there is no IMAT online test option).


The answer key will be released on the IMAT official website on exam day. An anonymous ranking list with individual scores will be posted on the University's website two weeks later. You can access your detailed score breakdown within three weeks on your University account. The official IMAT ranking is released four weeks after the exam (EU candidates are at University, and non-EU candidates are through their chosen University).

IMAT Preparation:

While there's no official IMAT preparation course online offered by the test administrators, many resources are available to help you excel. Consider enrolling in IMAT preparation courses, utilizing IMAT online practice tests, or studying from previous years' IMAT questions.

Key Dates and Deadlines:

•    Mark your calendars for the IMAT registration period (typically April-June) and exam dates (usually September-November). Deadlines are strict, so plan accordingly.

In Conclusion:

By understanding the IMAT format, eligibility requirements, and registration process, you can take the first step towards your Medical career in Italy. This guide has equipped you with the knowledge and resources to navigate the application process, conquer the IMAT exam, and unlock your medical future. Moksh Overseas Support empowers you to explore the best medical programs, ensures a smooth transition to life in Italy, and helps you achieve your full potential as a doctor.