AMELAT (Asian and Middle Eastern Languages Admissions Test)

What is the AMELAT?

If you are applying to study Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, Arabic or Jewish Studies as part of one of the following courses you will be required to sit the AMELAT (formerly known as the OLAT):

The AMELAT is a paper-based test, lasting 30 minutes and sat under timed exam conditions. The AMELAT is designed to assess your ability to analyse how languages work, in a way which doesn't depend on your knowledge of any particular language. Instead we are looking to gauge your aptitude for learning a new language rapidly. 

Candidates for Classics with Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (or Asian and Middle Eastern Studies with Classics) will need to take the CAT, but do not need to take the AMELAT. 

Why do I have to take a test?

Most applicants to Oxford University have great personal statements, excellent references, and are also predicted top grades. It can therefore be difficult for us to choose between so many well-qualified candidates, especially as applicants come from all over the world and take different qualifications.

Tests give us an extra piece of information for every student who has applied for a given course, wherever they are from. Considered together with the other elements of the application, this helps us to identify the very best candidates. However, there is no specific mark that will guarantee your application will be shortlisted. The tests vary each year, and your test score will be considered alongside the scores of other students who apply for your course.

Do I have to pay?

We do not charge candidates to take this test. However, please be aware that some independent test centres do charge an administration fee to candidates; you should contact your centre for details.

How are the tests designed and reviewed?

When a department wishes to introduce a new admissions test for their course, there is a substantial consultation process within the University, including a pilot testing phase, designed to ensure that the test is suitable. Where appropriate, subject departments are encouraged to share common tests, or elements of tests, to ease the process of application for the student and administration for the school or college. Use of the tests is carefully reviewed and we undertake substantial statistical evaluation of each test.

How do I register?

More information on how to register for this admissions test will be available here shortly. The deadline for registering will be 29 September.

Can I apply for access arrangements?

Your test centre will be able to apply for access arrangements for you if you have a permanent or long-term disability which might affect your performance such as a sight impairment, dyslexia or cerebral palsy. You may also be eligible for access arrangements if you have a short-term difficulty, such as a broken arm.

The access arrangements you are eligible for will depend on the exact nature of your condition and most often will be the same as those you would get while taking a public examination at your school. These could include modified materials (i.e. large print or braille exam papers), extra time, or the use of a laptop.

You should let your school or test centre know of any requirements you may have as early as you can and provide them with medical evidence to support your application. The deadlines for applying for modified papers and requesting access arrangements will be available soon.

When do I take the test?

Depending on which test is being taken, this will be on one of the two dates given below, so a few weeks after the test registration deadline of 29 September.

2023 test dates:
19 October: CAT, ELAT, GAT, MAT and AMELAT
20 October: HAT, MLAT, PAT and Philosophy Test

We are aware that sometimes tests fall during school half terms which vary by region reach year. Unfortunately, due to the tight timeframes for processing applications, it is not possible to avoid this but we hope by giving you considerable notice of test dates, schools will be able to make plans for their students to sit tests either at their school or at an alternative test centre, and candidates will make sure they are available to take the necessary test(s).

It is not possible to re-sit a test. If you feel you did badly due to extenuating circumstances, for example: if you were ill on the day of the test or if there was some form of disruption at your test centre, it will be possible for the centre or yourself to submit a form reporting these circumstances in order for you to be considered for special consideration. Further details on how to do this will be available here shortly.

Remember to ensure you register for the test by 29 September, even if you feel exceptional circumstances may mean there is a risk you will not able take it. Our admissions tests are an important part of our assessment process for candidates and in order to make sure your application is as competitive as possible, we strongly advise that you make every effort to sit the test. We are aware that there may be extra difficulties for some candidates this year but we do expect the vast majority of candidates to be able to sit tests as planned. If you experience exceptional circumstances beyond your control which prevent this, please alert the college you have applied to as soon as possible. If you have made an open application, please contact us using our contact form. In this case your application will be considered using the other information you give us as part of your UCAS form and alongside other candidates applying for your subject.

How do I get my results?

Results for the AMELAT are not automatically published but they can be requested as part of the usual feedback process.

Admissions tutors will receive the results of all tests in time to make their shortlisting decisions in November, so candidates do not need to send their results to us separately.

Practice materials

Taking any type of test or exam can be stressful, but you can help build your confidence by doing a bit of preparation ahead of time.

You may also do better in the real test if you've had a chance to practise some sample or past papers, and got used to the format and timings of the admissions test you have to take. 

Here are our top tips for preparing for the AMELAT:

  1. Watch our workshop video. 
  2. Review the sample papers for the test. This will help you to feel familiar with the test paper and know what to expect.
  3. Sit at least one past paper in test conditions. This is really important as it will help you get used to how much time to allocate to each question.

Don't worry if you find the past or specimen papers very difficult - they're supposed to be! All our tests are designed to stretch you further than you have been stretched before – most candidates will find them really hard.

AMELAT (formerly known as the OLAT) Workshop video

Past papers

Please note that the AMELAT was previously the OLAT. Test papers before 2023 are listed under the name 'OLAT.'

The University does not endorse, or allow use of, its tests that are protected by copyright for commercial use

Test solutions

The University does not endorse, or allow use of, its tests that are protected by copyright for commercial use