The TMUA (Test of Mathematics for University Admission) is an admissions exam designed to rank the applicants to certain UK universities to help admissions tutors separate excellent candidates from one another as part of the admissions test.
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The TMUA is made up of two sections, each 75-minutes in length and consisting of 20 multiple-choice questions. The first paper is on Applications of Mathematical Knowledge, whilst the second paper is on Mathematical Reasoning. The first paper is aimed at assessing your ability to apply your mathematical knowledge to new situations, whilst the second paper gives admissions tutors the chance to see your ability to deal with mathematical reasoning, and simple ideas from elementary logic.
Applicants for Cambridge University wishing to study Computer Science or Economics will be required to sit the TMUA as part of their application. Other UK universities also use the TMUA for various maths-related courses. These are: University of Bath, Cardiff University, Durham University, Lancaster University, LSE, University of Nottingham, University of Sheffield, University of Southampton, and University of Warwick.
If you’re applying for Cambridge and have heard of the ECAA Cambridge, or Economics Admissions Assessment, then you might be asking yourself why we haven’t mentioned this test. The ECAA is an older, Cambridge-specific admissions test that Cambridge University used to use for its economics applicants, but from this admissions cycle onwards, the ECAA 2022 has been replaced by the TMUA. If you’ve been preparing for the ECAA either by mistake or for a precious year’s application, don’t be disheartened! Prepping for this test or going through ECAA past papers will still help prepare you for the TMUA and an economics course in general.
Cambridge University uses the TMUA as a standardised format for assessing and benchmarking their applicants. The exam rewards problem solving over mathematical knowledge, so that students taking different qualifications at school can access the syllabus. Many applicants to Maths-related subjects at Cambridge will have similarly high grades and impressive personal statements, so an applicant’s TMUA test score heavily influences the decision of who to offer a place to. Other universities use the TMUA score as additional context in their decision-making process for admissions to maths-based courses.
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