It consists of 70 multiple choice questions on two categories; Arts/Humanities and Science/Mathematics. There are also two writing tests to be completed. One is usually an informative piece based on information given, while the second is an opinionative to be based on statements provided.
At the end of the year the student will receive a statement of marks showing their numerical score for each section (Writing, Arts/Humanities and Science/Maths) as well as a standardised study score out of 50 for each section.
The GAT is an important part of the VCE assessment procedures. Although it isn't part of the graduation requirements and doesn't count towards a students final VCE results or ENTER, the GAT plays an important role in checking that a school's assessments and examinations have been accurately assessed.
Therefore, if a student is enrolled in Units 3 and 4 of any VCE study — whether in Year 11 or Year 12 — they must sit the GAT unless exempted by the VCAA.
Year 12 Western Australian students also sit the VCAA GAT. This test was introduced into Western Australia as a trial to provide schools with feedback on the standard of assessment used for the new WACE courses.
The GAT, as of 2008, will be taken into consideration for the middle band for courses by Monash University if a student misses out on the subject because their ENTER score is just below the clearly in score.