What subjects should I choose for my PCE if I want to study a university degree in Spain? Which one has the highest weighting?

In this post, we explain which subjects you should choose for the PCE if you want to study for a university degree in Spain.

If you are considering taking the Specific Competence Tests (PCE) and wish to study at a university in Spain, it’s important to choose the right subjects. Here we provide information on which subjects to choose and how they can influence your admission score.

Before choosing your subjects, you should know your PCE itinerary. It’s important to understand that the number of exams you need to take for your PCE selectivity changes based on 3 factors:

  • The university degree you want to pursue.
  • The Autonomous Community where you will study.
  • Your status as an international student, that is, whether or not you are a student with an international agreement.

If you were not aware of this information, we recommend that you first read our pages about the structure of the PCE and frequently asked questions about the PCE.

Which subjects should I choose for the PCE?

Here is the list of available subjects for the Specific Competence Tests (PCE) offered by UNEDassis: German, Biology, Technical Drawing, Design, Business Economics, Physics, French, Art Foundations, Geography, Geology, History of Spain, History of Philosophy, History of Art, English, Italian, Latin, Spanish Language and Literature, Mathematics, Mathematics Applied to Social Sciences, Portuguese, Chemistry.

finger pointing Remember to consider the university degree you wish to pursue and consult the weighting table to choose the subjects that will allow you to obtain the highest score in the PCE.

 If you would like more information about the program of each subject, you can visit the UNEDassis page, where the specific content is detailed. Additionally, if you are interested in seeing solved exam examples in PDF format and videos, you can visit our exam page, where you will find useful resources to prepare adequately.

Why is better to choose subjects that weigh O.2 in the PCE?

When choosing the subjects, you want to take in PCE (Specific Competency Exam), it is very important to know which subjects weigh the most in the university you want to study (weigh 0.2). Let’s take an example for a mixed disciplines (social science) degree: Imagine you want to study Business Administration at the University of Valencia. In the following image you have the subjects and their weight for two very similar degrees offered by different universities

According to this table, the university recommends that among the subjects we choose, at least two of them should have a weighting of 0.2 (the more, the better, as we will have more options to increase our score). However, at a minimum, two of the subjects we select must be those with a 0.2 weighting in the table above.

Does this mean I can’t choose English or any other subject?

No, you can choose the subjects you want, and UNEDassis will weigh each one at 0.1 to reach 10. Then, the university, which will increase your score from that 10 to 14, will do so based on the grades you have obtained exclusively from the subjects that have a weighting of 0.2 in their table.

We already explained in the frequently asked questions post about the PCE how the PCE score is calculated, but we’ll refresh your memory. Look at the following infographic for a better understanding.

The score out of 10 is obtained as follows:

  • 60% – The high school grade (which must be previously validated)
  • 40% – The result of the PCE exams that the students have taken.

Admission Score = (0.2 x NMB + 4) + (0.1 x E1) + (0.1 x E2) + (0.1 x E3) + (0.1 x E4)

NMB= Average high school grade.
E= Score obtained in each specific competence test (PCE).

The score out of 14 is obtained as follows:

The two subjects with the best grades that have a 0.2 weighting are selected and multiplied by 0.2. The result is added to the admission score.

A person can take exams in English, history of philosophy (0.2), economics (0.2), and geography (0.2), for example. When they take the UNEDassis exams, each subject will be worth 0.1. These four subjects will make up 40% of the grade to be added to the high school grade. Once the total of the exams and the high school grade is obtained (always out of 10 points), the university selects the two highest grades that have a weighting of 0.2 and adds them to the previous score, thus achieving a score out of 14 points.

Imagine that this person has obtained the following grades (out of 10):

  • English: 8
  • History of philosophy: 6 —- weighting 0.2
  • Economics: 9.5 —- weighting 0.2
  • Geography: 8.5 —- weighting 0.2
  • Average high school grade: 7

Admission Score = (0.2 x 7 + 4) + (0.1 x 8) + (0.1 x 6) + (0.1 x 9.5) + (0.1 x 8.5)= 8.6/10

Highest 0.2 weightings (economics and geography) : 9.5 x 0.2 + 8.5 x 0.2= 3.6/4

Admission score for Business Administration and Management: 8.6 + 3.6= 12.20/14

PCE Updates for 2024

As an important update this year, under the new implementation of LOMLOE, students taking the PCE EBAU now have the option to choose between History of Spain and History of Philosophy. According to annual PCE outcome statistics, Philosophy is recommended as it historically shows better statistical results. You can view these results here.

Another notable update is for those preparing for degrees in science and technology. This year, in the core subject options, you can choose between Mathematics II and Mathematics CCSS (Social Sciences). Statistical data suggest that Mathematics CCSS tends to yield better results than Mathematics II, so if both subjects have the same weighting (0.2), it would be advisable to opt for CCSS. However, if only Mathematics II is weighted for you, it’s important to do a personal analysis. If you have good skills in mathematics, you might consider choosing it to maximize your score along with the other two specific subjects you select.

Still have questions?

Don’t worry, we are happy to resolve them for you. Contact us!

Structure of the PCE

Discover how the PCE exams vary depending on the degree and province, as well as your type of high school program!


Have questions? Our selection of Frequently Asked Questions is here to help you!

List of UNEDassis subjects

Table of weightings of Spanish universities

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