The standards of UK medical schools are incredibly high. In fact, out of a score of 100, graduate prospects at the top 15 med schools is 98 at its lowest. It goes without saying that succeeding at medical school is an enormous achievement. On the world stage, all UK medical schools are respected. There is no such thing as a ‘bad’ medical school! Such stringent testing and independent evaluation ensures that the standards are very, very high.
If you are interested in studying medicine, you need to start considering your options for medical school. This can be very overwhelming as there are 33 different schools that cater for this degree course. Finding the best school for you, therefore, requires a lot of thorough research before you put names onto your UCAS form.
If you are interested in a career in the medical sector, you will be looking to attend university to study medicine. Although the entry requirements for each medical school in the UK vary in some ways, there are certain subjects that are considered essential. In the following post, we will highlight the GCSE grades in particular that you need to be aiming for if you want to enrol to study medicine.
What do you need to know about applying to medical school?
If you are in college, and you have been thinking of a career in medicine, then you are probably best starting your preparation for it now. Even if you are not completely sold on the idea yet, start getting yourself ready. Medical school is crazy competitive, with around 10 applicants for each and every open spot on every course.
You are going to need to start your application process as soon as possible, and this means gaining the relevant experiences in relevant fields in order to start building the strongest application that you can. Failing to start strong can seriously harm your chances later.
What is the UKCAT?
The United Kingdom Clinical Aptitude Test,, is a computer-based test taken at Pearson Vue Centres, each year.
The UK Clinical Aptitude Test, to give it its Sunday name, is a computer-based test which is used in the selection process by a consortium of UK university Medical and Dental Schools.
This test It is run by the UKCAT Consortium, which is currently chaired by Nigel Siesage, in partnership with Pearson VUE. First introduced in 2006, it is now entering it 10th year of ‘service’
Things to keep in mind about life as a medical student
Being a medical student is a lot different than, say, being a student of art. As a medical student you are going to work harder, longer and more intensely than you have ever done before and likely ever to do again.
That said, it is also going to be extremely rewarding - and here’s why.
Medicine Personal statements are a vital thing to get right. It's your first foot in the door to going to medical school and becoming a doctor.
Firstly, we should probably explore what a personal statement is. You are probably familiar with the personal statement from job application forms and possibly your CV (if your doesn’t have a personal statement, it really should). The personal statement is probably the first item on your CV, and should be given the most attention.
Without a doubt, the best thing that you can do, in terms of preparing for a career with the NHS, is to get some on the job work experience. You could also undertake voluntary work, if you liked, in an area of health and social care and gain essential skills and experience that way.
Work experience, and voluntary work, will show you whether or not you are actually cut out for a career in medicine, and whether or not you would still like to pursue your chosen path after having a real world ‘taster’. These experiences can also show you what medical schools, and indeed employers, are looking for when making course or job applications.
Applying to medical school is full of pitfalls for the uneducated applicant. Follow the abundance of advice available and you wont go far wrong. If you can ensure you have a first class medicine personal statement, some meaningful work experience, great grades and a genuine passion for wanting to go into a healthcare career then a place in medical school is well within your reach.
Sweaty palms, upset tummy and the urge to bring your breakfast back into the light? Looks like you have a med school interview - congratulations!
What exactly is the point of work experience? After all, you already know what you want to do, you are going to apply to medical school, so why bother with the extra hassle of work experience - isn’t it just a waste of time?
Good questions, but you need to carry out some work experience so that you can find out whether or not medicine really is for you or not and whether it is all you would hope. It is always best to test the water before jumping in, especially before investing an enormous amount of time and money in preparation for it.