(Original post by Beska)
A bit of info about Newcastle's admission policy (which can be found here
Selection for interview - "shortlisting"
First things first, they check that applicants reach the minimum A-Level/GCSE requirements. All those that do are ranked by UKCAT score and approximately the top 40-45% are given interviews. The interview shortlisting is done purely on the UKCAT average. Having additional A*'s at GCSE or A-Level, for example, will not help or make it easier to achieve an interview. The UKCAT score required for interview will vary year on year because each year the UKCAT scores of those applying change. You will either be given an interview or rejected.
The UKCAT cut-off last year was 675 (then lowered to 667.5 later in the cycle). You can expect it to increase this year. It is impossible to know by how much.
UKCAT scores are given to Newcastle on or around the 5th November. You can expect interview invites from this date. My interview date for 2011 entry was 19 Nov, and I received the invitation (first by email, and then letter) on or around the 12th Nov. The latest you can be rejected for not meeting the UKCAT cut-off is around mid-February, so don't give up hope!
If you are above the UKCAT cut-off then you will be invited to interview. The medical school describe the purpose interview as "to confirm whether the candidate has the aptitude, motivation and personal qualities to succeed as a medical student" and they are held between mid-November and early March. You will be interviewed by two members of academic staff, which may or may not be practicing doctors (I was interviewed by two doctors). Each individually fill in an assessment form which is very structured. They rate you on a 4-point scale (1 being crap, and 4 being exceptional) on the following criteria:
- Choice of Newcastle - self explanatory.
- Reflection on the commitment to care and role of a doctor - caring nature, insight into a career as a doctor, understanding of the NHS, ethical issues, etc.
- Reflection on personal attributes - learning styles, communication skills, ability to deal with questions, ability to explain complicated concepts, non-academic and personal interests, personal attributes (strengths/weaknesses, self motivation, leadership, teamwork), coping with stress
- Verification of Personal Statement - ability to verify personal statement and draw on examples
- Overall performance at interview - rated on your overall performance
(All of these and a more in-depth description of each is available in the admissions policy I linked before.)
They won't tell you your scores until after the end of the application cycle. After then, you can apply for them and you get a letter if you're interested and nosy like I am.
Using all these 4-point scores, they will somehow give you an 'overall interview score' (which is separate from overall performance, by the way) which allows you to be ranked with the other applicants. This is the reason they do not give out any offers until they have finished interviewing everybody. Once they rank all of the applicants they have interviewed, they will give offers to approximately 400 of them. You have about a 43% chance of gaining an offer after interview. The interview stage is tough. It is not a case of "gain interview = gain place".
If you are ranked in the top 400-odd people they interviewed, you will be given an offer from early/mid-March. The first offers last year came out on 9th March (the day I got my offer! hooray!) and from some rumours floating around last year tend to be given out in some kind of descending interview score order.
(all estimated based on previous cycles)
: 07 Oct 2011
: 15 Oct 2011
UKCAT scores given to Newcastle:
~05 Nov 2011
Interview invites expected from:
~12 Nov 2011
~19 Nov 2011 - ~19 Feb 2012
All pre-interview rejections given out:
~12 Feb 2012
Offers start to be given out:
~9th March 2012
All post-interview rejections given out:
End of March 2012
Post-offer open day:
4 April 2012 and 11 April 2012
(approximate, based on 2010 entry cycle)
Chance of interview:
After interview, chance of offer:
Hope this helps!