Results are out! Find what you need...fast. Get quick advice or join the chat
Hey there Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Subjects/Grades Needed for Medicine

Announcements Posted on
    • Thread Starter
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I was wondering which A-Level subjects are required/highly regarded if you want to study medicine. Do I need to do two sciences? Or do I need something like Maths as well? Currently my options are Chemistry, Art, English Literature and Latin - but presumably, if I switched Latin to Biology then it would look better (I'd rather not change Art or English). So if my options were Bio, Chem, Eng Lit and Art then would this be OK, or would there be a problem with doing the two arts subjects?

    Also, would your GCSE grades be looked at? And do you need work experience? And which subjects would be necessary for other careers in healthcare, such as speech therapy? Sorry for so many questions, but I'm really confused and I don't want to end up studying something for 2 years only to find out that it was the wrong decision :confused:
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    i would take maths instead of art.
    and you do need two sciences.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    At least 1 maths, Biology and Chem is the ideal.
    • 2 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Most require Biology and Chemistry so its best to take those and Maths with another subject.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    just noticed you're from colchester..may i ask which school you will go to?
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I would recommend you dont do medicine. I know people who do Psychology, two sciences at A level, straight A's at AS level and straight A*s at GCSE. Well rounded person. But didnt get in anywhere for medicine.

    If you think you will get in picking English Lit and Art you are surely mistaken.
    • 2 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by benisright)
    I would recommend you dont do medicine. I know people who do Psychology, two sciences at A level, straight A's at AS level and straight A*s at GCSE. Well rounded person. But didnt get in anywhere for medicine.
    I know people who didn't get straight A*s, mainly As and still got into medicine. Its tough, but worth it if you want to do it. You need the neccesay work exp as well. I would take Bio, Chem, Maths + anyone of your choice but unis would prefer eng lit.
    • Thread Starter
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    If you think you will get in picking English Lit and Art you are surely mistaken.
    Well since posting this thread, I've done some research on uni websites and found out that lots of med schools like applicants to have done two sciences and one arts subject at A level. So if I did Bio, Chem and Eng Lit then it would show diversity rather than 3 sciences which could seem too specialised. I agree with you to a certain extent about the Art though, which is why I'm not planning on taking it further than AS. As long as I have my 2 science A levels then I don't see why I shouldn't get in, especially if I have the necessary grades and work experience. But thanks for the help anyway
    • 2 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Start your work experience now, see if you can have a few days a week at some sort of medical related place or an old peoples home etc then try and get week placements in your school holidays.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by xemmajanex)
    Well since posting this thread, I've done some research on uni websites and found out that lots of med schools like applicants to have done two sciences and one arts subject at A level. So if I did Bio, Chem and Eng Lit then it would show diversity rather than 3 sciences which could seem too specialised. I agree with you to a certain extent about the Art though, which is why I'm not planning on taking it further than AS. As long as I have my 2 science A levels then I don't see why I shouldn't get in, especially if I have the necessary grades and work experience. But thanks for the help anyway
    One of the ladies i know who got into Cambridge for PPE took Art. But as a 4th A level.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by benisright)
    If you think you will get in picking English Lit and Art you are surely mistaken.
    The med applicant from our school is doing chem bio and business at a level. She's done an AS in yr 13 (photography) and got offers for medicine no problem! They didn't even ask about the AS. So, all you really need is the chem and bio. Do some work experience, and do a third A Level to show you are a well rounded academic as well as individual.
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    To give yourself the best shot at as many med schools as possible, then make sure you do Chem to A2, and biology to at least AS, but preferably to 2.

    As for the third - do something you enjoy - a lot of medical schools state that they like to see an arts subject, as it shows diversity and that you're not a 'one trick science pony'. If you want to go for Cambridge, you will need Maths or Physics at A2 too...

    Make sure you have decent work experience and voluntary stuff that you can reflect upon too...
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by --monty---)
    Hmm here is what some of my friends wanting to do medecine are doing:
    Becca: 10A*s, A2 Biology, Chemistry, Maths, French, + sort of doing AS Further Maths but I'm not sure
    Jo: 6A*s 4As, A2 Biology, Chemistry, History, AS Physics
    Sarah: 10 A*s, A2 Biology, Chemistry, Maths, Physics.

    Everyone is also doing AS Critical Thinking

    Hope that was helpful xxx
    Probably not - it's really only helpful once they get in

    I know that sounds bitchy, but I've seen a lot of straight A students end up with 4 rejections in my time using this board (and Admissionsforum)...
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Fair enough, but I was only trying to help!
    • Thread Starter
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by --monty---)
    Hmm here is what some of my friends wanting to do medecine are doing:
    Becca: 10A*s, A2 Biology, Chemistry, Maths, French, + sort of doing AS Further Maths but I'm not sure
    Jo: 6A*s 4As, A2 Biology, Chemistry, History, AS Physics
    Sarah: 10 A*s, A2 Biology, Chemistry, Maths, Physics.

    Everyone is also doing AS Critical Thinking

    Hope that was helpful xxx
    Don't worry, it was quite helpful actually. It seems like a LOT of prospective medical students have got mostly/all A*s in their GCSEs :eek: Quite scary if I might be "competing" against these people for a place at med school. I mean, are these kinds of results normal?!
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Probably not, I go to a bit of an academic hothouse, v selective so all my friends are geeks I think they do want a good handful of As and A*s, but if you have some Bs and Cs too that will be fine lol! Also Becca and Sarah want to go to Cambridge so are not the most "normal" of people. Jo really wants to go to Edinburgh or KCL I think.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I have another question.. Is it absolutley nesseccary to take maths to pursue a career in med? See I was thinking of taking bio, chem and physics and I've heard phys can be substituted for maths? I was also considering classical civ and I haven't yet decided whether I'll be taking a fifth. Btw is it considered overkill to take all three sciences or do peole do it?
    Emmz xx
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by *.~emma~.*)
    I have another question.. Is it absolutley nesseccary to take maths to pursue a career in med? See I was thinking of taking bio, chem and physics and I've heard phys can be substituted for maths? I was also considering classical civ and I haven't yet decided whether I'll be taking a fifth. Btw is it considered overkill to take all three sciences or do peole do it?
    Emmz xx
    No - maths is not needed anywhere, except maybe to satisfy the multi science spectrum Cambridge like to see - I'd check with Helena on that last bit though...

    Quite a few people take 3 sciences, others take 2 sciences and one arts/humanity. There doesn't seem to be any set rules at BL, I know people with both, which I guess goes to show that med schools don't really care, so long as you have the grades they require and meet their basic subject requirements.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Four med applicants I know:

    - 13 A*s at GCSE, 4 As at AS and 4 As predicted at A level (biol, chem, phys maths) - firm Cambridge

    - 10 A*s 1 A at GCSE, 4 As at AS and 4 As predicted at A level (biol, chem, phys, German) - firm Nottingham

    - 10 As at GCSE, aabb (biol, chem, maths, Spanish) at AS, predicted AAB at A level (biol, chem, maths) - firm Brighton Sussex

    - 3 A*s, 6 As, 2Bs at GCSE, aabbc at AS (biol, chem, maths, English lit., general studies), predicted AAB at A level (biol, chem, maths) - rejected from all med courses applied to, turned down physiology offers, reapplying next year
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Chemistry and Maths would top the list of recommended subjects, followed by Physics and Biology. Please just don't assume that Biology is a critical subject for admission - it's not, though it will certainly help you understand the material taught in your 1st year more easily.
Updated: April 22, 2010
New on TSR

Have a UCAS application question?

Post it in our dedicated forum

Article updates
Reputation gems:
You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.