Alright...sorry in advance for a long post but im in a wierd situation that needs explaining!!
Just to put it into context...I've always had a dilemma between choosing medicine or a different degree, so I chose my A-Levels specifically to keep options open, although in the final year of 6th form I had decided on studying an economics-based degree, so did not carry on my sciences to A2. My final grades, therefore were:
Biology AS: A
Chemistry AS: B
Economics A2: A
Philosophy A2: A
Maths A2: B
+ As in general studies / critical thinking
Until recently I was studying Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Durham but I could not get engaged with the course. I dropped out and found a place on a RCN-credited Healthcare Assistant training course. I now work as an HCA in two medical practices, and absolutely love the job. I'm studying on a lot of other courses at the moment including ARTP spirometry, phlebotomy, asthma and a BSc module in COPD pathology. Its really got me excited about learning again, and ultimately I just feel that I've made a huge, huge mistake by not choosing medicine!
I tried to get myself on a foundation year for medicine, as some of these accept applications through UCAS Extra however I was not eligible for them as I do have AS level chemistry / bio, and they only really want to take people who have no scientific background. So my best option, it seems at the moment is for me to get my A2 in Chemistry. (one option may be to do this next year but ones not through extra...they may let me on with my science quals)
What I ultimately want to make sure of is this: a lot of universities seem to be changing their requirements from AAB to AAA on 2011 entry, grades to be achieved on the first sitting. When I do my chemistry and biology, what I will hopefully have is AAB (first sitting) + AA.
For unis that are changing their policy to AAA, are they applying it only to people who took their exams in 2011, or to people who did before that? Also, do they always tend to operate a 'first sitting' policy when looking at grades?
I just wanted to check, because I know medicine is extremely competitive. I know I have a strong application from a work-experience point of view, and I am working towards a range of other professional qualifications that will help me in my current job, I'm just hoping they'd be taken into account and that I wouldnt be immediately disqualified if I applied with my 'AAB + AA' results and the course was AAA
Would appreciate any input on my options from this point guys!!!
I'm not 100% because I didn't do A Levels so I didn't really look into it, but I think that the 'in one sitting' policy is concerning people who take an A Level, get a C and resit it to get an A. I don't think it counts if it's in a different subject. I'm not sure that the other professional qualifications would get you any extra brownie points, but they'd be nice to mention in your PS. Other than that, I'd really suggest getting all the prospectuses for all med schools, going through and throwing away the ones you 100% don't qualify for or don't like and spend an afternoon ringing the rest and telling them your situation. They may be lenient about your grades situation. Good luck!
I'm now studying nursing after doing another degree years ago. In between I had a lot of years as a HCA. My understanding from those doing medicine now that I know is that they don't need everything to be at one sitting but they may only consider the first grade if you resit. A lot of people do medicine as mature students and they usually make allowances for that. I suspect that this is the big benefit of the modular system these days meaning that its not expected that you do all your exams in one sitting - I did A levels in the days before AS and A2 and then it was a very common requirement that all grades had to be at one sitting so that people who wanted to resit one almost always resat the lot. Possibly tested ability to multi task more but I don't know. There is however always big disparity between courses so if there's a particular med school you want, I'd talk to them now and discuss your options, before committing to the A2s. It might also get your name known a bit before you have that interview and mean that you therefore have a better chance of an interview (not saying it will though)
Make sure you apply to universities which dont require first sittings only. Moreover, do some research into which universities would prefer a candidate such as yourself.
Hey guys cheers for all the advice
Looking hopeful with Bradford...theyre saying they'd consider me if I can make a proper application through UCAS Extra...only thing is UCAS are now saying that they won't put me on Extra, because I did have an unconditional offer!!
Going to try calling UCAS again and making the situation clear i.e. if I can get on extra, I have a good chance of getting a place, and if I don't I'm screwed! Heard someone on here saying UCAS can be pretty inconsistent and a lot depends on which advisor happens to pick up the phone