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2011 Unsuccessful Gap Year Discussion watch

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    Hi all, I am currently in my gap year and I reapplied for medical schools after I was unsuccessful last year (no interviews, straight rejections). I took time improving my application and ended up getting 4 interviews this year at Manchester, SGUL, BSMS and Keele, but eventually got rejections from everywhere again. Even my non-medical 5th choice rejected me (UCL for biomedicine) so I have no university placement for end of this year.
    I've even been working as a HCA in my gap year, which has given me SO MUCH experience in the medical field and in interviews I had so much to talk about what I'd honestly learnt and why it had made it clear that I wanted to study medicine, but all my effort was to no avail...
    In all of the mock interviews I had with the admission tutors in my school and with some doctors I know, they've all told me that I showed so much confidence and motivation to study medicine and my body language & communication was good (plus I knew a lot about what to talk about) so they said to not worry as I'd surely get an offer this year! However I have ended up in this fowl position with no med offers again...

    My current options are:
    1) taking another gap year
    this depends on whether medschools see gap year no.2 as a disadvantage or not.
    as long as I find out how and why I wasn't successful in any of my interviews, this is not a bad option as I feel that my application is quite strong (8A*S 2As GCSES, A*AAA for Alevel), but surprise surprise unis don't give you ANY feedbacks at all so I don't know how I can improve my interview skills.

    2) applying to UCAS Extra for a non-med degree
    I could go for a graduate entry or reapplying whilst in my first year of degree but everything has their risks...since if I am unsuccessful again I'll end up studying a degree that i didn't even want to do in the first place!

    3) applying abroad (e.g. Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic)
    I'll have to revise for my alevels again for the entrance exams and I've heard that it's still a very competitive application, and the fees are so high I'm not sure if it's a good option or not...even if it's slightly easier than getting into UK schools...

    I am very confused in what I should do right now, if there is anyone in the same boat as I am (or who was and has experience in this kind of thing), please feel free to discuss with me
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    Well, whilst I'm not in exactly the same position as yourself, I can empathise. I'm on two Gap Years following dire A Level results, and I anticipate rejections. Might I add, why are you applying to those places if you have those A Levels?! With that in mind, I cannot fathom why you were rejected. I'm not sure the Czech Rep. would be a wise option. I'd say ask for feedback, if you can, from your interviewers; following that, improve where you went wrong. Sounds obvious and is far easier said than done, but there's really not much else to suggest. Sorry :/ I know how hopeless you can feel when you're rejected and on an impromptu Gap Year.
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    I sympathise with you, I really do. Obviously you are a good candidate on paper; evidenced by the fact you obtained four interviews. However, there is evidently something a miss when it comes to either the way you present yourself or what you are actually saying in these interviews. I'm inclined to say that there is an element of luck in this process and you can just be unlucky in one or two interviews.

    However, after four interviews and no offers I'm less inclined to subscribe to the theory that you were unlucky. First thing I would do is request feedback and if possible obtain some form of analysis of your interview or even a marking scheme to find out where you went wrong.

    If the mistakes are rectifiable then I urge you to take a month or two off and then gear yourself up to reapply. If for whatever reason you are deemed to be incompatible with the medical profession (highly unlikely based on what you have told me) then I'd investigate other avenues through UCAS, for instance a professional degree such as pharmacy, nursing, optometry, teaching - ANYTHING really; that will both give you a solid job to fall back on and the opportunity to reapply as a graduate should you still desire in 3-4 years time.

    I've been through the admissions process myself and do not pretend to have it all figured out. I received 3 rejections without interview and have been waiting listed for my final choice, so things are not looking good on my end either. It is difficult, really it is.
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    I applied to those unis this year because I had no interviews at all last year so my main aim was to at least get interviews and I thought I'd get interviews from manchester/bsms/sgul/keele. As for Czech, I'm really hoping to end up in a medical school and wanted to consider any options available - I've asked some trusty people (doctors, admission teachers etc) and they said Prague Uni is well recognised by the EU so would be a good choice as long as I'm committed to study very hard after I get in.
    Yeah I've already asked all of my choices for feedback but all they said was, as usual, they can't give specific details of why I wasn't successful as it would be unfair for other applicants applying to their uni and I should figure out by myself on why I was rejected after my interview, as self-reflection is a key skill to have for a medical career....but I just can't think of where I can improve in my interviews

    Do med schools think bad of second gap year applicants as it means they must've been rubbish to have failed the first two times? Otherwise I shalln't think of a second gap year as a bad option to take
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    (Original post by Caponester)
    However, after four interviews and no offers I'm less inclined to subscribe to the theory that you were unlucky. First thing I would do is request feedback and if possible obtain some form of analysis of your interview or even a marking scheme to find out where you went wrong.
    The only slightly useful feedback was from Manchester. They said I did quite well in my interview and was put on hold but in the end I was slightly below the cutoff line.
    BSMS said each of three interviewers grade you for your performance. In the BSMS interview we only talked about my personal statement for 20mins so it was really on how well I can honestly talk about why I want to do medicine. I got graded C/C/C (much to my dismay!). I went to an interview course afterwards and asked an interview professional (she's also a doctor) for some advice and she said she didn't understand why I'd been rejected by BSMS (I told her exactly how I answered the questions I got asked...)

    The only thing I can think of is that I sometimes have a tendency to ramble a little when I describe things (I do answer the question but I also talk a little about things that are irrelevant) so maybe that could be why I got rejected?
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    With your results i'd go another year
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    I'm really sorry you dent get in. You must have a great PS and cleaky great grades to get all interviews. Tbh I think you should hold on for one more year! And apple wisely to some other choices, like Cardiff would be great for you because they don't weigh the interview very highly in comparison to academics ... so you don't need to do so well in the interview. St Andrews is the same, they place little weighting on the interview. Also Southampton, Edinburgh .... they don't interview so they would probs be a good choice.

    I applied to UCL, they reject a lot of people who also apply for medicine because they don't see you as very committed to their subject apparently. Bristol is fantastic uni for being a 5th choice, I got in through UCAS extra last yr (they wanted AAA for biology but made me an ABB offer, so they clearly look at applicants to apply to medicine).

    Also consider Peninsula, all though they place a huge emphasis on the interview you have A*AAA ... and they now want re applicants with an A* at Alevel, they are also a very fair med school.
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    (Original post by ryan118244)
    I'm really sorry you dent get in. You must have a great PS and cleaky great grades to get all interviews. Tbh I think you should hold on for one more year! And apple wisely to some other choices, like Cardiff would be great for you because they don't weigh the interview very highly in comparison to academics ... so you don't need to do so well in the interview. St Andrews is the same, they place little weighting on the interview. Also Southampton, Edinburgh .... they don't interview so they would probs be a good choice.

    I applied to UCL, they reject a lot of people who also apply for medicine because they don't see you as very committed to their subject apparently. Bristol is fantastic uni for being a 5th choice, I got in through UCAS extra last yr (they wanted AAA for biology but made me an ABB offer, so they clearly look at applicants to apply to medicine).

    Also consider Peninsula, all though they place a huge emphasis on the interview you have A*AAA ... and they now want re applicants with an A* at Alevel, they are also a very fair med school.
    . how do u know they want an A* i cant seem to find that on their website?
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    (Original post by hopes)
    . how do u know they want an A* i cant seem to find that on their website?
    There offers are now A*AA to AAA, I went to the open day a couple of weeks ago and they were talking about the entry requirements and that re applicants will be expected to have A*AA, which you have, so that's a bonus!
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    (Original post by ryan118244)
    I'm really sorry you dent get in. You must have a great PS and cleaky great grades to get all interviews. Tbh I think you should hold on for one more year! And apple wisely to some other choices, like Cardiff would be great for you because they don't weigh the interview very highly in comparison to academics ... so you don't need to do so well in the interview. St Andrews is the same, they place little weighting on the interview. Also Southampton, Edinburgh .... they don't interview so they would probs be a good choice.

    I applied to UCL, they reject a lot of people who also apply for medicine because they don't see you as very committed to their subject apparently. Bristol is fantastic uni for being a 5th choice, I got in through UCAS extra last yr (they wanted AAA for biology but made me an ABB offer, so they clearly look at applicants to apply to medicine).

    Also consider Peninsula, all though they place a huge emphasis on the interview you have A*AAA ... and they now want re applicants with an A* at Alevel, they are also a very fair med school.
    I thought Cardiff based their decision solely on your interview once you get to that stage. Could be wrong though, do you know for certain?
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    (Original post by ScrubZ)
    I thought Cardiff based their decision solely on your interview once you get to that stage. Could be wrong though, do you know for certain?
    No they point your GCSES and then add your interview score on top, so better GCSEs mean lower interview score. I know this because I have a friends at Cardiff med school and also I looked into applying to Cardiff ... their website is so hard to find this stuff out but it is there, it's on like a separate document thing.
    Though they could have changed since.
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    would applying to same schools as this year be a bad idea? apart from manchester, who told me that they don't accept same applicants for the subsequent year if they received an interview this year, all other schools said they allow same applicants to their school so surely they'd see some dedication from you?

    Otherwise, yeah I'd look at the schools that put less weight on interviews when I reapply, and I'll work my arse off for UKCAT and BMAT since now I've got time to spare to revise plenty for them.

    If I take another gap year, how do you reckon I should change my PS because I took so long ''perfecting'' this year's PS and I just don't think I can change anything to make it better...
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    (Original post by eaglo602)
    would applying to same schools as this year be a bad idea? apart from manchester, who told me that they don't accept same applicants for the subsequent year if they received an interview this year, all other schools said they allow same applicants to their school so surely they'd see some dedication from you?

    Otherwise, yeah I'd look at the schools that put less weight on interviews when I reapply, and I'll work my arse off for UKCAT and BMAT since now I've got time to spare to revise plenty for them.

    If I take another gap year, how do you reckon I should change my PS because I took so long ''perfecting'' this year's PS and I just don't think I can change anything to make it better...
    Some med schools like you reapplying there, others don't, you just have to phone up and find out.

    Tbh your UKCAT must have been good anyway to have gt an interview at Manc.
    Maybe cambridge would be good for you?

    I dont think you do need to change your PS as you got 4 interviews this yr, if you want any opinions on the PS I'm happy to help.
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    (Original post by eaglo602)
    would applying to same schools as this year be a bad idea? apart from manchester, who told me that they don't accept same applicants for the subsequent year if they received an interview this year, all other schools said they allow same applicants to their school so surely they'd see some dedication from you?

    Otherwise, yeah I'd look at the schools that put less weight on interviews when I reapply, and I'll work my arse off for UKCAT and BMAT since now I've got time to spare to revise plenty for them.

    If I take another gap year, how do you reckon I should change my PS because I took so long ''perfecting'' this year's PS and I just don't think I can change anything to make it better...
    so does keele bro im afraid
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    Hello
    Sorry to hear about your situation, it really sucks I know! I'm also on a gap year, having been unsuccessful again this year. I applied last year but only got one interview from B'ham but they rejected me on results day. I had an offer for Medical Science at B'ham but didn't want to do it. I applied again this year to Sheffield, Glasgow, Cardiff and Keele, which all said no without an interview. I've got an offer for Biomedical Science at King's College London and i'm really not sure what to do. My academic hsitory is 6 A* 5 A and 3 B at GCSE and AAB (Hist, Math and Chem) at A'level and A in Bio AS Level. (You have amazing grades btw, I'm suprised you didn't get any offers!) I know they're not great but applied to all universities who said they would consider me with these grades.
    In my gap year so far I've been to India, twice, and carried out voluntary/work experience in a childrens hospital and I am planning to go Australia in the next month or so. This gap year was totally random, I didn't have any plan of what to do, and I'm just confused now of what I should do. I've also looked abroad for uni's but I cannot afford it right now.
    My heart is set on doing Medicine, and I don't know whether I really could do Biomed for 3 years, and I've heard its even harder for graduates. I'd really appreciate any advice you or anyone alse could give.
    I thought i'd let you know you're not the only one hope that makes you feel somewhat better.
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    (Original post by Arvi92)
    Hello
    Sorry to hear about your situation, it really sucks I know! I'm also on a gap year, having been unsuccessful again this year. I applied last year but only got one interview from B'ham but they rejected me on results day. I had an offer for Medical Science at B'ham but didn't want to do it. I applied again this year to Sheffield, Glasgow, Cardiff and Keele, which all said no without an interview. I've got an offer for Biomedical Science at King's College London and i'm really not sure what to do. My academic hsitory is 6 A* 5 A and 3 B at GCSE and AAB (Hist, Math and Chem) at A'level and A in Bio AS Level. (You have amazing grades btw, I'm suprised you didn't get any offers!) I know they're not great but applied to all universities who said they would consider me with these grades.
    In my gap year so far I've been to India, twice, and carried out voluntary/work experience in a childrens hospital and I am planning to go Australia in the next month or so. This gap year was totally random, I didn't have any plan of what to do, and I'm just confused now of what I should do. I've also looked abroad for uni's but I cannot afford it right now.
    My heart is set on doing Medicine, and I don't know whether I really could do Biomed for 3 years, and I've heard its even harder for graduates. I'd really appreciate any advice you or anyone alse could give.
    I thought i'd let you know you're not the only one hope that makes you feel somewhat better.
    may i ask how you did in your UKCAT? i think it all comes down to the UKCAT whether you get an interview or not
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    I have conditional offer at Soton, but really wanted KCL or UCL but got rejections. I understand that KCL and UCL degree is “MBBS” and Soton is just “BM”. I seek following answers:

    1. Does it mean that Soton docs can not practice surgery (I mean the “Bachelor of Surgery” part is missing from the degree!)?
    2. I am an International. In my home country, although both degrees are recognized by regulatory body but perception-wise, in general public mind, MBBS is the norm so I am confused. Can anyone suggest if there is any Real difference or not?
    3. Will it be worth taking a Gap Year and try KCL again or will it be outright foolish to leave Soton?
    4. What if I take a BioMedical course in UCL and try medicine next year? Will it be better than the Gap year?
    5. If I get in Soton “BM” now, is there then any possibility of a transfer later on? If yes, what grounds are considered fair and genuine?

    Any place where I can find/get more information regarding above? Pls quote me when replying, thanks to all.

    Any helpful advise is welcome!!!!!!!
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    @Pan_93
    yh sure, I cant find my exact results paper but it was something like 585/590...i think...I know its pretty bad. What do you think I should do??
    Thanks
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    (Original post by david1992)
    1. Does it mean that Soton docs can not practice surgery (I mean the “Bachelor of Surgery” part is missing from the degree!)?
    It's the same medical degree as every other UK medical school.

    (Original post by david1992)
    2. I am an International. In my home country, although both degrees are recognized by regulatory body but perception-wise, in general public mind, MBBS is the norm so I am confused. Can anyone suggest if there is any Real difference or not?
    It's the same medical degree as you'd get from any UK medical school. I can't say what the perception is in your country but here every medical degree that confers GMC registration is the same.

    (Original post by david1992)
    3. Will it be worth taking a Gap Year and try KCL again or will it be outright foolish to leave Soton?
    Foolish as you may end up without a place anywhere.


    (Original post by david1992)
    4. What if I take a BioMedical course in UCL and try medicine next year? Will it be better than the Gap year?
    Forget the gap year - you have a place on a medical degree - go celebrate.


    (Original post by david1992)
    5. If I get in Soton “BM” now, is there then any possibility of a transfer later on? If yes, what grounds are considered fair and genuine?
    No hope for an international student. Some home students have been able to transfer if they have needed to live closer to home due to illness or carer responsibilities - even then it is on a case by case basis and very rare.
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    Hi all, it's been some time since my last post - since then I applied through UCAS Extra and received an offer from University of Warwick for the Biomedical Chemistry course

    In terms of where I'm standing now, I've gone and accepted the biomed chem offer but I'm still not 100% sure if I've made the correct choice...I know the decision is all down to me in the end however just the thought of having to go for the graduate entry (if my reapplication during undergrad study fails) scares me.

    The idea of taking a second gap year is still on my mind but everything depends on which option gives me the best chance of getting into medicine.

    I think some medical schools allow students, who are in undergrad study, to reapply for medicine - which is what I'm hoping to go for. I was wondering how I should approach this in my personal statement to convince them that my heart still lies with medicine and me dropping out of Warwick won't be detrimental to my application?

    (I've recently sent a letter to a lot of medical schools asking if they accept applications from undergrad students, so until I get plenty of useful responses my decision stays with Warwick...)

    Thanks again
 
 
 
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