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What is harder: Getting in to a Medicine Degree or Completing a Medicine Degree? Watch

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    It would be great to hear some opinions and experiences.
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    Different kinds of hard.
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    (Original post by Jacob :))
    It would be great to hear some opinions and experiences.
    Getting in.... Unless you go to Prague. In which case you're welcome to six years of hell. In all honesty everyone takes the Mick out of med students third year biochem vs medicine.. I wonder what's more difficult? :rolleyes:

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    I'm going with Completing a Medicine degree, as you need to get into it in order to complete it.
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    In the current climate, I'd say there are many degrees where getting a place is harder than actually completing them. Of course completing a degree is a huge amount of work, but if you put the effort in there's little risk of failure (for most mark schemes). Applying for competitive degrees seems to have become a bit of a lottery. I feel really lucky to have been applying in 2008 and not now.
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    Getting in.
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    I would 100% say completing it.
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    (Original post by Jacob :))
    It would be great to hear some opinions and experiences.
    Both are hard, and I have only tackled the first. However, if we look at the stats, only ~40% of applicants get an offer, but ~97% complete their courses.
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    That's a tough question. Getting in is hard, I personally know lots of people who didn't get who would make fabulous doctors, but due to their grades etc didn't get in.
    Staying in is even harder, many people (like myself) who got 4 offers to get in struggle once on the course.
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    Getting in, as there's a lot of competition and hoops to jump through.

    However, the amount of information you need to learn and retain during the pre-clinical phase of the course is a lot...at my medical school if you fail a pre-clinical exam and then the resit you're normally told to leave. Some people get to repeat the year, but generally they're pretty strict about it.

    Thankfully, the stats indicate that only three or four people end up leaving before the start of the clinical phase of the degree, but still, it's enough to put the fear of god into you and make you revise!

    I think the stats are similar across the country, I vaguely remember the head of the course telling us that 90 pre-clinical students a year are told to leave nationally...out of several thousand medical students that's not many at all. And certainly better odds than the chances of being rejected as an applicant.

    Once you're in, so long as you work hard and pass exams you'll qualify as a doctor.

    Which reminds me...I should be revising :sad:
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    Numerically, getting in is much harder. About 60% of med applicants do not get any offers each year. Although I have no official figures, I would hazard a guess that less than 10% of people fail to complete the course.

    However, that is absolutely NOT to say that once you're in, getting through med school is easy. It requires much more prolonged, dedicated work than the application process, and while the content may not all be conceptually particularly difficult, there is just so much of it to learn, it can be a real struggle. Plus of course your pass marks are often higher and failure is less well-tolerated than on other courses. So the academic commitment is pretty big. Then you have to think about the emotional toll it takes on you. Sure, you applicants are probably all "but applying is reeeeallly stressful," but just wait till you hit the wards and see people dying.

    So yeah, statistically if you've got an offer, the hard part might be over. But if you take that attitude into med school, you may run into trouble...
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    Speaking from another degree's perspective, I think getting in was probably harder/more pressure. When you do your degree it is your responsibility to get work done and produce quality work, if you do that you'll get a good mark. When you are applying to uni, there is only so much you can do then you admission is reliant on an admissions tutor liking you/thinking you are suited to the course. Obviously there are ways of increasing the chance of making them like you and offering you a place (doing well academically, having good extra curricular, writing a good ps), but I personally felt a lot more pressure during the application phase than I actually have during my degree.
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    I'm pretty sure this is going to be a opinionated topic given the subjectivity of it. Some people get into medicine first time around with four offers, others take two or three attempts to get just one offer. The former will likely consider the course more difficult than getting in, and perhaps the latter may consider the application process more gruelling?

    Statistically, though, as has been mentioned above, % entry is much lower than % completion.
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    Depends how you define difficult i suppose. In terms of effort, a med degree is obviously very taxing but is it more difficult than what we'd be doing otherwise? Especially when you consider we'd be entering employment 3 years earlier? Impossible to tell.

    Alternatively we can go by % success rate. We know how hard getting in is - about 40% manage it. How hard the course is is more difficult to answer as clearly most of that population of applicants will never get to try the course in the first place. I suspect it would be lower than 60% though.
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    Definitely completing it -that's not to say it's an impossible degree, rather it's a long old slog that requires a huge amount of time and commitment, and many more working hours along with shorter breaks than you'd get with any other degree (particularly in clinical years). That's not mentioning the moving around, emotive content, financial strain etc.
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    Getting in is hard in the sense that you have a limited control on your chance of making it. During the degree, you have a huge influence on your chances of succeeding (by working hard).
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    (Original post by bownessie)
    Speaking from another degree's perspective, I think getting in was probably harder/more pressure. When you do your degree it is your responsibility to get work done and produce quality work, if you do that you'll get a good mark. When you are applying to uni, there is only so much you can do then you admission is reliant on an admissions tutor liking you/thinking you are suited to the course. Obviously there are ways of increasing the chance of making them like you and offering you a place (doing well academically, having good extra curricular, writing a good ps), but I personally felt a lot more pressure during the application phase than I actually have during my degree.
    I'm afraid the pressures of a medical degree and other degrees are entirely different and not directly comparable. Besides the content (++++++quantity, more so than detail that you'll get with other degrees), you have the length of study, the contact time, the horrible stuff that you'll inevitably take home, the fear of 'getting it wrong' and doing some serious damage to somebody.

    It's a very different kind of tough to the application process, and speaking as someone who got all rejections first time and got through on a second application round, I can still say that the stress of the degree is so much more.
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    Getting into medicine is battle against others. Completing a medicine degree is battle within ones self.
 
 
 
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