Advice for Graduate/Mature Entry to Medical School

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emmamajury
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Hello,

I am looking to go to medical school, however I was unable to straight from high school.

From September I will either be studying a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Science or Immunology and Pharmacology - is one likely to be of more relevance than the other for obtaining entry to a medical school?

Can anyone offer any recommendations or advice about which is the better MBChB programme to look at? I live in Glasgow, and had obviously primarily considered Glasgow University's 5 year MBChB which requires the UKCAT test. However I've seen a few Universities in England offering a 4 year programme with the GAMSAT. Any advice either way?

If there's anyone currently, or previously having studied the MBChB programme it would be great to know what kind go "hands-on" elements there are in terms of procedures, etc. such as in the surgical blocks. Is it primarily theoretical and observational until completion of the programme and being in a foundation year placement, or are there practical elements in the programme itself?

All help and advice would be really appreciated!

Thanks,

Emma
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jam-jam
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Hey Emma -

Either degree would be fine for GEM - I am about to graduate with a Cell Biology degree and will be starting a 4-year GEM course at Imperial (in London) in September/October. I had no issues applying anywhere in terms of my degree - there are also universities that accept non-science degrees therefore, I would advise you choose the degree you'll enjoy most because its 4 years of your life!

In terms of whether to go for a 5-year UG course or a 4-year GEM course, that's up to you, however there are many factors to consider:

- there is no funding (currently) for graduates on 5-year courses therefore you would be up for paying 5 x £9000 (I think there is some help in the final year but not too sure). However, there is funding available for graduates on 4-year courses - between student loans and the NHS.

- 4-year courses are obviously a year shorter. This is a good thing in terms of getting qualified quicker however, it also means that it is more intensive.

- The competition is higher for 4-year courses so that is also a factor.

I don't believe there are any 4-year courses available in Scotland therefore if staying near home is important to you then obviously, you'd have to go for a 5-year course. I chose to go the 4-year route only for my applications with a view to add a 5-year course choice into the mix should I need to reapply.

Finally, in terms of admissions tests, the UKCAT is used for the 4-year course along with the GAMSAT (and the BMAT in some cases). The same exams (with the exception of the GAMSAT) are used for the 5-year course. I only took the UKCAT therefore only chose medical schools that took that as the entrance exam.

I hope I've managed to answer most of your questions
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Ingabbx
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Congrats first of all, my question might sound a bit weird but what did you do to be chosen in terms of results in your degree, work experience and stuff. Do you have any advice that I could take from it?
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ForensicKetchup
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Assuming you're a Scottish domiciled student, the tuition fees you'd pay at Glasgow are at that standard rate for Home/EU students (around about £1800 a year, I think) that is paid by SAAS for your first degree compared to £9k a year going for the four year programmes in England. The difference being you have to pay the fees yourself as opposed to SAAS paying them.
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Lantana
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(Original post by emmamajury)
Hello,

I am looking to go to medical school, however I was unable to straight from high school.

From September I will either be studying a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Science or Immunology and Pharmacology - is one likely to be of more relevance than the other for obtaining entry to a medical school?

Can anyone offer any recommendations or advice about which is the better MBChB programme to look at? I live in Glasgow, and had obviously primarily considered Glasgow University's 5 year MBChB which requires the UKCAT test. However I've seen a few Universities in England offering a 4 year programme with the GAMSAT. Any advice either way?

If there's anyone currently, or previously having studied the MBChB programme it would be great to know what kind go "hands-on" elements there are in terms of procedures, etc. such as in the surgical blocks. Is it primarily theoretical and observational until completion of the programme and being in a foundation year placement, or are there practical elements in the programme itself?

All help and advice would be really appreciated!

Thanks,

Emma
Nope, and we even had non scientists in my GEM cohort.

TBH, when applying I played to my strengths and what sort of course would suit me as those are the more important questions. I avoided GAMSAT like the plague and just did UKCAT. I suspect finances would also come into play.

I can only tell you about mine - we had an accelerated elongated year in which we covered everything that the standard 5th year course did in years 1 and 2 and then joined in their year 3 where we were treated no differently. As well as learning various procedures/examinations on models, we had some clinical encounter afternoons sprinkled through out the first year but then we were in placement all year after that.
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sweetchilli
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(Original post by emmamajury)
Hello,

I am looking to go to medical school, however I was unable to straight from high school.

From September I will either be studying a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Science or Immunology and Pharmacology - is one likely to be of more relevance than the other for obtaining entry to a medical school?

Can anyone offer any recommendations or advice about which is the better MBChB programme to look at? I live in Glasgow, and had obviously primarily considered Glasgow University's 5 year MBChB which requires the UKCAT test. However I've seen a few Universities in England offering a 4 year programme with the GAMSAT. Any advice either way?

If there's anyone currently, or previously having studied the MBChB programme it would be great to know what kind go "hands-on" elements there are in terms of procedures, etc. such as in the surgical blocks. Is it primarily theoretical and observational until completion of the programme and being in a foundation year placement, or are there practical elements in the programme itself?

All help and advice would be really appreciated!

Thanks,

Emma

(Original post by ForensicKetchup)
Assuming you're a Scottish domiciled student, the tuition fees you'd pay at Glasgow are at that standard rate for Home/EU students (around about £1800 a year, I think) that is paid by SAAS for your first degree compared to £9k a year going for the four year programmes in England. The difference being you have to pay the fees yourself as opposed to SAAS paying them.
Hi

If you're Scottish then the 5 year is the cheapest option in terms of fees as forensicketchup states. You can get student loans - means tested for years 1-4 of 5 year then the NHS bursary in year 5. think that NHS pays fees for year 5 but not 100% sure.

As for degree - any one of those you state will be useful for med. chose the one you think you'll enjoy most.

Can I ask why you can't apply now as a mature - have you no transferable qualifications that would meet he requirements? have you looked into the access to medicine at stow - only one year - you need get 70% + in all exams etc, do ukcat and score highly enough (varies year on year) to get interview for Glasgow.

pm me if you have any specific questions about Glasgow.
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veriluxe
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Hi,

I can't offer any advice on Scottish programs, but from an international graduate's point of view...

- Degree doesn't matter: I got in with an undergrad in Biology & Masters of Science (biology/genetics). I do remember hearing after KCL interview that they're thinking of not taking anymore non-science degrees for their GEP program, but that won't be a problem for you since your choices are both science degrees. I would take the program I like more because most UK schools need an upper-second in your first undergrad degree; you'd probably do better in the program you like more.

- Graduate entry: I tried for both grad and undergrad entry at KCL. In general, grad entry at any school would need a higher UKCAT score as the program's more competitive to get into / more intense to study etc. Got both interviews, didn't get a GEP place, got a 5 year place instead. If you don't think your UKCAT is up to par, don't apply to GEP programs; play to your strengths.
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emmamajury
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Thanks for all the advice guys! I didn't realise staying in Scotland was similar fees to other degrees. I'd assumed the fees for medicine were considerably higher regardless! That's definitely a strong consideration then
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emmamajury
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(Original post by sweetchilli)
Hi

If you're Scottish then the 5 year is the cheapest option in terms of fees as forensicketchup states. You can get student loans - means tested for years 1-4 of 5 year then the NHS bursary in year 5. think that NHS pays fees for year 5 but not 100% sure.

As for degree - any one of those you state will be useful for med. chose the one you think you'll enjoy most.

Can I ask why you can't apply now as a mature - have you no transferable qualifications that would meet he requirements? have you looked into the access to medicine at stow - only one year - you need get 70% + in all exams etc, do ukcat and score highly enough (varies year on year) to get interview for Glasgow.

pm me if you have any specific questions about Glasgow.
Unfortunately, as I have previously studied at degree "level" the access to medicine courses won't accept me - despite the fact it was only a diploma in business!! Was gutted I will admit. So unfortunately I'm in a bit of limbo as my Highers are a little short of what I need, I don't have a degree yet, and at 24 I don't know I've enough wiggle to try for mature entry quite yet. So I'm hoping a few years to get a solid undergrad will help!

Thanks for the help, I do have a couple q's so will drop you a PM
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