meloj
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#1
I am extremely passionate about studying medicine at university and it's all I want to do but I've had mixed advice about whether I should apply. The main reason for this is that my GCSE's weren't grades that would stand out much for a possible medicine applicant. They were:

Mathematics: A
English language: A
English literature: A
Core Science: A
Additional science: A
Statistics: A
Geography: A
Spanish: B
Performing arts: B
Business (BTEC which my school made us do): Distinction

I didn't get any A*'s and that's something I'm worrying about since the average applicant probably has at least 5! A few universities even state that they require A*'s so would my application even be considered? I'm currently in year 12 studying A-level biology, chemistry, maths and geography and my school targets from the subject teachers are AAAA (not taken too much from these since we're only around 8 weeks in) I KNOW for a fact I will have to work my ass off to get these grades but I am more than willing to do this.

I'm aware of how competitive medical school is, at the moment I have a voluntary job at my local hospital and also an elderly care home. I have also recently applied for some work experience at the hospital of which I'm really hoping I might get into. I'm also chair of school council at my school which in terms of duties, is similar to head girl. IF Idid manage to get the grades at AS level do you think I would have a chance due to my GCSE grades? Also, what AS level grades should I be aiming for?

Thanks for any help/feedback.
0
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#2
Report 6 years ago
#2
You're in a very difficult and unsightly position. Your GCSE grades are simply not up to par.

If you feel like you have something unique that would entice the medical schools (and that you can talk about in your personal statement) say for instance, something you learned during your work experience that's different and genuinely interesting, then go for it.

If you're the average Joe, then don't bother. It'll be a lot of heartache and a waste of time
0
reply
hellodave5
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#3
Report 6 years ago
#3
Surely the hospital and care home experience will go in your favour really well?
What do the entry requirements state for school leavers application entry reqs for gcse's?
0
reply
Democracy
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#4
Report 6 years ago
#4
(Original post by R Dragon)
You're in a very difficult and unsightly position. Your GCSE grades are simply not up to par.
This is totally untrue - they are fine so long as she doesn't apply to a medical school which places a great deal of emphasis on GCSE results.
1
reply
izpenguin
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#5
Report 6 years ago
#5
Your GCSEs are below average for a medicine applicant, but that doesn't mean it's all over. Apply tactically avoiding unis that place a lot of weight on GCSEs and try to make sure everything else in your application is sound.
0
reply
meloj
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#6
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#6
(Original post by Democracy)
they are fine so long as she doesn't apply to a medical school which places a great deal of emphasis on GCSE results.
Do you have any ideas on the uni's that don't put as much emphasis on GCSE grades?
0
reply
Democracy
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#7
Report 6 years ago
#7
(Original post by meloj)
Do you have any ideas on the uni's that don't put as much emphasis on GCSE grades?
You can check here:

http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki...E_Requirements
0
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#8
Report 6 years ago
#8
(Original post by Democracy)
This is totally untrue - they are fine so long as she doesn't apply to a medical school which places a great deal of emphasis on GCSE results.
I beg to differ.

That's why I said if OP doesn't have something unique to offer admission then not to bother, with low GCSEs you are still at a disadvantage no matter what way you look at it.
0
reply
meloj
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#9
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#9
(Original post by R Dragon)

That's why I said if OP doesn't have something unique to offer admission then not to bother, with low GCSEs you are still at a disadvantage no matter what way you look at it.
So even if I did manage to do well in my AS levels (what should I be aiming for?) and had the experience do you think it'd still be too risky? I just don't want to sit the ukcat, spend a long time on a personal statement etc and maybe not even get an interview. Thanks for your help.
0
reply
cwi111
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#10
Report 6 years ago
#10
It's definitely not worth giving up on it!!! You will have to apply smartly but if you apply to the right places, you'll be at no advantage over people with loads of A*s. Your main aim should be to get straight As in your AS Levels and a UKCAT that's really competitive (somewhere in the region of 680-700+) and go for it 😄 Plymouth for example simply tick the box that you meet their minimum GCSE require by and place far more emphasis on UKCAT and A2 Predictions 😊 You wouldn't stand a chance at Oxbridge or Birmingham, etc though 👍
0
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#11
Report 6 years ago
#11
(Original post by meloj)
So even if I did manage to do well in my AS levels (what should I be aiming for?) and had the experience do you think it'd still be too risky? I just don't want to sit the ukcat, spend a long time on a personal statement etc and maybe not even get an interview. Thanks for your help.
Look, it's not all about grades. Even people with impeccable grades often don't get interviews.

It's about what you learn during your work experience, and how that makes you a better applicant, and whether or not you can portray that in your interviews and in your personal statement
0
reply
neurogirl
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#12
Report 6 years ago
#12
You could always go for biomedical sciences first, and then apply for medicine as a postgrad. My sister's doing biomed, and there are people in her course who've had really low A level grades even

Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
Democracy
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#13
Report 6 years ago
#13
(Original post by R Dragon)
I beg to differ.

That's why I said if OP doesn't have something unique to offer admission then not to bother, with low GCSEs you are still at a disadvantage no matter what way you look at it.
She wouldn't be though - if she applies to a medical school which doesn't care much about GCSEs (e.g. Aberdeen) then she's not at a disadvantage at all, is she? Assuming she meets their other requirements...
0
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#14
Report 6 years ago
#14
(Original post by Democracy)
She wouldn't be though - if she applies to a medical school which doesn't care much about GCSEs (e.g. Aberdeen) then she's not at a disadvantage at all, is she? Assuming she meets their other requirements...

I've never understood that concept.

If OP and another applicant had basically an identical application (save for their GCSE grades, where the other applicant had better grades)

Then surely that's a disadvantage ._.
0
reply
Doodle00
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#15
Report 6 years ago
#15
(Original post by R Dragon)
I've never understood that concept.

If OP and another applicant had basically an identical application (save for their GCSE grades, where the other applicant had better grades)

Then surely that's a disadvantage ._.
Certain medical schools simply check that you have the required gcses which OP definitely does for several and then never look at them again. The UKCAT is much more important for securing an interview at these places.


Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
Democracy
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#16
Report 6 years ago
#16
(Original post by R Dragon)
I've never understood that concept.

If OP and another applicant had basically an identical application (save for their GCSE grades, where the other applicant had better grades)

Then surely that's a disadvantage ._.
What concept? Applying strategically? Here:

http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki...your_Strengths

Look, the admissions policies are online for all to see - medical schools don't just make them up to troll sixth formers. If the OP and another student both met the entry requirements at the pre-interview stage then they would both be offered interviews. Whether or not she then gets an offer then comes down to how she performs on the day.
0
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#17
Report 6 years ago
#17
(Original post by Doodle00)
Certain medical schools simply check that you have the required gcses which OP definitely does for several and then never look at them again. The UKCAT is much more important for securing an interview at these places.


Posted from TSR Mobile
I understand the importance of the UKCAT, but you can't underestimate the importance of good GCSE grades
0
reply
Doodle00
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#18
Report 6 years ago
#18
(Original post by R Dragon)
I understand the importance of the UKCAT, but you can't underestimate the importance of good GCSE grades
No but if the universities have stated that once you meet a specific cutoff that they never look at your gcses again then it's pointless to tell someone not to apply despite the fact that their gcses are above the cutoff they're just not the 6+ A*s that the student room seems to expect from all medical applicants. At the end of the day your A Levels and UKCAT are far more important than your gcse results, it's all about applying tactically.


Posted from TSR Mobile
1
reply
indigobluesss
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#19
Report 6 years ago
#19
(Original post by Doodle00)
No but if the universities have stated that once you meet a specific cutoff that they never look at your gcses again then it's pointless to tell someone not to apply despite the fact that their gcses are above the cutoff they're just not the 6+ A*s that the student room seems to expect from all medical applicants. At the end of the day your A Levels and UKCAT are far more important than your gcse results, it's all about applying tactically.


Posted from TSR Mobile
If you actually read my earlier comment, I didn't say OP shouldn't just not apply ._.

But regardless of what you say OP is still at a disadvantage
0
reply
cwi111
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#20
Report 6 years ago
#20
As a medicine applicant myself, I agree entirely with Doodle00 - it depends ENTIRELY on which medical school you apply to. Poor GCSEs will limit the medical schools that you can apply for, as some of them have very high criteria for GCSEs, but others hardly regard them at all! Have a look at the webpages of some of the universities you're considering and see what they ask for - That's the only way of knowing! The wiki is a good place to start, but a lot of it is really outdated so it's be best to check entry requirements directly on the medical school's website 😊
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Do you have the space and resources you need to succeed in home learning?

Yes I have everything I need (386)
56.76%
I don't have everything I need (294)
43.24%

Watched Threads

View All