Finished my first year of medical school - Ask me anything! Watch

bailey432
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Hi all!

I have just finished my first year of medical school and thought I would do an AMA for you all. Feel free to ask any questions about my application, how I found first year, university life, the medical course, or pretty much anything you want
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chickenfoot
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what's ukcat? some kind of entry test?
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Skill Twix
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Which uni are you at?
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Moonstruck16
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Did you really party more then every other student whilst doing serious work?

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bailey432
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(Original post by chickenfoot)
what's ukcat? some kind of entry test?
Yes, the UKCAT is a test required by pretty much all medical schools, used as one of many selection tools, alongside your personal statement, grades etc. It is made up of several sections - verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning, decision analysis, and situational judgement :^_^:
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bailey432
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(Original post by Skill Twix)
Which uni are you at?
Keele
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SiminaM
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Did you have dissections at your uni?
If yes, how did you cope?
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eternalhinch
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(Original post by bailey432)
Yes, the UKCAT is a test required by pretty much all medical schools, used as one of many selection tools, alongside your personal statement, grades etc. It is made up of several sections - verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning, decision analysis, and situational judgement :^_^:
Is it hard is the verbal reasoning like the ones in the 11+ exams?
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Skill Twix
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(Original post by bailey432)
Keele
Ah nice
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bailey432
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(Original post by Moonstruck16)
Did you really party more then every other student whilst doing serious work?

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Personally, no. I partied very little, however some of my classmates did go out quite a lot! I would say that on the whole we can keep up with the other non-medical students, but only if you were dedicated! I found I had too much work to do or too tired to go out much, but many of my friends went out at least once a week!

I would say though that the nights out arranged by the medical society (as opposed to a standard night out or a night arranged by the student's union) were undoubtedly some of the BEST. When we plan parties - we make them really fun!
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bailey432
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(Original post by SiminaM)
Did you have dissections at your uni?
If yes, how did you cope?
Yes, we did dissections on cadavers once a week in first year and will do so again in second year. I never found it a problem, but there were a few people who were a bit put off by it to begin with! However after a few weeks everybody becomes desensitised by it and it becomes much more "normal". My non-medic friends and family would be very grossed out by some of the things I told them but to other medics it would be considered normal conversation!
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bailey432
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(Original post by xGCSE_Studentx)
Is it hard is the verbal reasoning like the ones in the 11+ exams?
Depends what you define as "hard"! Personally I found it very difficult, but I bought an amazing book that was full of practice questions (just enter "UKCAT practice questions" into Amazon and lots of books come up) that was a massive help
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Yammy
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Is the course at Keele traditional or with problem based learning? If so what's your views on traditional style/PBL?
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Moonstruck16
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(Original post by bailey432)
Yes, we did dissections on cadavers once a week in first year and will do so again in second year. I never found it a problem, but there were a few people who were a bit put off by it to begin with! However after a few weeks everybody becomes desensitised by it and it becomes much more "normal". My non-medic friends and family would be very grossed out by some of the things I told them but to other medics it would be considered normal conversation!
I'm on a biology degree and we haven't even got close to dissecting a friggin leaf

Did you do the whole scrubs stealing thing?

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bailey432
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(Original post by muchensmile)
Is the course at Keele traditional or with problem based learning? If so what's your views on traditional style/PBL?
Keele is PBL based, but you do get lectures to support you. In first year it is much more mixed, with much of your knowledge coming from lectures. However in second year you have fewer lectures and almost all your learning comes from PBL.

Keele was the only PBL-heavy university I applied to, the rest were more lecture based, so naturally I had some doubts. However I found first year a good balance between the self-directed PBL learning and lectures, which makes me now feel much more confident in how the PBL system works going into second year, where I will need to rely on it much more. Hope this helps!
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Ani97
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(Original post by bailey432)
Hi all!

I have just finished my first year of medical school and thought I would do an AMA for you all. Feel free to ask any questions about my application, how I found first year, university life, the medical course, or pretty much anything you want
Hi there, I have an offer to study medicine, hopefully if I get the grades this results day I will be starting in October! Was there a massive jump in the difficulty of work and how did you cope? Also, what was the workload like? How long did you have to study a day? Oh and do you get 'homework'? Sorry for the questions, I really don't know how the system works :P


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bailey432
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(Original post by Moonstruck16)
I'm on a biology degree and we haven't even got close to dissecting a friggin leaf

Did you do the whole scrubs stealing thing?

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Unfortunately not! we don't wear scrubs to anatomy class, just our lab coats and disposable gloves. Would love to wear scrubs!
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Moonstruck16
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(Original post by bailey432)
Unfortunately not! we don't wear scrubs to anatomy class, just our lab coats and disposable gloves. Would love to wear scrubs!
Aww but I thought the scrubs stealing and scrub party was a tradition for medicine freshers!

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bailey432
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(Original post by Ani97)
Hi there, I have an offer to study medicine, hopefully if I get the grades this results day I will be starting in October! Was there a massive jump in the difficulty of work and how did you cope? Also, what was the workload like? How long did you have to study a day? Oh and do you get 'homework'? Sorry for the questions, I really don't know how the system works :P


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Well done on your offer and good luck on results day! I can only speak from experience so take from this what you like. Honestly, I found the jump between A levels and Medicine to be massive, both in work load and difficulty.

The workload is very big, time management is crucial to ensure that you get all of your work done, as well as enjoying your new university life and making friends! I would say I didn't cope brilliantly, but looking back I would say to you that a good way to cope would be to make sure you ask for help if you don't understand something (sooner rather than later!!) and DO NOT give up your hobbies and interests just to make time for your work, it just isn't a good idea at all.

I can't put a number on how many hours I worked per week during term time, I just worked as much as I could, but within reason!!! Meaning I would work as many hours as I could, but still allowing time for hobbies, making friends, relaxing, and the occasional trip home

We get "homework", sort of... Every monday in PBL we set ourselves a list of questions to answer over the week (E.g. Describe the process of breathing and the muscles involved), and would research the answers, which were supported by our lectures and lab classes. Also you could count "homework" as going home and spending 5 hours trying to make sense of the hour long immunology lecture you just went to! Going over lectures easily took up most of my study time during the week.

Sorry for the long response, wanted to answer fully, hope this helps!
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bailey432
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(Original post by Moonstruck16)
Aww but I thought the scrubs stealing and scrub party was a tradition for medicine freshers!

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Haha, ahh no, at our university our medicine freshers tradition is the pyjama pub crawl!! :dance:
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