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I'm more than just a number - Story of a french med student who failed and raised up Watch

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    (Original post by Metrododo)
    Aha I'll think about.

    I for one actually didn't mind the Bac (S) since I like most subjects, ie languages and philosophy too; but would have really enjoyed doing no biology or chemistry and more maths instead

    Tbf there are some positive things like the "options" if you want to do Greek or Latin and helps get a better average!

    I'm just so excited to got UCL next year tbh where are you planning on studying already?
    :P

    I like fhe bac S too but the thing is because of the coeff, "S students" suck at languages they do not even work for it :lol:

    UCL ?? So happy for you !!

    I still want to study med ;P I dropped out my med school two months ago (I could not do medicine, but could do all the other things, I don't want to) I applied abroad (King's College : unsuccessfull ; Semmelweis Uni in Budapest : eligible ; Otago Uni in NZ : eligible ; Charles Uni in Prague : currently working on the entrance examination )
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    How did you deal with the bad news?
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    :P

    I like fhe bac S too but the thing is because of the coeff, "S students" suck at languages they do not even work for it :lol:

    UCL ?? So happy for you !!

    I still want to study med ;P I dropped out my med school two months ago (I could not do medicine, but could do all the other things, I don't want to) I applied abroad (King's College : unsuccessfull ; Semmelweis Uni in Budapest : eligible ; Otago Uni in NZ : eligible ; Charles Uni in Prague : currently working on the entrance examination )
    Thank you basically cutting to the chase and directly study what I would have hope to have done in the grandes ecoles (Economics), and hopefully have a better atmosphere

    Wow that's pretty diverse, what would be your first choice? And I assume all the courses would be in English?
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    Wow! I did not realise that was that intense and competitive in France! Makes UK med school entry look like pre-school haha.

    Great read x
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    Bonjouuuuur tout le monde !........
    Very interesting read! Looking forward to more
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    (Original post by Kyx)
    How did you deal with the bad news?
    That was supposed to be an episode on my wonderful-not-so-wonderful-life, but I'll tell you a bit :P

    I was in my bed waiting for the result (they came online) and they were supposed to come at 9 am but I refreshed the page every single minute until 11 am. It finally CAME.

    At first.
    I was like "haha ! That's a mistake"
    Refreshing. Refreshing. 529th ? No way. Refreshing.
    Refreshing.
    Refreshing.
    I swear I did it at least 10 times.
    And then ? I laughed. Really ! I laughed. I'll never understand why I laughed, maybe because I really thought I could be a part of the 331 ? Maybe because I was still not believing it ? Dunno, I just laughed.

    Then.
    I remember it was sunny outside, and I remember it because I always imagined that if I don't get it, it would be kinda a rainy day or something, it was not, it was actually a wonderful day.
    I realized that the Earth did not stop just for me, and that's why I cried, because I expected the world to wait for me -to wait what ? You tell me, I was just shocked-
    I cried hard, my sister was there, she almost cried too, my dad heard me from the other room, and he came and told me he was proud and I was still the number one for him. That was so cute you know, but it did not change anything I was still crying.
    I cried night and day for 3 days, I barely ate.

    And.
    I decided to get off bed, to go abroad. That was my dream right ? I searched informations about med studies abroad, and found this guy's blog, a 26 year old guy who went trough the same thing as me. He was currently studying at Semmelweis Uni in Budapest, I called him and we talked 1h and a half.
    First time I stopped crying.

    Because there was hope again.

    I called this day : THE START
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    (Original post by tilray)
    Wow! I did not realise that was that intense and competitive in France! Makes UK med school entry look like pre-school haha.

    Great read x
    Hahaha I bet it's competitive in UK too, the big difference is for you, the competition comes before the entry, and for us, mmmh let the war begin ? :lol:

    (Original post by JBLondon)
    Very interesting read! Looking forward to more
    Thank youuu ! <3
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    Bonjouuuuur tout le monde !

    Here I am, the first unicorn of whole TSR ! I want to write a blog to share my experience -and to help me get through it why not- as a student who failed medicine. I noticed before that no one really knows how med studies goes on right here in France, and it is DEFINITELY different from the med system in UK.
    That's why I decided to tell you how it is, the whole thing, the official things, and the secrets things, and ALL OF IT.

    I can tell that was the most awful and wonderful experience of my whole life -yes both awful and wonderful- you learn a lot, and you change. You can't be the same person anymore after getting through such a thing. Well, let's start my friends !

    To start this blog, you need to know all about med studies in here. My first post will be all about it this part will be a bit complicated and technical, if you don't get it all at first it's okay don't worry !

    Applying.
    When you're at college, you can apply to 4 med schools. The special thing about France is, EVERYONE can go to a med school, whatever his grades ! Because the selection occurs during the first year, you'll understand.
    So, at college I had good grades but I was not the best (this part is a really long story, I'll tell you all about it later) and decided to apply for med schools because my dream has always been to become a surgeon. When you apply, that's a computer who will decide in which school you'll go, according to your 4 choices. This is this way for equality -that's what they say..- then, each med school could be heterogenous enough.
    The computer's choice is based on your mention at the baccalaureate. Here are the different mentions you can get :
    - No mention : grade between 10/20 and 12/20
    - Mention "assez bien" : 12-14/20
    - Mention "bien" : 14-16/20
    - Mention "très bien" : 16-20/20

    The purpose of the computer system is to have at the end 25% of each students in each med school. Everyone is following it's okay ? Well. I was taken in my first choice, who was also the best med school of whole France (according to the concours of the 6th year, that's an other story, to be continued !) And once you're taken, the nightmare begins !
    I will now talk about my school, the numbers I'll give etc are according to my school *it's everywhere else kinda the same thing tho*

    About the med school.
    The first year is called PACES or Première Année Commune aux Études de Santé (first common year of health studies) or P1. A first year student is also called a P1, so if you hear me sometimes say something like "the other P1" I would be talking about the 1st year students.
    The particular thing here is -yes, a lot of things are particular with France actually !- that we have to pass a "concours" I don't know how to translate it in english, but it means at the exam your grades have to be better that everyone else's grades, you can fail with good grades.
    Also, this concours is not only for those who wanna do med studies ! It's for all the people who wanna become : doctors in medicine, dentist, pharmacist, physiotherapist, midwifery. We are 2500 students. There are 331 places in medicine, 115 places in pharma, 36 in dentistery, 30 for midwifery, 28 for physio. Yeah. 540 places, 2500 students. Let's fight.

    You know about all this stuff when you apply, you just don't realize. You don't realize it's not as easy as it sounds ... Why limited places ? Because as you might already know, our Social Security system has a huge whole, and if there is too much doctors, there is too much drugs, and too much money who goes. The thing is, we are in need of doctors in France, we don't have enough ... Cherchez l'erreur ! (= search for the mistake, french expression, does it make sense in english ?)

    About courses.
    The year works like that. 2500 students, 9 months, 2 semesters, 2 examinations (11 different tests) and .. 540 winners.
    We learn subjects by "UE -> Unité d'Enseignement" it's like a module, each module will have is own test, and each module is about a few differents subjects. For the first semester, who start around the 10th september, there are 4 UE :
    - UE1 : general chemistery, organic chemistry, biochemistery
    - UE2 : cell biology, reproductive biology, histology, embryology
    - UE3.1 : physics, biophysics
    - UE5 : anatomy
    The examination takes place around the 15th december. You need to know that all theses subjects are ALL DONE in 3 months, and there are the equivalence of : 2 years in a biology course, 3 years in a physics course + all the anatomy stuff. I'm not joking or exagerating. This is TRUE. Unfortunaltely. And that's all about the first semester for now, this is not the end haha !

    After the semester 1 (S1) we have the S2, with :
    - UE3.2 : biophysics + physiology
    - UE4 : biostatistics
    - UE6 : drug's knowledge
    - UE7 : psychology, law, public health and medicine history
    - UECS1 : anatomy
    - UECS2 + UEP : pharmaceutical science

    In this semester, it's like doing one year of psychology. For the rest I don't even know ;P Well ! The S2 starts around the 5th january and ends up around the 5th may.
    The first examination ends up to a rating , from 1 to 2500. This rating is not definitive tho, and the S2 is here to : helps you keep your place, helps you gain places in the rating. Obviously, when you're to far from the 331 , you have no chance and you retake the year. The thing is, you can only do the year twice. And if you are after the 1500th, you can't retake at all. Yeah, awful I know. I'll tell you about it later !

    When you have so much to learn, you wish a day could me more than 24h (I really made that wish actually haha) , and you start having bad habits like sleeping only 6h a night (just, NEVER do it haha I can certify it's not good :lol: ) ; eating too fast (in 30min.. Don't do it as well !) and other weird stuff like that.

    The worse part is the culpability you feel, you're always like "if you take a too long shower, you'll lost places at the rating" I SWEAR to you, we have thoughts like that. We definitely turn insane lol.

    Now, you know all about med studies in France. Officially. That's what it is supposed to be, and it is the way it is, BUT. But med students are more than just numbers, and a lot of people can't see that.
    I wanna tell you about it, about our feelings, because we are not numbers. Right now I'm trying to convince myself, but that's hard' , because whatever happens, when you put a foot inside a med school, you become a number. You fight for a rating, you live for it, you dream about it, you eat- and sometimes don't even eat- for it, you want to be a part of the 331 , you wanna be a number. You want to. That's when you become a number you did not wanted to be, that you realize that you were not supposed to be a number at all.
    That you were not just the 529th, that you were still a human. You want to believe it, you try, but it takes time. Because it's too late, you are a number for everyone else.


    Thanks for reading guys I hope you find it interesting, feel free to ask anything if I was not clear enough or something.

    The next time : I will tell you about a typical med student day, how the courses goes on, the houuuuurs of hard working, and I'll tell you a bit about my grades before the med school, and at the med school, and the thing about me being a genius kid (that's an interesting fact you know, because when you have been the number one your whole life, you don't even imagine that you can fail. To be continued !)

    Thanks again for reading, love you all <3 !


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    Still seems hell of a lot better/fairer system than the UK where the system is a lot more susceptible to bias and corruption.
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    (Original post by Metrododo)
    Thank you basically cutting to the chase and directly study what I would have hope to have done in the grandes ecoles (Economics), and hopefully have a better atmosphere

    Wow that's pretty diverse, what would be your first choice? And I assume all the courses would be in English?
    Ah les grandes écoles ! Good good ! You know you really should write that blog :O :lol:

    My first choice : Prague ! Then Budapest, and NZ "in case of emergency" :lol:
    Yes all in english. I'll still have to learn Czech/ Hungarian (to deal with the patients at hospital etc) , but I'm kinda a linguist I like to learn new languages
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    Hahaha I bet it's competitive in UK too, the big difference is for you, the competition comes before the entry, and for us, mmmh let the war begin ? :lol:



    Thank youuu ! <3
    When med school entry turns into Game of Thrones LOL
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    (Original post by CharlieGEM)
    Still seems hell of a lot better/fairer system than the UK where the system is a lot more susceptible to bias and corruption.
    You think in France it's better than UK ? Why that ?
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    (Original post by tilray)
    When med school entry turns into Game of Thrones LOL
    :lol: :lol:
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    OMG so amazing

    :hugs:
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    (Original post by Kyx)
    OMG so amazing

    :hugs:
    Amazing ? I'll take it as a compliment :lol:
    :hugs:
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    OH MY GOD MESSING UP WITH UCAS ???? Your teacher is a monster o_____O I know it's probably not on purpose but still ..
    I have a bac S too :3

    Yes I'm studying in France, I'm french I was born there, I'm 20, had my Bac S at 18, went to med school, did one year and a half (one year + retook the year) and dropped out after my results two months ago to apply abroad
    I'm currently working on an entrance exam for a med school in Czech, and I was eligible in a med school in New Zealand (but I want to go to Prague, fingers crossed :P)
    What do you study ?
    Yeah that teacher really was awful; he didn't do it on purpose but because he was an idiot. Of course he never apologized, and since I couldn't stand him I pretty much flunked his subject... maths, my "Spé" (coeff 9 )

    That's great, I have a friend who also opted to go to a med school abroad (in Lithuania I think) and loves it, seems anywhere is more fun than France
    If you get in (or I should say, when you get in) do you start next year?

    I'm not studying for now, i'm on that "imposed" gap year after the lovely UCAS drama; i'll be doing ecology and environmental sciences next year though.

    How is it that your English is so good? After years spent in English classes with French students it felt like every Bac S student could only really say "where is Bryan?"
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    Ah les grandes écoles ! Good good ! You know you really should write that blog :O :lol:

    My first choice : Prague ! Then Budapest, and NZ "in case of emergency" :lol:
    Yes all in english. I'll still have to learn Czech/ Hungarian (to deal with the patients at hospital etc) , but I'm kinda a linguist I like to learn new languages
    Ah that's pretty cool, me too I speak Spanish pretty well, and learning russian during my gap year atm; especially since you can do languages as part of your optional modules in your degree!

    Some of my friends have visited Prague, it looks really cool!
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    It's a compliment
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    (Original post by davros1996)
    Yeah that teacher really was awful; he didn't do it on purpose but because he was an idiot. Of course he never apologized, and since I couldn't stand him I pretty much flunked his subject... maths, my "Spé" (coeff 9 )

    That's great, I have a friend who also opted to go to a med school abroad (in Lithuania I think) and loves it, seems anywhere is more fun than France
    If you get in (or I should say, when you get in) do you start next year?

    I'm not studying for now, i'm on that "imposed" gap year after the lovely UCAS drama; i'll be doing ecology and environmental sciences next year though.

    How is it that your English is so good? After years spent in English classes with French students it felt like every Bac S student could only really say "where is Bryan?"
    Omagad .. Never apologize ? WHAT A JERK ~______~
    I'm sorry for that, enjoy your gap year tho :3
    Ecology ! That's great ! Just like one of my friends

    Hahaha where is Bryan :lol: you made my day :' ) ! I did not learn anything at school in english lol, I just learned by mysellf, I have an english obsession since I was younger, I started reading in english and watching movies in english etc and now I can speak fluently I like to learn new languages \o/
    Are you bilingual in french ?

    Edit : I forgot to tell sorry, in Prague/Budapest I start in september 2016 , and in NZ in January 2017 or october 2017, it depends on a lot of things (and honestly I don't wanna wait :P that's why that's my last choice :3)
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    (Original post by Metrododo)
    Ah that's pretty cool, me too I speak Spanish pretty well, and learning russian during my gap year atm; especially since you can do languages as part of your optional modules in your degree!

    Some of my friends have visited Prague, it looks really cool!
    Amazing !! Learning languages is great right :cool: Russian !! I've planned to learn it in 2/3 years after learning Czech :3
    For now I speak french, english, arabic fluently, I understand german but barely speak it (I don't practise) and I'll start learn Czech in a few months :3

    I never been there :lol: I'll go there in may, but yeah my friends went too and enjoyed it ^^
    If I go it's for 6 years, after that I'll probably continue my studies in USA (like my 26 year old friend, he failed in France, studied in Budapest and moves to California in a few months, he's my idol :lol: )

    (Original post by Kyx)
    It's a compliment
    Thank youuuu <3 :hugs:
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    You think in France it's better than UK ? Why that ?
    I appreciate that all the pressure is not very nice but in the UK two things that are assessed competitively are work experience (massively favouring those with connections to the profession as the official one week program is never enough) and interviews (basically how you interact socially with existing members of the profession). If either of these two is considered to be below a certain standard than you won't get in.

    So basically however smart you are, if the existing members of the medical profession don't like you then no place and this is after spending hundreds of hours getting work experience.

    Most other countries reserve a significant minority of places to be allocated purely on academic results or entrance exam scores (or both). This makes the profession less conformist in those countries which in turn I think has led to better working practices.
 
 
 
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