Advice on application to medicine Watch

MollyYates
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I'm in year 12 at the moment, I'm currently doing chemistry biology maths and English lit at as level and would greatly appreciate if someone could lend their experience to answer a few questions that are causing me a lot of stress these are as follows:
-I got what I would consider satisfactory results for my GCSEs (7 As 1B and 1C) however, not to make excuses for myself, I feel it is relevant to add that I come from an area of quite high social deprivation and my school was very bad having got only a 27% pass rate for my year. Also I was not able to take more than this number of GCSEs. At my current college, which I consider to be a very good college, I believe I am more than capable of achieving my potential.
-My tutors are all confident that I can achieve As at A level in each of my subjects
, I would like to (for reasons of personal enjoyment as I love all of my subjects and for possible maximising my Ucas profile and making up for my poor gcse results) take all of my subjects to a level. My tutors think that I am capable of doing this and still gaining A grades, biology and English lit have stated previously that they think I'm capable of getting A*s in these subjects. However family members are skeptical of me doing this as they believe it could be detrimental to my results as it would mean less time is spent on my a levels than if I was only doing 3
-I would like to know which unis accept students with poor gcse results, I am not looking at Oxford/Cambridge obviously don't worry. It would be helpful if someone could provide information regarding the standard of applicants accepted at their unis.
-information regarding alternative routes into medicine if I do not receive any offers
I am extremely interested in science and medicine, specially neurology due to family circumstances and I have done a 10 week work placement in a hospital already and am currently doing two weeks volunteering in an orphanage in Kenya. My mock results were: A in maths A in English lit B in chemistry (2 marks off an A) and a D in biology I know what went wrong in biology though and I am working on it. I am also thinking of volunteering at my local hospital during the summer. Information on the UKCAT would also be very helpful. Thankyou
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study101
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(Original post by MollyYates)
I'm in year 12 at the moment, I'm currently doing chemistry biology maths and English lit at as level and would greatly appreciate if someone could lend their experience to answer a few questions that are causing me a lot of stress these are as follows:
-I got what I would consider satisfactory results for my GCSEs (7 As 1B and 1C) however, not to make excuses for myself, I feel it is relevant to add that I come from an area of quite high social deprivation and my school was very bad having got only a 27% pass rate for my year. Also I was not able to take more than this number of GCSEs. At my current college, which I consider to be a very good college, I believe I am more than capable of achieving my potential.
-My tutors are all confident that I can achieve As at A level in each of my subjects
, I would like to (for reasons of personal enjoyment as I love all of my subjects and for possible maximising my Ucas profile and making up for my poor gcse results) take all of my subjects to a level. My tutors think that I am capable of doing this and still gaining A grades, biology and English lit have stated previously that they think I'm capable of getting A*s in these subjects. However family members are skeptical of me doing this as they believe it could be detrimental to my results as it would mean less time is spent on my a levels than if I was only doing 3
-I would like to know which unis accept students with poor gcse results, I am not looking at Oxford/Cambridge obviously don't worry. It would be helpful if someone could provide information regarding the standard of applicants accepted at their unis.
-information regarding alternative routes into medicine if I do not receive any offers
I am extremely interested in science and medicine, specially neurology due to family circumstances and I have done a 10 week work placement in a hospital already and am currently doing two weeks volunteering in an orphanage in Kenya. My mock results were: A in maths A in English lit B in chemistry (2 marks off an A) and a D in biology I know what went wrong in biology though and I am working on it. I am also thinking of volunteering at my local hospital during the summer. Information on the UKCAT would also be very helpful. Thankyou


To be honest, some universities don't really look at GCSE results (obviously they're important, but the main requirement usually is to get A/A* in Maths, Chemistry, Physics, Biology and English Language). Uni's that I would recommend you look at are: Liverpool, Keele (need a lot of volunteering/hands on work experience), Lancaster. There are others but can't remember exactly, you can read more here: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki...your_Strengths

I strongly suggest that you only do 3 A-Levels, because most universities don't really care if you have more than 3. So if you can focus on 3 A-Levels and get A*/A's in them, that's much better. Also, you don't need the added stress of another A-Level, and it won't help you out that much.

Hope I helped

P.S. Go through all the med schools in the UK, get a pen and paper, see which ones are GCSE heavy or not. If they do put a lot of emphasis on GCSE's, stay well away from them. Apply to your strengths (and if you can get 3 A*'s at A-Level, then it's better than getting 4 A's or 2A's and 2 B's if that makes any sense).
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eva_1998
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Yeah I agree with study101, some unis do allocate points based on GCSEs but as long as you're careful not to apply for them, and you have decent grades in English and Maths then you should be fine.
Unfortunately a lot of med applicants do receive 4 rejections first time round, if it does happen then don't worry as you're not alone. Email your unis, ask them for feedback and take their advice as goals to work on over your gap year; be it gaining more work experience, building your confidence for interviews or cramming a bit harder for the UKCAT etc. It seems that gap year applicants have much better chances of getting in anyway, I'd chalk it up to experience tbh. A lot of people (around 25% of med students at most unis) do other degrees, like biomedical science or biology, so that's an option as well.
For the UKCAT, Kaplan offer courses and books which are somewhat helpful in getting you ready for the exam format and timing so invest in them if you can but really, as it's a psychometric test designed to show natural intelligence, they can only really do so much.
As for A levels, I'm doing 4 personally just because I enjoy all my subjects but also know other successful med applicants doing 3 so it's really up to you. ☺️


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MollyYates
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Thankyou both so much!! That's really valuable advice, I was considering the gap year however my family think this would be a bad idea and it would be better to go into clearing😕. At the moment I'm quite unsure about the a level choices, I think I'm going to wait until my as results and see how my ums are.. If they are good I will continue to do all four. So for example if I applied to Manchester which I believe minimum points are 15, which I only just get would that be the last time my GCSEs are looked at or is there a specific cut off point? Btw I got As in core and additional, maths and English lit though I only got a B in English language. I'm sure that link will be very helping I'll have a look now. Also do you know anywhere where I could access typical interview questions, I was going to start preparing for UKCAT and interview ect after my exams do you think that would be a good idea or should I start earlier? Thankyou ☺️
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Tatty007
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Personally I found balancing 3 A levels with the extra reading/interview prep in year 13 quite a lot of work and probably would've got quite stressed taking 4. It's always useful to have a bit more time on your hands when it comes to interview season, especially if you decide to take BMAT!
Definitely don't bother with interview/personal statement/UKCAT stuff until after your exams this summer, getting good AS results is a priority (if they still count any more?) and there's plenty of time over the summer to prepare. I started looking at UKCAT about 2-3 weeks before the test and my score was pretty good
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