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    Hello,

    I have an offer from UEA and Plymouth to study Medicine but I'm quite confuddled on what to firm...
    I went to the Plymouth post offer day and I just really liked it, it had a good friendly atmosphere. Teachers were all really easy to talk to and the year itself is quite small - around 90 I think so I think that's quite nice. And I really liked that they have regular clinical skills sessions. Unfortunately, couldn't go to UEA's but went to a mini open day but got there extremely late due to a train delay - so I didn't get to see much at all (literally got in for a small lecture abut studying at UEA in general and I had to return straightaway to catch my train back home) - but it seemed like a really lovely place.
    Any thoughts or information both unis and the course will be much appreciated, I need to decide soon - the official deadline is on the 4th but my school wants to know by the end of tomorrow :/
    Thank you!
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    (Original post by ~ PathofLife)
    Hello,

    I have an offer from UEA and Plymouth to study Medicine but I'm quite confuddled on what to firm...
    I went to the Plymouth post offer day and I just really liked it, it had a good friendly atmosphere. Teachers were all really easy to talk to and the year itself is quite small - around 90 I think so I think that's quite nice. And I really liked that they have regular clinical skills sessions. Unfortunately, couldn't go to UEA's but went to a mini open day but got there extremely late due to a train delay - so I didn't get to see much at all (literally got in for a small lecture abut studying at UEA in general and I had to return straightaway to catch my train back home) - but it seemed like a really lovely place.
    Any thoughts or information both unis and the course will be much appreciated, I need to decide soon - the official deadline is on the 4th but my school wants to know by the end of tomorrow :/
    Thank you!
    Hey, I answered on the other thread, but in case you missed it or in case anyone else is interested:

    "Hi, congratulations on the offers! I really love UEA, I'm so so happy I chose to come here, for me the course is fantastic. For the pros and cons, I actually did a post in the proper "Pros and Cons" thread recently, maybe this is helpful?

    (Original post by Cam,)
    Hi, so I saw that the only entry for UEA was seven years ago, so I thought I'd put up an updated version. If anyone is thinking of applying and has any questions about UEA, feel free to PM or quote me

    • Integrated teaching – for me, this is the biggest plus of the UEA course. All of our learning is totally integrated, meaning that we're meeting patients and learning clinical skills from week one of year one. We go to a GP surgery one day a week throughout the course, with a GP tutor who has the whole day dedicated to us, where we put our learning into practice and meet patients. At my point of the course – fourth year - we're often sitting in the actual GP and nurse clinics and leading the whole consultation and examinations, checking our findings and plans with the GP supervising us. We also spend three months each year on hospital placements, where we're on the wards, in clinics/theatre, or having clinical teaching. Obviously this kind of learning isn't for everyone, you might find it too intense right at the beginning of the course, but for me I think this is the best way to learn to become a doctor. It's amazing how quickly you develop confidence and good communication skills learning this way, and I think it makes the stuff you learn in lectures relevant and interesting, and makes you a better doctor imo. The GMC recently did a big survey of all foundation doctors, and UEA graduates had the highest percentage of doctors saying they were well-prepared for work as a doctor than any other UK medical school, so they must be doing something right!

    • Systems-based learning – so our course is split up into systems-based modules, for example in second year the three modules are cardiology, respiratory and haem/derm. Each module consists of eight weeks of campus-based teaching and four weeks of secondary care. The eight weeks of campus teaching split the module into eight chunks, for example in cardiology there is a week on arrhythmias and collapse, a week on acute coronary syndrome, a week on hypertension. One week doesn't sound like loads of time, but the week is structured so we can maximise the time the best – we meet in our PBL groups to discuss what we need to learn and go over last week’s teaching, we have three days of lectures and seminars, and then we go to GP where we meet patients with those conditions and learn the relevant clinical skills, then we consolidate our knowledge in our PBL groups again with discussion and presentations. There's so much opportunity to flag up if you're unsure about something, and it works to really reinforce your knowledge. Then after eight weeks of this we spend four weeks in hospital, which I talked about above. This again helps us reinforce our knowledge in that specialty and learn more specialist clinical skills, like suturing.

    • Small-group teaching – so much of our learning is in small groups, which means that there's so much opportunity to ask questions and get help if there's anything you're stuck on. There's a three hour PBL session each week in PBL groups of ten, there's a whole day at GP each week in the same PBL groups, in secondary care we’re in small teaching groups, most of our campus-based seminar teaching is in groups of about 40 so it's not so daunting to put your hand up and ask something

    • Feedback – UEA are really good with feedback and they're always open to doing their best to change the course if there's something we don't agree with, which is fantastic. For example, when I was in first year our anatomy teaching wasn't great – although all of us could do full body dissections, the teaching was very didactic and hard to engage with. So we fed this back to the medical school, and now the teaching is amazing, there's surgeons and radiologists who join in the teaching, it's more enthusiastic, there's extra workshops, there's tons of models and books for people who struggle to get stuff out of the dissection. Also when I was in first year we had parallel seminars in our first module – when two or three seminars were going on at the same time and we had to choose which to attend. Again we fed this back, and the course director worked really hard to work the timetable so now the current first years don't even know what a parallel seminar is

    • Student Support - there's loads of support available within the med school, there's a whole team of really good advisors who help students who are maybe struggling academically, or having physical or mental health troubles. They're specific to med so they understand the pressures we're under, and they're really good at providing support and helping to take off pressure off

    • Com skills – we get loads of consultation skills teaching, with actors in small groups, so we can develop our skills and practise in a safe space. For example, I recently had a session on breaking bad news, which is great to practise with an actor, and a session on paediatric triadic consultations with children from a local school.

    • Anatomy – all students get to do full-body dissection in small groups throughout the course, alongside anatomy seminars, radiology teaching etc, which is really useful. I think they're now starting to integrate some ultrasound teaching into the anatomy labs in the lower years too

    • Transport – throughout the course we get transport provided to all placements outside of Norwich, which includes the vast majority of GP placements and three of the four teaching hospitals (the fourth is literally next to the uni), which is so handy and I understand is quite unusual

    • UEA and Norwich – I think UEA is a fantastic uni in general. It's friendly and sociable, and has loads of green space (massive lake and woods). There's always stuff going on – last year we had Radio 1’s Big Weekend with Muse, Foos, Swifty, Snoop Dogg, Imagine Dragons etc, and we had the second Avengers film filmed here the year before, with RDJ, Samuel L Jackson, Scarlett Johanssen etc on campus. Norwich is such a lovely city, it has a bustling centre with great shopping, but it's still a medieval city with cool winding little streets, a gorgeous river, loads of quirky shops and great pubs. Plus it's in the sunniest county in the UK so what's not to love!


    Things that might not be for you (it's hard to call them ‘cons’ as for me these actually suit me and my learning really well, but maybe not for everyone)

    • Because there's no preclinical/clinical divide, some people feel that they could use more grounding in the basic sciences at the start of the course. For me this has never really been an issue, as pure science isn't really what interests me – I can only really find things interesting so far as I can see them applied – but I know some people who have been frustrated by this. Having said that, there is always the support out there if you had any questions or wanted some guidance on what basic science would be helpful to cover, and we do have lots of lectures on the core sciences, they're just more spread through the year

    • Small group learning might not be for everyone. I am on my fourth PBL group and never had so much as an argument in a single one of them, and for most people this is the case. However if there was a real personality clash, you'd have to learn how to work with that, as you have PBL every week and spend your whole GP day plus com skills with the group. I do know a few people who have had to work around this, but tbh when you're working in a team as a doctor, if you don't get on with someone you still have to learn to work with them, and PBL definitely teaches you to work in a team. Learning to learn in a team, helping each other whilst not letting your learning be dependent on others, is a tricky skill that takes a while to get used to

    • Module 1 length – the first half of first year is a module that aims to introduce you to the way the course works, by having a module that goes over the “human lifecycle” from birth to death. This allows you to learn some basic science, get to grips with how PBL and placement works, and generally ease you into life as a med student. This is a fantastic idea. BUT it lasts half of the year (in year one there's only two modules: this and ortho/rheum) which in most people's opinions is way too long. By the end of it you'll be itching to get stuck into some proper medicine. Module 1 is far better than it was when I took it, as I said above there are no more parallel seminars, but it would be great if this module was a bit shorter

    I hope that's useful if anybody reading is considering UEA, and like I said feel free to ask if there's any more you'd like to know
    In terms of clinical skills, because our course is integrated we learn them throughout. We tend to learn them during the secondary care part of our module, and they're relevant to that module (for example you'll learn taking blood when you're doing haematology in second year, arterial blood gases during respiratory in second year, catheter insertion during urology in third year). You also learn the examinations relevant to each module as you go through, for example how to do a cardiovascular examination and pick up murmurs in the cardiology module in second year. There's a huge new building next to the hospital and campus where there's the clinical skills labs. You practise first using models, then you can do the real thing (for example, learning venepuncture, I had a couple of sessions in the clinical skills lab where we're taught and practise on models, then I went back in a lunch break to have another practice, then I was timetabled to spend an afternoon with the phlebotomists where I could do it in real life under close supervision). The clinical skills lab is always open to practise.

    Does that answer your question? Is there any more you'd like to know about the course here, or uni life in Norwich, or anything at all? I'm more than happy to answer anything so please don't hesitate to ask "
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    (Original post by Cam,)
    Hey, I answered on the other thread, but in case you missed it or in case anyone else is interested:

    "Hi, congratulations on the offers! I really love UEA, I'm so so happy I chose to come here, for me the course is fantastic. For the pros and cons, I actually did a post in the proper "Pros and Cons" thread recently, maybe this is helpful?



    In terms of clinical skills, because our course is integrated we learn them throughout. We tend to learn them during the secondary care part of our module, and they're relevant to that module (for example you'll learn taking blood when you're doing haematology in second year, arterial blood gases during respiratory in second year, catheter insertion during urology in third year). You also learn the examinations relevant to each module as you go through, for example how to do a cardiovascular examination and pick up murmurs in the cardiology module in second year. There's a huge new building next to the hospital and campus where there's the clinical skills labs. You practise first using models, then you can do the real thing (for example, learning venepuncture, I had a couple of sessions in the clinical skills lab where we're taught and practise on models, then I went back in a lunch break to have another practice, then I was timetabled to spend an afternoon with the phlebotomists where I could do it in real life under close supervision). The clinical skills lab is always open to practise.

    Does that answer your question? Is there any more you'd like to know about the course here, or uni life in Norwich, or anything at all? I'm more than happy to answer anything so please don't hesitate to ask "
    Wow. Thank you SO much for your reply - it was super informative!
    Yes, that definitely answered all of my questions.
    Everyone single person I've talked to about UEA seem to absolutely love the place, which is fantastic.
    Thank you very much, I really appreciate your help! :yy:
 
 
 
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