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Can planning to perform research be unattractive in a med school applicant? Watch

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    I'm in the process of writing my personal statement. My story is that I'm at the end of a PhD in pain research, and while doing it I was exposed to the hospital environment and doctors who divide their time between clinical work and research. I've ended up confident that I'd like to partake in healthcare alongside improving it via research, so now I'm applying for medicine.

    Naturally, wanting to perform research related to my clinical work has been a prominent theme while describing my motivations in my PS' first draft. Would that put off any universities? Would some rather their applicants were focused entirely on delivering healthcare?

    edit: If it makes any difference, I plan on applying to at least 2 undergraduate courses, not just GEPs.
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    (Original post by Chikkinn)
    I'm in the process of writing my personal statement. My story is that I'm at the end of a PhD in pain research, and while doing it I was exposed to the hospital environment and doctors who divide their time between clinical work and research. I've ended up confident that I'd like to partake in healthcare alongside improving it via research, so now I'm applying for medicine.

    Naturally, wanting to perform research related to my clinical work has been a prominent theme while describing my motivations in my PS' first draft. Would that put off any universities? Would some rather their applicants were focused entirely on delivering healthcare?

    edit: If it makes any difference, I plan on applying to at least 2 undergraduate courses, not just GEPs.
    Of course it isn't a demerit. You can mention it, and some school *cough*imperial*cough* love that their students want to go into research. What they want to know is that you have a good understanding of waht being a doctor actually is. If you only talk about research that isn't good, but if you give a balanced knowledge, the nits good.
    For my interview at imperial, I knew they liked students interested in research, so when they asked me about why I wanted to be a doctor, I mentioend the usual science+ people crap everyone gives, but I also added that variety of the work that doctors do (various specialties and theres the clinical aspects, teaching, research etc). I obviously subtlely emphasised I enjoyed research during my first degree and was interested in getting involved in it in the future!
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    (Original post by Freyr)
    Of course it isn't a demerit. You can mention it, and some school *cough*imperial*cough* love that their students want to go into research. What they want to know is that you have a good understanding of waht being a doctor actually is. If you only talk about research that isn't good, but if you give a balanced knowledge, the nits good.
    For my interview at imperial, I knew they liked students interested in research, so when they asked me about why I wanted to be a doctor, I mentioend the usual science+ people crap everyone gives, but I also added that variety of the work that doctors do (various specialties and theres the clinical aspects, teaching, research etc). I obviously subtlely emphasised I enjoyed research during my first degree and was interested in getting involved in it in the future!
    Yeah, I would've loved to apply for Imperial, but it seems they don't particularly want grad students anymore... If there's nowhere else that has a similar interest in developing researching clinicians, I think I'll reduce the amount of emphasis I put on my interest in research. I'll just refer to it briefly as something I'm interested in, rather than frame it as an important career goal. Thanks!
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    (Original post by Chikkinn)
    Yeah, I would've loved to apply for Imperial, but it seems they don't particularly want grad students anymore... If there's nowhere else that has a similar interest in developing researching clinicians, I think I'll reduce the amount of emphasis I put on my interest in research. I'll just refer to it briefly as something I'm interested in, rather than frame it as an important career goal. Thanks!
    Try checking out the med schools that have large research funs (generally russel group). Either way, its not like its actually a downside. medicien is all about broadening people that go into it, and its a fact that many doctors go into research, they take time out of training, or do it at the same time etc. So its just a part of the job. jsut be careful you don't go on about one thing since personal statements are very limitited in space
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    (Original post by Chikkinn)
    ... If there's nowhere else that has a similar interest in developing researching clinicians...
    Imperial didn't invent the idea of clinicians being involved in research. Its a central role of being a doctor!. Of course they are not the only ones!
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    Clearly its not a deterrent! your personal statement is just that. Personal! I really dont subscribe to the idea that you have to fit into a set format. I think people over think this. Tell them why you want to study medicine and If its honest and valid then that will get you far more points than trying to tell them everything you think they want to hear. I genuinely think this is why people are rejected.
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    (Original post by Chikkinn)
    I'm in the process of writing my personal statement. My story is that I'm at the end of a PhD in pain research, and while doing it I was exposed to the hospital environment and doctors who divide their time between clinical work and research. I've ended up confident that I'd like to partake in healthcare alongside improving it via research, so now I'm applying for medicine.

    Naturally, wanting to perform research related to my clinical work has been a prominent theme while describing my motivations in my PS' first draft. Would that put off any universities? Would some rather their applicants were focused entirely on delivering healthcare?

    edit: If it makes any difference, I plan on applying to at least 2 undergraduate courses, not just GEPs.
    I would say that you should mention it as much as possible. It's a breath of fresh air to hear something original like involvement in clinical research above and beyond the normal "I like science and people" stuff in a personal statement. I would frame it as an important career goal. It makes sense with your past career and makes it clear what you want to get out of the MBBS.

    For what it's worth, when I applied to (undergraduate) courses I mentioned heavily that I wanted to intercalate and applied to places on the strength of their MBBS/PhD programmes, and mentioned the possibility of intercalating a PhD and wanting a research career at interview. They definitely weren't put off by somebody saying that, and although it obviously depends on interviewer, I doubt anybody would be as short-sighted as to mark somebody down for wanting to be involved in research. It's a (fairly) struggling area of medicine and increase participation is an important element of various national schemes.
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    I've come across a small but significant minority of people who've got PhDs and have then done medicine in order to be able to take on more clinical research - though usually on grad entry courses than UG. You're older and in a different position from most medicine applicants, so try to take advantage of that! I still think a degree of work experience and reflection on why you want to make the transition to more clinical work is a good idea, but I think your background is more likely to be an advantage than anything - and it's more realistic than the 17 year olds writing that they want a career in research!
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    (Original post by nexttime)
    Imperial didn't invent the idea of clinicians being involved in research. Its a central role of being a doctor!. Of course they are not the only ones!
    Haha, no, I didn't think they would be. My only concern was that a couple of med students I talked to in my time there said that Imperial specifically seems to want to train clinical researchers; they gave me the impression that the emphasis they place on research goes beyond what other med schools might like. I'm glad to hear that's not the case, though.

    (Original post by Zakadoh)
    Clearly its not a deterrent! your personal statement is just that. Personal! I really dont subscribe to the idea that you have to fit into a set format. I think people over think this. Tell them why you want to study medicine and If its honest and valid then that will get you far more points than trying to tell them everything you think they want to hear. I genuinely think this is why people are rejected.
    (Original post by Beska)
    I would say that you should mention it as much as possible. It's a breath of fresh air to hear something original like involvement in clinical research above and beyond the normal "I like science and people" stuff in a personal statement. I would frame it as an important career goal. It makes sense with your past career and makes it clear what you want to get out of the MBBS.

    For what it's worth, when I applied to (undergraduate) courses I mentioned heavily that I wanted to intercalate and applied to places on the strength of their MBBS/PhD programmes, and mentioned the possibility of intercalating a PhD and wanting a research career at interview. They definitely weren't put off by somebody saying that, and although it obviously depends on interviewer, I doubt anybody would be as short-sighted as to mark somebody down for wanting to be involved in research. It's a (fairly) struggling area of medicine and increase participation is an important element of various national schemes.
    Well, I'm certainly convinced for the moment then! My research aspirations currently feature quite heavily in the discussion of my plans and motivations, and formed a major part of my discovering that I want to study medicine. That's the honest explanation, so I guess I'll stick with it. Thank you!
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    (Original post by Helenia)
    I've come across a small but significant minority of people who've got PhDs and have then done medicine in order to be able to take on more clinical research - though usually on grad entry courses than UG. You're older and in a different position from most medicine applicants, so try to take advantage of that! I still think a degree of work experience and reflection on why you want to make the transition to more clinical work is a good idea, but I think your background is more likely to be an advantage than anything - and it's more realistic than the 17 year olds writing that they want a career in research!
    Thank you! Yes, it's perhaps the best opportunity I have to stand out. I've bolstered my assurance that it's what I want to do with 2 weeks of work experience and a couple of years of volunteering, so I should have plenty of the normal school-leaver bases covered. I'd like to study on an undergraduate course, but I'll have to find universities that don't mind that I wasn't a particularly motivated student 10 years ago (and my GCSEs/ A levels reflect that). It may be that I'm restricted to GEPs on that front. We'll see!
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    No that's a valid thing to put on a personal statement. Academic medicine is a valid career path after all.*

    However, I always steer people clear of being too predictive with their personal statements. You have no idea exactly how your plans may change and you need to be open to any and all experiences. Medical schools favour this approach. If you do mention it, insert a caveat to that effect as well. I would talk more about the attraction the clinical environment has to you and why this has steered you away from a purely academic career. *
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    (Original post by giella)
    No that's a valid thing to put on a personal statement. Academic medicine is a valid career path after all.*

    However, I always steer people clear of being too predictive with their personal statements. You have no idea exactly how your plans may change and you need to be open to any and all experiences. Medical schools favour this approach. If you do mention it, insert a caveat to that effect as well. I would talk more about the attraction the clinical environment has to you and why this has steered you away from a purely academic career. *
    Right you are, I'll be sure to keep an open mind, both in practise and on paper in my PS. Thanks!
 
 
 
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