In the middle of my 2nd degree. Medicine as 3rd?

Badges: 12
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
Hi again TSR (Mods feel free to re-locate this if I've misplaced it),

About 2 years ago I posted here asking about doing Medicine as a 2nd degree, 4 years post graduation with a non-science degree. I initially applied to Medicine aged 18 through an access course but it didn't go very well so I decided to take a couple of years out, took some non-science A-levels, and then I pursued an entirely different degree rather than ''settling" for my 5th choice.

Anyhow, when I last posted here - I had my 2.1 in that ''entirely different" degree and 4 years work experience, one of those years being in healthcare. I had no recent study and very little clinical experience.

I decided that Graduate Medicine was too much of a gamble at that point in my life - I needed more certainty of a career, being 27 at the time. I felt massively unprepared for the GAMSAT and I knew my work experience was mostly irrelevant. I knew my chances were slim and it would be far more sensible to spend the subsequent 2-3 years getting experience and, hopefully, getting a solid career in case Medicine never transpired.

Cut a long story short: I did an access course in the sciences and left with a distinction, then I applied to a clinical degree which I'm currently doing very well on.I'll soon be qualified and can work in the NHS - hurrah! But....I'm almost on the wrong side of 30 and this isn't going away - in the back of my head I still want to be a Doctor.

So, 2 years from now I will have a BSc (hopefully 1st or 2.1), a BA, an access to science, a bunch of decent GCSEs, and some irrelevant A-levels

I've been working as a HCA for almost 2 years part-time, as well as completing the training that goes with it (first aid/manual handing etc), I'm on placement (most of the time) in hospitals as part of my degree and the profession I'm training in is extremely patient-focussed.

If medicine doesn't work out - I will still get to look after patients and help people in this profession and there is a lot of opportunity to specialize and learn - hence the reason I've taken a 2nd degree. But if there's a chance I could apply to GEM and secure a place, then I'd like to give it a really good try.

The current hurdle I have is that I have some serious ties to where I'm living (family/mortgage) so the medical school in this city is my best option, personally and financially. I am willing to commute (nearest other school is 3 hours away), but as I say, I'd like to give my 1st choice a good shot. The problem is, they want A-levels in Chem and Bio and they're a notoriously difficult school to get into. Should I take Chem/Bio A-level? Do unis look at applicants on a case-by-case basis or is it a box ticking exercise of ''you must have X,Y,Z" to be considered? I have Chem/Bio to degree level - but I don't have the A-levels.

At the moment, I kind of feel like I'm chasing my tail. The first time around - I was young and unconfident (flopped at interview), second time around I couldn't take the risk due to personal circumstances, and now third time around - it looks like my choices have narrowed and what I'm left with is the possibility of being ruled out instantly due to a choice I made when I was 18 despite the fact I've proven my academic capabilities in the sciences.

Can anyone advise me of where to go from here? It's much appreciated!
Badges: 14
Report 3 years ago
Hi! I realise this topic is 8 months old but thought I'd contribute anyway.

I am in a (roughly) simialr position, in that I have completed many many years of further education before finally pursuing my dreams and applying for medicine. I have a BA(hons), a BSc(hons) and a PGcert in CVD Health. One of the things that is stopping me from applying to all of the unis that I want to in Scotland (can't afford to study elsewhere), is a lack of appropriate high school grades. For some universities, namely Edinburgh and St Andrews, these are a box ticking exercise, so there's no way arounf it other than to do it! For Edinburgh however, if you don't get them whilst at school, you don't stand a chance. It seems ridiculous, but I suppose they can afford to be picky. The other Scottish uni I have a applied to will accept my Biology degree in lieu of any higher/a level grades, thankfully!

It would be best to contact each university individually and lay out, as succinctly as possible, your situation and would they encourage an applicant of your experience to apply? Usually they will offer you advice based on your circumstances.

I am also over 30 and finally going for it, with fingers crossed for entry next year. Just this blasted UKCAT to traverse first. I'm not a fan of it.

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