Medicine personal statementWatch
Ultimately, a personal statement will need to be tailored towards whatever medical schools you are applying for. Therefore are rather subjective and its important you research each medical school's policy on the personal statement. Edinburgh has a great resource on what they expect for personal statements, and I'd recommend you give it a look to get some ideas of how it should be written.
A personal statement is used for two things:
1. Show you have a realistic view of what medicine is - conveyed by your work experience
2. Show them what makes you. This can encompass: what interests you have, positions of responsibility, sports teams etc etc
Things to consider to boost your personal statement can be anything. But the main reason you are doing them is to show the examiners the skill you have gained and how these translate into the qualities of a medical student. These include:
- Team work skills
- Leadership skill
- The ability to reflect
(There's plenty more qualities, but give it a think)
Be creative and be unique! Ultimately, be you.
It's also important to remember that it is a personal statement. Don't just list everything you have done but reflect upon your volunteering and work experience. How do you think they will help you in terms of being a doctor? What aspects of your volunteering/work experience did you find challenging, and how did you get over those moments? Lots of applicants will have done similar things in terms of work experience etc, but no one else will have reacted in the same way, or learnt the exact same things from those activities as you have.
Think about skills like teamwork, communication, responsibility and try to link these with your extracurriculars.
Also remember that you will be asked about what you have written in your PS during interviews.
What kind of things would you do in order to boost your personal statement ?
To boost your personal statement for medicine, you should cover the following three key areas: Motivation (why do you want to study medicine?), Exploration (what have you done to learn about it?) and Suitability (why are you a great fit for medicine?).
The best thing to do is to adhere to the following structure:
- Why I want to be a doctor (motivation)
- Work experience (exploration)
- Volunteering (exploration)
- Wide reading and study (exploration)
- Extracurricular (suitability)
- Conclusion (motivation)
You can make your personal statement stand out by reflecting well on the work experience you have, putting a personal spin on your motivations for studying medicine, and avoiding clichés ('I've wanted to be a doctor since I was 5 years old' etc!)
You can read more about writing an excellent PS, visit our Personal Statement for Medicine page - this has details of each of the three sections and top writing style tips. You might also find it interesting to read our page on How Medical Schools Use Your Personal Statement.
Hope this helps!
The Medic Portal