Application to Irish Med SchoolsWatch
My name is Fabrizio and I'm Italian. I'm thinking about studying medicine abroad, and I took into consideration the UK and Ireland (especially Trinity College Dublin). In the UK I would have many more possible choices, although Brexit is a very limiting factor for EU applicants, mainly because the actual laws and conditions for 2019-2020 have not been decided yet. Therefore, Trinity would be one of the best options for me. The strange thing is that their admissions are based on CAO points. These points are a sum of the high school Diploma points plus the points achieved with a test (HPAT). The Diploma points can reach a maximum of 565, while the maximum test points are 300. So the maximum overall score is 865. Realistically talking, the maximum HPAT score has been 220 so far. This means that a score of 180 is generally high, and 200 is very very hard. Last year's minimum points for entry (Trinity) were 730 more or less.
The problem is:
While the maximum score for the Irish Leaving Certificate is 565, the Italian one is just 541 (100% mark). As a consequence, to get a 730 I would need 24 (565-541) more points in the HPAT than all the other applicants. That's not fair! 24 points could seem easy to get in the HPAT with a little effort but they're not. The most common HPAT results are between 160 and 220. 24 points make an enormous difference.
I called a lot of unis and admissions offices... This morning Trinity college told me that in order to get more points I would have to attend a med school in Italy for 1 year, get a pass and then apply to Trinity. That's crazy. Med schools here are restricted too. Once I get in I don't think I will abandon it for 24 points.
What's more, the CAO (Central Admissions Office) didn't know anything about all this, and neither did all the Other Irish Med schools. Most of the people who were talking to me on the phone didn't know what to say. I was even told "the Italian diploma is weaker compared to the Irish Leaving Cert." but what should I do? Apparently there are no other courses or certificates to get more points. On the Trinity website it says "We are delighted to welcome students from all over the world."It doesn't seem so. Any suggestions? Don't tell me to try and get 200 points in HPAT because that's what I'm going to do anyway.