Kxmil7
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Hi,

It’s results day tommorow and I am really worried that I won’t have the GCSEs to get into medical school because I’ve heard that they are a very important factor, I know that some unis have requirements that are not to harsh, but I’ve also heard that to have a good chance you need to have 6+ A*s and As. However I haven’t got my grades yet, but I think I’ll get around 4 As, my GCSEs didn’t go well I know that but I also know I am very academically able, enough for medicine. I just want to know what my chances are for medicine.

Thanks.
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ecolier
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Hi,

It’s results day tommorow and I am really worried that I won’t have the GCSEs to get into medical school because I’ve heard that they are a very important factor, I know that some unis have requirements that are not to harsh, but I’ve also heard that to have a good chance you need to have 6+ A*s and As. However I haven’t got my grades yet, but I think I’ll get around 4 As, my GCSEs didn’t go well I know that but I also know I am very academically able, enough for medicine. I just want to know what my chances are for medicine.

Thanks.
Post to https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5678544 tomorrow with your actual results.

However, at the end of the day, we wouldn't be able to advise properly until you have your UCAT score.
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Kxmil7
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Another thing I forgot to mention is that I have to choose my a level subjects as well by tommorow, and if I don’t have a good chance I don’t want to pick chemistry and biology...
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ecolier
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Another thing I forgot to mention is that I have to choose my a level subjects as well by tommorow, and if I don’t have a good chance I don’t want to pick chemistry and biology...
Well it seems you know what to do already, but here is another thread that you should post in if you need any help choosing your A-Levels for medicine: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5611422
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Kxmil7
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Hi,

It’s results day tommorow and I am really worried that I won’t have the GCSEs to get into medical school because I’ve heard that they are a very important factor, I know that some unis have requirements that are not to harsh, but I’ve also heard that to have a good chance you need to have 6+ A*s and As. However I haven’t got my grades yet, but I think I’ll get around 4 As, my GCSEs didn’t go well I know that but I also know I am very academically able, enough for medicine. I just want to know what my chances are for medicine.

Another thing I forgot to mention is that I have to choose my a level subjects as well by tommorow, and if I don’t have a good chance I don’t want to pick chemistry and biology...

Thanks.
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Kxmil7
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Im looking to do maths, further maths, biology and chemistry if my GCSEs are good enough for medicine, if not then maths, further maths, physics and economics
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DGeorge13
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Im looking to do maths, further maths, biology and chemistry if my GCSEs are good enough for medicine, if not then maths, further maths, physics and economics
I would advise you to do what you enjoy and don’t just take bio and chem for medicine as you still have to do them and if you don’t like them it won’t be worth it . Remember you can’t do anything to change your grades anymore so try to just not think about it
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whizzer_wins
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Okay, so I'm assuming you'll take the UCAT, because it's more popular and I'm not doing the BMAT, but it all depends on what medical school you choose; some place more weighting on GCSEs, while others focus on other elements of your application (UCAT, predicted A Levels, Personal Statement). For example, according to a really useful website called The Medic Portal, (https://www.themedicportal.com/blog/...re-2019-entry/) Newcastle only screens its applicant to make sure they meet the advertised GCSE requirements (usually around 5 or 6 grade 7s, As, for most schools) and then they use the UCAT as the only other deciding factor to select students for interviews. You've also got Barts, which asks for at least 3 7s and 3 6s (AAABBB), then they focus on predicted A Levels and UCAT score. In short, these schools, according to the information I've been looking at, don't really include GCSEs too much in their selection process, as long as you meet their minimum requirements. You might have to double check some of this because some of the sites I've quoted from haven't been updated for 2020 and 2021 entry - please take a look online to be sure.
Another really important thing is basically every medical school wants you to take A Level Biology and Chemistry (although some only need one of the two), so if you still think you have a shot at medicine tomorrow, make sure to pick them!
Best of luck with the GCSEs!
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TSU - Mod
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Im looking to do maths, further maths, biology and chemistry if my GCSEs are good enough for medicine, if not then maths, further maths, physics and economics
Hi Kxmil7,

Regarding your A level choices. If you are considering medicine, and not 100% sure then you must have chemistry as an A level choice. This is a minimum requirement for almost all medical schools in the UK, and by not having it will put you in a difficult situation come next year. For most med schools, Biology is not a requirement and not having it will not affect your application for most universities (Oxbridge included).

My advice would be to first take 4 A-Levels in Maths, Chemistry, Physics and an additional of your choice. After receiving your GCSE results you can choose to drop/change a subject.

Honestly, from my experience/research, a large number of medical schools are moving away from GCSEs as an indicator of academic ability. As long as you have your standard 7/A in maths and 6/B in English most medical schools do not look further than that. Admission examinations such as the UCAT(UKCAT) and BMAT are the main results used by med schools to offer interview places. From there, Interview scores and admissions results are the primary factors when offering applicants places.

You'll need to strategically apply to med schools that match your personal strength and in your case, maybe steer away from schools favouring high GCSE grades.

Hope this helps!
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S.carter
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Hi,

It’s results day tommorow and I am really worried that I won’t have the GCSEs to get into medical school because I’ve heard that they are a very important factor, I know that some unis have requirements that are not to harsh, but I’ve also heard that to have a good chance you need to have 6+ A*s and As. However I haven’t got my grades yet, but I think I’ll get around 4 As, my GCSEs didn’t go well I know that but I also know I am very academically able, enough for medicine. I just want to know what my chances are for medicine.

Another thing I forgot to mention is that I have to choose my a level subjects as well by tommorow, and if I don’t have a good chance I don’t want to pick chemistry and biology...

Thanks.
You only need a 6 for most schools to take A level biology or chemistry, so I’m sure you’ll be fine. A-Levels are a lot more important than GCSEs, so I don’t think universities will care too much if you don’t do well in RE or something like that as long as you have decent science grades.
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Queen_1
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Hi,

It’s results day tommorow and I am really worried that I won’t have the GCSEs to get into medical school because I’ve heard that they are a very important factor, I know that some unis have requirements that are not to harsh, but I’ve also heard that to have a good chance you need to have 6 A*s and As. However I haven’t got my grades yet, but I think I’ll get around 4 As, my GCSEs didn’t go well I know that but I also know I am very academically able, enough for medicine. I just want to know what my chances are for medicine.

Thanks.
Not all med schools will ask you about GCSEs and if they do they’ll focus on Maths English and Sciences not really the other subjects
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DGeorge13
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Biology is a requirement at about 1/2
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Kxmil7
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Thanks a lot for the advice from everyone, I am feeling a bit more confident now
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ecolier
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(Original post by TSU - Mod)
fffor most med schools, Biology is not a requirement and not having it will not affect your application for most universities (Oxbridge included)
Med schools who will need Biology (these Unis state Chemistry and Biology, as opposed to Chemistry and one of Biology / Maths / Physics etc.):
Aston
Birmingham
Brighton Sussex
Cardiff
Edge Hill
Exeter
HYMS...
etc. etc.

So, I wouldn't suggest dropping Biology at all.

Don't just take my word for it, it's all on https://www.medschools.ac.uk/media/2...al-schools.pdf

My advice would be to first take 4 A-Levels in Maths, Chemistry, Physics and an additional of your choice. After receiving your GCSE results you can choose to drop/change a subject.
Why do four A-Levels? It's just making things difficult for yourself.

All undergrad med offers are for 3 subjects.
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TSU - Mod
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(Original post by ecolier)
Why do four A-Levels? It's just making things difficult for yourself.

All undergrad med offers are for 3 subjects.
It allows them to drop a subject if they find they do not like if / they don't need it anymore / continue with the ones they need etc...
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ecolier
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(Original post by TSU - Mod)
It allows them to drop a subject if they find they do not like if / they don't need it anymore / continue with the ones they need etc...It's a very sensible thing to do.
Not if they didn't pick Biology in there it's not.
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Kxmil7
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Now the issue is I don’t know whether to take biology or physics, I think I’ll get 7 or 8 in gcse biology and 8 or 9 in gcse physics as physics is my best subject, so I don’t know whether to go for physics because I am very good at it, or biology just in case because it is a requirement for some unis.
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ecolier
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(Original post by Kxmil7)
Now the issue is I don’t know whether to take biology or physics, I think I’ll get 7 or 8 in gcse biology and 8 or 9 in gcse physics as physics is my best subject, so I don’t know whether to go for physics because I am very good at it, or biology just in case because it is a requirement for some unis.
As I have mentioned, if you dropped Biology you cannot apply to quite a few med schools. The choice is yours.

This is a very important decision so I would recommend that you research thoroughly yourself, reading https://www.medschools.ac.uk/media/2...al-schools.pdf would be a good start. This is for 2020 entry but would be similar for 2021 / 2022 entries.

Do come back to us if you have any specific questions.
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Kxmil7
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Yeah I’m very split
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epicnm
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Doing Biology at A level is almost essential* at a level. It has the content which many universities ask about during interview.

In terms of your results, a 7 in biology is definitely good enough to do a level. The only problem with having “lower” GCSEs is it prevents you from applying to certain unis like Oxbridge, Birmingham, etc. I spoke to a Birmingham admissions tutor who said and I quote,” We often find that GCSEs are more reflective of an applicants ability than a level”.

By no means will achieving 4As at GCSE prevent you from doing medicine, especially from the universities that place lower emphasis on GCSEs and more on a level predictions, UKCAT, Personal statement. Achieving “bad**” GCSEs won’t stop you from doing medicine, just slightly narrow your options. But by no means do not let your GCSE results dictate you doing Biology and Chemistry A Level if your grades are sufficient enough in them.

I assume that you’ve chosen medicine because you enjoy science, so even if you aren’t able to apply, there’s always Graduate entry medicine by studying another science course (which also makes you more employable!)

The other thing I would say is that maybe if you find 4 A Levels too much, maybe drop one, because if a fourth a level will prevent you from achieving 3 As/A*s or take time away from you revising to achieve 3 A/A* grades, do not take it. Remember it isn’t essential to have 3 A Levels but IT IS essential to have 3 As (at least).

What do you like most, Bio, Chem or Physics. Do the subjects which you like, but also the ones that will help you get into a future career. For example, there’s no point in taking Physics, maths and economics if you can only see yourself being a doctor or there’s no point in taking Chemistry, Biology and Maths if you can only see yourself doing Business management(or something completely unrelated!)

*When I say essential, I mean a lot of Biology content is needed for first year foundations, hence why 1/2 of med schools have it as compulsory. It however won’t harm your chance of getting into a med school which doesn’t require it.
**When I say “bad”, I don’t mean “bad”, as 4 As are great grades so you should be proud. But the grades “required” for medicine

Last point is don’t worry, you may think you’ve only got 4As and tomorrow find out you come out with 7A*s! Don’t worry and if your passionate about medicine, GCSEs won’t become an obstacle on your path to becoming a doctor.

Good luck for tomorrow!
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