A Level resit query for a potential Medicine applicant

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MSD90
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Hi all.

So basically I have done AS Level exams in Biology, Chemistry and Maths several years before the new linear A Level system was introduced. My grades from those exams were pretty poor and way off what I wanted/needed for Medicine. I had a few personal issues going on which affected my motivation to study during this time as well as being in local authority care between the ages of 4-18.

Now I am a mature student (27) who is thinking about giving university another shot and hopefully getting on to a Medicine course. I hope to attend a local college to do the A Levels required for Medicine. My circumstances would see me fulfill the criteria for several University's wider participation/access programme (so I could receive lower offers by up to 2 grades if successful with my application, UKAT, interview etc). I have also looked at Brighton and Sussex Medical School who say on their website that they automatically invite applicants who are (or have been) looked after in local authority care (for more than 3 months) for interview.

The issue is that most medical courses insist that A Levels should be completed within 2 years of study. As I have already done 1 year of AS levels previously and hoping to do another 2 years in college to get the required A Levels, would this mean I have taken 3 years overall to complete them?

As a backup option (if I don't get the required grades for Medicine or I fail my application/interview), I would be looking to apply for Diagnostic Radiography (dependent on getting a work shadowing/experience placement which is very unlikely at the moment due to COVID-19). I would then be looking to apply to a medicine undergraduate or graduate entry course after gaining some healthcare experience working as a Radiographer.

I have looked into doing an Access to Medicine course (no local college does this course in Birmingham where I live), however I would need to be getting distinctions in every unit/assessment to stand a chance of actually getting an interview for Medicine (only 4 unis require 28/30/39 distinctions instead of 45/45 distinctions from the graded units which the rest of the relatively few unis which accept an Access to Medicine qualification seem to want).

The only positive of doing an Access to Medicine course instead of a 2 year A Level route would be that it would take 1 year instead of 2 years. Whereas the advantages of doing the A Level route would be that it is more widely accepted, I would able to benefit from the widening participation/access criteria (only applicable to A Level offers) and that A Levels seem to be more favourable and widely accepted if I end up doing Radiography and then applying for an undergraduate medicine course or graduate entry afterwards with hopefully a 2(i) honours degree.

Which route would be advisable to take?
A Levels or Access to Medicine.

Sorry about the long post but I needed to explain my circumstances and thoughts clearly.
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999tigger
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Havent you just posted this? It is 3:28am, there wont be many people round now.
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StarLinyx
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Medicine is a really tough course - are you sure you will be able to handle it? Anything less than BBB at A level and you probably won't be able to.
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revolvingseed
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(Original post by MSD90)
Hi all.

So basically I have done AS Level exams in Biology, Chemistry and Maths several years before the new linear A Level system was introduced. My grades from those exams were pretty poor and way off what I wanted/needed for Medicine. I had a few personal issues going on which affected my motivation to study during this time as well as being in local authority care between the ages of 4-18.

Now I am a mature student (27) who is thinking about giving university another shot and hopefully getting on to a Medicine course. I hope to attend a local college to do the A Levels required for Medicine. My circumstances would see me fulfill the criteria for several University's wider participation/access programme (so I could receive lower offers by up to 2 grades if successful with my application, UKAT, interview etc). I have also looked at Brighton and Sussex Medical School who say on their website that they automatically invite applicants who are (or have been) looked after in local authority care (for more than 3 months) for interview.

The issue is that most medical courses insist that A Levels should be completed within 2 years of study. As I have already done 1 year of AS levels previously and hoping to do another 2 years in college to get the required A Levels, would this mean I have taken 3 years overall to complete them?

As a backup option (if I don't get the required grades for Medicine or I fail my application/interview), I would be looking to apply for Diagnostic Radiography (dependent on getting a work shadowing/experience placement which is very unlikely at the moment due to COVID-19). I would then be looking to apply to a medicine undergraduate or graduate entry course after gaining some healthcare experience working as a Radiographer.

I have looked into doing an Access to Medicine course (no local college does this course in Birmingham where I live), however I would need to be getting distinctions in every unit/assessment to stand a chance of actually getting an interview for Medicine (only 4 unis require 28/30/39 distinctions instead of 45/45 distinctions from the graded units which the rest of the relatively few unis which accept an Access to Medicine qualification seem to want).

The only positive of doing an Access to Medicine course instead of a 2 year A Level route would be that it would take 1 year instead of 2 years. Whereas the advantages of doing the A Level route would be that it is more widely accepted, I would able to benefit from the widening participation/access criteria (only applicable to A Level offers) and that A Levels seem to be more favourable and widely accepted if I end up doing Radiography and then applying for an undergraduate medicine course or graduate entry afterwards with hopefully a 2(i) honours degree.

Which route would be advisable to take?
A Levels or Access to Medicine.

Sorry about the long post but I needed to explain my circumstances and thoughts clearly.
I would do A Levels as personally I did a Foundation course a couple of years ago and it is very intense and the reason why Foundation course was straight forward for me was because my prior knowledge of my A Levels the year before, in my case very few medical universities accepted the course as acceptable.
Access to Medicine is accepted by very few universities and rarely do they give Access to Medicine applicants offers unless the medical exams are also very high too which may be very stressful and a lot to take on. A Levels on the other hand, if you score (bare minimum) C and above you have a good chance. There are some universities that just consider degrees and medical exam, such as King's. I am not sure if you do have a degree that is bioscience related.
Good luck.
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