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Imperial college: from biochemistry to medicine

I would like to know how hard it is to move from biochem to medicine after the first year of undergrad and whether it is better to finish 3 years of biochemistry and apply to the accelerated program for medicine (grad medicine, generally 4 years). I am aware the latter is not offered by Imperial so the application would be for another university. Thank you in advance for your help!
Reply 1
Given the completely different admissions processes it would not be possible to switch from biochem to medicine.
If you want to do medicine, apply as soon as possible and do not apply for biochemistry just to get into medicine later. Graduate entry medicine is much more competitive to get into, and I don't think student finance or the NHS bursary will fully cover you for the course either.
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Original post by Sinnoh
Given the completely different admissions processes it would not be possible to switch from biochem to medicine.
If you want to do medicine, apply as soon as possible and do not apply for biochemistry just to get into medicine later. Graduate entry medicine is much more competitive to get into, and I don't think student finance or the NHS bursary will fully cover you for the course either.

Thank you for your response. My daughter did not apply to medicine because she does not hold a British passport and we were made aware that only about 10% of places were available to non-Brits. We thought it would be easier to apply from inside but, as you said, it does not seem so. My daughter has been accepted at Galway and Navarra for medicine and she aims to do an Md-PhD but she would have preferred Imperial. However, given how hard it seems to be, especially for non-Brits, she might start medicine in Ireland or Spain, I guess. Any views welcome
Original post by aligarciaherrero
I would like to know how hard it is to move from biochem to medicine after the first year of undergrad and whether it is better to finish 3 years of biochemistry and apply to the accelerated program for medicine (grad medicine, generally 4 years). I am aware the latter is not offered by Imperial so the application would be for another university. Thank you in advance for your help!

Unfortunately, Imperial does not do biomed transfers for medicine. Graduate entry medicine is even more competitive than standard entry medicine as the international quota still applies.

Original post by aligarciaherrero
Thank you for your response. My daughter did not apply to medicine because she does not hold a British passport and we were made aware that only about 10% of places were available to non-Brits. We thought it would be easier to apply from inside but, as you said, it does not seem so. My daughter has been accepted at Galway and Navarra for medicine and she aims to do an Md-PhD but she would have preferred Imperial. However, given how hard it seems to be, especially for non-Brits, she might start medicine in Ireland or Spain, I guess. Any views welcome

Has your daughter considered taking a gap year. Medicine being more competitive for international students doesn't mean that she wouldn't get an offer. She'll never know if she would get an offer for medicine in the UK if she never applied. Also, the degree obtained for graduate entry medicine in the UK is the same MBBS/MBchB as standard undergraduate entry.
Original post by hungrysalamander
Unfortunately, Imperial does not do biomed transfers for medicine. Graduate entry medicine is even more competitive than standard entry medicine as the international quota still applies.


Has your daughter considered taking a gap year. Medicine being more competitive for international students doesn't mean that she wouldn't get an offer. She'll never know if she would get an offer for medicine in the UK if she never applied. Also, the degree obtained for graduate entry medicine in the UK is the same MBBS/MBchB as standard undergraduate entry.

My daughter is considering starting medicine in Spain and applying to medicine to UK but it seems hard to move from one medicine faculty to another too.
Original post by aligarciaherrero
My daughter is considering starting medicine in Spain and applying to medicine to UK but it seems hard to move from one medicine faculty to another too.


No medical school accepts transfers from abroad, she could apply while being enrolled at a medical school in Spain but most medical schools do not accept this.
Reply 6
Original post by aligarciaherrero
I would like to know how hard it is to move from biochem to medicine after the first year of undergrad and whether it is better to finish 3 years of biochemistry and apply to the accelerated program for medicine (grad medicine, generally 4 years). I am aware the latter is not offered by Imperial so the application would be for another university. Thank you in advance for your help!


Probably near extremely difficult. Apply to medicine direct.
Graduate medicine is even harder to get into.
Even if you have to take a gap year to reapply is no biggie in the grand scheme of things.
(edited 1 year ago)
@becausethenight can probably advise more, but I'm not aware of any transfer scheme in place for those courses. You categorically cannot transfer into medicine from any other degree, at any medical school, unless there is an explicit pre-existing transfer scheme in place. Note also even for those that do exist, they are ferociously competitive - with about 200 students applying for ~5 places. Likewise, graduate entry medicine is also much more competitive than standard entry medicine (as above there are also major financial implications).

If your aim is to do medicine then you should not do any other degrees at any other point and simply take gap years and improve your application and reapply over successive application cycles until you are successful (or decide you don't actually want to do medicine). If you do any other degree, assume you will never get into medicine. Note also that many medical schools will not consider someone who has started but not completed any degree elsewhere, and some will only consider them if they have extenuating circumstances. Reapplying during first year elsewhere then drastically reduces the range of options you have available to you.
Original post by artful_lounger
@becausethenight can probably advise more, but I'm not aware of any transfer scheme in place for those courses. You categorically cannot transfer into medicine from any other degree, at any medical school, unless there is an explicit pre-existing transfer scheme in place. Note also even for those that do exist, they are ferociously competitive - with about 200 students applying for ~5 places. Likewise, graduate entry medicine is also much more competitive than standard entry medicine (as above there are also major financial implications).

If your aim is to do medicine then you should not do any other degrees at any other point and simply take gap years and improve your application and reapply over successive application cycles until you are successful (or decide you don't actually want to do medicine). If you do any other degree, assume you will never get into medicine. Note also that many medical schools will not consider someone who has started but not completed any degree elsewhere, and some will only consider them if they have extenuating circumstances. Reapplying during first year elsewhere then drastically reduces the range of options you have available to you.


Thanks for the tag - can confirm it is simply not possible to transfer.

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