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*MEGATHREAD* - The "Which Medical School Should I Apply To?" Uberthread [part 5 of 5]

Read this before posting:

Medicine 2021 Entry requirements

GCSEs for Medicine 2021 Entry requirements

Shamelessly ripped from @Hygeia post from the first part of this thread.

As it's getting closer to the medicine deadline, more and more of these threads are appearing in the forum and people are getting a little frustrated with the them so this thread is for all of those queries (the x uni or y uni questions, the where should I apply with these grades etc).

I'll start with some useful links:

What you might like to consider when deciding where to apply

The pros and cons of various universities

For all your where CAN I apply questions, have a look at the main medicine wiki page which contains links to the GCSE/A Level/UKCAT requirements of each university, allowing you to exclude those medical schools where you don't meet the requirements.


A couple of FAQs
Which medical schools are easier to get into?
The simple answer here is none of them, all medical schools are very competitive and those with a lower applicant to offer ratio one year are likely to have a much higher one the next year.

However, it is possible to apply smart - for example, getting into Birmingham if you don't have the requisite number of A*s would be very difficult where the same number of A*s at another medical school are fine. Similarly, if your UKCAT is not brilliant, applying for medical schools which love the UKCAT might not be very sensible. You can make it easier for yourself by doing some research into the medical schools (using the links I posted earlier).

Should I apply to X university or Y university?
This is a very personal decision you have to make on your own as it is where you may be studying for 5 or 6 years. Do you have a gut instinct over which to go to? What is it you like about each? What don't you like? Have you visited both, if so, which did you feel more 'at home' at? Some people find it helpful to draw up a list of pros and cons for each if they're really struggling to decide. You can also have a look at what current students say about their medical schools in the link I posted earlier.

Any further threads on this topic will be merged with this one and hopefully someone (@meddad or @GANFYD) will respond to each giving advice, however, try to do some research on your own first! I'll add FAQs as and when they come up.

If you are wanting advice about med school applications, we need (as a minimum)

GCSEs and full grade/subject breakdown

A levels, subjects and predictions

UCAT and breakdown of subsections

SJT band

Brief mention of work experience

Any contextual or WP flags

The research you have done and any preferences


It also needs to be remembered that everyone advising here is doing so voluntarily and on top of other commitments, so manners and patience will receive a more favourable response!

Link to the previous "Which Medical School Should I Apply To?" [Park 4 of 5]: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7102578
(edited 1 year ago)

Scroll to see replies

Would it be worth me redoing my A-levels if applying to medicine as a bioscience graduate?

I took my original ones 11 years ago (2012)
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Smeraldettoi
Would it be worth me redoing my A-levels if applying to medicine as a bioscience graduate?

I took my original ones 11 years ago (2012)

Depends on the universities you're going to apply to and your actual degree (& its content). I'm currently a first year at Glasgow and did my IB exams in 2013. I applied in 2020 (deferred entry), with a BSc (grad. 2016) and MSc (grad. 2017). Glasgow allows 7 years since most recent qualification but eg St Andrews wanted 5 so I couldn't apply. Edinburgh want 3. None of them asked for redoing IB exams though.

Check individual unis requirements but it'll most likely be a no.
Original post by lastlullabyy
Depends on the universities you're going to apply to and your actual degree (& its content). I'm currently a first year at Glasgow and did my IB exams in 2013. I applied in 2020 (deferred entry), with a BSc (grad. 2016) and MSc (grad. 2017). Glasgow allows 7 years since most recent qualification but eg St Andrews wanted 5 so I couldn't apply. Edinburgh want 3. None of them asked for redoing IB exams though.

Check individual unis requirements but it'll most likely be a no.

Congrats for getting in; did you find they asked about your IB exams at all at interview?
Original post by Smeraldettoi
Congrats for getting in; did you find they asked about your IB exams at all at interview?

No, no one cared - it was so long ago.
Reply 5
Anyone, why is Keele so popular for its medicine course? Why is it so highly ranked?
Original post by mommyyy
Anyone, why is Keele so popular for its medicine course? Why is it so highly ranked?


Maybe ask in Keele thread as they will be better placed to answer your questions...

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7277929&page=4
Original post by mommyyy
Anyone, why is Keele so popular for its medicine course? Why is it so highly ranked?

@the mumivator has provided a very useful link above. Another thing to consider is quite a lot of people apply with good material for the R&R form which incorporates volunteering etc in it which has important traits such as leadership, teamwork, communication among others. Keele typically has a lower (ish - I mean there isn't such as thing as low UCAT med schools anymore lol) UCAT cut offs compared to others and so is a good university for those who have the experience to put down on their R&R form and talk about at interview.
is IMU better than rcsi bahrain if i wanna go to the USA?
WHERE SHOULD I APPLY WITH THESE STATS (hopefully this is the right place for this :colondollar:)

I’m a graduate applicant BTW.

Degree: Biological Sciences at Imperial predicted First.
A Levels: A*A*A* in Bio Chem English.
Work experience: only have a few weeks of shadowing at a hospital and GP. Also done a year placement abroad at a lab and volunteering at a children’s charity.
I haven’t sat any admission tests yet.

As I’m in London I was hoping to apply to Barts and KCL graduate courses or even 5 year undergrad for convenience but the number of applicants vs places is crazy!! :eek: It just feels like luck getting in. I’m also considering Anglia Ruskin as a “safe option”.

Does anyone have any strategies or tips on where to apply? I think I have good academics but my work experience isn’t as strong and I think I may struggle at interview stage (I’m not good at interviews). Even if I apply to undergraduate courses, I think some have a cap on how many graduates they accept - but it’s difficult to find this information.
(edited 9 months ago)
Reply 10
Original post by Cadgetfcfgr
WHERE SHOULD I APPLY WITH THESE STATS (hopefully this is the right place for this :colondollar:)

I’m a graduate applicant BTW.

Degree: Biological Sciences at Imperial predicted First.
A Levels: A*A*A* in Bio Chem English.
Work experience: only have a few weeks of shadowing at a hospital and GP. Also done a year placement abroad at a lab and volunteering at a children’s charity.
I haven’t sat any admission tests yet.

As I’m in London I was hoping to apply to Barts and KCL graduate courses or even 5 year undergrad for convenience but the number of applicants vs places is crazy!! :eek: It just feels like luck getting in. I’m also considering Anglia Ruskin as a “safe option”.

Does anyone have any strategies or tips on where to apply? I think I have good academics but my work experience isn’t as strong and I think I may struggle at interview stage (I’m not good at interviews). Even if I apply to undergraduate courses, I think some have a cap on how many graduates they accept - but it’s difficult to find this information.

hey, it's hard to judge at this point as the main factor is your UCAT/BMAT result, although you sit the bmat after you apply.
Original post by Cadgetfcfgr
WHERE SHOULD I APPLY WITH THESE STATS (hopefully this is the right place for this :colondollar:)

I’m a graduate applicant BTW.

Degree: Biological Sciences at Imperial predicted First.
A Levels: A*A*A* in Bio Chem English.
Work experience: only have a few weeks of shadowing at a hospital and GP. Also done a year placement abroad at a lab and volunteering at a children’s charity.
I haven’t sat any admission tests yet.

As I’m in London I was hoping to apply to Barts and KCL graduate courses or even 5 year undergrad for convenience but the number of applicants vs places is crazy!! :eek: It just feels like luck getting in. I’m also considering Anglia Ruskin as a “safe option”.

Does anyone have any strategies or tips on where to apply? I think I have good academics but my work experience isn’t as strong and I think I may struggle at interview stage (I’m not good at interviews). Even if I apply to undergraduate courses, I think some have a cap on how many graduates they accept - but it’s difficult to find this information.

Graduate route is definitely more competitive than undergraduate in terms of interviews and number of spaces available. It is difficult to gauge as you haven't sat your UCAT yet - concentrate on getting as high a score as possible, the higher the better. I know as a bare minimum Warwick seems to be the lowest (around 2700-2800 comes to mind) but they also require work experience so worth checking that out. But emphasis is on a high UCAT as without that you'll be stuck for choices.
I’ve spent many hours reading previous threads and learned so much, so thank you to the contributors.

Asking for advice for my my daughter. She achieved an A for Eng Lit and A stars for Math, physics, biol, chem, geography, Spanish, French and Eng Language GCSE. She’s doing biol, chem, math and Spanish at A level and predicted A star for each so far. She’s also doing an EQP but I gather from my research that is neither here nor there. Due to start university Sept ‘24

The issue we have (I think?) is that she is a late starter to the medicine path (she’s only recently decided she wants to pursue med ) and as a result she has only just begun some regular volunteer work (with a homeless charity). Though to be honest anything before now would have been incredibly difficult as we are at a British school in Spain and she is only this year up to conversing in Spanish having learned the language from zero for just shy of 3 years as of now. Of course she’ll complete all the online WE she can, and she’s been an avid reader of scientific journals and articles for a while now and has done several MOOCs

Assuming she achieves her expected 4 x A stars at A level, and achieves a solid UCAT ( I realise this is an even bigger ‘unknown’) how much of an issue is her lack of face to face volunteer work to potential universities? ( we’re looking at Southampton, Plymouth, Leicester and Exeter or St Andrews). She will be a home fee paying student if that is relevant. Her plan B is to apply for Biomed at Plymouth as her 5th option and transfer to medicine after 1st year if possible, which we both understand is a huge long shot.

Thank you.
Reply 13
Original post by Somethingso
I’ve spent many hours reading previous threads and learned so much, so thank you to the contributors.

Asking for advice for my my daughter. She achieved an A for Eng Lit and A stars for Math, physics, biol, chem, geography, Spanish, French and Eng Language GCSE. She’s doing biol, chem, math and Spanish at A level and predicted A star for each so far. She’s also doing an EQP but I gather from my research that is neither here nor there. Due to start university Sept ‘24

The issue we have (I think?) is that she is a late starter to the medicine path (she’s only recently decided she wants to pursue med ) and as a result she has only just begun some regular volunteer work (with a homeless charity). Though to be honest anything before now would have been incredibly difficult as we are at a British school in Spain and she is only this year up to conversing in Spanish having learned the language from zero for just shy of 3 years as of now. Of course she’ll complete all the online WE she can, and she’s been an avid reader of scientific journals and articles for a while now and has done several MOOCs

Assuming she achieves her expected 4 x A stars at A level, and achieves a solid UCAT ( I realise this is an even bigger ‘unknown’) how much of an issue is her lack of face to face volunteer work to potential universities? ( we’re looking at Southampton, Plymouth, Leicester and Exeter or St Andrews). She will be a home fee paying student if that is relevant. Her plan B is to apply for Biomed at Plymouth as her 5th option and transfer to medicine after 1st year if possible, which we both understand is a huge long shot.

Thank you.


Hi, I am sure you will get lots of experts providing you with a lot of accurate advice. So I wont go there, but as a parent with offspring doing this i would say:

> well done to your daughter on learning Spanish so quickly. That ability to assimate and learn will serve her in good stead whatever she studies in uni !

> although its good to have an idea of where you might fancy going to do medicine - its better to be strategic once you know the UCAT/BMAT scores. Posting back on this thread then will help mote targeted advice. It may not be where you plan now. This can be difficult.

> birmingham university website had some useful pointers on work experience in my view.

https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/medical-school/applying-to-medicine/preparing-to-apply.aspx

Ignore what they specifically they are looking for and scroll down to the reflection section. There is some useful links etc there. Its how you reflect on wex that is important.

> Several unis policies say stuff about overseas work ex not accepted. If you are targeting one of those I would make sure it is clear that the wex has been carried out there because you live there.

> read the admissions policies of the courses interested in very carefully. Not just the website. Crawl over the websites and click every link. Read the selection policies.

> Many wont take account of the PS at selection for interview stage but may refer to it at interview. This means that there is more time to gain some good reflective experiences. Those that do look at Personal Statements at selection stage often are looking at specific stuff so think about structure of PS carefully if applying to them.

> there are a lot of good online open days, but have found often not as well advertised as the in person days.

> several unis (incl Southampton for example) insist on in person interviews and you may not have a huge amount of time to plan. So be ready in advance.

> EPQs can give rise to alternative offers.

> transfers from other courses after first year are highly competetive as is graduate entry medicine. Many people find the undergraduate process is a two year (or more) event.

Good luck !
(edited 9 months ago)
Reply 14
Original post by GGIN
Hi, I am sure you will get lots of experts providing you with a lot of accurate advice. So I wont go there, but as a parent with offspring doing this i would say:

> well done to your daughter on learning Spanish so quickly. That ability to assimate and learn will serve her in good stead whatever she studies in uni !

> although its good to have an idea of where you might fancy going to do medicine - its better to be strategic once you know the UCAT/BMAT scores. Posting back on this thread then will help mote targeted advice. It may not be where you plan now. This can be difficult.

> birmingham university website had some useful pointers on work experience in my view.

https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/medical-school/applying-to-medicine/preparing-to-apply.aspx

Ignore what they specifically they are looking for and scroll down to the reflection section. There is some useful links etc there. Its how you reflect on wex that is important.

> Several unis policies say stuff about overseas work ex not accepted. If you are targeting one of those I would make sure it is clear that the wex has been carried out there because you live there.

> read the admissions policies of the courses interested in very carefully. Not just the website. Crawl over the websites and click every link. Read the selection policies.

> Many wont take account of the PS at selection for interview stage but may refer to it at interview. This means that there is more time to gain some good reflective experiences. Those that do look at Personal Statements at selection stage often are looking at specific stuff so think about structure of PS carefully if applying to them.

> there are a lot of good online open days, but have found often not as well advertised as the in person days.

> several unis (incl Southampton for example) insist on in person interviews and you may not have a huge amount of time to plan. So be ready in advance.

> EPQs can give rise to alternative offers.

> transfers from other courses after first year are highly competetive as is graduate entry medicine. Many people find the undergraduate process is a two year (or more) event.

Good luck !

A perfect summary :smile:
Thanks so much, the Birmingham link is super useful. I’ll post again after she has received her UCAT results. Have a great weekend and thanks again. 😊
Reply 16
Original post by Somethingso
Thanks so much, the Birmingham link is super useful. I’ll post again after she has received her UCAT results. Have a great weekend and thanks again. 😊


Also, have a nosy at GANFYDs post in this thread.

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7359086
(edited 9 months ago)
Reply 17
Original post by GANFYD
Read this before posting:

Medicine 2021 Entry requirements

GCSEs for Medicine 2021 Entry requirements

Shamelessly ripped from @Hygeia post from the first part of this thread.

As it's getting closer to the medicine deadline, more and more of these threads are appearing in the forum and people are getting a little frustrated with the them so this thread is for all of those queries (the x uni or y uni questions, the where should I apply with these grades etc).

I'll start with some useful links:

What you might like to consider when deciding where to apply

The pros and cons of various universities

For all your where CAN I apply questions, have a look at the main medicine wiki page which contains links to the GCSE/A Level/UKCAT requirements of each university, allowing you to exclude those medical schools where you don't meet the requirements.


A couple of FAQs
Which medical schools are easier to get into?
The simple answer here is none of them, all medical schools are very competitive and those with a lower applicant to offer ratio one year are likely to have a much higher one the next year.

However, it is possible to apply smart - for example, getting into Birmingham if you don't have the requisite number of A*s would be very difficult where the same number of A*s at another medical school are fine. Similarly, if your UKCAT is not brilliant, applying for medical schools which love the UKCAT might not be very sensible. You can make it easier for yourself by doing some research into the medical schools (using the links I posted earlier).

Should I apply to X university or Y university?
This is a very personal decision you have to make on your own as it is where you may be studying for 5 or 6 years. Do you have a gut instinct over which to go to? What is it you like about each? What don't you like? Have you visited both, if so, which did you feel more 'at home' at? Some people find it helpful to draw up a list of pros and cons for each if they're really struggling to decide. You can also have a look at what current students say about their medical schools in the link I posted earlier.

Any further threads on this topic will be merged with this one and hopefully someone (@meddad or @GANFYD) will respond to each giving advice, however, try to do some research on your own first! I'll add FAQs as and when they come up.

If you are wanting advice about med school applications, we need (as a minimum)

GCSEs and full grade/subject breakdown

A levels, subjects and predictions

UCAT and breakdown of subsections

SJT band

Brief mention of work experience

Any contextual or WP flags

The research you have done and any preferences


It also needs to be remembered that everyone advising here is doing so voluntarily and on top of other commitments, so manners and patience will receive a more favourable response!

Link to the previous "Which Medical School Should I Apply To?" [Park 4 of 5]: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7102578


Hello. I remember seeing a spreadsheet that shows by Uni, the UCAT Scores success rate. Could you please point me to it? I can no longer find it. Thank you very much.
Original post by Cadgetfcfgr
WHERE SHOULD I APPLY WITH THESE STATS (hopefully this is the right place for this :colondollar:)

I’m a graduate applicant BTW.

Degree: Biological Sciences at Imperial predicted First.
A Levels: A*A*A* in Bio Chem English.
Work experience: only have a few weeks of shadowing at a hospital and GP. Also done a year placement abroad at a lab and volunteering at a children’s charity.
I haven’t sat any admission tests yet.

As I’m in London I was hoping to apply to Barts and KCL graduate courses or even 5 year undergrad for convenience but the number of applicants vs places is crazy!! :eek: It just feels like luck getting in. I’m also considering Anglia Ruskin as a “safe option”.

Does anyone have any strategies or tips on where to apply? I think I have good academics but my work experience isn’t as strong and I think I may struggle at interview stage (I’m not good at interviews). Even if I apply to undergraduate courses, I think some have a cap on how many graduates they accept - but it’s difficult to find this information.

You really need to sit UCAT first before anyone can advise re unis to apply to. For example, I'm a grad who just finished firsr year at Glasgow, and here the biggest obstacle to interview is high UCAT. They don't even look at things like work experience etc prior to interview. Just check if you meet minimum academic criteria (e.g. 2.1 or above) and move on to ranking of UCAT scores. Top X amount if people get interviewed.

Will you be sitting GAMSAT too?
Reply 19
Original post by Somethingso
Thanks so much, the Birmingham link is super useful. I’ll post again after she has received her UCAT results. Have a great weekend and thanks again. 😊


Original post by GGIN
Hi, I am sure you will get lots of experts providing you with a lot of accurate advice. So I wont go there, but as a parent with offspring doing this i would say:

> well done to your daughter on learning Spanish so quickly. That ability to assimate and learn will serve her in good stead whatever she studies in uni !

> although its good to have an idea of where you might fancy going to do medicine - its better to be strategic once you know the UCAT/BMAT scores. Posting back on this thread then will help mote targeted advice. It may not be where you plan now. This can be difficult.

> birmingham university website had some useful pointers on work experience in my view.

https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/medical-school/applying-to-medicine/preparing-to-apply.aspx

Ignore what they specifically they are looking for and scroll down to the reflection section. There is some useful links etc there. Its how you reflect on wex that is important.

> Several unis policies say stuff about overseas work ex not accepted. If you are targeting one of those I would make sure it is clear that the wex has been carried out there because you live there.

> read the admissions policies of the courses interested in very carefully. Not just the website. Crawl over the websites and click every link. Read the selection policies.

> Many wont take account of the PS at selection for interview stage but may refer to it at interview. This means that there is more time to gain some good reflective experiences. Those that do look at Personal Statements at selection stage often are looking at specific stuff so think about structure of PS carefully if applying to them.

> there are a lot of good online open days, but have found often not as well advertised as the in person days.

> several unis (incl Southampton for example) insist on in person interviews and you may not have a huge amount of time to plan. So be ready in advance.

> EPQs can give rise to alternative offers.

> transfers from other courses after first year are highly competetive as is graduate entry medicine. Many people find the undergraduate process is a two year (or more) event.

Good luck !


Hi, i found that the really useful reflective diary on the Bhm website goes to a deadlink. The diary is also available to download from the page below if wished.

https://www.rcgp.org.uk/your-career/resources
(edited 9 months ago)

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