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Journey to medicine (D's to A's)

Ok this is my first time making a thread, I'm gonna use this to motivate myself through this whole process of trying to get to medical school.
I'm in year 12, so i'm applying next acdemic year (2024) but obviously theres a lot i need to do now.

Ok so for background knowledge my GCSE's arent amazing I got an 8, two 7's and the rest were 6's with two 5's. so i'm not the "average" medicine applicant with all 9's. I'm doing Biology, Chemistry and Sociology A levels. and in bio and chem i'm pretty much failing with d's and e's (A levels is really kicking my butt :frown:).
Anywayss i decided i wanted to do medicine at the beginning of year 12, so for me to really have any chance of getting in, I need AAA in my mock, in june, as they're using it for our predicted grades which they send to unis. I've started revising and i'm seeing improvement little by little so i just need to keep going.

As for work experience and all the other things that come with this,
I've only done virtual work experience and no volunterring as of yet. I'm gonna try and calls some GP's and see if i can get some work experience but apparently it can be really hard.
Ill just sort of update as i go along, but if anyone is in the same boat as me, follow this thread so we're in this boat together. :smile:
Reply 1
Hi, I just stumbled across this thread and I just wanted to say that first of all good luck! You got this and I'm gonna be rooting for you!

Secondly, I don't know if this will help but I was also in a similar situation. Throughout my GCSE years I played academy football so I was very busy constantly and I struggled with balancing my GCSEs with my football career. In the beginning I did really poorly because I never learnt how to revise and would just rely on turning up to lessons and hoping I remembered everything. In year 9 I was lucky to have a teacher who did a 2 hour workshop on how to revise properly and so I did my best. I did really well in the end coming out with a handful of nines, majority of 8s and a 7. This was after being predicted 6s and 7s based on my mocks so I ended up proving whoever does your predicted grades wrong.

By the time I reached A-levels, I was sadly released by the club and instead I just played a lot of semi-pro/non-league. This allowed me more time to focus on my studies and one day I just woke up and decided I really wanted to do medicine, I just felt so inspired by a documentary I watched called the Surgery Ship. At A-Level I struggled in the first year with Biology, I would scrape by with Cs a couple of Ds and one time I got really lucky and got a B. In the end of year exams which would determine your UCAS grades I was absolutely terrified. But at this time, I was revising properly, I knew that if I wanted to do medicine I had to prioritise my studies not football so football took a backseat for me. I managed to do well and scrape an A in biology by I think by around 3 marks. I did well in chemistry and psychology so I was applying to medical school with A*AA.

In second year I knew that this needed to change, people applying to medicine are some of the most intelligent people in the country and I knew that I had to do even better if I wanted to stand out and earn a spot. I spent the summer between first year and second year revising for my UCAT and BMAT and ended up doing really well in my UCAT (2950) but really mediocrely in my BMAT (4.4, 4.6 and 4.5A). Second year was hard for me, people were turning 18 and going out and I was always either revising or playing football. I did let myself go out a couple of times and it was fun but ultimately getting minimum AAA was my goal for the year. Around 3 months before my exams I decided that it was time to grind. I stopped playing competitive football and instead after lessons each day I would go into the library and grind for about 2-3 hours. By the time we were on study leave I was averaging 3-4 hours a day for revision, but I always took weekends off to look after myself. I was lucky that I had friends who decided to join me and this made it so much easier to have others with you. It was hard not to go out and socialise as much but it was a sacrifice I was willing to make to have a banging summer and hopefully study medicine in September. My hard work ended up paying off and I managed to achieve A*A*A* and now I'm studying medicine.

The reason I'm sharing my story is that I was in a difficult place at the end of year 11, not knowing what I wanted to do. At the start of college I was struggling with the jump and struggled academically. With just a couple months of hard work I was able to turn that around. I'm not the most naturally smart person so I relied on hard work rather than natural intelligence and it paid off. I've been in your shoes and I want to let you know that you can do it. Don't doubt yourself, you got this. I'll be following this thread closely, I wish you the best of luck.

P.s sorry this is so long, but this thread reminded me a little of my situation when I was at your stage, so thought it might be useful.
(edited 10 months ago)
Current med school student wishing nothing but the best for you. I can empathise with you. Work smart & hard then the results will follow. Don’t give up on your dreams.
(edited 10 months ago)
Reply 3
Original post by Lordyy
Hi, I just stumbled across this thread and I just wanted to say that first of all good luck! You got this and I'm gonna be rooting for you!

Secondly, I don't know if this will help but I was also in a similar situation. Throughout my GCSE years I played academy football so I was very busy constantly and I struggled with balancing my GCSEs with my football career. In the beginning I did really poorly because I never learnt how to revise and would just rely on turning up to lessons and hoping I remembered everything. In year 9 I was lucky to have a teacher who did a 2 hour workshop on how to revise properly and so I did my best. I did really well in the end coming out with a handful of nines, majority of 8s and a 7. This was after being predicted 6s and 7s based on my mocks so I ended up proving whoever does your predicted grades wrong.

By the time I reached A-levels, I was sadly released by the club and instead I just played a lot of semi-pro/non-league. This allowed me more time to focus on my studies and one day I just woke up and decided I really wanted to do medicine, I just felt so inspired by a documentary I watched called the Surgery Ship. At A-Level I struggled in the first year with Biology, I would scrape by with Cs a couple of Ds and one time I got really lucky and got a B. In the end of year exams which would determine your UCAS grades I was absolutely terrified. But at this time, I was revising properly, I knew that if I wanted to do medicine I had to prioritise my studies not football so football took a backseat for me. I managed to do well and scrape an A in biology by I think by around 3 marks. I did well in chemistry and psychology so I was applying to medical school with A*AA.

In second year I knew that this needed to change, people applying to medicine are some of the most intelligent people in the country and I knew that I had to do even better if I wanted to stand out and earn a spot. I spent the summer between first year and second year revising for my UCAT and BMAT and ended up doing really well in my UCAT (2950) but really mediocrely in my BMAT (4.4, 4.6 and 4.5A). Second year was hard for me, people were turning 18 and going out and I was always either revising or playing football. I did let myself go out a couple of times and it was fun but ultimately getting minimum AAA was my goal for the year. Around 3 months before my exams I decided that it was time to grind. I stopped playing competitive football and instead after lessons each day I would go into the library and grind for about 2-3 hours. By the time we were on study leave I was averaging 3-4 hours a day for revision, but I always took weekends off to look after myself. I was lucky that I had friends who decided to join me and this made it so much easier to have others with you. It was hard not to go out and socialise as much but it was a sacrifice I was willing to make to have a banging summer and hopefully study medicine in September. My hard work ended up paying off and I managed to achieve A*A*A* and now I'm studying medicine.

The reason I'm sharing my story is that I was in a difficult place at the end of year 11, not knowing what I wanted to do. At the start of college I was struggling with the jump and struggled academically. With just a couple months of hard work I was able to turn that around. I'm not the most naturally smart person so I relied on hard work rather than natural intelligence and it paid off. I've been in your shoes and I want to let you know that you can do it. Don't doubt yourself, you got this. I'll be following this thread closely, I wish you the best of luck.

P.s sorry this is so long, but this thread reminded me a little of my situation when I was at your stage, so thought it might be useful.


thank you for sharing this! I've never been blessed with natural intellegience as well so it's so hard to keep motivated when it seems like everyone around you has it but you.I'm just gonna focus on myself and work hard to acheive my goals, I know i can do it :smile:
Reply 4
Original post by CaptainDuckie
Current med school student wishing nothing but the best for you. I can empathise with you. Work smart & hard then the results will follow. Don’t give up on your dreams.

Thank you !
Reply 5
Ok, so i haven't really been revisng as much recently, but i did just get my biology test results back and i got a B which is a big improvement from the E i got last time :smile:
Today we have no school so i'm gonna try and do some chemistry revision and then see if i can do some exam questions. Mocks are coming up soon and i'm so scared.
I have done some online work experience and I've applied for a work experience placement in my local hospital so hopefully i'll be accepted. :s-smilie:
I also tried applying for some volunterring at a care home but the hours are sort of inconvenient, so i might just volunteer in a charity shop. does anyone know if thats good enough for medical school? I've tried looking for more hospice based volunterring but there's none in my area.
I've also been thinking of going to open days with some of my friends and my parents as well. looking for schools who will accept me is soo hard though, If it isn't the fact that i need like 5 GCSE's above a grade 7, Its always the fact that i need a grade 6 MINIMUM in GCSE biology. sometimes i wish i could just retake a couple subjects, it would make life a lot easier.
Reply 6
Original post by M.ayEL
Ok this is my first time making a thread, I'm gonna use this to motivate myself through this whole process of trying to get to medical school.
I'm in year 12, so i'm applying next acdemic year (2024) but obviously theres a lot i need to do now.

Ok so for background knowledge my GCSE's arent amazing I got an 8, two 7's and the rest were 6's with two 5's. so i'm not the "average" medicine applicant with all 9's. I'm doing Biology, Chemistry and Sociology A levels. and in bio and chem i'm pretty much failing with d's and e's (A levels is really kicking my butt :frown:).
Anywayss i decided i wanted to do medicine at the beginning of year 12, so for me to really have any chance of getting in, I need AAA in my mock, in june, as they're using it for our predicted grades which they send to unis. I've started revising and i'm seeing improvement little by little so i just need to keep going.

As for work experience and all the other things that come with this,
I've only done virtual work experience and no volunterring as of yet. I'm gonna try and calls some GP's and see if i can get some work experience but apparently it can be really hard.
Ill just sort of update as i go along, but if anyone is in the same boat as me, follow this thread so we're in this boat together. :smile:


I just came across this but -> wish you best of luck and DONT GIVE UP! I can relate to this -> I didn't get the best GCSE's (actually very similar to yours!) and then I also went on to the same A-levels (best decision of my life) I was able to actually devote time to Biology and Chemistry. Got an average UCAT score. Worked hard throughout year 12 and year 13 and it paid off. I was predicited ABB -> I ended up getting A*A*A. Througout the whole process, I remained commited to one thing and that was getting the BEST possible A-level grades that I could get (regardless of what interveiws and offers I had). I'm in med school now and really enjoy it!!!!!!!!!

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