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gap year for medicine

ive applied to university to study a biomedical science course- which I don't mind but i had the idea of doing graduate entry medicine after it. Im stuck between doing the biomedicine degree then applying to GEM or taking a gap year to do the required a levels (I haven't done biology or chemistry and was going to do it via a third party) I wanted to see if anyone has done either approach and succeeded.
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The "Which Medical School Should I Apply To?" Uberthread
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Medicine A-Level subjects queries
Work Experience and Voluntary Work

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Official Undergraduate Medicine 2023 Entry
Graduate Entry Medicine 2023 Entry
Medicine 2023 entry for resit / retake / gap year applicants
A100 Medicine for International Students 2023 Entry
Medicine Interview discussion 2023 Entry
2023 entry A100 / A101 Medicine fastest and slowest offer senders
Index of Individual Medical School Applicants' threads 2023 Entry

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Graduate Entry Medicine 2024 Entry
GAMSAT 2024 / 2025 entry discussions megathread
UCAT 2024 Entry Discussions Megathread

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Graduate Entry Medicine 2025 Entry
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GCSE Requirements for Medicine
Everything you need to know about the BMAT
Work Experience as a Graduate or Mature student
Medicine Personal Statement Advice
Medicine Personal Statement Advice (Graduate Entry)
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MMI Medicine Interview Tips
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Original post by ange1l
ive applied to university to study a biomedical science course- which I don't mind but i had the idea of doing graduate entry medicine after it. Im stuck between doing the biomedicine degree then applying to GEM or taking a gap year to do the required a levels (I haven't done biology or chemistry and was going to do it via a third party) I wanted to see if anyone has done either approach and succeeded.

Plenty of people do GEM after doing a previous degree, and biomed is one of the most common degrees of people who choose to do GEM. However it's not a great idea to go into a degree wanting to do GEM afterwards because that's at the very minimum an extra four years of collecting student debt and, an even better reason to avoid GEM altogether if you can help it, that GEM is mega competitive. Standard undegrad entry to Medicine has something along the lines of 3.5 applicants per place, which isn't a pretty number. GEM can be as many as 36 applicants per place, which is a downright ugly number to compete with.

It can be done. Plenty of people do. But the wisest route, the one which gives you the better chance of succeeding and less headaches, is just to take a gap year to sit your Biology and Chemistry A levels and apply to standard undergraduate degrees.
Reply 3
Original post by scotland yard
Plenty of people do GEM after doing a previous degree, and biomed is one of the most common degrees of people who choose to do GEM. However it's not a great idea to go into a degree wanting to do GEM afterwards because that's at the very minimum an extra four years of collecting student debt and, an even better reason to avoid GEM altogether if you can help it, that GEM is mega competitive. Standard undegrad entry to Medicine has something along the lines of 3.5 applicants per place, which isn't a pretty number. GEM can be as many as 36 applicants per place, which is a downright ugly number to compete with.
It can be done. Plenty of people do. But the wisest route, the one which gives you the better chance of succeeding and less headaches, is just to take a gap year to sit your Biology and Chemistry A levels and apply to standard undergraduate degrees.

thank you so much for your response, the thing is will medical school accept a levels which have been taken from a third party and not from school, I didn't get the grades to do it here at sixth form and people have said they only accept a levels which have been done in a specific time frame. And if I was to apply for undergrad as a graduate would that be an option?
(edited 1 month ago)
Original post by ange1l
ive applied to university to study a biomedical science course- which I don't mind but i had the idea of doing graduate entry medicine after it. Im stuck between doing the biomedicine degree then applying to GEM or taking a gap year to do the required a levels (I haven't done biology or chemistry and was going to do it via a third party) I wanted to see if anyone has done either approach and succeeded.

Hi there,

As a current medical student, I know people who have done both! Alot of people do a degree first in a science (biomedicine, biochemistry, pharmacy, psychology etc) and then come into medicine. I think that there is no right way to get into medicine, everyone has a slightly different path in. I think if you are sure that medicine is what you want to do then either route is great. Some universities you can do 1 year of biomed and then get the option to transfer depending on your ranking. So it might be worth looking into this as well. But people have definitely been successful in both routes, so whatever you think is best for you will be fab!

I hope this helps,

Ellen
Y4 Medical Student
Uni of Sunderland
Digital ambassador
Original post by ange1l
thank you so much for your response, the thing is will medical school accept a levels which have been taken from a third party and not from school, I didn't get the grades to do it here at sixth form and people have said they only accept a levels which have been done in a specific time frame. And if I was to apply for undergrad as a graduate would that be an option?

Medical schools should accept 3rd party A levels, but you should email each medical school about this and ask - medical schools can be picky about this sort of stuff and you're right, a lot of med schools will want you to do your A levels in two years, which wouldn't be your case. But there will be schools that won't care and you should find out what those schools are and apply to them!

You can also apply to a standard undergrad degree as a graduate. But different med schools will have different requirements for graduates in their undergrad courses so that's something you should research later on if you end up doing this. But again, not the wisest route AND the support you get by student finance doing this route is incredibly limited - you'll be paying every year's tuition fee out of your own pocket, which isn't great.

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