Graduate Entry Personal Statement Guidance
*It should be noted that personal statements are given less weighting in the application process in an attempt to standardize the medicine admission process, however a good personal statement can still go a long way.
Use your degree to your advantage
- Skills and attributes
- Ensure you take every opportunity to participate in events in university that you can include in your personal statement. This includes Student Rep positions, Feedback meetings, Mental Health talks and so on. As long you can reflect upon what you did, then it becomes relevant. For graduates who have left university, use your degree to reflect upon the skills and attributes learnt, such as team-working through group projects or organizational skills learnt through doing multiple modules at a time.
Example: ‘I proudly hold the position of Student Feedback Leader within my course, an opportunity which has allowed me to develop me leadership skills through frequent course meetings and feedback events.’
- Academic excellence
- Additionally, pick a few modules that you did particularly well in and use them to demonstrate academic excellence. This is impressive when displayed at university level as it shows dedication and commitment to the medical admission tutors assessing your application.
Example: ‘During my degree, I undertook a Molecular Genetics of Cancer module and had the opportunity to demonstrate my knowledge and enthusiasm on the topic through a presentation.’
- Sports clubs and societies
- Medical admissions tutors are looking for what you could bring to their university alongside your studies. This includes any interests or talents that you can convey dedication for by talking about your participation in them during your undergraduate degree.
Example: ‘I was a proud member of the debating society during my undergraduate degree and enjoyed planning and organizing group meetings, something I am keen to bring forward into future studies.’
- Outside interests
- As graduate, you are advantaged in the sense that you’ve had more time and freedom to explore what your general interests are outside of academics. This includes your hobbies, such as going to the cinema or reading books. Medical admission tutors want to see that you are someone who can manage the workload of a medical degree through engaging in other activities. You’ve got to convey your personality across to them and this can easily be done in your personal statement.
- Work Experience and Volunteering
- Note that graduates applying to medicine face more competition and are generally expected to have higher levels of maturity and experience.
- Your work experience and volunteering will arguably form the most important part of your personal statement as you can use them to reflect upon your experiences and ‘show off’ on how much you know about the roles and requirements of a doctor.
- It is important to note that reflection is better than stating what you did or saw. As a graduate, it is also likely that you’ve committed to a role for a longer period of time – so do state how long you’ve worked in a position as it shows commitment and dedication.
- Note that naming specific hospitals or consultants is not needed. Your role requirements and duties are the important part.
- Variety is key. If you can talk about at least 2 different roles in healthcare settings then it shows a wider depth, and breadth, of knowledge and experience.