• Getting into Medicine 15 February 2018 | View comments

  • This week, Lisa Stone, freelance Career Consultant  www.lisastonecareersandcoaching.co.uk is guest blogging about getting into a career in medicine.

    Medicine is competitive, however I would like to bust a few myths about getting in.

    Myth # 1

    You need to have studied A-levels to get into medicine. Usually ‘yes’, but there are some ‘access to medicine’ courses that are one year in length that are designed for mature learners who may not have A-levels or equivalent (to widen their access to medicine). Not all medical school accept these, so it is essential to check where they are accepted.

    Myth # 2

    You need to pay over £9,000 per year for five years. There is some support. In England an NHS bursary pays for final year tuition fees and there is a means-tested bursary for maintenance costs. There is nothing before this though, so you’ll need to rely on loans. NB: For those on the graduate entry programme your course will usually be four years in length.

    Myth # 3

    For the graduate programmes, you will need to have a science degree. This is often the case, but it is not true for all medical schools. Each medical school sets its own criteria, so it’s worth checking this out. However, there will usually be admission tests, e.g. UKCAT – UK Clinical Aptitude Test that will test your knowledge of the sciences.

    Other aspects to consider, if you are thinking about going into medicine

    Work experience – this counts for a lot in the medical school personal statement and interview. You can think about work shadowing, volunteering or paid work. It does not need to be in the NHS. It could be in care homes, hospices, charities or private clinics.

    If you want advice on anything to do with getting into medicine, either Alistair or myself can help. We have both worked in the NHS advising doctors and providing information on the NHS website about getting into medicine.

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