How To Become A Doctor In The UK – 7 Tips For International Medical School Applicants


4. Get Work Experience

In order to be a competitive candidate for studying Medicine in the UK, you’ll need to demonstrate that you’ve gained some relevant extra-curricular experience. Many students believe that shadowing a doctor is the only kind of work experience they need, but in reality UK medical schools are interested in candidates who have been involved in activities which have helped them to develop the kind of skills they’ll need in order to be successful medical students and doctors. Successful applicants have often undertaken a range of relevant activities, which can include shadowing a clinician, but also voluntary work, for example, working with the elderly, children, people with special needs or refugees; part-time customer service jobs; and teams, clubs or societies which have given them the opportunity to improve their interpersonal skills. You’ll only have your UCAS application and the limited duration of your interview to communicate your experience to medical schools, so make sure you take notes, pick out some key events and reflect on your experiences beforehand so that you can focus on these in your application.


5. Apply to up to 4 Medical Schools

Medical schools will require high academic grades at GCSE and A level/IB or equivalent, but that’s not all. There can be up to 20 applicants for every place on the most competitive courses, so in addition to the work experience requirement, you’ll need to set yourself apart from other highly-qualified candidates through an excellent personal statement; most institutions will also insist on an entry test and an interview. The medical interview can take a number of formats, the most common of which is the Multi Mini Interview (MMI). This involves candidates moving around a number of stations, each of which gives them the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and experience through role plays, scenarios, problems to solve or questions about their own experiences (among others).

While all medical schools are competitive, you can maximise your chances of being made an offer by researching thoroughly the entry requirements of the different schools you are considering, as well as the selection process, information on which should be available on the course web pages. You can apply to four different medical programmes through UCAS, plus a fifth non-medical choice. Most applicants choose a related programme such as Biomedical Science for their fifth option, as this gives them the option to apply to progress into Medicine at a later stage if they are not successful on their first attempt. For example, the Biomedical Science BSc programme at St George’s, University of London offers a fast-track transfer into year two of the university’s four-year graduate entry Medicine degree for high-achieving students. If you have questions about the course or application statistics which you can’t find the answers to online, get in touch with the International Office of the universities you’re planning to apply to.

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