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Medicine - a level physics or not?

(32 Posts)
IDontDoIroning Fri 21-Jun-13 16:19:11

Ds went to 6th form interview today. Wants to do maths biology and chemistry. Thinking of Medicine- Tutor said he might want to consider not doing physics but something like history instead.
Obviously waiting for the Gcse results but wondered if there's anyone out there who can advise.

peteneras Tue 25-Jun-13 16:22:28

All the Sciences and Maths (Further Maths) are just a bit too tedious and do not reflect the candidate’s knowledge and understanding of the wider world, IME.

Another essay based subject he may consider is Divinity/RE. Personally, I think this is much more relevant than History, Geography, Language, etc. in a field like Medicine. Don’t be mistaken, Divinity isn’t all about God and the great Divine in modern day exams. It has plenty of (medical) ethics questions, for example:

Q: Has a 70-year-old woman the basic human right to bear a child of her own? [Through IVF, of course!] smile

Q: Who in your opinion, has a better legitimate claim to a NHS liver transplant between a confirmed alcoholic (family man with 3 young kids) and a young bachelor?

Take a look also at OCR’s Religious Studies A-Level paper from January 2011:

1.Critically assess the claim that conscience is the voice of reason.

2.‘The environment suffers because business has no ethics.’ Discuss.

3.‘Our ethical decisions are merely the result of social conditioning.’ Discuss.

4.‘Natural Law is the most reliable approach when making decisions about premarital sex.’ Discuss.

Preparation for RE A-Level bodes well in Medicine interviews. DS has a particular knack for this subject which he took to A-Level (A*) together with the Sciences and Maths.

peteneras Tue 25-Jun-13 16:33:42

The school that DS attends is a world renowned medical school in central London, alreadytaken, with world class teaching hospitals where both students and professionals come to learn and work. It is not appropriate for me on MN to identify this school which has just failed 24.8% of its second year cohort this month for it may deter potential candidates from applying.

Yes, Helspopje, the paper in question is a clinical paper/exam, OSCE.

I don’t think the school is practising ‘deleveraging’ either, LittleFrieda as I see a handful of students scoring more than 80% in all papers but failed on one single paper by a mere one or two marks and still registered officially as an overall FAIL.

I know of at least one case previously of a student failing the final year and left the school with nothing. This is really brutal, I thought, but at the same time I feel it is necessary in order to produce a set of world-class doctors at the end.

Yes, it’s a matter of life and death, I’m afraid.

Pusspuss1 Tue 25-Jun-13 16:44:03

Yes, he should do physics. I know a doctor in his 30s who's currently struggling with some of the more advanced professional exams, as a direct result of not having physics A level. It introduces important, fundamental concepts which may well be helpful to him later in his career.

alreadytaken Tue 25-Jun-13 17:24:16

I'd already worked out it was a London school, peteneras, and might narrow it down further by asking a few current students. Looking at student satisfaction rates already suggests some medical schools where potential applicants need to ask searching questions at open days.

78bunion Tue 25-Jun-13 17:37:38

Also presumably the better places are those prepared to fail students who are not up to the mark. In a sense if you can get into somewhere strong enough to that that is a good choice.

LittleFrieda Wed 26-Jun-13 12:03:28

I think it's pretty normal for med students to be failed even though the failed student failed only one exam. But 24% failure is alarming.

Birmingham do deleverage. They recruit more med students than they ever intend to keep for the entire medicine course.

lljkk Wed 26-Jun-13 20:38:58

I agree that the 4th subject should be something he loves.

However...I have a leetle insider knowledge and very confidently think that a humanities subject would be brilliant. Something like Ethics, RE, History or Philosophy, English. It's not just "breadth", they are looking for strong evidence of people and communications skills.

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