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Sorry, another medicine question! Personal experience please.

(198 Posts)
Mindgone Sat 06-Sep-14 16:12:55

DS is stuck for a fourth choice, here are his stats:
GCSE. 8A* 3A
AS. AAAB in maths, chemistry, biology and psychology
UKCAT 725 SJBand 1

He doesn't fancy PBL, London, or the BMAT unis.

I was just wondering, bearing all this in mind, where others' DCs have been happy? Any personal experience and/or advice would be gratefully received. Thanks.

Twotallladies Sat 06-Sep-14 16:23:33

Look north. In a word, Scotland. Lots of fab medical schools there. Queens Belfast also excellent.

Decorhate Sun 07-Sep-14 17:19:04

Hi. My dd is also applying for medicine. She has similar exam results to your ds Mindgone, but lower UKCAT which will rule out lots. Because of this she will do the BMAT & apply to at least one BMAT uni (Leeds). Still not decided about what else to put down but considering Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh. Your ds should be ok for most UKCAT unis. Has he considered Nottingham?

Carriemac Sun 07-Sep-14 18:35:35

He'd get an interview for Newcastle with that UKCAT

redastra Sun 07-Sep-14 21:45:08

Dundee university are currently getting a good review for medicine as well!

Mindgone Sun 07-Sep-14 23:44:44

Thanks all. He thinks Scotland is a bit far too! Not fussy at all!!

Decorhate nice to know I'm not alone, it's going to be a tricky year! DS really hated the Ukcat, so really doesn't want to put himself through the BMAT. He was really impressed by Leeds when we went to the open day last year, but now his brother is going there, so that's put him off! As well as the BMAT.
DS quite likes the look of Bristol too, does anyone have any experience of it there?
He doesn't seem to have much of an opinion on Birmingham, except that he thinks they like 4As at AS. He went to the open day at Nottingham, and wouldn't rule it out, but didn't like it as much as the others he'd seen.
So far, he likes Sheffield and Leicester, and would love to go to Newcastle, but not sure if his ukcat score is high enough. Interesting Carriemac that you think it would be! I think last year's cut off was 740, but some think that scores are down this year.

Pipsqueak11 Sun 07-Sep-14 23:53:43

Dd1 at leeds and has been v happy there . Seems quite supportive place and early placement experience from term 1 if that is of interest - good luck with applications - such a roller coaster year

Twotallladies Mon 08-Sep-14 07:07:51

We've been through this too and I know how stressful it can be. I would really advise throwing the net wide and thinking about it this way...the list should comprise those universities he thinks he has a chance of getting into, rather than those he "likes".

Medicine is very tough to get into even with the best grades. IMO it's a mistake to discount unis on geographical location. All medical schools need to train you to a specific standard.

BTW, Aberdeen did not weigh the UKAT particularly heavily when My DS went there.

Good luck!

BeckAndCall Mon 08-Sep-14 07:55:54

On the Scotland thing, as an English applicant do you not have to be careful of the Quota issue? You'll know more about this that i do but for DDs medicine friends this year, i do recall that Edinburgh at least was a tough decision (on whether to apply or not) because of the very very low proportion of offers they make to English students. Its something you need to at least be sure of before your DC use up one of the precious spaces on the UCAS form!

BettyOff Mon 08-Sep-14 08:15:24

I'd have a good look at Birmingham. A lot of friends went there and I've seen a lot of new doctors from there recently and they produce good, well rounded doctors who all speak very highly of their training. The teaching hospitals there are excellent and it has an excellent research base so is highly regarded.

Carriemac Mon 08-Sep-14 09:11:24

Betty DS is thinking of applying to birmingham, after a poor UKCAT (660) and 9A* 4good As at AS . He has lots of work experience, volunteers in a Cheshire home and works in a fare school club and as a lifeguard. My concern for him is the high attrition rate in Birmingham , 8% in first year I believe.

peteneras Mon 08-Sep-14 09:18:45

Twotallladies just about spoken my mind. Look at universities to see what they like and determine whether your son fits in or not and not what your son likes. If he had to go to Land's End to suit the school, so be it. Remember, your son doesn't choose which medical school he goes to, it's the school that does the choosing. I would also leave Edinburgh alone if you're not Scottish though I'd settle for this one school and forget the rest if a place can be guaranteed there. It's a world class medical school!

BettyOff Mon 08-Sep-14 09:29:06

I don't know about the individual attrition rates but we lost 12 people I think in our first year. Most medical schools have a very heavily science based first year and if you're naturally clever and haven't had to work very hard to do well in school it comes as a bit of a shock. You do have to work very hard initially but I think it gets easier as you go through and I say that as someone who failed all my first year exams There's quite a lot of drop out generally from people who just don't settle, who change their minds about the course they want to do or who spend too much time having fun and can't drag themselves to lectures with a hangover! If he's prepared to work hard and sure medicine is worth the sacrifices he'll be fine anywhere.

Blowninonabreeze Mon 08-Sep-14 09:50:55

Probably a difficult question at this stage, but does he have any ideas about what sort of medicine he'd like to do ultimately? (Don't worry, most don't!)

Different courses are strong in different areas and a burning desire for a particular speciality might help to guide choice

Carriemac Mon 08-Sep-14 12:08:41

I could see him as a GP. He is not super clever, but a diligent worker, very sporty . We are a medical family so he is realistic re workload and pay.

Mindgone Mon 08-Sep-14 14:37:30

Does anyone know if Birmingham would look at him with a B in his 4th AS?

Carriemac do you think your DS will mention his medical family at any stage? We are not sure whether this would work for or against! It definitely shows that they have a much greater understanding of stresses and workloads than most at this stage. I could see DS being a GP too!
I do understand that the medical schools choose, rather than the applicants, but the applicants do choose which ones to put down in the first place!

Twotallladies Mon 08-Sep-14 17:23:01

OP, I would phone Birmingham and ask that question directly.

Decorhate Mon 08-Sep-14 17:35:54

Re Bristol, the one off-putting thing is they have a reputation for taking ages to make offers. Thanks for the comments re Edinburgh. We hadn't picked up that they have a quota for non-Scottish applicants.

Birmingham usually ask for A*AA so need to check predicted grades before putting that one down.

Does anyone know if all UK residents are deemed to be UK applicants even if they don't have a UK passport (but have right to residency)

Carriemac Mon 08-Sep-14 18:43:12

I will advise him not to mention his consultant dad. A nurse or AHP mum should be ok smile

hellsbells99 Mon 08-Sep-14 20:43:25

Birmingham is already out of the window for my DD2 as she 'only' got As in her English Gcses - got A*s in everything else though.

AllMimsyWereTheBorogoves Mon 08-Sep-14 21:27:24

'Indefinite leave to remain' used to be the key phrase, Decorhate. Simply having permission to live in the UK is not enough. You need specialist advice, which the admissions teams at the universities should be able to give you.

Carriemac Mon 08-Sep-14 22:20:56

Hells I'm curious, Ds got an A* in English lit and an A in English language, does that rule him out of birmingham? I can't get a clear answer on the website.

Mindgone Mon 08-Sep-14 22:36:39

Carriemac, I think you need an A* in at least one english, IIRC.
Am interested that you think it's ok to mention a nurse in the family, but not a doctor!?
Twotallladies, thanks, good idea!

hellsbells99 Mon 08-Sep-14 22:56:55

Hi Carriemac. Mindgone is correct. At the open day, they said A* in all sciences, maths and 1 English as a minimum.

Decorhate Tue 09-Sep-14 06:48:25

Thanks Allmimsy. We do have that & afaik the kids could get British passports. We just weren't sure if the "nationality" section on UCAS was just a data gathering thing or significant

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