So, you’re reading this because you’ve finished the UKCAT, sat the test, got your score and whether it was what you wanted or not you need to look forward to the next stage. There’s plenty more to do and here are five that you should turning your attention towards now…
The UCAT scores are on a spectrum and medical schools use them differently, so you need to take your score and use it as a tool to help you properly narrow down where you’re going to be apply.
Be realistic about it – you might have set your heart on a particular medical school, but if your UKCAT score isn’t enough for them, don’t waste an application there. Remember if you apply to your strengths you are so much more likely to get an offer!
Universities tend to have open days in October, so if you are really unsure, it may be worth booking yourself on those so you can take your score and critically compare the way it will assessed by each admissions team.
The UCAS deadline is approaching fast and you need to make sure you write and perfect your personal statement well before it. Ideally you should have a fully complete draft before the end of the summer so you’re only left with the fine tuning once you go back to college/sixth form.
If you’re unsure about how to go about starting it or don’t know what to include, make sure you check out my step-by-step guide which will help you write your personal statement from scratch.
The summer is nearly over, so you do need to start thinking about getting back in to the work mode. Second year of A-Levels is tough and it is definitely a jump up, so you need to make sure you’re on top of everything from day one.
Applying for Medicine makes it all harder because you’ll often find yourself so preoccupied with your application that you may end up slightly neglecting your subjects. Try not to let that happen and help yourself by going over last year’s content before beginning the new year. Using my A-level summaries may help you get through it all more efficiently.
Some of you will be sitting the BMAT, and if you are one of those people you need to turn your attention to that right away. Whether you’re going for the earlier or later test date, now’s your best time to begin preparation.
Make sure to check out the BMAT website and look through the information they have on there. There’s also loads of BMAT past papers on there that you need to make sure you have the time to complete.
After submitting your application, everything will happen so fast and before you know it you’ll be going for your first medical school interview – some of them can even be as early as November!
One of the things you need to definitely start doing now (if you aren’t already), is keeping up with medical news. This doesn’t have to be too intense, but you do need to be aware of what’s going on in the medical field on a day-to-day basis.
Just spend half an hour or so everyday looking through BBC Health and Guardian Healthcare and keeping up-to-date. I used Twitter for this (and still do) – I follow a handful of journals and reliable Health news sites and skim through my feed everyday, reading any titles that interest me. You can also check out The Medic Portal’s weekly news summaries, or NHS Hot Topics.
Words: Masumah Jannah
Masumah is a 1st year medical student at the University of Manchester. She writes a blog documenting her experience through medical school and also giving tips to aspiring medics: lifeofamedic.com