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Three Counties Medical School

Three Counties Medical School (TCMS), based at the University of Worcester is one of the newest medical schools in the UK, having accepted its first cohort of 44 students in 2023. For the 2024 entry, TCMS is anticipating 62 new students. The ‘three counties’ served by the new medical school are Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

Due to being such a new programme, there is currently no data available about where TCMS ranks in terms of UK medical schools.

About The Course

Three Counties Medical School is a new graduate entry-only programme set up as part of a government initiative to enrol more medical students across the UK. The 2024 cohort will be its second ever and their contingency school is Swansea Medical School, which ensures the security of all students enrolled.

TCSM’s four-year programme aims to develop compassionate and highly skilled doctors, prepared to excel in any field they choose. Students will learn from a range of teachers on campus and from healthcare professionals in a variety of settings including general practices, outreach clinics, hospitals and care facilities.


Studying medicine at TCMS is split into two phases, Phase 1 (years 1 & 2) and Phase 2 (years 3 & 4).

Structure Of The Course

Year 1-2

The first two years at TCMS are primarily based on the University’s campus in which students will learn about the science underlying medicine and introduce key medical concepts.

Teaching will be delivered through a variety of means including lectures, practical sessions, group work and online virtual learning. However, students will still experience early clinical contact in both the community and hospital environments in which learning can be practically applied.

Throughout phase 1, students are also required to complete two longitudinal studies which involve prolonged contact with patients. These studies will be ‘Family Case Study’ and ‘Living with a Diagnosis’.

Year 3-4

Phase two consists almost entirely of clinical placements, however, students’ learning will still be supported by the University. The third year includes long-term placements in primary and secondary care, whereas the final year focuses on preparing students for their roles as foundation doctors through an assistantship.

In year three, students will undergo an individual project aimed to support their development as well-rounded doctor with system-wide knowledge of healthcare organisations.


Academic Requirements

GCSEs: If the applicant's degree is in a non-science subject, they will also need to have passed (grade C/4) two science subjects at GCSEs.

A-levels: A-levels and equivalent qualifications are not considered as all entrants must be graduates.

IELTs (International applicants only): IELTS with a score of at least 7.0 overall, with 7 in the speaking component and at least 6.5 in all other in all components.

Bachelor's Degree (Graduates only): An undergraduate degree in any subject at a minimum award of 2:1. Alternatively, applicants with a 2:2 undergraduate degree may apply if they also hold a Master’s or Doctoral degree.



Further Entry Requirements

Work experience: TCMS does not require a set amount of work experience to apply, however, work experience is always useful for medical applications, especially for the interview stage as it demonstrates insight into the career.

Personal statement: Personal statements are likely considered in the initial screening process.


Admissions Process

Application to Ulster Medical School must be done via the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Deadlines for submission are earlier for medical courses, typically mid-October. This application will include all of your academic history as well as your personal statement and other qualifications/achievements. However, international students can continue to apply after this date via UCAS Extra until places have been filled.

Admissions Tests:

UCAT
Applicants are required to sit either the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) or the Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT). The UCAT exam is a two-hour computerised test that most UK medical schools require, you can find out more about the UCAT in our guide. The GAMSAT is a medical admissions test designed specifically for graduate students. Unlike the UCAT, the GAMSAT can be taken more than once in an application cycle and is a full-day test, you can find out more about the GAMSAT in our guide. TCMS does not use a hard cut-off score to shortlist candidates based on aptitude tests, instead, it depends upon the performance of the cohort. However, based on last year's admissions, applicants typically achieved 50 or more on the GAMSAT or 2500 or more on the UCAT.

Interview Type: Traditional

Interview Topics: Applicants who are shortlisted based upon meeting academic requirements and sufficient aptitude test scores will be invited to sit the CASPer test which is an online situational judgement test similar to the SJT component of the UCAT. The CASPer is a 90-110 minute test comprising 14 scenarios with either video or typed responses aimed at assessing skills such as collaboration, communication, empathy and professionalism.

Three Counties Medical School uses a panel-style interview which involves multiple interviewers assessing the applicant’s suitability for medicine. Due to the TCMS course being established so recently, there is very little information about what their interviews involve.

However, questions typically centre around key skills and qualities important for a career in medicine such as communication, motivation for medicine, empathy and work experience. You can learn more about graduate entry medical interviews in our guide.

In the final process of selecting which candidates will receive an offer at TCMS, a holistic approach is used. As well as considering the interview performance of the shortlisted candidates, preferential treatment will be given to applicants with one or more of the following criteria:

  • Substantial geographical links to the area (e.g. childhood parental address or current address in the Three Counties postcodes).
  • Worcester graduate.
  • Frst in the family to go to university.
  • Current residence in POLAR quintiles 1 and 2.
  • Working in, or significant knowledge of the NHS.
  • Refugee status.

Although exact dates for TCMS are not confirmed, medical interviews typically take place between December and March and offers come out from February to June.


Admissions Statistics

Total number of applicants: 1055
Total number of places: 80
Total number of entrants: 80
Acceptance rate: 7.58%

Fees

Home students: £9250 pa
Rest of UK: TBC
International students: £46500 pa

Teaching Methods

Teaching style: Three Counties Medical School uses a variety of methods to teach their students including Problem-Based Learning, clinical skills workshops, lectures, group work and guided independent study. As students progress to phase 2, most teaching takes place in clinical placements where students learn from a variety of healthcare professionals as well as patients themselves. There is also a heavier emphasis on independent learning as students move through the years.


Graduate Prospects

As the first cohort of students at TCMS only started in 2023, there is no available information regarding graduate prospects.


FAQs

Is Three Counties Medical School New?

Yes, TCMS was established in 2023 as part of a government initiative to enrol more students in medical schools across the UK. In 2024, TCMS is looking to accept 62 new students into their cohort.

What Admissions Test Does Three Counties Medical School Use?

TCMS accepts either the UCAT or the GAMSAT as part of their admissions process. This gives applicants a useful advantage as both tests can be taken and the highest score can be submitted in their application.

Does Three Counties Medical School Accept School Leavers?

TCMS is a graduate entry-only medical programme so applicants must have completed at the minimum an undergraduate degree. However, the University of Worcester offers a variety of related undergraduate courses such as Biomedical Science.

Taking your undergraduate degree at Worcester also gives you an advantage in the application process when applying to the graduate medical course.

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