1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Medicine or Biomedical Sciences?

Discussion in 'Personal Statements and UCAS forms' started by AmberB, Apr 16, 2011.

  1. AmberB

    AmberB New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    At the moment I'm not sure whether to apply for medicine or biomedical sciences this Autumn! It's confusing me a lot and I was wondering if any one would be kind enough to offer advice based on the "pros and cons" I've written for each (I'm so sorry- it's a bit long!) I've put it in this category because the main thing my choice will affect is how I write my personal statement.

    Medicine
    -Last summer I went on work experience at a Hospital and it was the most wonderful week, which is what really made me interested in this option. I've had difficulty with organising more than two other work experiences because I'm young for my year, so I won't be 17 until a few months before my application
    -I volunteer at a care home every week, providing friendship for the residents, and I love it!
    -So far I'm set to get the right grades... I got 10 A*s and an A at GCSE and 5 high As (averaging 93%) in three sciences and two maths in the January modules
    -I really like the idea of life-long learning
    -I do a lot of extra things at school and in my own time, which should lead to quite a full personal statement

    -On the other hand, I'm generally quite shy, which is one of the main obstacles! I suppose I'm fine talking to strangers, but I'm more of a "smile and listen" person than being an actual conversationalist.
    -I like to site down and think about things, rather than making the quick decisions required for medicine
    -I don't want to have a job which makes me stressed for the rest of my life!
    -I don't have any musical or sporting activities to talk about on my personal statement really: I'm interested in other things.

    Biomedical Sciences
    -I would quite like to go into biomedical research, because whilst in medicine you save lives on a day to day basis, in research you have the opportunity to develop something that could change healthcare across the world
    -I wrote a "research paper" for Medlink, and I really enjoyed the experience
    -I'm more likely to be able to get a place at a good university. (It would feel like letting down my family, teachers and myself going somewhere less prestigious.)
    -I would like to do a PhD, so I could end up being a Doctor anyway
    -Admissions will be less stressful, with less interviews to mess up!
    -I could do post-graduate medicine, once I've matured a bit and overcome my shyness at university
    -Many of the topics are similar to medicine, so I could still learn about all the bits I'm interested in
    -I'm more likely to be able to travel

    -On the other hand, I might always regret not going into medicine
    -The standard offers are lower, which would be more welcome to most people, but I really like the challenge which comes with high entry requirements
    -In research I would miss the contact with other people
     
  2. lexipower

    lexipower New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hiya
    Just read this...I have some thoughts
    1. I think it would be really good for you to do some more work experience, if after that one week you're not quite sure...for me doing work experience was what helped me be certain. I know you said you're young - are there any friends/family in medicine you can ask for help?
    2. Have you ever considered taking a gap year? I was rejected from medicine first time round and got forced into it, but I've worked as a healthcare assistant and it has really helped overcome shyness, as I was also a bit like that. my job has really helped me learn about what patients go through in hospital, and be more at ease talking to them and cheering them up. maybe thats an option? But it doesn't have to be that, even a job in a shop or something means you end up talking to people a lot and being more confident :) But you said you're working in a care home and getting to know the residents - how could you be doing that if you're too shy?
    3.You said you're more of a 'smile and listen' person - that's really not a bad thing, more doctors should be smile and listen people! theres that old saying that the biggest source of information is the patient themselves and if you listen hard they will give you the diagnosis :)
    4. Don't let the fear of being rejected hold you back from applying for medicine - you mention you don't have any musical or sport activities. you don't have to! there's no 'one type' of doctor or medical student, you don't have to be like, a grade 8 pianist or captain of the rugby team :p but you said you do lots of extra activities which will give you a full personal statement - as long as you enjoy them and they help you relax thats fine! med schools want to know that you're a normal person and will have some things to do outside work so you don't get over stressed all the time. honestly with your grades and maturity thinking this through I think you will definitely get in anyway
    5. You said at the end you might always regret not going for medicine - it seems to me like that is what you really want and you're worried about not getting in/not being confident or chatty enough. By the time you're a junior doctor you'll have overcome being shy I rec kon, after being in uni and with all your placements in med school.
    6. You said you felt like your family would be let down if you didnt get into a prestigious school - come on! How could any family feel let down if their daughter got into medical school! my mum practically burst into tears lol
    7. your pros for doing biomedical science are kindof short term - things like wanting your family to be happy, wanting a less stressful admissions process...and then you said you could always do post grad medicine, which seems like you're thinking in the short term doing biomed is easier, but in the long term you still want to be a doctor. Better to bite the bullet and go for it now?

    However!
    I totally understand you considering the stresses of a medical career and its worth thinking about. its a lot of hard work and a lot of dedication (which im now feeling a bit nervous about!)...if being in research appeals to you as much as being a doctor (which from your post I don't feel it does?) then perhaps really consider it because you don't want to go into medicine half hearted i dont think.

    Anyway, just my thoughts, hope its helpful and i havent offended you/got it totally wrong! good luck :):)
     
  3. lexipower

    lexipower New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sorry that was SO long!
     
  4. lexipower

    lexipower New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    0
    OH! one other thing - you can always apply for both! i applied for medicine and biochemistry and got offers for both, so you could always apply for one or two biomedical and 3 or 4 medical, then you can decide at a later point :)
     
  5. House Jr.

    House Jr. New Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2009
    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hope I've helped somewhat :)
     
  6. AmberB

    AmberB New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you, those were both very thoughtful answers! I was planning to apply for both, but then at a talk on Personal Statements we were told that Medical Admissions tutors don't like personal statements adapted slightly towards science subjects, which is what really made me think about having to choose between them.
     
  7. House Jr.

    House Jr. New Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2009
    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    0
    People tend to put Biomed down as their 5th choice when applying to medicine, so their personal statements are aimed at medicine and generally the biomed admissions tutors expect this and thus are more lenient than if it were the other way around. Therefore, if its a choice between focusing your personal statement on medicine or biomed and you intend to apply to both, then I would advise you to go with the former.
     
  8. lexipower

    lexipower New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    0
    totally agree. I emailed the Kings admissions tutors before sending my UCAS to check it would be okay for my personal statement to be geared towards medicine and they said its fine and they assess you in other ways, also that they're aware of how competitive medicine is and its sensible to have other options. UCL have rejected quite a lot of medicie applicants this year who applied for biomedical courses because they consider that to mean they're not committed - so I would email the admissions of your chosen universities first and check they will be okay with your personal statement being about medicine :)
     
  9. maria.uk

    maria.uk New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2014
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    An accredited Biomedical Science course or a non-accredited course?

    I am also confused whether I should go for an accredited Biomedical Science course or a non-accredited one.

     

Share This Page