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Re-taking A Level for Graduate Medicine?

Discussion in 'Mature Students' started by banker22, Jun 22, 2015.

  1. banker22

    banker22 New Member

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    As my chemistry a-level is over 7 years old, I would need to re-take the four paper (not practical) exams to be considered for Cambridge grad entry medicine.

    If I retake this exam and don't do well, what is the worst case scenario? Would other graduate entry programs see this and would it reflect poorly on me? Is retaking the a-level to have a chance at Cambridge worth the potential for reducing my chances at all of the schools?

    I am fully confident I could do very well in the exams, but my work hours are very intense and unpredictable, and I could not guarantee full attention for the 4 exams over 4 weeks that are required.

    Thank you!
     
  2. vmed

    vmed New Member

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    Hi Banker22,

    I suppose you're a banker. It's funny, me too I was one and me too I had my eye on Cambridge and me too I thought of taking A level in chemistry. When I asked them, they told me A2 chemistry was enough, so 2 papers only and I needed an A. But I got a B, but it didn't prevent me from applying to other graduate programmes, I just didn't mention my A level because it didn't add anything onto my application. And good news, I'm gonna start med school in September. So, worst case scenario, you can still end up in a med school ;)!
    Good luck with it though
     
  3. banker22

    banker22 New Member

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    Thanks for this!

    Did you self-study or use a class?

    Congrats on med school - where did you get in?
     
  4. Martigan

    Martigan Super Moderator

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    Are you sure your A-Level has to be within 7 years? I just thought you had to show evidence of some type of academic study within 7 years. That's how it was when I applied, but that was about 6 years ago.

    Also, why not apply for other courses while prep for Cambridge. Grad med is fiercely competitive with lots of high calibre applicants, like you viing for just a few places. It's best not to put all your eggs in one basket. You could always defer a place if you still want a shot at Cambridge.
     
  5. Martigan

    Martigan Super Moderator

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    PS Oxbridge doesn't hold the same prestige in medical circles...
     
  6. vmed

    vmed New Member

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    I am going to Swansea :)

    I hired a private tutor for chemistry because it's been so LONG and he was really helpful. Then for bio, physics i self studied, using youtube a lot and a level books.
     
  7. Martigan

    Martigan Super Moderator

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    I did chem self study, and its HARD! A tutor may be helpful. Its getting a decent one which is the challenge. Anyone can bill themselves as a tutor, but there are more crap ones than good ones.
     
  8. coolrunnings

    coolrunnings New Member

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    Hi there - which private tutor did you use vmed?
     
  9. Iona1

    Iona1 New Member

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    When you say you did Chem self study, how did you do the practicals? Do you need to do the practicals to get the A Level Qualification? Are the practicals the most important part for GEM?
     
  10. Martigan

    Martigan Super Moderator

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    At the time all the A-level chem syllabus's had practicals, which I took as a paid course at a local private school with other people self studying.

    I think this has changed now.

    The practicals have zero value to medicine, other than they are required for the A-level, which is needed at some Uni's.
     

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