This student applied in the 2018/19 application cycle and therefore the selection process at Southampton may have changed since then. You should read all the information a University sends you about the selection process to get the most up to date details!
Remember to check out the glossary at the bottom of the page for our explanations of all the jargon we medical students like to use!
More about this student
Sometimes students share information with us about their demographics, which may help put their application experience into a bit more perspective.
This student identifies as a mixed Asian woman who went to a comprehensive school that doesn’t regularly send students to medical school.
Course: Standard undergraduate entry
In person panel interview with group task
Admissions Tests: UCAT, BMAT
Before I made my application…
Choosing to study medicine
When did you decide to apply to medicine?
Maybe year 10?
How did you choose which universities to apply to?
Closest to home in London but not in London!
Completing work experience
What types of work experience did you do?
Hospital shadowing, Care work (e.g. in residential care)
How much work experience did you do?
One week hospital shadowing, 3 days in a care home
How did you find your work experience opportunities?
Through asking someone I knew to take me on
During the application process…
What admissions test did you sit?
University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT): https://www.ucat.ac.uk/
Biomedical Admissions Test (BMAT): Southampton doesn’t use the BMAT to select applicants and the BMAT won’t be used after the 2023 application cycle!
How did you prepare for your admissions test?
Online practice questions all summer long!
What type of interview did you do?
Panel: This type of interview is a ‘traditional’ sit down interview where you’ll be interviewed by a group of people, usually academic tutors and doctors. This differs from an MMI interview, which is based around ‘stations’ which have themes or scenarios attached to them.
Group task: At Southampton, most interviews have a group task, where multiple candidates are interviewed together.
How did you prepare for your interview?
I bought an interview book from Amazon and I attended an interview teaching session in London. I practiced questions over and over with friends and did lots of online research about what comes up.
What happened during your interview?
We discussed a topic as a group.
Do you have any further advice?
Getting work experience is all about who you know- I was lucky but it’s not the same for everyone!
* This is just one student’s opinion. Check out virtual/online work experience opportunities & you don’t need to do clinical work experience!
Clinical work experience: Not every student will complete clinical work experience before they apply to medical school. Don’t worry, this is not required to be able to apply. You can use non-clinical work experience (e.g. a caring role, like in a care home) or even reflect on paid work you’ve done (e.g. in customer service) in a productive way.
Books: Don’t worry if you’ve not been able to find this particular book or afford to pay for it. You might be able to find secondhand copies online which are usually much cheaper, or at your local library (sometimes, libraries will order in books that you’ve requested, so check out this as a possibility too!). Bear in mind that some books may become out of date, so make sure you check when they were published, and if any changes to the relevant admissions tests/interviews have been made since then.
Paid-for courses: Some students choose to pay for courses either online or in person to help them prepare for admissions tests and interviews. There is no evidence that they give you an advantage. There are good, free alternatives for preparation for admissions tests and interviews, and some offer bursaries and discounts to students who come from low income families. Check out our guides and uni websites for more details.
Support networks: While not every student will have a support network to help them prepare, there are plenty of other ways to prepare for your admissions tests and interviews, such as through free online resources, like on our website.