Application to University of Southampton in 2019/20

This student applied in the 2019/20 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 white British woman and went to a comprehensive school that doesn’t regularly send students to study medicine.

Our Summary
Course: Standard undergraduate entry

In person panel interview with group task

Admissions Tests: UCAT

Any final advice? I currently volunteer with in2medschool which is the kind of resource I which I’d have when I applied so would be a great thing to recommend to anyone applying to medicine!

Before I made my application…

Choosing to study medicine

When did you decide to apply to medicine?
Easter of Year 12

How did you choose which universities to apply to?
Closest ones to my home that I liked following the open days. My non med choice was Biomed at Cardiff because they allowed some students from this to swap onto medicine from what I remember.

Completing work experience

What types of work experience did you do?
Hospital shadowing, Customer service role (paid)

How much work experience did you do?
1 week in a hospital on the stroke ward. And my part time job in a shop which I think I also referenced.

How did you find your work experience opportunities?
Through a formal scheme or work experience placement

During the application process…

Admissions tests

What admissions test did you sit?
University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT):

How did you prepare for your admissions test?
Did lots of practice questions over the month leading up to my test.

What resources did you use?
I believe I just used the free UCAT practice tests online and advice on applicant websites like The Medic Portal.


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?
Read a lot of info from The Medic Portal website as they had a lot of summaries of key interview topics and Southampton specific advice. As well as google and other things but mainly Medic Portal. Also had a mock interview day my school ran for us in combo with any Oxbridge applicants to practice interviews.

What happened during your interview?
In our group discussion we were given a topic to discuss the positives and negative impacts of in society amongst the 8 of us for around 10 minutes then discuss what we thought we could each do better.

In my individual panel interview the majority of the conversation surrounded topics from my personal statement as well as some typical interview topics such as NHS values. From what I remember it lasted around 5-10 mins.


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. 

The Medic Portal: The Medic Portal is a popular website that provides resources to help you prepare your medicine application. The Medic Portal has some free resources online but some are paid-for. There are good, free alternatives for preparation available online, so check out our guides and the university websites for details.

Mock interview: Don’t worry if you didn’t have this opportunity. Interviews are designed to take into account that not everyone has the same level of preparation. See our guides and blogs on interviews to find out more about free online resources. 

NHS Values: The NHS Values guide healthcare education and careers. It’s important to know and understand these values to help you be as successful as possible in your application. They can help you answer questions in your interview, or guide what you write about in your personal statement. Find out more here: NHS Values

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. 

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