This student applied in the 2019/20 application cycle and therefore the selection process at Nottingham 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 British mixed woman who went to a grammar or selective state school in the UK.
Course: Standard undergraduate
In person MMI interview
Admissions Tests: UCAT
Before I made my application…
Choosing to apply
When did you decide you wanted to apply to medicine?
How did you choose what medical schools to apply to?
Distance from my family home, transport links, research, reputation of the university for medical teaching , reputation for student satisfaction/ student life, for my non-medical one I choose one that specifically stated that it didn’t read the person statement so that my medic-focused personal statement wouldn’t hinder me
Completing work experience
What types of work experience did you do?
Hospital shadowing, Care work (e.g. in residential care), Customer service role (paid)
How much work experience did you do?
Formal work experience in a hospital- 5 days
How did you find your work experience opportunities?
Through a formal scheme or work experience placement
During the application process…
What admissions test did you sit?
University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT): https://www.ucat.ac.uk/
How did you prepare for your admissions test?
Read about the types of questions and had a book that went over this and how to approach the questions. Then had Medify for 4 weeks and spent the month leading up to the exam doing questions/prep papers for a couple of hours a day
What resources did you use?
Medify UKCAT question bank (paid) – was the most useful resource. Allowed me to track progress and learn the skills I needed
Medic Portal UKCAT question bank (free)- useful as an additional resource but difficult to store progress
* Remember that paid-for courses do not give you an advantage.
What type of interview did you do?
MMI: Multiple Mini Interview. This type of interview usually includes several short interviews or ‘stations’ which may involve different types of questions and scenarios. This is different compared to a panel interview, which may cover the same scenarios/types of questions but be a more ‘traditional’ sit-down interview.
How did you prepare for your interview?
I read lots about current affairs in medicine – particularly regarding the pressures the NHS was facing and health news that could warrant a discussion (eg. Changes to laws) and made sure I could argue pros and cons. In an interview for a different university I was asked about NHS values and didn’t know the answer so I made sure to look that up. I also practiced answering interview-style questions with my friends and teachers. I used the Medic Portal a lot (a free resource) and the ISC Medical Medical school interview book.
What happened during your interview?
I had two stations that involved actors that tested your communication skills and your ability to sensitively discuss a delicate issue. Other stations included discussing ethical dilemmas and justifying your thought process.
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.
Medify: Medify is a popular website which provides resources for helping you prepare your medicine application. Medify has some free resources online but some are paid-for. There are good, free alternatives for preparation available online, so check out our subject guides and the university websites for details.
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.
Paid-for resources and 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.
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.
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
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.
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.