Application to University of Nottingham in 2020/21

This student applied in the 2020/21 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 white British woman who went to a comprehensive school that does regularly send students to medical school.

Our Summary
Course: Standard undergraduate entry

Online MMI interview

Admissions Tests: UCAT

Before I made my application…

Choosing to apply

When did you decide you wanted to apply to medicine?
From quite an early age

How did you choose what medical schools to apply to?
Based on location and entry requirement

Completing work experience

What types of work experience did you do?
Hospital shadowing, Other healthcare setting e.g pharmacy, physiotherapy, Customer service role (paid), Volunteering as a meal time helper at a hospital

How much work experience did you do?
I had 4 days at a hospital and 2 weeks in a neuroscience lab.

How did you find your work experience opportunities?
Through asking someone I knew to take me on, Emailing local hospitals

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?
I firstly tried to tackle the different question types untuned just so I could get used to the question styles. I then later used resources like the test website for practice questions that I did timed. I also watched lots of YouTube videos on how to approach each question type. For abstract reasoning I wrote down a list of patterns that came up and also used an acronym to remember what to look for. Practice was key!

What resources did you use?
Medify– really useful for practice questions. Probably the most valuable resource I used
Practice papers from the test website- pretty representative of the exam


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 the information provided by the university and looked up practice questions online that I practiced with friends. I also made summaries on topics that I thought could come up in the interview such as ethics and NHS hot topics. The most useful website for questions I used was The Medic Portal as it covered a range of topics, I often wrote down what I would answer the question with if I couldn’t practice with friends or family. I also had a mentor who was a first year medical student who helped guide me through the interview process via zoom and ran mock interviews for me.

What was your interview like?
I can’t remember much of my interview but I remember there being a few scenarios that were either ethical or checking professionalism with follow up questions. There was also a role play with a current medical student. I remember it feeling quite intense and serious but I know other students has more friendly experience. There was plenty of time to answer questions and they would prompt you to add more if you had lots of time left.

Do you have any further advice?
Starting earlier would have really benefitted me with being fully prepared for applying for medicine. So much stuff I found out the summer of application due to my school not being aware of the process of applying. I know that this isn’t the case in other schools and it means that you’re not trying to do everything in like 2 months.


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. 

YouTube: There are many current and recent medical students who create videos on YouTube about their experience and advice about applying. Remember that their experience is personal and individual, and may not reflect yours. They might provide some useful advice but remember that they might be advertising paid for services. Take their advice as part of a more holistic approach alongside moderated advice such as ours, and official advice from universities and test providers. 

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.

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. 

Mentoring: Not everyone has had mentoring and some mentoring programmes services may have particular criteria for you to join the programme. Don’t worry if you’ve not had this opportunity. There are plenty of free online resources to help you prepare for the application process, like on our website, and not having a mentor will not put you at a disadvantage. 

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. 

Role play: Some interviews or interview stations may require you to engage in a bit of role play. You might have to act out being in a scenario where you might have to deliver bad news or a clinical decision.

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