This student applied in the 2022/23 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-Irish woman who went to a fee-paying school.
Course: Graduate entry
Online panel interview
Admissions Tests: UCAT, GAMSAT
Top tip: Play to your strengths.
Before I made my application…
Choosing to apply
When did you decide you wanted to apply to medicine?
I’ve always thought about it as both parents are medics, I’ve always been surrounded by it. I really like science and caring for people is something engrained in my values early on.
How did you choose what medical schools to apply to?
I chose 2 UCAT and 2 GAMSAT to play the odds. I looked at which universities had the most places, again to play the odds. I looked at universities with placement requirements as I had lots of hands on experience. I looked at places closer to home than my undergrad.
Completing work experience
What types of work experience did you do?
Hospital shadowing, GP surgery, Care work (e.g. in residential care), Other healthcare setting e.g pharmacy, physiotherapy
How much work experience did you do?
I worked as a domicile carer for 3 months and as a volunteer vaccinator for 3 months. I had hospital and GP work experience through family friends which equated to around 2 weeks.
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/
Graduate Australian Medical Schools Admissions Test (GAMSAT): GAMSAT was originally used in Australia and is now used in some UK universities for graduate entry admissions. https://www.gamsat.co.uk/gamsat-uk
How did you prepare for your admissions test?
For UCAT I just used Medify for 2 months before my test. For GAMSAT, I started preparing 10 days before and felt it was plenty of time (I have a science undergrad and all science A-Levels) I wrote 2 practice essays for my GAMSAT and looked over my chemistry notes and did some practice questions. I mainly familiarised myself with the science that would be required in the test. I also practising sitting for 6 hours, that was the hardest part of the exam for me.
*Note that paid-for courses aren’t necessary; they don’t give you any advantage when you apply, and they’re not proven to be more effective means of preparation!
What resources did you use?
Medify was helpful to prepare for timings of UCAT. The GAMSAT prep tests weren’t that helpful to apply to the real thing.
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 values of the university to see if I aligned well with them. I did mock interviews and prepped with medics I know through family and friends. I wrote down strengths and weaknesses relevant to Medicine. I familiarised myself with my personal statement and the events described within it. I looked at practise questions online and spoke my answers in the mirror.
What was your interview like?
I had to speak about events from my personal statement and how I had learnt from them, if I would change anything. I was asked about difficult situations I had been in and what impact it had had on me. I spoke about my undergraduate degree and what happened to stop me studying straight from school.
Do you have any further advice?
Don’t stress yourself over the entrance exams, you will probably have a stronger style (for me GAMSAT), work to that strength. Think about if you rely on family for support, it’s a hard course and might be nice to have easy access to loved ones.
Graduate entry medicine: A pathway into medicine for students who have already received an undergraduate/Bachelors degree. Some universities require this previous degree to be related to medicine (E.g. Biomedical sciences or in another science) while others don’t. Graduate entry to medicine is available at less universities and is equally as competitive as undergraduate, but is a good option if you don’t get into medicine straight from school, or only decide you want to be a doctor after you’ve already received your degree, or later on in your career.
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.
Paid-for courses and resources: 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.
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.
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.
Insiders: Don’t worry if you don’t know people like this. Most students don’t have friends who have already been through the process or healthcare professionals that they know who might be able to support them. You can meet current medical students to speak to at open days, or via free mentoring schemes, but it’s not a requirement for you to be successful.