Are you an aspiring medic living in Hong Kong? Thinking of studying Medicine in the UK? You’ve come to the right place!
The UK is a fantastic place to study Medicine: unlike other countries, Medicine is available at undergraduate level, which means you can start your medical education immediately after finishing school. It is also home to some of the best medical schools in the world with great reputations for world-class research, such as Oxford and Cambridge. The National Health Service (NHS) is one of the largest publicly-funded health services in the world, and means all UK universities have close ties with different hospitals across the country.
This page will guide you through studying Medicine in the UK – from studying for your UKCAT to applying for a Student Visa.
Where can I study Medicine in the UK?
There are currently 33 universities in the UK which offer a range of medical courses – including Dentistry, Nursing and Surgery. These are:
- Barts, Queen Mary, University of London
- Brighton and Sussex
- Cardiff University
- Hull York
- Keele University
- King’s College London
- Lancaster University
- Norwich (UEA)
- Queen’s University Belfast
- St Andrews
- St George’s, University of London
- Swansea University
- University College London
However, in your UCAS application you can only apply to four universities – so make sure you check the programmes thoroughly to pick the right UK medical schools for you.
Studying Medicine in the UK: What are the entry requirements?
Entry requirements differ between medical schools, so for programme specific requirements, it’s best to visit their websites. However, as a rule, most UK universities require a strong academic record in Chemistry and Biology – if you’re unsure on the requirements for a course, you can contact the school’s admissions services.
UK universities also require English language proficiency and ask for an IELTS (or equivalent English test – some schools count HKDSE Level 4, or require an SELT – Secure English Language Test). Check the medical school’s website to check which tests they accept.
It’s worth remembering, too, that most UK universities have a limit on the number of international students they can admit – this is around 7.5%, so competition for spaces is high. A good way to boost your application, aside from good academic merits, is to gain some medical work experience to demonstrate your commitment to Medicine
Studying Medicine in the UK: Do I have to take the UKCAT?
The UKCAT (UK Clinical Aptitude Test) is designed to test aptitude for Medicine, rather than knowledge. It tests a range of skills, including verbal reasoning, situational judgement and decision making.
Currently 25 UK universities (out of 33) use the UKCAT, including Abderdeen, Barts (Queen Mary, University of London) and Manchester. It’s important to double check if the universities you’re applying to use the UKCAT – you can check this on each individual website
Studying Medicine in the UK: Do I have to take the BMAT?
Like the UKCAT, not all UK universities use the BMAT. This test is designed to assess your mathematical skills, scientific knowledge and problem-solving abilities.
The following universities currently use the BMAT in their admissions process:
- Brighton and Sussex
Studying Medicine in the UK: How do I apply using UCAS?
Studying Medicine in the UK means you’ll need to apply using the UK University and College Application Service (UCAS) – this is our equivalent of Hong Kong’s JUPAS. The application process is very similar in that it requires a personal statement and your academic results. If you’re stuck, UCAS also has a very handy International Guide for applicants outside the UK.
- Choose your courses – in the UK, you can apply to four universities for Medicine. Pick wisely according to their entry requirements, course content, BMAT and UKCAT requirements.
- Complete your online application – this will include your personal details, a Personal Statement detailing your experience and motivation for studying Medicine, as well as a letter of recommendation from one of your teachers.
- Send your application – UCAS will send all applications to the relevant schools, who will then respond to each candidate. Once you receive your offers to study Medicine, don’t forget to check if an English language test is required. Your offers will fall into two categories: conditional and unconditional. Conditional means that your place will be confirmed once you meet your university’s entrance requirements (for example, grades in particular subjects). Unconditional means that you have already met the school’s requirements.
- Make your Visa arrangements – once you’ve confirmed your place on your course, you’ll need to apply for your Visa to study in the UK. Your Student Visa (also known as a Tier 4 General Student Visa) will cost £328, and you can obtain this from the UK Government’s website.
Studying Medicine in the UK: How will I be interviewed?
Although some schools do offer Skype or telephone interviews, some universities ask that international applicants travel to the UK for their interviews – so be prepared for the potential flight expenses! If you’ve been offered an online interview. A good way to check this is on the school’s website, or by getting in touch with them directly.