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Tips for Medical Interviews

By now you may have finished your year 12 exams. For those who sat the UCAT this year, it almost seems like the end of the road. However, there is one crucial component for entry into medicine that many major universities require – the interview. It is important you prepare and practice for this last step, especially because this time, you are competing against a tough cohort: all those students who performed outstandingly in both the UCAT and ATAR. The first step to preparing for any interview is to start practicing. Whether this be attending the MedEntry Interview Training sessions, practicing...
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What is the UCAT test?

UCAT stands for University Clinical Aptitude Test. UCAT will be an important criterion for entry into medicine and some dental courses at most Universities across Australia and New Zealand.  UCAT comprises five sections: verbal reasoning, decision making, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning and situational judgement.  UCAT is a computer based test that takes approximately 2 hours, and will be administered by Pearson VUE. Candidates will receive their score immediately after the test. There will be various sittings of the test offered in July 2019, across Australia, New Zealand and internationally. Further information about UCAT will be released by the UCAT Consortium prior...
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Why study Medicine?

There are only two things people seem ask you about in your final year of schooling: those big exams at the end of the year and what you want to do when they’re over. It’s a stressful and busy year with plenty of studying to be done. The constant questioning can be annoying, but it’s really important that you take the time to really look at what it is you are going to do next year. For anyone considering applying to sit the UCAT and putting medicine down on your university preferences, here are just a few of the reasons why...
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What Happens Next: After the UCAT

For the few weeks leading up to the UCAT, it can seem like the entire world revolves around it. Often you can put off worrying about day to day issues until after the day of the test. So when the test date does roll around, and you walk out of the test centre with your head held high, the first question that you are likely to ask yourself is, “What am I supposed to do now?”. One thing that it is good to organise for directly after the test is to spend an evening with friends or family, maybe at dinner...
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Studying Medicine – My First Year

Having just finished my first year of medicine at Monash University, it is clear to me that my first year studying medicine was not necessarily as I had expected. Having said that, at the start of the year I was very unsure as to what I should expect from the first of five years of my degree. As such, I am going to give you a basic outline of how the first year of the course is structured, and hopefully you can use this to help guide your decision on whether or not Medicine is the right choice for you. Content?...
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Is the median ATAR of medical students at USyd/UniMelb higher than at UNSW/Monash?

No, in fact, it is far lower. People assume that because the University of Sydney and the University of Melbourne have a certain limited number of places for their “guaranteed entry” scheme (for which the minimum ATAR required is 99.90 or 99.95) the median ATAR of medical students at such universities must be very high. This is a myth and is completely untrue. The University of Sydney and the University of Melbourne have about 300+ places each in their graduate entry programs and only about 10% of places are from the guaranteed entry stream. The rest of the places are generally...
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What is UCAT? UCAT stands for University Clinical Aptitude Test. It is a test developed by UCAT Consortium and used to help select students into medicine and dentistry courses at university. The UCAT consists of questions in five subtests and has a total of 233 multiple choice questions to be completed in 2 hours on a computer. What courses require UCAT? For a full list of courses that require UCAT, please visit How long is UCAT? The UCAT takes a total of 2 hours.  When is UCAT? UCAT will take place in July. How do I register for UCAT? Registrations for...
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Is the UCAT even relevant to medicine?

Sometimes it can feel like the UCAT has got nothing to do with being a doctor. It can feel like just another one of the oddly-shaped hoops one must jump through in the medical entry process. However, this mindset that the UCAT is just a barrier to doctor-hood can be demotivating and counterproductive. In this post, I’ll give some real life examples of how the UCAT relates to skills I’ve had to develop in medical school, and how UCAT preparation is related to, or perhaps even beneficial to, the study of medicine. VR, DM and QR Everything we know about medicine...
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Is this my only shot at getting into Medicine?

Many students sit the UCAT for the first time thinking that they must to do well in UCAT because it is the only way for them to be accepted into their dream uni degree, medicine. This is untrue! This thinking places an enormous amount of unnecessary pressure on students. The reality is there are numerous ways to be accepted into medicine, although they are not necessarily the ideal pathways. Sitting UCAT, getting a good ATAR and smashing an interview may be the easiest and quickest way to get into medicine, but it is not the only one. Other options to be...
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One on one with a medical school interviewer

I was fortunate enough to have jumped through the hurdles that lie on the way to medical school, and there are quite a few benefits on the other side. One of these is being able to talk to doctors, health professionals or community members that have had previous experience as interviewers. The following is an excerpt from a conversation I had with a past interviewer to understand what they are looking for in medical interviews.    1. As a community member are you concerned about the medical/dental focus of some of the scenarios? “The scenarios in the MMI (multiple mini interview)...
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Behind the Scrubs, Part 2: Student’s views of Undergraduate Medical Courses in NSW – Joint Medical Program, University of Newcastle

The University of Newcastle (UoN) has taken a unique teamwork approach within their Bachelor of Medicine course, collaborating with the University of New England to create the Joint Medical Program. Although this joint effort represents a new modelling of the course, UoN has offered an undergraduate Medicine course for almost forty years, and has gained an unofficial reputation for creating doctors with superior clinical skills. Their use of ‘Problem-Based Learning’ to train students to think critically and integrate concepts has been extensively harnessed by other medical schools. In this article, 4th year medical student Emma gives us further insight into the...
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Behind the Scrubs, Part 1: Student’s views of Undergraduate Medical Courses in NSW – Western Sydney University

The Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) course at the University of Western Sydney (UWS) is the newest addition to NSW's undergraduate medical courses, opening its doors for the first time in 2007. UWS has a particular commitment towards providing health care and education for the Western Sydney region, including a focus on the area of Indigenous health. To find out more about the UWS medical course, I caught up with Jess, a third year medical student at Western Sydney.   Evie: So Jess, you're now more than half-way towards graduating from UWS! Could you share with us what the Medicine...
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Pathways into medicine: my experiences with UCAT and GAMSAT

Living in our corner of the world and having a desire to pursue medicine will mean that at some point you will encounter either the UCAT or the GAMSAT. I experienced the former a multitude of times and the latter most recently, and have achieved success in both. This blog will guide you through both exams and pathways.   If you are a student pursuing medicine in New Zealand, the UCAT will be your only concern. It is not possible to directly enter medicine as a high school leaver at either Auckland or Otago, so the UCAT is a barrier you...
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Sample MMI question: A Contemporary Issue Scenario

Scenario: Vaccinations are an important part of an individual’s immunity and keeping a community safe from disease. It is ideal that all children get immunized at the appropriate age to prevent contraction of preventable diseases. However, there are some in Australia that oppose vaccination. They argue the harm of vaccinations outweigh the benefits, and the lack of freedom of choice in how their children should be raised. Their claims often have no scientific basis, and create unnecessary fear in society. You are on the advisory board of the Australian Government looking to change the laws on how to deal with improving...
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Discrimination in university admissions?

What is discrimination? Discrimination can be defined as unwarranted unfavourable treatment towards an individual or groups of individual based on their actual or perceived membership in a certain group or social category. Such treatment is usually in a way that is worse than the way people are usually treated. Discrimination could be based on someone’s gender, race, location, or socio-economic basis, etc. Discrimination is against the law under the Discrimination Act 1991 (ACT), Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 (NSW), Anti-Discrimination Act 1996 (NT), Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (QLD), Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (SA), Anti-Discrimination Act 1998 (TAS), Equal Opportunity Act 1995 (Vic) and Equal...
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Famous Australian Doctors: Great Models for Aspiring Students

Medical interviews Congratulations to those who got a medical interview. It is a good idea to prepare for the interview. You may need to have examples of role models during the interviews. If you need some some inspiration for finding your role model, we have found some inspiring doctors below. These short biographies of their notable work will be great for medical interviews.  Remember, MedEntry offers great medical interview training packages and medical interview guide.  Frank Macfarlane Burnet An Australian virologist best known for his contributions to immunology. He won the Nobel Prize in 1960 for predicting acquired immune tolerance and was best...
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I don’t have time for the UCAT during year 12, should I do the GAMSAT instead?

A lot of people think because their final year of school is such a busy one, they should forget about doing the UCAT and focus on their school exams instead. Some say, “Don’t worry if you are not sitting the UCAT, you can always just sit the GAMSAT during Uni and get into Medicine that way”. Whilst this is true, the graduate entry route is no doubt harder. You compete with a far wider range of test takers. The percentage of students who actually get into Graduate Medicine may also be lower than the undergraduate route. The decision to sit either...
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Time management in the final year of school

The final year of school can be a tough year. If you want to do well and obtain entry into medicine, you have to put in the effort and work. On top of assessments and exams, there is also UCAT preparation. How do you fit it all in? We have tips for you below on how to optimise your time.  UCAT preparation is a subject A lot of students find it a difficult task to manage all their subjects and do UCAT preparation as well. But the process can be made easier starting with a simple mindset change. Treat UCAT preparation...
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When should I start preparing for the UCAT?

Confused about how to approach UCAT preparation? When should I start my UCAT prep? Is there even a point to preparing for the UCAT? Well, if you are reading this, you would have started preparing already. What is the UCAT for? If you are interested in medicine, dentistry or other health science related fields, you will need the UCAT. (More info: The UCAT is a test administered by Pearson Vue to help in the selection of students for those given courses. It is usually sat in year 12 for students going into university the next year. Is it worth preparing for?...
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School leaver entry (UCAT) or Graduate entry (GAMSAT)? Which route is better?

Medicine after high school or degree? For a simpler comparison of UCAT against the GAMSAT please see the following articles:  UCAT vs GAMSAT ‘UCAT or GAMSAT? which is harder? which is easier?‘. Our view is that UCAT route is far superior for several reasons including: 1. No guarantee: Even if you do ace your GPA and do well in GAMSAT, there is no gurantee that you will get in: there is often an interview as well. 2. More stress and uncertainty: You have just finished a hard slog for your final high school exams. Do you really want to continue to...
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