A list of commonly asked questions can be found below. For more information on applying to medical school, please see our applications page. For information on training after graduation, please see the after medical school section.
When is the deadline for completing a medical school application?
Applications for medicine close on 15 October every year. No applications are accepted after this deadline.
For Autumn 2018 entry, applications will close on 15 October 2017.
I am a British citizen but live outside of the EU/EEA. Am I guaranteed 'Home' fee status?
No. Citizenship does not automatically guarantee Home fee status. Normally, to be considered a Home student, applicants will need to fulfil the following:
- Be a citizen (so be able to live in the UK/EU/EEA unrestricted by visas)
- Be ordinarily resident in the EEA (you must currently live in the UK/EU/EEA, and be living here for at least the last three years)
- The reason you have lived here (UK/EU/EEA) has not been for education (for example you cannot be on a student visa)
There are other exceptions for being considered as a Home student, however for more detail you should contact the medical school you are interested in applying to and the UK Council for International Student Affairs.
What are the fees for international students?
Overseas fees for medicine vary depending on the school. To find out what these are, you should visit medical schools' websites or contact the universities directly.
I am an international applicant and would like to study medicine in the UK. Are there any scholarships or funding available?
The Medical Schools Council is not a funding agency and does not award scholarships or grants.
Information on general scholarships can be found at the nearest British Council office. You may also wish to contact your local Ministry of Education.
Scholarships or bursaries available can vary between different medical schools, and they will post information on any funding they offer on their websites.
The British Council can help you find funding for a chosen course through its scholarship schemes and links with other websites. Many of the scholarships available are only applicable to postgraduate degrees, but some do provide funding to help cover fees for specific subjects, and scholarships may be available for specific institutions. For help with identifying the funding available, visit the British Council website.
The education departments within the UK Government, the Scottish Executive, the Welsh Assembly and the Northern Ireland Assembly decide on who is eligible for student loans and grants. The regulations on the different categories for eligible students can be complicated. To help, the UK Council for International Student Affairs has produced a summary for international students and also publishes some general information about fees, funding and student support which is available on its website.
I have international qualifications from my home country. Can I use these to apply to a UK medical school?
Most medical schools will list the entry requirements for qualifications such as A levels and the International Baccalaureate (IB). They may also list what the requirements are for other qualifications from outside of the UK.
To find out whether a medical school accepts your qualification, and what the requirements are, you should see individual school websites or contact them directly.
Is there a lower age limit to study medicine?
Before sending applications, we would advise checking how the medical schools you are interested in will consider an applicant who is not 18 at the start of the course.
Medical schools need to consider the age of applicants carefully, but would not make a decision purely on age alone. Age needs to be considered because medical courses often involve placements in NHS Trusts early on in the medical degree and legally it can be difficult for these Trusts to accommodate students who are under 18 years of age. When dealing with such restrictions the medical school would need to consider with the placement provider (the NHS Trust) any reasonable adjustments to how the requirements of the course might be met. If the adjustments that need to be made are not considered to be reasonable then it may be that entry to the course would be deferred.
Is there an upper age limit to study medicine?
There is no upper age limit for applications to study medicine in the UK. You may find it helpful to contact the admissions departments of medical schools you are interested in, to discuss this further.
I am a medical student from outside of the UK. Can I transfer to a UK medical school?
UK medical schools do not usually accept transfers of students from a medical school outside of the UK. This is because each medical school follows a different course structure and there are no realistic means of verifying the quality and grades received at a university outside of the UK medical education system.
It may be worth contacting the medical schools to which a transfer is desired in order to ask their opinion about the options available, as they will be best placed to advise on this.
I am a medical student from outside of the UK. How can I apply to complete an elective placement in the UK.
Medical schools vary as to whether they host electives for visiting students, including international students. Please see our visiting student electives page for more detail.
I am studying a science degree at a UK university. Can I transfer onto a medicine course?
No. Medical schools do not accept transfers from other degree subjects.
Can I apply to medical school with an Access to Medicine course?
What is an Access course and who are they for?
Access courses provide a route for mature learners wishing to study medicine who do not have formal qualifications in A-level Biology and Chemistry. They are delivered in further education colleges. An Access course is an alternative to a level 3 qualification (e.g. AS/A Levels, NVQ Level 3 etc. more information here), rather than a supplement for poor performance. This means that if you have recently been unable to meet the academic requirements for entry to medicine, an Access course would not be seen as an immediate alternative.
Before selecting an Access course
Different medical schools have different rules about accepting applicants from Access courses and about which Access courses they accept. Before you enrol on an Access course you are advised to consider the following:
- Find out which medical schools accept the Access course you are interested in. It may also be worth asking how many Access course students have gone on to further study and at which institutions.
- Prior qualifications are still relevant. Many medical schools have GCSE/O-Level requirements, for example minimal attainment requirements in Maths and English. You are advised to check what other qualifications (beyond an Access course) are required by those medical schools you may wish to apply to in the future. Some medical schools issue written statements of what they require prospective applicants to achieve through an Access course.
- Medical schools require applicants to demonstrate some understanding of what a career in medicine involves. Applicants may draw on relevant work experience, either paid or voluntary in health or related areas, to demonstrate this understanding. Access courses are likely to request this of applicants too. This may mean practical experience in hospices and residential homes, domestic caring responsibilities, reflection on experiences of a healthcare setting or work in a conventional healthcare setting such as a hospital or GP surgery. More important than the experience itself, is the ability to demonstrate an understanding of the relevant skills and attributes the profession requires by reflecting upon and drawing on any experience. Where this experience is limited, it may be necessary to conduct further work experience or shadowing prior to application to medical school.
- Medical schools generally expect ‘distinction’ grades from Access course applicants and usually require 60 credits, with at least 45 being at level 3, the rest being at level 2, though this may differ.
What do Access courses teach?
The core content of Access courses tends to be biology, chemistry and physics modules. The level of these core modules should be the equivalent of A-Level standard, although the breadth of coverage may not be exactly the same. Modules on health issues and other medicine specific topics may also be covered. The content of courses should require significant commitment, as this will help to prepare you for a standard medicine course.
For further information, read our guidance on access to medicine and dentistry courses.