Students’ views are broadened through medical study abroad in both an academic and cultural sense. Additionally, as part of adjusting to life abroad, future doctors develop maturity, self-reliance, and discipline. Consequently, because of their unique backgrounds and skill sets, international students have an advantage in the labor market.
For the past 20 years, English-taught medical school studies in Europe have grown in popularity among prospective doctors. Some people’s desire to pursue a career in medicine overseas is a result of the extremely difficult entrance standards in their native nations. Others who apply match the requirements but are compelled to attend medical school in Europe since it is less expensive.
Whatever the case, it is not to be denigrated or viewed as a different professional route to study medicine in Europe. The fact is that medical schools abroad provide the same excellent instruction and amenities and are approved by all major health organizations. This implies that you will be qualified to pursue a medical school career wherever in the world.
Top international locations for medical degree programs
- The United States
Medical school College Requirements
In order to be eligible for a medical degree in the US, you need to have completed your undergraduate studies. When it comes to admissions to medical schools, many students wonder if the rank or reputation of their undergraduate institution matters. This question does not have a definite “yes” or “no” response.
Medical schools may take into account the prestige or difficulty of a student’s undergraduate institution when assessing their GPA. The GPA will also be taken into account if a student enrolls in an institution that is regarded as easy.
Consider Student A as having attended a highly esteemed institution that is infamous for grade inflation and awards few As. She has a 3.45 GPA with a rising trend. Let’s imagine that student B attended a less esteemed college and received a 4.0 GPA. Student A might be viewed as a more competitive applicant than Student B, who attended a much less demanding undergraduate institution, depending on additional characteristics like the MCAT score and extracurricular activity.
In this process, the MCAT serves as a tremendous leveler. Assuming all other circumstances were equal, Student A and Student B would both be equally competitive if they both received excellent MCAT scores, let’s say a 523.
Medical schools are aware that many students attend less selective colleges for good reason. Medical school admissions committees find a lot of top college honors programs to be pretty remarkable. Any college’s high GPA is noteworthy, but it is more so if it is coupled with rigorous coursework and a good MCAT score.
Requirements for Major in Medical School
Many candidates approach me to inquire what major “looks nice” on their application. “The one that intrigues you the most,” is always my reply. Overall, getting a minor or double major does not help one’s candidacy.
Students can major in fields other than science. Medical schools actually don’t want a class full of biology and chemistry majors; instead, they are always looking for applicants who are intellectually interested and diversified.
Take upper division science courses no matter what your major is to demonstrate that you can succeed there. The main fact is that as a premedical student, you can major in any area or disciplines you like.
However, since your GPA is so important for getting into medical school, you should strive to major in the subject where you can achieve the greatest GPA. Assuming the Spanish major is enrolled in upper-division science courses, a Spanish major with a 3.9 overall GPA and a 3.7 BCPM GPA will be equally competitive as a biology major with the same numbers.
On the other hand, a Spanish major with higher metrics might be more competitive than an Applied Math major with a 3.5 overall GPA and 3.4 BCPM GPA.
Getting Into Med School with a Low GPA OR Poor MCAT/UCAT Score
We can’t always get the results we seek. No matter how much you study for an exam, tension might still be too much and affect your performance. You realize it doesn’t represent your true potential or expertise, so you feel let down and betrayed. There are other circumstances in which you might experience health issues or family issues that hinder you from having a strong GPA. We comprehend. Even if life isn’t always fair or easy, you shouldn’t give up.
Here are some suggestions that can help you convince the admissions committee to give you a chance if you have a lower GPA or MCAT/UCAT score.
DISPLAY A GENERAL IMPROVEMENT
Let’s say your GPA is lower than what the medical school you’ve picked requires as a minimum. If your first year of high school or undergraduate studies wasn’t great, but you gradually improved your grades during the next years, make sure to point that out during the interview or the personal statement. Keep in mind what Plato advised: “Never discourage anyone who consistently advances, however slowly.”
MCAT/UCAT SUCCESS Exam
This applies to those of you who put in a lot of effort and aced the MCAT or UCAT exam despite having a lower GPA. It’s challenging since the admissions committee can be perplexed by your good exam result after previously failing to make an impression.
Make use of this to your benefit. Include a paragraph in your personal statement explaining how your prior academic failures helped you realize how much you want to become a doctor. Describe the effort, concentration, and hours of study that you put in to achieve your excellent score.
Obtain IMPORTANT RECOMMENDATION LETTERS
You can benefit from reference letters if they are a prerequisite for admission. Speak to those who are familiar with you. They could be professors, former coworkers, or people for whom you did volunteer work. Tell them why you require a motivation letter and ask them to write one for you.
It’s unnecessary to recommend that they write about this or that. Describe how your grades aren’t great and how you want to bolster your university application with materials that demonstrate you’re more than just a score on an exam or grade.
You can get incredible recommendation letters from these people, which will impress the admissions committee and raise your chances of getting accepted, if you pick them wisely.
WRITE A PERSONAL STATEMENT THAT CONVINCES
Your opportunity to excel is in the personal statement. You might not be able to change your grades, or the recommendations people made for you, but this statement is a great chance for you to fully express yourself.
Don’t be misled. It’s not the kind of document where you should write nonsense, become apologetic, or lament your shortcomings. You don’t want to sound too emotional or forget your purpose: to convince the admission committee members that you’re the right candidate for the university and that the study programmes is the right next step in your academic and professional life.
Choose your words wisely, be honest and express your ideas clearly. Make sure each paragraph only focuses on one main idea. Give relevant examples where necessary and point out situations or achievement that show your lower grades don’t reflect your knowledge and abilities.
IMPRESS DURING THE MEDICAL SCHOOL ADMISSION INTERVIEW
Not all universities use interviews to screen their applicants. But if you’re university does, rejoice!
We know that for many people interviews can be terrifying. It’s easy to view the committee as an enemy or someone who’s there to make final judgments and decide your future academic fate. But that’s not exactly the reality, is it?
The interview is a great opportunity to impress. Dress sharp, but don’t overdo it. Be there on time, maybe a bit earlier. Use the extra time to calm yourself and put order into your thoughts. Several days, or maybe one week before the interview, think about the questions you might be asked.
Write down your answers and see how you could express them better. Remember, the idea is not to exaggerate or lie about something. You should use your words and examples carefully so that they highlight the best things about you, not the past failures.
MCAT is what?
The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) developed the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), a multiple-choice test (AAMC). Nearly all US medical schools request MCAT exam results from students when they submit their university applications. The MCAT exam has four main sections and lasts around seven and a half hours to complete:
- The Biochemical and Biological Basis of Living Systems
- Biological System Foundations: Chemical and Physical
- Critical thinking abilities in Psychological
- Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior
Top 5 Medical Schools in Europe
If you’re wanting to study medicine in Europe, Oxford University should be at the top of your list because it is the best medical school in the world according to the Times Higher Education Supplement (2011–16). According to Oxford, college life is encouraging and brimming with opportunities.
Everyone at Oxford is a member of a college, their subject department or departments, and the university. Thus, students enjoy the advantages of both belonging to a large, prestigious institution and to a close-knit academic community. Oxford was founded in 1096, making it the first English-speaking university in the entire globe. The institution also has a long list of notable alumni, including 56 Nobel Prize winners and 28 British prime ministers.
Given that Oxford is an ivy league institution, admission can be difficult. If Oxford University interests you, be sure to read the entrance guidelines and application guidance.
The Catholic University of Leuven (KU Leuven), which is frequently ranked among the best institutions in Europe, is another research-focused institution on our list. This big institution has campuses in ten different cities, totaling fourteen.
Humanities and Social Sciences, Science, Engineering and Technology (SET), and Biomedical Sciences are the three primary faculties at KU Leuven. There is a PhD school for each of these institutions’ training programs. KU Leuven, one of the oldest universities on our list, was established in 1425. Their “Christan view of the world and the human” is stated in their mission statement. They add, “KU Leuven strives to be a critical center of reflection in and for the Catholic community and a forum for open discussion of social, intellectual, and ethical questions.”
Check out KU Leuven if studying medicine in Belgium is something you’re interested in. We advise reviewing your Dutch before applying!
University College London is the next item on our list (UCL). The best institution in the world for research strength is UCL, according to the Research Excellence Framework.
There have been 30 graduates of the institution who have received the Nobel Prize since its founding in 1826. UCL, which is ranked eighth overall in the 2022 QS World University Rankings, is a strong option for any medical student considering an international education. With more than 40,000 students, UCL is a sizable institution in the center of London. UCL can be the spot for you if you want to network extensively within London’s medical community. Larger schools provide many chances for relationship building and peer learning.
UCL is a good option for any student seeking to study in Europe due to its high rankings and favorable reviews from the academic community.
The largest academic medical research facility in Sweden and one of the top universities in the world is the Karolinska Institutet (KI). The Nobel Assembly, which chooses the recipients of the prizes in Physiology and Medicine, has been held at KI since 1901.
Additionally, KI has a lengthy historical past. Karolinska Institutet was established by King Karl XIII in 1810 as a “school for the training of expert army surgeons,” according to its website. The hospital has a significant role in almost all of Sweden’s medical history to date, including the implantation of the first pacemaker in a human. The university normally enrolls fewer than 7,000 full-time students because it is a school solely focused on studying medicine and conducting research. Attending a school that only teaches medicine can be beneficial because all of the institution’s resources are focused on that one area.
The state-of-the-art facilities at the Karolinska Institutet may be the place for you if you’re looking to study medicine in Europe and have a keen interest in research.
Imperial College London has a strong international reputation and is particularly well-known for its engineering and scientific programs. According to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021, the institution is ranked third in Europe, eleventh overall, and first for graduate prospects.
Numerous charts routinely place Imperial as one of the top universities in London. However, for a few noteworthy reasons, it has recently overtaken the nearby university UCL. Imperial outperforms UCL in all areas, including the percentage of international students and student faculty, the employer reputation indicator, and the availability of bursaries. Your best choice ultimately relies on your field of specialization because UCL and Imperial are also strong in subject-specific areas.
Imperial College London is “the only UK university to focus exclusively on science, engineering, medicine, and business,” according to its website. Imperial, which ranks third on our list, was established in 1907 and has invested a lot of time in developing its reputation.
Medical Schools in USA
The medical school of Boston, Massachusetts’s Harvard University is largely considered as the most esteemed institution of its kind in both the United States and the rest of the globe.
Since its founding in 1782, it has contributed to the achievements of a large number of gifted academics, medical experts, and Nobel Prize recipients. Numerous chances are available thanks to the Harvard Medical School. The school takes pleasure in providing state-of-the-art medical equipment, a current medical curriculum, and a sophisticated setting that motivates its students to provide their best efforts. There are numerous teaching affiliates in and around the Greater Boston Area who can offer training to Harvard students. There are many of these, such as the prestigious Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Institute, and the Joslin Diabetes Center.
A learning community has been established at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (JHUSOM) that is based on the Hogwarts houses shown in the well-known Harry Potter book and film series. Students are assigned to one of four colleges, Sabin, Taussig, Nathans, or Thomas, each of which bears the name of a notable member of the university’s faculty.
Each institution provides its students with a personal advisor who can guide them through the demanding medical curriculum, career alternatives, and research opportunities. Throughout the four-year medical curriculum, there are several ways in which the student community is strengthened.
Mayo Clinic School of Medicine
The Mayo Clinic Health System, which offers medical assistance to more than 60 underserved communities in the states of Iowa, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, is affiliated with the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine.
Any of these hospitals may be used for the clinical rotations that students must complete. The medical school also has sites in Phoenix and Jacksonville (Florida) (Arizona). This suggests that roughly 20% of all graduate physicians working in U.S. hospitals are employed by the Mayo Clinic. The medical school also offers a setting that is conducive to learning. The largest medical school in the country is housed at the college’s Rochester campus, which is a source of particular pride. Additionally, the college is the location of the world’s largest medical library.
The only private research university to be selected is the Weill Cornell Medicine School at Cornell University. The outstanding medical education provided here can help undergraduates, graduates, and even professionals. Out of a total of over 6,000 candidates, only about 106 students are accepted each year, making it one of the medical schools in the US with the strictest admissions standards.
The Stanford University School of Medicine was the first establishment of its kind in California when it first opened its doors in 1858. The medical college offers prestigious graduate programs in the biosciences in the disciplines of biology, bioinformatics, genetics, neurobiology, and neuroscience.
The university also has a full-service teaching hospital with the most advanced medical technology and infrastructure available. According to SUSOM, it is now ranked as the fourth best medical school in the country.
FAQS on Medical school entry requirements
How Much Does It Cost to Study Medicine in Europe?
The annual tuition costs for studying medicine abroad might vary from €3,000 to €30,000 depending on the nation you choose. These prices are purely based on the country's economic situation. Because medicine is taught and studied in the same ways everywhere, more expensive options do not necessarily imply higher quality education.
Here are some general price ranges for medical school in Europe:
The most popular and cost-effective options are Georgia and Serbia, where annual tuition starts at £4193.
The annual prices for Romania, Bulgaria, Poland, and other Central and Eastern European nations fall between £ 4324 and £ 13102.
Italy, Turkey, Cyprus, and Germany are among the countries with annual costs of £ 4193 and more.
Check out our comprehensive list of medical universities in Europe for a full price comparison. You can get comprehensive information on a variety of topics, including nations, programs, tuition costs, living expenses, and curricula.
Where Can You Study Medicine In Europe In English Without An Entrance Exam?
The majority of universities in Europe require applicants to take entrance exams in biology and chemistry. However, there are a number that don't require entrance exams:
Medical University Of Lublin - Poland
Wroclaw Medical University - Poland
Acibadem University - Turkey
Riga Stradins University (RSU) - Latvia
All 3 medical schools in Cyprus
European University in Tbilisi - Georgia
Carol Davila University of Medicine - Romania
University Of Medicine & Pharmacy Craiova - Romania
Oradea Medical University - Romania
Medical University Of Bialystok - Poland
Where to Study Medicine in English in Europe?
More than 100 medical schools in Europe offer English-language medical education. The most well-liked vacation spots include Georgia, Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, and Poland.
Visit our universities page for thorough evaluations and details on the top medical schools in these nations.
An extensive list of famous universities with their annual tuition costs and academic offerings may be found there. As an alternative, you can save hours of research time by speaking with a Medlink Students advisor who will give you a FREE consultation on your alternatives.
How many volunteering hours do I need for medical school?
We advise applicants against trying to accrue hours in order to be considered for medical school. The importance of an experience and your ability to use it to benefit others will frequently determine how many hours you have. It's time to think about quitting an activity whenever it gets monotonous or reaches its end, which means you can no longer discover a method to get anything worthwhile from it or make a significant contribution. Students from MedEdits who were admitted into medical school volunteered anywhere from 30 to 1000 hours.
What degree do I need to graduate before applying for medical school?
It varies. Only in the US are premedical courses and/or a bachelor's degree required in order to apply for a medical degree. Although you must have studied Biology, Chemistry, and other relevant topics during high school and/or pass an admission exam confirming your logical skills and understanding in science-related subjects, this is not the case in the UK or other European nations.
What are the most common names for Medical degrees?
Depending on where you study, the name of your medical degree can change significantly. The abbreviations MBBS, MB ChB, MB BCh, and BMBS are frequently used in the UK and other nations that use the British educational system. They all make reference to the medical graduates' degree, the Bachelor of Medicine.
Different designations may be used in other European nations, such as the Licentiate degree in Finland or the DES (Diplôme d'Études Spécialisées) in France.
The medical degree is known as a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine in the US and other nations that use it as a model (DO). Only Americans can receive the DO.
What is the best major for medical school?
There is no "best major," as we have stated in this post, for medical school. What interests you the most should be your major. To demonstrate your ability to succeed and that you have a strong foundation for medical school, take upper level science courses in addition to the required prerequisites if you are majoring in a subject other than science. Whatever field you are interested in, medical school admissions committees want to see that you have mastered it. Some students believe that college is their final chance to really study a non-science subject, so they make the most of it. This is valued by medical schools, which place a high importance on intellectual curiosity. According to the data, no particular major will improve your chances of getting into medical school.
The criteria for medical school can seem onerous, and you can feel overburdened when you consider everything you must do and achieve to be a competitive applicant. The positive news You can (and will) finish everything if you work hard, stay organized, and don’t rush through tasks. Thousands of our pupils and I have both done it in the past (a few years).
And because it is so fascinating and enjoyable, you can genuinely take pleasure in the process. Yes. FUN! A fundamental knowledge of the sciences and mathematics is necessary for the study of medicine. Therefore, biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics are the main subjects covered in medical school requirements.
The admissions committees for medical schools want to know, among other things, that you understand what it means to practice medicine, how to get along with individuals from different backgrounds, and how to work well in a team.
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