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How to apply for medicine in the UK as an Irish student

UK medical schools have an excellent reputation internationally and many Irish students travel to the UK to study each year. Applications to UK universities are made through UCAS (like the UK version of the CAO). Irish students applying to study medicine in the UK can start their UCAS application over the summer before 6th year (applications open on 18 May 2021). They must submit their UCAS application by 15 October 2021, and need to sit UCAT between 26 July and 29 September 2021. These students will enter medicine in the UK in September 2022. Students who have completed 6th year and...
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I didn’t get a good enough HPAT score. What should I do?

After spending months working through HPAT guides, completing practise exams and labouring over difficult drills it can be devastating when HPAT results day arrives, and you realise that you have not achieved a good enough HPAT score to get into medicine. It is completely understandable that to feel extremely disappointed, but it is very important that you have a clear idea of the other options that you have to get into medicine. Firstly, remember that the points required for entry into medicine vary from year to year, and also depend on your performance in the Leaving Certificate. Thus, you may not...
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AN EXPLANATION OF HPAT RESULTS: HOW ARE HPAT RESULTS CALCULATED? AND OTHER HPAT RESULTS FAQS.

WHEN AND HOW WILL I RECEIVE MY HPAT 2020 RESULTS? You will receive your HPAT 2020 results in late-June. You will receive an email from ACER once results are available to notify you of their release. You will be able to access your results via the ACER HPAT-Ireland website, by logging into your account. WHAT HPAT RESULTS WILL I RECEIVE? When you receive your HPAT results you will be given a score for each HPAT section (logical reasoning and problem solving, interpersonal understanding and non-verbal reasoning), and an overall weighted aggregate HPAT score. From this information, you will also be given...
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Medicine, the HPAT, the CAO and one big mistake to avoid

For any Leaving Certificate students hoping to go on to study medicine, the HPAT and the CAO are two well-known abbreviations which are of great importance to you as you prepare for life after the Leaving Certificate. For me, I wasn’t certain until the very end of 6th year as to what exactly I wanted to do after school. Honestly, it wasn’t until those last few weeks while I waited for my Leaving Cert results that I realised for certain that I had put down the right courses in the right order from my desperate hope that I would get the...
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How to survive your first year of Medicine

Medicine is tough, really tough but you’ve made it this far so you’re tougher. First year is a whirlwind and at times can seem overwhelming but having made it through to the other side of those first few full on months I can hand on heart say that everyone is telling the truth when they say college will be the best time of your life. You’ll have ups and downs, I can guarantee that, but overall the ups will far outweigh the downs, but here’s just ten tips to help you power past those downs and navigate your way through the...
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HOW WILL CALCULATED GRADES AFFECT HPAT AND MEDICAL ENTRY 2020?

Due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Leaving Certificate Examinations have been cancelled. Many students are wondering how this will affect HPAT and medical entry in 2020. This blog answers some common questions.   What is the new system of Calculated Grades? The Calculated Grades system has been selected to provide Leaving Certificate 2020 students with the ability to progress to third level education or to begin work. The grades will be calculated from a combination of a school-based estimate and data available on past performance of students in each school and nationally. This allows a standardisation to give students as...
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GAMSAT will be run online in 2020

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Graduate Medical School Admission Test (GAMSAT) will be run online at the end of May for the first time ever. GAMSAT is used to select students for entry into graduate medical programs. GAMSAT is usually run in person across multiple venues. However, due to COVID-19, the GAMSAT exam scheduled for Saturday 21 March 2020 has been cancelled. This applies to all candidates, in all locations globally. ACER, which runs GAMSAT, has said that candidates will sit GAMSAT at home or at a private location of their choosing. Candidates will need to have a...
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Ten tips for surviving your first year of Medicine

Medicine is tough, really tough but you’ve made it this far so you’re tougher. First year is a whirlwind and at times can seem overwhelming, but having made it through to the other side of those first few full-on months, I can hand on heart say that everyone is telling the truth when they say college will be the best time of your life. You’ll have ups and downs, I can guarantee that, but overall the ups will far outweigh the downs. Here’s ten tips to help you power past those downs and navigate your way through the minefield that is...
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Studying undergraduate medicine in Ireland at a glance

There are 5 universities in Ireland that offer undergraduate medical degrees: Trinity College Dublin (TCD)The Royal College of Surgeons Ireland (RCSI)University College Dublin (UCD)University College Cork (UCC)National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG). TCD and UCC offer a five year course, UCD offers a six year course and both NUIG and RCSI offer a 6 or 5 year course. The entry requirements for each of the courses varies slightly, but all applicants are required to sit the HPAT exam and receive a minimum of 480 points in their leaving certificate. TCD has 121 places, UCD offers 90 places, UCC offers 88 places,...
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Is medicine for me? 5 tips on how to make the big decision

Deciding what to put on your CAO can be extremely daunting. Personally, it took me months and lots of research and thought to finally make that decision. Here are a few of the ways I went about deciding whether medicine was right for me or not:   1. Talk to those in the know I was lucky to be given the phone numbers of friends of friends and colleagues of relatives who had just recently completed med school and were beginning to embark on various careers in medicine. Listening to their first hand experiences and being able to ask questions about...
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Dispelling the Myths of Medicine

  The idea of studying medicine at university can seem like a very daunting prospect. There are many myths and false beliefs about the degree which allow these fears to prosper. Having completed my first year studying medicine at Monash University, I hope I can dispel some of your fears about potentially studying medicine at university.   Medicine is ULTRA competitive Granted, Medicine, like all high-achieving courses, is competitive. Many of the students are extremely dedicated to their studies and strive to get the best out of themselves. However, one of the great aspects of medicine is that one of the...
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Why study Medicine?

There are only two things people seem ask you about in sixth year: those big exams in June 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 HPAT and putting medicine down on your CAO, here are just a few of the reasons why you should study medicine. Unlike a lot of...
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SO YOU WANT TO BE A DOCTOR? HOW TO GET INTO MEDICINE

Congratulations on your decision to pursue medicine as a career! Medicine is an interesting, valued and rewarding profession. The process of getting into medicine can be confusing, so here’s an introduction. Criteria for getting into medicine The minimum points required to get into medicine varies from year to year and between universities, but a total of at least 720 points is generally required. This is the addition of: Your adjusted Leaving Certificate points andYour overall HPAT score Let’s consider each of these in turn.   Adjusted Leaving Certificate Points In determining entry into medicine, Leaving Certificate Examination points are adjusted as...
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MEDICINE AS A DOUBLE DEGREE

A common question that aspiring medical students ask is whether they should combine their medical degree with another degree, such as arts or music. It is important to think carefully about this. You will be spending 3–4 years of your life and as well as a lot of money if you pursue a double degree. Will a degree such as English, history, philosophy, music or literature actually benefit you?Some argue that these degrees are worthwhile, may point to all the things you can learn, and perhaps even point out a few successful people that achieved a lot with such degrees. But...
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