Becoming a Doctor

To become a doctor, you must first attend university to study medicine. The course is usually either five or six years long, and includes a mix of both theoretical and practical components.

Entry to medical school is fierce, and there are many applicants for each place.To apply for a place, prospective doctors must ensure they meet the entry criteria. This criterion is different for every university, but usually includes the requirement of high grades at both GCSE and A-level. In addition, extra-curricular activities such as volunteering or humanitarian work, and an in-depth knowledge of the role of the doctor is required.Entrants that meet the entry criteria will usually be required to sit an exam designed to determine their cognitive ability before progressing with their application. If they pass this, they will be invited for an interview. This interview can take many forms and include things such as presentations, role play and a formal personal interview.
Once entrants pass the entry criteria and are offered a place at university, they have several years of study ahead of them before qualifying as a junior doctor. Depending on the university, most medical courses consist of the first three years being predominantly theory based, including subjects such as anatomy and physiology, and the different systems within the human body. This progresses to pathology and identifying when something is wrong. The final two years incorporate more practical learning, both within a hospital environment in addition to placements such as at hospices, GP surgeries, with paramedics, and in health clinics.
It is only after the successful completion of the challenging medicine course that applicants can become junior doctors.