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Common pitfalls to avoid for year 12 school leavers and other medicine applicants

v.confused

New Member
What is your ATAR/UMAT combo?

CSU Dent have sent out OFFERS, so I highly doubt they still have interviews to do. WSU Med have sent out interview rejection emails (did you get one?), so it’s also probably safe to remove them from your list. If you didn’t get CSU Dent then I suspect you’d struggle to be competitive for UNSW Med, so that’s probably another one you can remove. Did you get a UNSW rejection email yesterday?

Physiotherapy at Newcastle sounds like a fabulous backup option! I’d caution you against Clin Sci at Macq.

I got a 99.1 atar and an 84 for the UMAT.

I think I should take CSU off in that case but I’m still not 100% sure since I called them the other day and they said they couldn’t tell me anything about whether I should take it off my list (they couldn’t say for sure that I had no chance for an offer). My best fiend got an offer after O-week this year but she got interviewed in the first round so I have a feeling they interview a lot more people than they expect to compensate for people who decide not to take the offer.

Yes, I got emails from both unsw and uws that I didn’t meet their requirements this year but I’m just wondering if they’d do any more interviews or not.

I think I’m just overthinking it, but I just really want to study medicine so I don’t want to stuff anything up in the application process.

Hmm, what you said about clinical science is definitely something I’ve heard before but could you please elaborate? I met a girl at my JMP interview who did the course and really enjoyed it, so that’s why I’ve been considering it lately. Plus, it’s compressed so I’ll have finished a bachelors degree in 2 years instead of 3 in case I can’t get into medicine.

Thank you for your help!
Would you have any other suggestions for good plan b’s?
 

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Logic

Medical Student
Silliest Member 2018
I got a 99.1 atar and an 84 for the UMAT.

I think I should take CSU off in that case but I’m still not 100% sure since I called them the other day and they said they couldn’t tell me anything about whether I should take it off my list (they couldn’t say for sure that I had no chance for an offer). My best fiend got an offer after O-week this year but she got interviewed in the first round so I have a feeling they interview a lot more people than they expect to compensate for people who decide not to take the offer.

Yes, I got emails from both unsw and uws that I didn’t meet their requirements this year but I’m just wondering if they’d do any more interviews or not.

I think I’m just overthinking it, but I just really want to study medicine so I don’t want to stuff anything up in the application process.

Hmm, what you said about clinical science is definitely something I’ve heard before but could you please elaborate? I met a girl at my JMP interview who did the course and really enjoyed it, so that’s why I’ve been considering it lately. Plus, it’s compressed so I’ll have finished a bachelors degree in 2 years instead of 3 in case I can’t get into medicine.

Thank you for your help!
Would you have any other suggestions for good plan b’s?
Hi v.confused,

I suggest you have a read of this thread to get an idea of why we usually recommend you don't study something such as clinical science/medical science/ biomedicine etc : Common pitfalls to avoid for year 12 school leavers and other medicine applicants

The degree does not have the best job outlooks with just the clinical science degree alone. You usually require further study such as a masters/PhD etc. if you plan to use that degree to pursue research. Doing something that you would enjoy if you never got in to medicine (as is what happens with the majority) and with a good outlook is a better idea.

Another thing to keep in mind is if you plan to use the accelerated 2 year degree to apply to medicine through the graduate pathway, a large portion of the universities do not accept the accelerated 2 year degree, with the minimum being a 3 year degree. This is another reason as to why taking that degree is not recommended.

Hope that clarified some of your questions, feel free to ask more :)
 

Smelly Boy

Fourth time’s the charm
Hmm, what you said about clinical science is definitely something I’ve heard before but could you please elaborate? I met a girl at my JMP interview who did the course and really enjoyed it, so that’s why I’ve been considering it lately. Plus, it’s compressed so I’ll have finished a bachelors degree in 2 years instead of 3
Most grad unis (vast majority as far as I know) only recognise 3+ year bachelor degrees. Even doing accelerated degrees in 2 years are sometimes also not recognised as a bachelors degree at some of the grad unis. So all you’re doing is closing your options for a lot of unis that only take year 12 leavers & also limiting yourself from applying to a lot of grad unis.

In addition to this there’s really not any work in this field besides working in a lab doing repetitive stuff. If that’s your thing then go for it but a lot of people obviously don’t like this!

Summary - if u do Clin science:
- limiting your options
- basically no work + the work is very uneventful
 

v.confused

New Member
Hi v.confused,

I suggest you have a read of this thread to get an idea of why we usually recommend you don't study something such as clinical science/medical science/ biomedicine etc : Common pitfalls to avoid for year 12 school leavers and other medicine applicants

The degree does not have the best job outlooks with just the clinical science degree alone. You usually require further study such as a masters/PhD etc. if you plan to use that degree to pursue research. Doing something that you would enjoy if you never got in to medicine (as is what happens with the majority) and with a good outlook is a better idea.

Another thing to keep in mind is if you plan to use the accelerated 2 year degree to apply to medicine through the graduate pathway, a large portion of the universities do not accept the accelerated 2 year degree, with the minimum being a 3 year degree. This is another reason as to why taking that degree is not recommended.

Hope that clarified some of your questions, feel free to ask more :)
Thank you!

Do you have any thoughts on what I said about my preferences? My understanding is that I can’t add back most medicine courses if I take them off now (to make space for Physio etc) since they have an inclusion deadline for uac. However, because most of my preferences are filled with competitive courses, I do want to get an early offer on the 20th so I have something to fall back on if I don’t get into the JMP. The issue is I don’t have enough spots as all my preferences are taken. And I’m also seriously questioning what my backup should be since there’s a very real chance I’ll end up studying it next year.

Hope that made sense.
 

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v.confused

New Member
Most grad unis (vast majority as far as I know) only recognise 3+ year bachelor degrees. Even doing accelerated degrees in 2 years are sometimes also not recognised as a bachelors degree at some of the grad unis. So all you’re doing is closing your options for a lot of unis that only take year 12 leavers & also limiting yourself from applying to a lot of grad unis.

In addition to this there’s really not any work in this field besides working in a lab doing repetitive stuff. If that’s your thing then go for it but a lot of people obviously don’t like this!

Summary - if u do Clin science:
- limiting your options
- basically no work + the work is very uneventful
Thanks! That makes sense.
 

Q3

Regular Member
You can definitely take wsu off your preference list because they finished all their interviews in November. Their website states that they do not conduct interviews outside the given dates.
 
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LMG!

Moderator
Admodistrator
Thank you!

Do you have any thoughts on what I said about my preferences? My understanding is that I can’t add back most medicine courses if I take them off now (to make space for Physio etc) since they have an inclusion deadline for uac. However, because most of my preferences are filled with competitive courses, I do want to get an early offer on the 20th so I have something to fall back on if I don’t get into the JMP. The issue is I don’t have enough spots as all my preferences are taken. And I’m also seriously questioning what my backup should be since there’s a very real chance I’ll end up studying it next year.

Hope that made sense.
You can definitely remove WSU and UNSW from your preferences. You mention you’ve already received rejection emails from both, and I can also confirm that your UMAT is not competitive for either university (you’d need mid-high 90s, percentile rank-wise, as a non-rural applicant). Also, WSU Med and CSU Dent have finished interviewing for 2019 entry.

Med and Dent Universities interviewing many more applicants than they have spaces to offer and one or two applicants per course getting offers as late as O week are both standard occurances. So your friend’s experience is not surprising. But unfortunately it doesn’t help you given your UMAT in particular means you were not competitive for an interview. This is the vital first step in the offer pathway.

The only university we have heard of doing unofficial last minute interviews is UAdel and even that, I believe, has only occurred the once that we’ve been made aware of here.

Your question re. clinical science has been answered above but I’ll reiterate; you mention you’ll have a bachelor degree in 2 years not 3 as a bonus, but unfortunately this rules you out of some grad Med universities and also is very unlikely to lead to employment in its own right. A career in clinical science (if you never get into Med, which is the statistical likelihood) would be, most likely, in research. If this was appealing to you, it’s important to realise you’d also need an honours degree and a PhD to be competitive for sustainable employment. The road is a LOT longer than those two bachelor years.

If having a qualification after two years is important to you, then there are career degrees, such as fast track nursing, that would also be worth looking into.

Comparing these with your Physio suggestion, yes physio is a slightly longer degree, but it’s a definite career degree with a well established path to fairly flexible/diverse employment options (hospital, private practice, paediatrics, geriatrics, rehab, elite sports, research, community health...). It would also open all Grad Med options, and allow you to continue applying for non-standard Med as you move through.

I think the important question to ask is: “if I never get into medicine I could definitely see myself as a... physiotherapist... researcher....” etc. I recommend against doing a degree solely for the purposes of getting into grad Med.

Good luck with your decision making and with JMP!
 

RMeister

New Member
In the past I supported this gap-year strategy for those who (1) have a reasonably high ATAR say 99.3+, (2) can potentially improve on UMAT, and (3) are prepared to go interstate (to gain the benefit of the extra med schools they can apply to vs starting uni).

In your case (1) you haven't said how good your ATAR is, (2) UCAT will be a totally new unknown, (3) all three NSW schools accept non-standard applicants. There isn't much for you to gain with a gap year.
Thanks for your replies Crow and A1! My ATAR was 99.4, and yes, I'm aware that starting a degree would open up the graduate medicine option, but still thinking in terms of undergrad, aren't there much less non-standard spots than the 'normal' spots which are still accessible through the gap-year option? And in the case that I fail UCAT next year, couldn't I just start a degree then, and start working towards graduate med?
 

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Crow

Moderator Band
Most Active 2018
Thanks for your replies Crow and A1! My ATAR was 99.4, and yes, I'm aware that starting a degree would open up the graduate medicine option, but still thinking in terms of undergrad, aren't there much less non-standard spots than the 'normal' spots which are still accessible through the gap-year option? And in the case that I fail UCAT next year, couldn't I just start a degree then, and start working towards graduate med?
Yes, there are less undergraduate medicine spots outside of Sydney open to non-standard applicants. That option only has merit if you are willing to apply interstate. However in saying that, your ATAR is already too low for Griffith and Flinders, you’d be closed off from UQ, and taking a gap year won’t improve your chances for JCU either (in terms of academic rank). That leaves Adel (which interviews more than 6x the number of applicants they offer places to), Curtin, UWA, and Monash (the latter two being among the most competitive undergraduate schools to get into in the country) - it’s really not closing off many schools to you in the grand scheme of things.

If you are, I strongly advise against taking the gap year purely to sit a single test that nobody has ever sat before in Australia (so it’s a complete unknown for everyone) when you only get one 2 hour block in the entire year to do it - if you did this then you’re banking your entire year on that one 2 hour window. Alternatively, there are many other appropriate reasons a person would take a gap year (e.g. travel, work), so if this is also a part of your plan then it would be a more reasonable course of action.

I personally stand by my point of commencing a tertiary degree ultimately opening up many more doors to you than it will close, but of course we’re only here to advise, and it will be your decision in the end. Good luck :)
 

A1

Admissions Speculator
Moderator
thinking in terms of undergrad, aren't there much less non-standard spots than the 'normal' spots which are still accessible through the gap-year option?
The three NSW undergrad schools don't set a separate quota for non-standard. Not only that, even if you start uni now (1) you will be eligible for WSU with your ATAR regardless of GPA, (2) JMP requires a modest GPA 4.8+, and (3) ATAR/GPA is not weighted into place selection. There is no advantage in taking a gap year to "protect" your 99.40, in fact we have heard from several current students there non-standards outnumber school leavers in the intakes.

The only possible disadvantage is UNSW combining GPA with ATAR to an equivalent Rank. If you achieve GPA 6.5+ it should maintain your 99.40, but less than 6.4 can drag you down below 99. Overall I don't think it's worth taking a gap year.
 

truetryhard

New Member
I know at least 3 people who got 99.95 and were not accepted into USyd's Double Degree Medicine Program, and decided to do a BSc with Advanced Studies at USyd (despite receiving offers from UNSW, UWS, etc.), hoping to get into USyd's medical school through graduate entry pathway via GPA+GAMSAT+interview. Is this a good idea, or would it have been wiser to accept the UNSW offer?
 

pi

Junior doctor
Admodistrator
In retrospect, for those three people, surely it would have been wiser to accept the UNSW offer.
 

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Crow

Moderator Band
Most Active 2018
I know at least 3 people who got 99.95 and were not accepted into USyd's Double Degree Medicine Program, and decided to do a BSc with Advanced Studies at USyd (despite receiving offers from UNSW, UWS, etc.), hoping to get into USyd's medical school through graduate entry pathway via GPA+GAMSAT+interview. Is this a good idea, or would it have been wiser to accept the UNSW offer?
I think this almost deserves its own pitfall in this thread!
- Turning down a med offer in the same city
- Taking a pathway that will see them graduate 1-2 years later if they’re lucky enough for it to work out for them on the first attempt
- Risking never getting into med to very possibly end up with a degree they can’t use

I know what I’d be doing in their situation!
 

Wombat1

New Member
My friend got a USyd DDMP offer on Monday and also having his UNSW interview and probbaly Monash interview later. She is actually hoping to get Monash or UNSW offer as the course is shorter.
Do you think she is right?
 

Wombat1

New Member
I know at least 3 people who got 99.95 and were not accepted into USyd's Double Degree Medicine Program, and decided to do a BSc with Advanced Studies at USyd (despite receiving offers from UNSW, UWS, etc.), hoping to get into USyd's medical school through graduate entry pathway via GPA+GAMSAT+interview. Is this a good idea, or would it have been wiser to accept the UNSW offer?
I thought UNSW offer is not out yet until Jan
 

A1

Admissions Speculator
Moderator
I know at least 3 people who got 99.95 and were not accepted into USyd's Double Degree Medicine Program, and decided to do a BSc with Advanced Studies at USyd (despite receiving offers from UNSW, UWS, etc.)
I might believe this for one odd person, but for three and you happened to know them all is very peculiar. I'd say likely their UNSW/WSU offers were non-med, either you misunderstood or they made it sound like med.
 

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LMG!

Moderator
Admodistrator
I thought UNSW offer is not out yet until Jan
This is presumably historical information, or the OP meant to say UNSW/WSU interview invites, not offers. For non-rural applicants, both UNSW and WSU offers will come out in Jan, 2019.

ETA: or it's incorrect as per A1 above.
 

crazycatlady88

New Member
Hello,

Just received my OP and I feel like I may just miss out on medicine entry this year.

So my backup plan is doing a undergrad like science or biomed or paramedicine (still deciding)... however, I am unsure if medicine uni's would be biased about which uni I go to to complete my undergrad.

Southern Cross University have given me an offer to study biomed there but I'm not sure if I should choose somewhere like griffith or UQ instead because they have better reputations when applying for med... or does it not matter (id like to go to southern cross bc it's closer to my house).

Note: I'm in Australia and also don't care where in Aus i study medicine (just as long as i can get in lol).
and if I have to complete an undergrad to get in, I'd prefer to go to southern cross but if i have to (for the sake of reputation in uni's eyes), i could go to griffith/UQ/etc.

pls help!!!!
thanks :)
 

LMG!

Moderator
Admodistrator
Hello,

Just received my OP and I feel like I may just miss out on medicine entry this year.

So my backup plan is doing a undergrad like science or biomed or paramedicine (still deciding)... however, I am unsure if medicine uni's would be biased about which uni I go to to complete my undergrad.

Southern Cross University have given me an offer to study biomed there but I'm not sure if I should choose somewhere like griffith or UQ instead because they have better reputations when applying for med... or does it not matter (id like to go to southern cross bc it's closer to my house).

Note: I'm in Australia and also don't care where in Aus i study medicine (just as long as i can get in lol).
and if I have to complete an undergrad to get in, I'd prefer to go to southern cross but if i have to (for the sake of reputation in uni's eyes), i could go to griffith/UQ/etc.

pls help!!!!
thanks :)
Hi,

First things first, I'd have a read through this thread about the perils of biomedicine and similar degrees.

But with regard to where you should do your undergrad, it really doesn't matter for the most part. SOME universities have preference programs for their own students for Medicine entry down the track (Monash, UAdel, Flinders, Curtin, UTAS), but with reputation, I don't believe there is any issue whatsoever. Choosing a University based on location close to home is very legitimate (cost of rent, family support, friends, employment if you have it already).

If you want to share your OP and ATAR we can probably provide information a little more clearly?
 

Crow

Moderator Band
Most Active 2018
Southern Cross University have given me an offer to study biomed there but I'm not sure if I should choose somewhere like griffith or UQ instead because they have better reputations when applying for med... or does it not matter (id like to go to southern cross bc it's closer to my house).
Depending on the degree you ultimately choose to do, there’s no problem going to Southern Cross as opposed to Griffith or UQ or QUT etc. However, a couple of points to consider are:

- Southern Cross doesn’t have as many options for health degrees as the other mentioned unis do (e.g. if you want to do paramedicine or pharmacy or medical laboratory science or physio, none of these are offered at Southern Cross)

- This probably doesn’t apply to you as you sound keen on doing a health-related degree, however reputation DOES matter in areas like law/commerce/accounting etc and anecdotally my friends from Griffith and UQ that graduated from these degrees have found it much easier to find jobs than friends from Southern Cross have in similar fields.
 

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