Flinders Uni- a brief introduction
Flinders was founded in 1966 and is situated in Bedford Park, an outer suburb of Adelaide. Transport wise it’s around 35 minutes by bus, perhaps quicker by car, from the city centre (traffic dependant, but it’s Adelaide, traffic is NOTHING compared to Melbourne or Sydney.) It’s quite close (3km) to Marion, as massive shopping complex with anything you’re need and around 5 km from Brighton beach. It’s a nice campus, not as opulent as say Melbourne Uni but the views over to the nearby beachside suburb of Brighton are quite stunning when walking to lectures. The medical school itself is integrated into the hospital: the lecture theatres/prac rooms are literally next door to one of the largest hospitals in Adelaide, making clinical exposure much more convenient. It’s quite a well-regarded uni in Australia and overseas for many disciplines. Besides, a medical degree is a medical degree (essentially)
The medical degree itself: an overview
The Medical program at flinders can be divided into two streams, both of which end up with the same degree/qualifications except one is undergrad entry and one is postgraduate. Read on for an explanation
Firstly, there is what is known as the “Bachelor of Clinical Sciences/Bachelor of Medicine Surgery (BMBS as it is unusually abbreviated to: it’s a medical degree, don’t stress). In this course you start immediately after school (no gap years allowed) do two years of essentially “pre-med” (Physiology, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Legal/Ethical studies, Anatomy) and if you get a credit average (65%) (Which you should, in the two years it has been running only two people have missed the cut and they kind of went off the rails, apparently and its pretty easy if you do the work) you move on to the Medicine/Surgery 4 year graduate program. So 2 + 4 =6 years.
The actual medical program at Flinders (which you end up doing after your two pre-med years) is a 4-year post-graduate course. Flinders was the first Australian University to adopt the 4-year post-grad model. The curriculum is based in the first two years on PBL (Problem based learning) whereby small groups of students work together to solve a case presented and apply their collective knowledge. To encourage teamwork, the first two years of the 4-year graduate program are an ungraded pass or fail system and this seems to encourage teamwork. Practical skills are introduced from day one and the medical school seems to be well equipped with mannequins and other training devices. Years 3 and 4 are held in a variety of settings: the usual time spent moving through large urban hospitals to rural settings. Electives can be done anywhere in the world: more on this later.
Admissions to the course
As there are two streams, there are two ways to get into the course. I’ll detail these separately.
Firstly, there is the 4-year post-grad stream, which you apply to the usual way (GAMSAT, GPA, Interview) and these combine to rank you. There are 87 domestic places and 25 international places available. I don’t know the specifics for this entry scheme but I imagine it’s pretty competitive.
Secondly, there is the 6-year (2 years pre med, 4 years med) program, Bachelor of Clinical sciences/Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery (BMBS). There are 25 places in this scheme and admissions are based on 90% ATAR and 10% UMAT (only section 1 and 2 are looked at). INTERVIEWS ARE NOT PART OF THE ADMISSIONS PROCESS. ATAR scores vary from about 96 to the high 99’s, the minimum cut off is 95. UMAT scores range from mid 60[SUP]th[/SUP] percentile and above, you MUST have the UMAT but a massively high score (aka 90[SUP]th[/SUP] percentile) isn’t really needed. Second rounders are often given, it’s not unusual to find out in late January/Early February that you were admitted (some people had already enrolled in Engineering when they found out) As stated previously you must obtain a Credit Average (65%) and not fail any units but this is pretty easy to do if you do some work, the Dean advises the students in this stream to get some “life experience” in the first two years as if you are hard working/smart enough to get into the course, apparently you should be fine.
There is another course, run in Darwin by Flinders, which follows the same model as above but I’m not sure of the details because it’s relatively new and is run in conjunction with Charles Sturt (from memory)
Just a disclaimer, all information provided above is obviously just my opinion/recollection/factual presentation so for more info email Flinders or check the website if you’re seriously considering applying. Personally I love it and recommend it wholeheartedly.
So far, loving Flinders, great course, great Uni, great people. Can’t complain!
Any questions, post below and I’ll get back to you