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  1. #1
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    BMAT for Cambridge Graduate Entry

    I was advised by one of the college's admissions staff not to take the BMAT if I was applying to the graduate entry course as "it is difficult to attain the required grade." I would love to not have to take the BMAT, but if I wanted to apply to other programs (which I obviously would...) then I would have to take the BMAT, correct? Is there anyway to take it to give to the other schools but not give it to Cambridge? Or is it common to just apply for one program?

    Also, is there a way to apply to both the regular entry and graduate entry programs, or be considered for regular entry if you don't make the graduate entry cut?

    Lastly, what BMAT score does the graduate entry program look for?

    Thanks



  2. #2
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    I hail you in considering applying for Graduate Entry to Cambridge! Cam is arguably one of the best places in the world to study medicine - duh, everyone knows that - and can be very rewarding and fulfilling.

    First, you do NOT need the BMAT to apply for a graduate entry course. Oxford, Cambridge and Imperial use it for their 6-year course only and UCL, which doesn't have a graduate entry course, uses it exclusively for their 6-year medical degree.

    Yes, you can apply to both regular and graduate entry programs and you are, in fact, encouraged to do so since 4-year medical courses are, by nature, very competitive. Maybe it is because these grads already have superb study skills or perhaps because the ratio of applicants-to-places is very high.

    Either way, you will find that King's will automatically consider unsuccessful applicants (to their four-year courses) for the five-year course and so there is no need to waste an application choice/entry here. And Oxford does not allow one to apply for both the five- and the four-year courses. You are encouraged, in the first instance, to apply for the four-year course if you are qualified.

    Unfortunately, as regards sending your BMAT to institutions, there is no facility to select who you send your scores to. All BMAT institutions whom you have applied to will, unfortunately, see your scores. Maybe you should not apply to the BMAT unis if you are also thinking of applying to the Cambridge Graduate course because Cam will see your score.

    All the best. Trust your own instincts and go for what is right for you. I do indeed wish you the best of Luck!

    And btw, I am applying for Cambrige Grad entry also; but in 2021! Yes, that far way, when I will be 35+!
    Last edited by Crocodile Dundee; 15-04-2009 at 05:13 AM. Reason: omission

  3. #3
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    Thank you for the help, crocodile dundee. With this new information, then I won't take the BMAT but will do an access course (hopefully College of West Anglia) and apply this october. I forgot to mention, however, that my previous degree is a degree in finance and not the sciences. I have taken a substantial amount of university level science courses, though, and will be completing the access course. Will I still be eligible for the graduate entry programs? I know I will still be eligible for Cambridge, but what about the others? I need to figure out which tests I need to take and which 4 schools to apply for.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4
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    OK - you have to check the websites. I know St George's London does not require any specific degree but requires the GAMSAT, which I understand is a difficult and gruelling examination, lasting the better part of a day. Same goes for King's and Southampton, I think.

    Besides, there are excellent five-year courses at Leeds, Newcastle, Birmingham and Edinburgh. You will probably need the GAMSAT and UKCAT and maybe the MSAT.

    You will have to research individually through the medical schools' websites - UKUSUK - I wish you the best of luck...

  5. #5
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    Regarding Cambridge (CGMC): their requirements are kind of complicated. I ended up having to send basically every transcript (with syllabus) since GCSE to the admissions tutor at college who forwarded it to the committee that considers whether you fulfil the "premedical requirements". That said, they were extremely helpful - rather than just tell me "you should take the BMAT" they went through all the trouble to check my academic history - before I even decided to apply!
    They ask for an "A" in each of sections 1 and 2 for BMAT for the graduate course, which is very hard to achieve. But they leave a lot of options to get around the BMAT - basically any distance A-level, OU or uni course etc., that, syllabus-wise, covers what they need (A-level chem and a couple of further requirements, look it up on the webpage under "premedical requirements), will be able to substitute. E.g. I didn't have enough science A-levels but had done a physics module of sorts in my 1st year at uni - I obtained a copy of my old syllabus and my grades etc and posted it, and it was approved as the topics overlapped sufficiently.

    The only thing to do is to write to the admissions tutor at the college you're interested in and ask. They are VERY helpful. They can't say much if you're very vague, but if you can compose e.g. a document with all your courses, marks, and the respective syllabus (in detail) for each course, they will be able to tell you where you stand, requirement-wise. It might be that you don't need a whole Access year but that a few OU courses or a distance A-level will do - I'd investigate!

    Another thing to keep in mind is that they take work experience very seriously - preferably long-term and in a hands-on caring role...

  6. #6
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    P.S. If you take the BMAT (for other unis like UCL or for the 5-year programme at Cam which doesn't require As in both sections - else they'd probably not have many applicants left...) it doesn't matter if the Cam graduate-entry people see your score (the interviewers won't in any case) - they will ignore it if you have fulfilled the pre-medical requirements...(that's how I understood it). They don't use it in the selection process even if you do it - and even if you are required to do it because you don't fulfil the premedical requirements otherwise, they just tick off whether you got the required As in sections 1 and 2 - the interviewers etc won't see the score.

  7. #7
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    Btw I think the Cambridge non-graduate course is SIX YEARS long, not 5. And you didn't say what marks or better these 'A' grades in BMAT Sections 1 and 2 are...

  8. #8
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    The course is 5 years I believe if you already have a BSc since the 3rd year is just an intercalated BSc.

    As for what constitutes an A, it is a Cambridge thing I think - I seem to remember it was over 6.5, but perhaps it changes from year to year so better ask someone in the current know (I don't want to spread wrong information here). Below is the information I got sent a few years ago - to check whether it is still valid you need to write to the admissions tutors I guess!

    Pre-medical (P-M) requirements for any medical course. These are minimum requirements for admission. The University P-M requirements (a minimum standard) are (1) GCSE passes in Physics, Biology, and Mathematics, at a C grade or above (or Double Science instead of the 2 sciences). AND (2) A Level or AS level, Chemistry, plus two out of Physics, Biology or Mathematics. At least one of the second group has to be at A Level. (See: Undergraduate Admissions: Medicine Graduate Course entrance requirements which also states the minimum requirements; note the Undergraduate Prospectus further emphasises the need for A level Chemistry at: Undergraduate Admissions: Medicine entrance requirements and expectations). In common with all the undergraduate colleges, Wolfson College prefers applicants to have passed Chemistry at A level standard in order to cope with the course. A level Chemistry or its equivalent is now a requirement for medical studies. The alternative for the Pre-Medical Requirements is to pass the BMAT test held in early November (Undergraduate Admissions: Admissions tests and written work) at ‘A’ grade in the first two sections. However, very few students manage this, and it leaves no backup if the exams have been avoided. The BMAT test is not currently necessary for GCM entry, but is a requirement for the Affiliated/Standard courses which all share the same lectures in years 1 and 2.

    For pre-medical requirements purposes there are also equivalent exams to the minimum required A and AS passes available from OU courses, the BMAT exam passed at AA, 1 year Access to Medicine/Science Courses (GCM recognises Access to Medicine at Kings Lynn or Norwich for pre-med purposes), or by taking modules (content and time studied required) forming part of your degree course. If you do (or will) meet the pre-medical requirements (or their equivalents) your application will be considered. However, if you have not already met the pre-medical and A level Chemistry requirements and will be offering AS/A level exams, or equivalents, for this purpose, you are strongly advised to discuss the exams/equivalents with the Admissions Tutor. Note that the above Access courses are accepted as fulfilling the A level Chemistry requirement as well as the pre-medical requirements.
    Last edited by Pammy; 16-04-2009 at 11:23 PM.

  9. #9
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    OK - well and all said, I guess...However, it is as well that you emphasised how difficult it is to achieve an 'A' grade in the BMAT's first two sections.

    When I took in the exam in November 2006, I managed a 5 in section 1 and something far less in section 2. A year later, a friend attempted the BMAT and had like 8.5 in BMAT section 2 but less than 5 on section 1.

    In my view, I think it is far easier to achieve a mark greater than 6.5in section 2, which is a test of science skills than in section 1, which is a more demanding test of general (academic) aptitude.

  10. #10
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    I agree - I think the problem is that it really asks for an excellent mark in each of section 1 and 2, and not some combined average which would leave some room for compensating bad luck in one section! Far easier to do some OU course I think :-)

    However, I would ascertain the current admissions policies by writing to the admissions officer (it even advises to do this in the prospectus) since they are always subject to change, and everyone's circumstances are unique!

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