6 reasons why students DON’T get into medical school

education, medical school, medical degree, doctor, junior doctor, student, university
Read the list below to secure your place at a top medical school

Unfortunately, many aspiring medical students are unsuccessful in their pursuit to become a doctor. Here are 6 reasons as to why that might be!

1. Applying to only a small range of medical schools.

The competition for medical school admissions is extreme and so you have to be realistic and cast a wide net. We recommend you apply for a broad range of medical schools even if you have outstanding grades.

2. A lack of clinical experience.

You need to be able to demonstrate that your experience fits your career decision. Many medical school applicants are interested in science as while research is important, it can’t substitute exposure in a clinical setting. If you’re struggling to gain any clinical work experience, think about volunteering in a clinic or participating in a premedical program. Check out 24hrs on the ward - a virtual work experience on

3. Submitting poorly composed written documents.

No matter how impressive your achievements, your experience descriptions, and personal statement must convince the people reviewing your application that you are worthy of an interview. This is key in the first stage of your admissions process. Written documents that clearly and articulately express the evolution of your interest in medicine are more likely to influence the admissions committee to invite you to an interview.

4. Having an uninspiring academic profile.

You may have satisfactory grades and UCAT results but is your performance strong enough? Many med schools ‘screen’ applications and so if your grades don’t meet a certain threshold, you’ll be automatically rejected. It’s important you research the criteria for the med schools you wish to apply to - see our previous blog ‘How is your UCAT score used?’.

5. Submitting a late application.

You could be an outstanding applicant if you submit your application late, your application is essentially being considered against a large pool of applicants. It can take up to 6 weeks to review and verify an application.

6. Poor interview skills.

If you reach this stage, the interview is the most important determinant of your success. Applicants with great interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence are naturally better interviewees than those who are more introverted. Those who are very nervous and maybe not very articulate can underperform in the interview.

It’s important to understand the common areas that prevent applicants from getting into medical school so you can address possible weaknesses. However, how a school weighs each of these factors among many others, is determined by each applicant and their unique profile - remember each medical school considers every candidate individually and there are many things that you can do to improve your chances of success.

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