Studying Medicine Abroad
A few students who don’t get into medicine in the UK choose to study abroad. Then, once qualified, they sit entrance exams to allow them to practise in the UK. This is an unusual option but may be a feasible choice for some, especially those who have language skills or an open mind about living and training elsewhere.
Studying medicine in Eastern Europe (countries such as Romania and Bulgaria) is becoming increasing popular as the cost of higher education there is lower, alongside more affordable living costs. The prospect of being immersed in a completely different culture has an adventurous allure to it as well, so if you’re an adaptable person who enjoys novel surroundings, this may be a suitable option for you. Studying abroad also encourages independence, with the experience likely to be an enriching one in which you become more self-aware.
Language is an important factor to consider when applying to study medicine abroad. Checking whether the course will be taught in English, or ensuring that your proficiency in the necessary language is suitable for you to follow the course, is essential. Some universities offer language classes to allow you to improve your proficiency. This will be especially important as you move into the clinical years and will be interacting regularly with patients whose first language is not English.
There are several online consultancy companies which allow you to research your options, organise admission exams and submit your applications to universities abroad. It is always worth researching these companies carefully to compare the quality of their services and the price at which they are offered.
If you’re planning to return to work in the UK it is essential to check whether the course you plan on pursuing fulfils the criteria set out by the UK General Medical Council. This is to determine whether you will be eligible to gain GMC certification and practise legally in the UK as a doctor upon graduation. Find out more on the GMC website.