Medical student

MBBS Graduate Medicine

UCAS code A109 | 5 years

This programme, designed for those who already have at least a 2:1 in an appropriate science degree, allows you to achieve the MBBS qualification in five years.

About the course

Overview

A key aim of the Imperial Graduate Medicine programme is to identify and train the academic clinicians of tomorrow and, as such, is particularly suited to those students who are interested in pursuing a career in academic medicine.

The first two years of the course focus on science and foundation clinical skills, with tailored opportunities to pursue research and scholarship. Years 3 to 5 follow years 3, 5 and 6 of the six-year programme, with students exempted from the BSc Honours year.

The programme is delivered through an innovative combination of classroom-based study and practical (including clinical) experience.

  • Years 1 and 2 focus on core elements of the scientific basis of medicine and clinical experience
    Additionally, in Years 1 and 2 students will have the opportunity to:
  • Year 3: one 11-week and two 10-week clinical placements with a programme of live lectures and e-learning and a programme introducing clinical specialties
  • Year 4: a dedicated pathology course followed by six clinical specialities
  • Year 5: a range of clinical placements and lecture courses designed to prepare you for your first job as a doctor, specialised study modules and private study periods

Our programme is strongly aligned with the NHS vision and purpose, and we ensure that the NHS values underpin all that we do. 

More information on the values of the NHS constitution can be found here.

Assessment

Your performance will be assessed in all years. This is done through a combination of formal written and clinical examinations and continuous assessment. 

All assessments contributing to the MBBS programme will be pass/fail.

Student agreement

All students will be asked to sign an agreement upon entry which sets out the responsibilities of both the College and the student. The agreement complements the College’s current policies and procedures, promoting a coherent understanding between students and the Faculty as to what is expected from each and improving the student’s learning experience. 

Find out more: Faculty of Medicine and Medical Undergraduate Agreement [pdf]

Structure

Modules shown are for the current academic year, and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Students are not permitted to progress to the next year of the course unless satisfactory attendance and academic performance is maintained. Further details of progression rules can be found under procedures and regulations.

Years 1 and 2

During the first two weeks you will undertake an introduction and orientation to the undergraduate medical course and to the School of Medicine.

Following the introductory sessions you will begin an integrated programme consisting of themes covering the main elements of the core course: Scientific Basis of Medicine and Clinical Experience.

  • Molecules, Cells and Disease includes molecular and cell biology, genetics, blood and blood-forming tissues, metabolism, infection, immunity, cell pathology, and cancer
  • Life Support Systems includes the skin, cardiovascular, respiratory, alimentary and urinary systems, and the anatomy of the thorax, abdomen, pelvis and perineum
  • Life Cycle And Regulatory Systems includes human life cycle, neuroscience and mental health, the endocrine and musculoskeletal systems, the anatomy of the head, neck, spine and limbs, as well as pharmacology and therapeutics. Foundations of Clinical Practice includes communication skills, Society and Health Medical ethics and Law, epidemiology in practice, and Digital Literacy The initial element of clinical experience (the Patient Contact course) is also managed as part of this theme
  • Science and the Patient includes problem-based learning and personal and professional development and is taught in small groups throughout the first and second years

Teaching comprises lectures, clinical demonstrations, tutorials, seminars, computer workshops, laboratory practical and clinical skills classes, and some problem-based learning.

Graduate Medicine students will be cohorted together for small group teaching sessions as much as possible. Lecture programme attendance will be tailored to individual needs after discussion with the Head of Graduate Medicine.

Clinical Experience

Clinical experience in the first year is provided by the Patient Contact module. During the module, you will pay a number of visits to a patient or a family in their home environment, and in a clinic setting, in order to explore the module topics: illness, health and disease; the experience of health and social care; and living with a long term condition.

Patient visits are supplemented by small group work with practising GPs or hospital consultants.

In the second year you progress to your first hospital-based clinical attachment where you begin to apply your knowledge and skills to the care of patients.

In addition to the core learning associated with Years 1 and 2, you will be offered learning opportunities generated specifically to meet a key aim of the Imperial Graduate Medicine MBBS programme – to identify and train the academic clinicians of tomorrow.

Clinical Research Experience

During Year 1, research supervisors will be assigned. You will be able to undertake these research projects during free time across Years 1 and 2, although a specific eight week block will be assigned for completion of these projects during Year 2 as part of the Science and Patient Course.

Educational Training

During Year 1, you will receive specific teaching on ‘how students learn’ and ‘appropriate methods for teaching, learning and assessing in medicine’.

During Year 2, you will have the opportunity to act as Graduate Teaching Assistants within the Undergraduate Medical programme.

Those students wishing to obtain the Higher Education Academy Associate Fellowship will need to produce an Account of Professional Practice (APP) for submission to the HEA.


Year 3

This year consists of three 10-week clinical placements, which may be at any of the hospitals associated with the School.

You also continue to study the systems and topics component of the programme, begun in the first and second years, via a programme of live lectures and interactive online learning delivered alongside the clinical attachments. 

The emphasis throughout is on the acquisition of core skills and knowledge in general medicine (including cardiovascular, renal, respiratory, neurology, oncology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, haematology, rheumatology and medicine for the elderly), general surgery (including gastrointestinal, breast and vascular surgery, and urology), anaesthetics, and clinical pharmacology and therapeutics.

Core learning is based on:
  • Medical or surgical takes
  • GP teaching: basic clinical skills/methods in general practice
  • Patient clerking: to clerk (take the history and examine) at least two patients each week and write up these case histories – students are assessed on two of these written clerkings during each attachment, separate from the case project
  • Consultant teaching: key cases relating to the attachment – you will be expected to present patients during these sessions and this forms part of your assessment Problem-based learning
  • Lecture module: a continuation of systems and topics teaching
  • Other teaching: this will depend on the nature of the clinical attachment, but should include outpatient clinic teaching, theatre sessions, endoscopy sessions, and anaesthetics sessions
  • Reading and electronic resources
  • You will also undertake the three-week Background to Clinical Specialties module, which acts as an introduction to many different clinical specialties

Year 4

There is a dedicated Pathology module at the start of the fourth year, which covers essential clinical pathology followed by 10 clinical specialties:

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Paediatrics
  • Psychiatry
  • Oncology and Palliative Care
  • General Practice and Primary Health Care
  • Radiology
  • Infectious Diseases/GUM/HIV
  • Dermatology
  • Rheumatology
  • Orthopaedics/Musculoskeletal Medicine
  • Critical care
  • Teaching skills

Year 5

The final year consists of:

Seven three-week clinical attachments in:

  • Emergency Medicine
  • General Practice Student Assistantship
  • Cardiology
  • Neurology
  • Ears, Nose and Throat
  • Ophthalmology
  • Renal Medicine
  • Two senior placements (one in medicine and one in surgery)
  • One specialty choice module
  • An eight-week elective period which may be spent in the UK or overseas
  • An integrated module in Medicine, Surgery and Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics
  • A revision module for the finals examinations
  • A transition to Foundation module

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis. If your qualifications are not listed here, please see our academic requirements by country page, which gives the minimum entry requirements for a range of international qualifications.

The minimum entry requirement for this course is a 2.1 BSc or PhD in a biological subject such that you will have significant knowledge of the basic physiology and biochemistry of mammalian cells and organs. Examples of such degrees are:

  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology
  • Physiology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Science
  • Pharmacology

It is not possible for us to provide an exhaustive list identifying which degrees from throughout the world are acceptable and which are not; there are too many courses and they change too frequently.

If you are invited for an interview, you will need to provide details of your previous degree course. However, in order to understand what we are looking for, you should complete the checklist of the features of your degree.

If you find your degree does meet our requirements and you are subsequently invited for an interview, you will be required to produce a copy of this checklist validated by a tutor on the course you took. Candidates whose degrees do not satisfy the checklist requirements will not be eligible for entry into the course.

If you are yet to graduate at the time of application you will be expected to provide a letter from your course supervisor that contains a prediction of your expected degree class.

UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UKCAT)

We no longer accept the UKCAT admissions test for entry to Graduate Medicine.

Biomedical Admissions Test (BMAT)

All candidates applying to the five-year course must take the BioMedical Admissions Test (BMAT) in the year of application in order to be considered for an interview.

You are required to register with BMAT assessment centres prior to the test. Please refer to the Admissions Testing Service website for key dates and additional information. Candidates who would like extenuating circumstances considered for their performance in the BMAT must adhere to the procedure found here.

Invitations to an interview will be based on:

  • the content of your UCAS application
  • your performance in all three sections of the BMAT

BMAT cut-off scores are calculated each year as a result of ranked candidate BMAT scores versus number of expected interview sessions. As a result, the absolute BMAT cut-off changes each year. For 2016 entry, the minimum scores required were:

  • a score of 4.5 in section 1
  • a score of 4.5 in section 2
  • a score of 2.5 and grade B in section 3

Overseas students

There will be a small number of places available on the Graduate Medicine course each year to outstanding overseas students.

Candidates should submit a full degree transcript (or a transcript of their study to date) to the Admissions Officer at medicine.ug.admissions@imperial.ac.uk when they submit their applications to UCAS.

Deferred entry

Deferred applications will not normally be accepted from applicants to the Graduate Medicine course.

Transfers

Students will not be accepted for transfer into this course from other Imperial courses or institutions.

Health requirements

All candidates offered a place must complete a health assessment with the College's Occupational Health Service. You will be sent a confidential health questionnaire along with your offer. You should complete this and return it to the Occupational Health Service as soon as possible.

The primary aim of the assessment is to learn about any health problems or disabilities you may have which may require special support, so that we can plan for this before you begin your course.

We are also required by the General Medical Council (GMC) to ensure that you are not affected by a condition that would make it impossible for you to acquire the skills necessary to qualify and work safely as a doctor before accepting you into the course.

The School of Medicine welcomes applications from candidates with disabilities and, wherever possible, seeks to provide any extra support that may be necessary. Most disabilities or health problems, even if substantial, can be accommodated.

If you have a disability or health problem that you think may affect your fitness to practise, or which you think may be difficult to accommodate, then you can contact the College Occupational Health Service for advice, in confidence, before applying. For further information read the GMC booklet Tomorrow's Doctors.

Vaccinations for medical school

If you are offered a place, you will need to be immunised against a range of infections to meet health and safety standards necessary for work with patients.

You will be sent details of the vaccination programme along with your offer. As soon as you receive this information you should arrange with your doctor or a health clinic to begin this programme, as it can take eight months to complete.

Blood-borne infections

Chronic viral infections that are carried in the blood can be transmitted during surgery to patients from an infected healthcare worker.

When you come to Imperial, in order to comply with NHS requirements, you will be offered blood tests to check that you are not infected with hepatitis B, hepatitis C and/or HIV, before you can be cleared for hands-on surgical experience.

If you are infected, you will be allowed to continue your course but not allowed to assist with or undertake surgery, or other 'exposure-prone' procedures on patients. It will not prevent you from qualifying or practising as a doctor, except for the restriction on exposure-prone procedures.

Criminal record/Disclosure and barring service check

Admission is subject to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974) Section 4(2) (Exemption) Order 1975 and DHSS Circular HC(88)9 guidelines regarding child protection and police checks.

As a condition of acceptance, all applicants will be required to have completed an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check by the given deadline. When you are offered a place you will be advised of the procedures as part of the admissions process.

Candidate selection

Admission to medicine at Imperial is highly competitive. We receive well over 800 applications for entry and interview about 80 candidates. We make approximately 30 offers.

We use a range of criteria to assess candidates. Candidates must meet the minimum academic requirements outlined in the section on entrance requirements and BMAT. Candidates are expected to be available for competitive interviews in January 2017 without which no offer will be made.

Candidates must:

  • have obtained or be predicted to obtain a degree of adequate class, in an acceptable biological subject, to satisfy the School of Medicine’s academic criteria
  • have sat the BMAT examination in the academic year prior to the year of admission
  • submit their application on time

Candidates who do not fulfil the above requirements will be rejected immediately.

If a candidate fulfils the minimum entry requirements his or her application form will be passed to an experienced member of the selection panel. After that staff member has reached a decision about whether to interview the candidate or not, that decision will be ratified by one of the admissions tutors. The panel members look at the following criteria when assessing applications:

  • Grade(s) and content of previous degree(s)
  • BMAT scores
  • Evidence of commitment to the values of the NHS constitution
  • Motivation and understanding of medicine as a career
  • Community activities
  • Leadership and teamwork interests
  • Referee’s report
Interviews

If you have been assessed as suitable you will be required to attend an interview. These will generally take place in January 2017. Normally, the interview panels consist of a chairperson, two other members of the selection panel, a senior medical student and frequently a lay observer. The interview is not intended to be an intimidating experience and staff will try to put candidates at ease while evaluating the following:

  • Motivation and realistic approach to medicine and medical research as a career
  • Capacity to deal with stress
  • Evidence of working as both a leader and a team member
  • Evidence of commitment to the values of the NHS constitution
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Likely contribution to university life
  • Communication skills, and maturity of character

There will be three possible outcomes from the interview:

  • An offer – conditional upon verifying/obtaining relevant qualifications
  • Reserve list – meaning that if you remain unplaced at any other medical school, we may be able to reconsider you later in the admissions cycle should a vacancy occur
  • Rejection

Candidates should normally receive a written response from the School of Medicine by early February.

Candidates who are unsuccessful cannot be reconsidered for entry within the same cycle but may reapply the following year (if they obtain the relevant qualifications at the first attempt) without prejudice to the new application.

Scholarships

Candidates will be invited to compete for a scholarship based on their performance at interview. There are a limited number of entrance scholarships available funded by College Endowments, St Mary’s Association, and the St Mary’s Development Trust. Please note that these scholarships are only open to home/EU students.

Application for a scholarship is normally in the form of an essay. Awards are restricted to students whose place at Imperial is confirmed and who enrol on the MBBS/BSc or the MBBS course.

Tuition fees and funding

Home and EU students

2016 entry:

£9,000 per year

Please note the tuition fee you pay may increase slightly each year in line with inflation and subject to UK government regulations.

Applicants will not be eligible for a tuition fee loan from government however you may be entitled to a government maintenance loan to support your living costs.

For further information, please select A109 MBBS Graduate Entry from the list on the NHS funding for medical students page to see full information on fees and funding

Islands and overseas students

2016 entry:

£37,100 per year

Please note that the tuition fee amount you will pay may increase slightly each year in line with inflation.

Fees for 2017 have not yet been confirmed. Please check back for details.

Funding

For information on funding available for Graduate Medicine students from the NHS and the UK government please see the relevant section on our Fees and Funding website.

How to apply

UCAS Apply system

To apply to study at Imperial you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

The UCAS code for Imperial College London is I50.

Application deadlines

All applications which include choices for medicine must be submitted to UCAS by 18.00 (UK time) on 15 October 2016 for entry in October 2017.

The deadline for other courses starting in 2017 is 18.00 (UK time) on 15 January 2017.

Students at a school/college registered with UCAS

All UK schools and colleges and a small number of EU and international institutions are registered with UCAS.

To make it clear which school or college you are applying from you will need to ask one of your teachers or advisers for the UCAS buzzword. You will need to enter this in UCAS’s Apply system when you register.

See our How to apply section for further guidance.

Independent applicants and students at schools/colleges not registered with UCAS

If you’re applying independently or from a school/college not registered with UCAS you will still need to use UCAS’s Apply system. You will not need a UCAS buzzword.

See our How to apply section for further guidance.

Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

For more information about the Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS), please see the International Student Support website.

Tracking your application

Once you’ve completed your application and it’s been submitted through UCAS’s Apply system, you can use UCAS’ Track system to follow its progress and manage your choices.

Professional accreditation

All MBBS degrees based at Imperial College London are professionally accrediated by the General Medical Council (GMC). Additionally, all MBBS degrees lead to the award of the Associateship of Imperial College School of Medicine (AICSM).

What our graduates do

Graduates from the School of Medicine enter a wide and diverse range of careers, including medical practice, biomedical research, the pharmaceutical industry, scientific journalism and healthcare management.

Achieving an MBBS degree from Imperial provides you with a primary medical qualification (PMQ). Holding a PMQ entitles you to provisional registration with the General Medical Council (GMC) and license to practise in approved Foundation Year 1 posts, subject only to acceptance by the GMC that there are no fitness to practise concerns that need consideration.

You will need to apply for a Foundation Year 1 post during the final year of your undergraduate course through the UK Foundation Programme Office selection scheme, which allocates these posts on a competitive basis. So far, all suitably qualified UK graduates have found a place on the Foundation Year 1 programme, but this cannot be guaranteed.

On successful completion of the Foundation Year 1 programme you will be eligible to apply for full registration with the GMC before entering Foundation Year 2. Doctors need full registration with a license to practise for unsupervised medical practise in the NHS or UK private practice.*

*This information is correct as of January 2016 but please be aware that regulations in this area are subject to change.