MBBS Medicine

Review Breakdown

Course / Module Content
Teaching Quality
Learning Resources
Assessments & Feedback
Academic Support
Enjoyment Factor

Reviews

Anonymous

Fantastic integration of learning clinical care skills and the fundamentals of science upon which to understand the workings of the human body. More artistic aspects are also represented, such as sociology and law, as well as the option to take contrasting modules (such as a language).

Anonymous

Heavily lecture based in the first two preclinical years, in contrast to most medical schools which can often have more of a clinical problem-based learning approach. It is not for everyone, and sometimes it can feel like there is no point learning about the intricacies of subjects such as embryology with little clinical relevance, but it really prepares you for opportunities outside of the main curriculum to pursue research opportunities that are both enjoyable and useful to your application at the end of the 6 year course. The first two years are preclinical, concentrating on the medical sciences that underlie research and clinical practice. The intercalated year is mandatory for undergraduate students in third year, and there is a reasonably diverse range of around 20-30 programmes, within which countless options for module choices to focus your learning on a subject of your choosing. The 4th-6th years are the clinical years much like any other medical school, which offer a balance of lectures (more in 4th year than 6th) and clinics, some of which happen in the main hospitals, but increasingly through to 6th year you will find yourself travelling quite a lot outside of London. Overall a very enjoyable and interesting course, if the structure of a lecture-based course interests you. The work is not incredibly difficult, although there is a lot of it so it requires hard work and a lot of hours (late nights in the library!) to keep up, although not impossible to learn without a bit of effort! As the year is of a huge size (approx. 300 and increasing in the clinical years), in the preclinical years especially there is not a huge deal of feedback, most feedback coming throughout the year in the form of marks from multiple choice quizzes. Support is good if you need it, although you need to have a good work ethic to keep on top of your work as there are infrequent tutorials and you can get away without having done anything until exams come around if you are not careful!

Anonymous

The teaching is excellent and clear. However, lectures are of a very large number so it is quite impersonal and asking questions to lecturers is difficult. There is a lot of support from peers to make up for this.

Anonymous

I transferred to UCL from Cambridge University after completing 3 years of pre-clinical studies and I am very happy I made the decision. Cambridge provides a lovely, small community within the colleges and while I miss the intimacy of college life, UCL is very good at throwing people together in small teaching groups so I still have an immediate group of friends despite the huge year group. There is a good social scene, especially Wednesday night if you play sports and facilities such as student bars and libraries are excellent. The final three years of medicine involve rotating through lots of hospitals and I think this is a very good thing as you see a wide range of medical conditions and get used to mucking into a team of people you don't know.

Anonymous

Medicine isn’t quite like other degrees, so forget two hours of contact time per week and one essay per term. Learning begins at the atomic level – about the biophysics and chemistry in year one, and ends with the macroscopic – a real person who is sick and needs treatment, stat. A medical student's head is filled with dogma from the start - that you cannot and will not be judged by the standards of others – whether that be academic endeavor, constraints on your time, or professional behaviour.The first three years were spent with formaldehyde-filled anatomy lessons, cell biology and pathology labs (what happens when the body goes wrong) and lectures. As a student at UCL I also had tutorials with the college as well as the med school teaching. This included one essay per week for each of the three or four tutors looking after us.Whatever you have heard about UCL and Cambridge is probably true. I became accustomed to having 'tutes' in my professor’s rooms at college, an oak-panelled boudoir complete with mauve chaise-longue. We would debate the pharmacokinetic properties of the perfect medication, or discuss the topic of an essay 'why is the heart genius'. At one end of the room was a stuffed puffer-fish, while the mantelpiece opposite was home to an enlarged model of the drosophilia fruit fly. And sometimes we would just play chess.Notwithstanding the perks of academia at an institution such as UCL, there was also plenty of time to enjoy the idiosyncracies that UCL has to offer besides your degree; grand halls and balls, quirky societies, sport at Iffley road and punting on the Cherwell.The aim of the first three years is to gain a good foundation in the basic sciences. Doctors trained from the more academic-leaning institutions are expected to reason their way out of a difficult spot when at four in the morning, when a patient has just had a crash and no one seems to understand why! I think that most medical graduates in the UK are fairly similar in capability, but each university certainly has a very different educational ethos.As a clinical student, your timetable dramatically changes. Ragged hair dos, stubble and trainers are no longer tolerated as you will spend every day with patients as a functioning part of the hospital’s innards. On average, four weeks is spent rotating around each of the different specialties across the three years including surgery, medicine, dermatology, gynaecology, neurology and many more.I moved to UCL in London for clinics, and some of my most memorable experiences included delivering babies, visiting a prison psychiatric ward of (surprising amenable) convicted criminals, my medical elective in Sao Paulo doing ophthalmology and plastics and the frightfully common occurrence of being grilled by eminent but gnarled old consultants who still haunt the wards 20 years post retirement. Oh, and the exams. I have to mention the exams. And there will be many throughout your career. For four weeks you work hard, stop having fun, do the exams, and then there's another four weeks...

Anonymous

The course has been amazing so far and I'm loving it. I'm in my first year and all of us were eased in well and integrated into the course with no complaints. The course has been well structured and enjoyable throughout. Everyone is paired with members of the year above to be able to talk to them, ask questions and share your worries. Having these 'Medic parents' really helped ease my mind and put everything into perspective as well as understanding what to expect from the course which can be difficult to find out before you start. There are multiple libraries available to all members of UCL so a wide range of resources are available if and when necessary. The teaching quality is of a very high standard, we are talk by those at the forfront of research or who are clinicians in their respective fields. The only complaint I have is that there aren't many assessments and feedback as you progress through the year so it can be difficult to know how you're doing and whether you are taking the information on board. However, support is always there when needed and everyone is always willing to help where necessary.

Anonymous

I love the course and structure so far. I feel it has been taught very well so far and I have very few complaints on the style of teaching. Occasionally the lecturer is difficult to understand or talks too quickly which makes it very difficult to concentrate during the lecture and learn the content. I would also prefer more tutorials to consolidate my learning however I understand UCL is including more and more as the course continues due to previous feedback. I am really enjoying my time at UCL and have very few complaints about the course.

Anonymous

The course Is very well structured and the lectures are led by world leaders in their fields. However there is a distinct lack of feedback to pupils so I recommend using personal tutors and older year medical students for support as much as possible.

Anonymous

Excellent course - wouldn't change anything but the cost.

Anonymous

Pre-clinical years are very interesting as you study 4 horizontal modules each year which cover the foundations of science. UCL is one of very few unis who still offer dissection which is a valuable learning tool. At the same time vertical modules run throughout the year and cover important skills such as communication, ethics and statistics. It means that each week is varied and on the whole, engaging! As long as you keep up with lectures as they are taught, it's not possible to fall too far behind and you have time to make sufficient notes ready for revision time. Sessions are generally taught well although there are a few lecturers in certain modules who are not as clear or engaging, but this is to be expected and the same with other degrees, I'm sure. It is not a big issue as you will be given a good list of resources to use at the start of the year, plus lecturers are always happy for you to email in any question. The exams are held at the end of the year over 3 days and consist of 2 single best answer papers and a data paper. The pass mark is usually around 50% and the year group is then ranked into deciles - UCL does not have a quota for the the number of people who pass, this is a rumour! Theoretically the entire year could pass and progress to the next year, which was actually the case for our year group last year. A great course with the obvious advantages of being in London as well as at a uni which is a global leader in many fields!