Reapplying to Medical School

Re-applying to medical school can be a daunting experience flush with feelings of uncertainty and fear. However, our expert team, our Medical Application Mentors, are here to guide you through improving your application and re-applying. Look no further as this will give you a concise guide on re-applying, improving, and relaxing. 

Medical Schools & Re-applying 

Firstly, it is vital to determine whether your choice of medical school accepts reapplicants. Be sure to thoroughly check out the admissions page or save time by checking out our medical school comparison tool.

You need to register with UCAS again using a new username and password to begin the application process. 

The rest of the application is the same, meaning that you’ll still need to write a unique personal statement or redraft your old one to reflect what you have undertaken during your gap year from academia. 

Don’t forget to update your UCAS to reflect any predicted grades from re-sits or further obtained qualifications. 

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Improving your application 

  • Request constructive feedback from the medical schools: The best way to determine why you may have been unsuccessful in the application process is to request input from the medical schools that have rejected your application. This allows you to reflect on your portfolio, focussing on both your areas of strength and weakness. If your medical school of choice is reluctant to give feedback, request your information/notes from the process in line with “GDPR legislation” or the “Freedom Of Information Act.” 
  • Interview/UCAT practice: This is a vital first step in preparing yourself to compete in subsequent application cycles. Although this may not have been the hurdle you faltered at, extra preparation makes you more of an exemplar applicant that’ll stand out from the crowd. And our willing tutors are always available to assist you. 
  • Getting further work experience: Trying to do so within local clinical settings or local charities is an excellent step towards improving your application and developing transferable skills for your future career. Working in these environments can help you better understand how the local community may function and the relevance of specific structures, guidelines or processes in healthcare provision. 
  • Create a backup plan: This ensures that the outcome of future applications does not leave you blind-sided. Consider your interests and goals. Perhaps there are medicine-adjacent degrees that might take your fancy, or you may aim to do a different degree before applying to post-graduate Medicine.
  • Online Courses: are a great way to improve your scientific knowledge and understanding before you’ve even gotten a place. Platforms such as “Coursera” or “FutureLearn” can be great tools for learning a variety of medical topics which will be critical to your future learning at medical school. 
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What to do in the meantime?

When you’ve ticked all the boxes mentioned above and forged a plan for your re-application, you should next think of how to spend your time before the new application cycle efficiently once you’ve got in preparation and taken the time to improve yourself. 

  • Take up a new hobby: This can help distract you from this arduous application process. Giving you an extended academic year to start learning a skill you’ve always wanted to,  sewing, volunteering and even lacrosse. These additions build character, personality, and transferable skills to help you throughout your future medical career.
  • Part-Time Jobs: This is a great way to start saving money and making life at university while studying medicine more convenient. Additionally, many everyday roles build skills that are looked upon favourably by medical school admissions officers. 
  • Appreciating your time with loved ones: This is the most important thing you can do in your time out from academia. Medical school can become quite time-consuming. Therefore, valuing this time you have available with your loved ones should be well-used and cherished. 

The hardest step is the first, which is getting through the application process of your chosen medical school. But by acting upon the steps above and improving your application, you’re statistically more likely to get a place this year. Be motivated, enthusiastic, and professional. 

Frequently Asked Question

→What is reapplying to medical school?

Reapplying to medical school means that a student who was previously unsuccessful in gaining admission to medical school is applying again in the hopes of being accepted in a subsequent application cycle.

→What can I do to increase my chances of being accepted to medical school?

Some ways to increase your chances of being accepted to medical school include retaking the UCAT if necessary, gaining more clinical experience or research experience, and seeking feedback on your application from medical school advisors or admissions committees.

→Should I reapply to the same medical schools?

It is a good idea to re-evaluate your list of medical schools and consider adding or removing schools based on your experience and feedback from the previous application cycle. Applying to a mix of reach, target, and safety schools can increase your chances of acceptance.

→What should I do differently in my medical school reapplication?

You should consider seeking feedback on your previous application, improving areas that were lacking (such as UCAT score, medical work experience or medical interview technique), and adding new experiences that can make your application stand out.

→Can you reapply to medicine at Oxbridge?

Yes, it is possible to reapply to Oxford and Cambridge. However, there are some restrictions and guidelines that applicants should be aware of.

At both universities, applicants are generally not permitted to apply for the same course in consecutive years, unless there are exceptional circumstances. This means that if you were unsuccessful in your application for a particular course, you will need to choose a different course if you wish to reapply the following year.

In addition, Oxford and Cambridge have different policies regarding the number of times applicants can apply. Oxford allows students to apply a maximum of three times, while Cambridge allows four attempts. It is important to note, however, that both universities may take into account an applicant’s previous applications when considering a new application, and that multiple unsuccessful applications may have an impact on future chances of admission.

Ultimately, if you are considering reapplying to Oxford or Cambridge, it is important to carefully consider your reasons for doing so, seek feedback on your previous application, and work to strengthen your application in the areas that may have been lacking.

→When is the best time to reapply to medical school?

The best time to reapply to medical school depends on individual circumstances, but most students wait at least one year before reapplying. This allows time to strengthen their application and gain more experience.

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366 Comments

LeahMedic Mind Tutor

14 February 2023

Hi, I am a mature student (28) and I have just graduated with a 1st class in Biomedical Science. My university (Plymouth) offers those that have received a 1st an interview for their 5 year med degree and the entrance exam requirement waivered. I have worked as a lab tech for 6 months, completed a medical volunteering project in Ghana for a month, and currently working as a health care assistant in a hospital ward. I wasn’t sure on my chances but since I could get an interview with my uni, I thought it would be worth a try and at least would provide experience for interviewing. I was then planning to apply this year for graduate entry programmes. I was pleasantly surprised when I received an offer from Plymouth! Now I am in the predicament of deciding whether to accept the offer knowing I would have to self fund for the tuition or reject the offer and take the risk of applying to 4 year programmes and hoping I get a high UCAT score, get an interview and get an offer. I would reapply to Plymouth as a back up but I am not sure if universities would penalise me for rejecting an offer and reapplying. I have a baby on the way which is why I am trying to to find a way to have financial support for tuition which the 4 year programme offers. However, I am not sure if it too risky to reject a sure thing of studying medicine and potentially ending up with nothing. Any advise on this would be extremely appreciated.