We will consider, normally, those applicants who have completed a life science degree at the time of application. We will rank applicants according to the quality of their degree result, giving preference to those with a 1st class mark, but we expect also to consider those who have achieved a result at the upper end of the 2:1 range.
Secondary school qualifications are used to discriminate between applicants. In particular, we expect very good results in Science, English and Mathematics. As a guide our A level threshold requirements are BBB, though these grades may be raised through competition. A sound knowledge base in Chemistry is essential, either from A levels or other pre-university examinations, or from the content of the degree programme. Where the highest qualification in English or Maths is at GCSE, grade A is normally required.
BTEC: BTEC Extended Diploma, Diploma and Subsidiary Diploma not accepted
See also general entry requirements.
We want our students to start the course with a good knowledge of biological processes, cell functions and cell interactions. The degrees we regard as generally suitable are:
- Biochemistry/Medical Biochemistry
- Biomedical Science
- Human Biology/Physiology/Pharmacology
- Psychology (British Psychological Society accredited programme)
Many other degrees may be suitable, but variations between different degree programmes will require each programme to be looked at individually (i.e. syllabus assessed). These include:
- Most Biological Sciences degrees
- Sports Science/Sports Studies
MBChB Programme for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Applicants
We offer approximately five or six places on a three year training course for qualified Dentists who wish to pursue a career in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and who have achieved or are expected to achieve MJDF or MFDS. Unlike for the full graduate-entry course, international applicants can be considered but preference will be given to applicants who offer substantial evidence of clinical practice in the UK post graduation. It is important to demonstrate commitment to a career in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.
Applicants must apply for Year 2 entry on the Graduate-entry course (A101), which must be indicated on the UCAS application. The number of places on this programme will depend on the availability of clinical placements.
We do not use any additional admissions test such as UKCAT or GAMSAT.
Applicants should enter details of all their qualifications (including exact percentages, where relevant) on the appropriate section of the UCAS application. Incomplete applications may not be considered.
Applicants who are undertaking higher degrees are expected to have completed all components of the assessment process (including receiving formal approval of corrections for a Masters or PhD thesis) before the end of August of the same application cycle (which commences in September).
Non-UK degrees: We must have unequivocal evidence that your result places you at a level at least equivalent to the threshold degree requirement for UK degrees. Your results in secondary school qualifications must be at an equivalent standard to our A Level requirements also.
All candidates who receive offers will have been interviewed.
Time since graduation: Applicants who completed their first degree less than 5 years ago, including those with a higher degree, will be considered in the manner described already (first degree result plus school qualifications). Where more time has elapsed since graduation we may be flexible over school qualifications but only if you can demonstrate significant progression in a career after graduation. We are looking for evidence of qualities such as innovation and leadership. This could include, but is not limited to, running your own successful business, rapid promotion in a career, leadership and training roles, design and introduction of innovative practice. If you have a postgraduate degree we would expect to see evidence of higher achievement. The closer these experiences relate to medicine the better.
Notwithstanding the above, we will take account of the length of undergraduate and postgraduate training which has to be undertaken. In addition, we expect that no more than four years has elapsed since a significant and relevant qualification.
Extenuating circumstances: We may be flexible over the route to achieve our academic requirements but we will not reduce the thresholds. We will consider only very serious life events occurring at an important stage in education; such as, absence from education for a significant period of time through illness or unexpected death of a close family member. Following discussion and receipt of independent evidence, we may, for example, consider applicants who study A Levels over 3 years. Please note that extenuating circumstances during exam periods should be presented to the relevant examination board(s) for consideration. We will not consider further mitigation regarding exam results beyond that which the examination board has deemed as suitable.
Post-degree activity: We expect that, normally, all applicants have completed their first degree at the time of application. Your application must leave us in no doubt that you will be/have been engaged fully in significant activity since graduation. We do not expect all of your experiences to be directly related to medicine but your healthcare involvement must be on-going.
Repeat medicine application: We will not consider anyone whose application to Birmingham medical school has been rejected previously following interview. Otherwise, we will consider those applying for medicine for a second time.
Re-sit grades: These are not considered (except, see extenuating circumstances)
Transfer from another degree programme: We do not consider applicants who are currently studying or have previously studied medicine.
Non-academic offer requirements
All accepted candidates will be required to complete a health declaration form, and some may be contacted by an Occupational Health Physician where appropriate.
The UK Government Health Authorities require that all medical students must be screened to ensure that they are not carriers of the hepatitis B virus. All applicants who accept an offer must:
- Undertake a screening blood test for Hepatitis B.
- If negative, they must start a course of immunisation.
- Thereafter provide certified evidence of these.
Prospective students are strongly advised to take the blood test in good time.
The UK Government Health Authorities recommend that all medical students should be offered screening for a number of blood-borne viruses (Hepatitis C and Human Immunodeficiency Virus as well as Hepatitis B). You should be advised that any health care worker who is infected with any of these viruses (or who cannot prove that they are not infected) is not able to undertake exposure prone procedures when qualified (which are defined as ‘those invasive procedures where there is a risk that injury to the worker may result in the exposure of the patient’s open tissues to the blood of the worker.’). The MBChB Course at Birmingham is a non-Exposure-Prone Procedure course, so students with Hep C and/or HIV will not reflect any risk to patients during the course. Therefore, students who are positive or decline the offer of a blood test will still be permitted to continue on the programme. Although, medical students may engage in exposure-prone procedures on a voluntary basis (for example, during their elective). If this is the case, students are required to be screened.
For further information about these requirements, please see: Medical and Dental Students: Health clearance for Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV and Tuberculosis.
The College of Medical and Dental Sciences will reimburse students with financial hardship for up to £200 of the cost of their vaccinations. If you are eligible for an award under the National Scholarship Programme (i.e. qualify for at least one of the state benefits associated with Free School Meals entitlement, classed as a Care Leaver or with a household income of £16,190 or less), you are advised to obtain receipts for any health checks that you have had to pay for. Once you commence study at the University of Birmingham, you may then apply for reimbursement from the College, up to the cost of £200.
Students will be required to complete a successful Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before admission to the programme.
All students are required to sign the Fitness to Practise Code of Conduct prior to entry, details of which will be forwarded with an offer letter.
Medical students are expected to attend the entire course, which includes some evening and weekend work.
Opportunities for candidates with disabilities
We take a positive view of what candidates with disabilities can achieve as future medical professionals and take seriously our obligation to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that all students with disabilities can successfully complete their studies. All applicants will be assessed up to and including the interview on the basis of the criteria outlined above regardless of any disability. All students, including those with disabilities, have to be able to meet the competency thresholds set by the GMC. If you declare a disability we will invite you to work with us to explore how best we can support your studies.
This full 4-year course is open to home/EU students only.
Applicants must have excellent written and spoken English. In line with the requirements for applicants from the UK, normally we expect grade A in English at GCSE (or equivalent). Please note that the university’s Standard English language requirements are minimum standards, which are likely to be raised through competition.
Depending on your chosen course of study, you may also be interested in one of our foundation pathways, which offer specially structured programmes for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on Birmingham International Academy web pages.