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PBL

Lancashire, North West England

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Lancaster University

Overview

Lancaster is a collegiate university with a tight-knit community.
The university is ranked top 10 in the 3 major national league tables, and it provides excellent teaching and support to students (especially within the medical school)
It has a safe and friendly environment to work and express yourself

University Life

Lancaster is much smaller than other cities like London or Manchester. But this only means that everyone gets to know everyone else and there is a greater sense of community, which makes people feel very safe and welcome.
The campus has 9 colleges, which all have their own accommodations.
On campus there is a great sports centre with a pool, a cinema, 2 supermarkets for all your essentials, a WHSmith, a post office, lots of places to eat and 9 college bars.
There is also a chaplaincy centre on campus that welcomes people of all faiths (and none) as well as Islamic prayer rooms for both males and females.
The university library is open 24-hours and it has many books and resources to aid your learning. (There’s even a live tree at the centre of the library!)
It only takes 10-15 minutes on the bus to get from campus to town and buses are frequently available.
The town centre has a wide variety of shops to cater for all your needs. After 1st year, most people will also rent student houses off-campus, in town.
The Royal Lancaster Infirmary (one of our teaching hospitals) is located in town but there is also a GP practice on campus.

Social Life

MedSoc! There are loads of medic socials, societies, events, nights out - fun for all and you get to know other medics from your year and other years. MedSoc also does an annual pantomime, freshers fair and winter ball.
Fresher's week is always amazing - getting to party with your college and making new friends!
There are loads of student societies, and it is practically impossible not to find one that you are interested in!
Whatever sport you’re into, there is a guaranteed team to get involved with, whether you want to play recreationally or competitively (play for your college, for the university, or for fun).
There are also medic specific football and netball teams, playing in recreational leagues.
Every May there is the annual Roses competition between Lancaster and York university, which is like a mash-up of the Olympics and American varsity competitions – there are loads of sporting events, socials and it really brings a great campus spirit
Even with the added pressures of a medical degree, there is still more than enough time to engage in extracurriculars. These also provide the opportunity to bond with like-minded people and expand your social circle outside of medical students.
There are many nightclubs in town including one owned by the student union which provides a free bus service on days that the nightclub is open.
There are Extravs (basically summer festivals) run by each undergraduate college every year. Each college picks a theme for their event – which allows you to dress up, plan costumes and just have a great time with your mates during the final week of the summer term at university.
There are also good transport links to other places such as The Lake District, Manchester, Leeds, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Interview

MMI style interview with 14 MMI stations, 2 of which are rest stations.
Each station is 5 minutes long, with the exception of 1 station which is 10 minutes long.
Prior to the MMI, there is a 20 minute PBL (problem-based learning) group task which assesses an interviewees suitability for Lancaster medical school’s PBL curriculum. Interviews run from January to February for those who applied in October
For those who apply through UCAS extra in March/April, interviews usually run in May
There is a combination of preparatory stations (where you might read/watch something and consider some questions) as well as assessed stations where your interaction with the interviewer will be assessed.
Be aware of ethics – you might get asked about medical ethics but it could also be just ethics in general every day situations (situational judgement).
Have a look at the medical portal as they have a great section on ethics!
Keep your eyes and ears open for interesting stories in the news about healthcare & the NHS – think about your opinions on it and be prepared to explain and give reasons for your views.
Reflect on what you’ve learned from your work and volunteering experiences - what skills do you have that helped you tackle situations and what skills have you gained? How does it make you suited to a career in medicine? How will these skills help you as a doctor?
Think about why you want to become a doctor – try explaining it to different people in many ways so that it flows more naturally and doesn’t sound scripted.
Being able to formulate an articulated answer in a limited amount of time is important – you want to be concise but trying to answer the question as fully as possible. Don’t be afraid to take a few seconds to collect your thoughts and think about a response before responding!

Tips

Make sure you research what problem-based learning (PBL) is, what it involves and what skills you will require to partake in it as our curriculum is PBL based.
There is no specific BMAT score cut-off point but a high score will definitely be more advantageous in the admission process.
In terms of academics, you need a minimum score of 13 from 8 subjects (A or A* or 7-9 = 2 points; B or 6 = 1 point) and the A level entry requirement is AAA-AAB

Farhana Mostafiz @farhanam1999

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