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June 07, 2020, 02:48:33 am

Author Topic: How hard is it to get into Biomedicine, and how hard is the course?  (Read 1054 times)  Share 

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So I am a year 10 student who is currently thinking about going in the medical field. My end goal is to become a general practitioner and I know in order to complete the GP fellowship you need a Doctor of Medicine. Direct entry into Doctor of Medicine from high school is very hard though so I am thinking of taking the commonly taken biomedical science route; 3 years biomed, 4 years med, then onto the fellowship. Does anyone know how hard it is to get into this course in terms of competition and also how difficult this course is? I am pretty young at this point so main things I am thinking about is if I am going to have time to go out with friends, go to parties, play a sport, go on holidays overseas etc. in the same way that I do have time for doing these things during year 10. I have attached an outline of how my next 14 years are looking too.


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Re: How hard is it to get into Biomedicine, and how hard is the course?
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2019, 06:37:07 pm »
Second year Biomed student at Unimelb here!

It's really great that you've started to plan early and from the looks of it you seem really committed to becoming a doctor.  In this case, it would be best to consider getting into undergraduate medicine. Getting into medicine after Biomedicine isn't impossible but it takes a lot of work. You will have to sit the GAMSAT (like the UMAT but for post graduate medicine), go through an interview process and have a high WAM (weighted average mark). About a third of the Biomed cohort is accepted into post grad medicine at Melbourne every year with the rest of the students coming from other undergraduate degrees or other universities.

That being said I have really enjoyed studying Biomed so far and I think it's a really valuable degree. We are taught by experts in the field and we've had time to decide what exactly we are interested. I know people who have changed their minds about what field of medicine (or medicine in general) because of what we've done in our course. Doing Biomedicine gives you exposure to careers and pathways in health science that you hadn't thought about before. In doing so, I think that students that do go on to post-grad medicine are better prepared and have a clearer idea on what they want. 

Getting into Biomedicine isn't easy but it is achievable with Chemistry, Methods and English as prerequisites. The lowest ATAR to get into Biomedicine at Unimelb for the last two years was about 94-95 so it's not that much easier to get into compared to undergraduate Medicine. Of course like in any course there are crazily competitive people in the course but you won't notice if you find yourself a good, supportive study group.

Otherwise, everyone is really dedicated to the content and it's a great learning environment. I'm not going to lie and say that Biomedicine is easy. I just finished finals this week and I'm so drained physically and mentally. Our core subjects are intense with first year covering the basics (physics, biological mathematics, biology and chemistry) whilst second year went in depth with two double credit subjects (meaning double the content) on molecular cell biology in first semester and human structure and function in second. I think third year takes on a more clinical approach and looks at the broader scope of public health - I guess I'll find out for myself next year. The subjects do seem really intimidating at first (especially the double credit subjects) but it really helps that the content is so interesting and that that everyone else is in the same boat.

In terms of socialising, the Biomedicine Student Society has heaps of social events throughout the year and the university in general has hundreds of clubs and parties. You can be as social (or anti-social) as you like. I definitely still have time to go out to parties and socialise whilst doing my degree and they really encourage you to have a balanced lifestyle. If you organise your time well you can still fit in sport, music, languages, parties and time for friends. Biomedicine is a demanding degree and you have to work hard but you can also play hard too ;) 

Exchange and travelling overseas is still possible through Biomedicine as well. We have about three months off after exams in the summer and about a month off between the two semesters in winter.  I was able to travel between first and second year without disrupting my degree. Since Biomedicine is so structured the only time to go on exchange is really second semester of second year. It does take a lot of organisation and research on your part but there are people who can help you at the university.

It's great that you've been planning ahead and thinking about what you want to do after school but keep your mind open to new opportunities as well. I can't count how many times since year 10 I changed my mind on what I wanted to do. It's important to actively explore and question what interests you and figure out why something interests you. This will help you decide where you want to go. 

Good luck with your studies and feel free to ask any more questions about Biomed or Year 12!
-Rebecca :)