Lancaster Medical School
Lancaster Medical School

Lancaster Medical School is the UK’s newest medical school - the first cohort of students started in 2006. It is also one of the smallest medical schools in the UK, with only 54 students in each year. This allows Lancaster to meet their aim of giving students more one-to-one attention, both in terms of teaching and clinical attachments.

Lancaster Medical School offers a 5 year Medicine and Surgery course (MBChB) and a one year Foundation course (HE Cert), designed for students who are not eligible to apply directly to the 5-year programme. This course is primarily aimed towards students who have not taken relevant A level subjects; those who have mitigating circumstances which have hindered them from gaining the typical offer grades at A level; and those whose schools have A level results below average in the UK. The topics covered over this year give students a solid foundation in the biomedical sciences, preparing them to embark on a medical degree. Students on the Foundation Course are guaranteed an interview at Lancaster Medical School for the 5 year Medicine and Surgery programme.

The first year of the 5-year programme is based at the university campus, and is delivered through a series of problem-based learning (PBL) modules, lectures, clinical anatomy sessions, clinical skills teaching, and communication skills training sessions. There is also a community placement in the first year, giving successful applicants the opportunity to get clinical experience early in the course.

Years 2-4 involve a mix of lectures, tutorials, PBL, clinical teaching, patient contact, and placements in the hospital and community. The final year aims to prepare students for life as a junior doctor, with intensive clinical attachments, including shadowing an FY1 doctor.

The medical school at Lancaster offers students the opportunity to choose to focus on areas of particular interest in Special Study Modules every year for the first three years. The fourth year of the course allows students to arrange their own clinical elective, which can be taken in hospitals abroad. In the final year, in addition to clinical attachments in Acute Care and Community Medicine, students can choose to two seven week blocks in a clinical specialty that interests them. This allows them the chance to explore different careers within Medicine from an early stage.

Lancaster University’s Widening Participation Scheme offers a summer school for potential students who meet the Widening Participation criteria. Summer school students who show the most promise and aptitude for the PBL learning curriculum will be offered a guaranteed interview. More information can be found here: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/schools/summer-schools/

Lancaster Medical School

Undergraduate Applicants

  • Minimum Admission Criteria
  • No. of places
  • Degree
  • GCSEs
  • A levels
  • Exam
  • Interview
  • Work experience
  • 5-year programme
  • UK/EU – 50, Non-UK/EU - 4
  • N/A
  • 15 points from 9 GCSEs (*)
  • AAAb – A*AA (**)
  • BMAT (****)
  • MMI
  • Necessary

Graduate Applicants

  • Minimum Admission Criteria
  • No. of places
  • Degree
  • GCSEs
  • A levels

  • Exam
  • Interview
  • Work experience
  • 5-year programme
  • UK/EU – 50, Non-UK/EU - 4
  • 2.1
  • 15 points from 9 GCSEs (*)
  • Biological/ Biomedical/ Health Science Degrees – BBBb
    Other Degrees – AABb (including Biology and Chemistry at grade A) (***)
  • BMAT(****)
  • MMI
  • Necessary
* A* or A= 2 points, B= 1 point - all other subjects must be at least grade C. A B grade is the minimum requirement in Biology, Chemistry & Physics (or Core & Additional Science), English and Mathematics.
** Including both Biology and Chemistry at A level; only one of Maths or Further Maths will be considered. Lancaster will consider applicants who have taken 3 years to achieve required grades.
*** Graduates must have three A levels taken at one sitting, after 2 years of study, plus a fourth subject to at least AS level. General Studies and Critical Thinking are only considered as the fourth subject. Only one of Maths or Further Maths may be considered.
**** Must be sat in year of application

All undergraduate applicants (UK/EU/International) can apply for a 5-year programme, with the option of taking an extra year after their fourth year of studies to do an intercalated degree.

The intercalated degree may be a BSc, an MSc, an MRes or an MPhil degree. Intercalation provides students with an opportunity to study a subject related to Medicine in greater depth or to engage in academic research for a year.

The core curriculum at Lancaster medical school is delivered through problem-based learning (PBL). This is supported by other learning styles, including lectures, clinical anatomy teaching, clinical skills teaching; as well as clinical experience throughout the course. For more information about PBL, follow this link - http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lms/study-with-us/undergraduate/mbchb/problem-based-learning/

Undergraduate applicants can also apply to a 1-year Foundation course (HE Cert), designed for students who are not eligible to apply directly to the 5-year Medicine and Surgery programme. Successful students who engage with the Foundation course will be given a good knowledge base in biomedical sciences, and are guaranteed an interview at Lancaster Medical School for the 5-year Medicine and Surgery programme.

Eligibility for the Foundation Year for Medicine and Surgery

There are three different sets of circumstances which allow an applicant to apply for the 1-year Foundation course. These are:

  • A level candidates with predicted/achieved grades of AAA who are not studying both Chemistry and Biology at A level, and who have not taken 3 years or more to complete their A levels. These applicants must meet the GCSE criteria below or equivalent (see under Other Diplomas)
  • A level candidates studying the relevant subjects (see below), and who have an excellent academic record at GCSE, but have serious mitigating circumstances that will affect their performance at A level (such as a serious health condition which has affected the candidate’s ability to attend classes in Years 12 and/or 13; or a serious health problem/death of a close family member which has impacted the candidate’s engagement with their studies). It is a good idea to contact the admissions team before applying to seek their advice as to whether your circumstances would enable you to apply through this route.
  • A level candidates studying the relevant subjects, but whose school examination results are below average for state-funded schools in England. These applicants would be expected to attain excellent results at GCSE and A level compared to the average results of students in their school. Please see this link for further details: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lms/study-with-us/undergraduate/foundation-year/entry-requirements--selection-process/academic-entry-requirements/

Note that candidates who have re-taken A levels are not eligible for entry via this route but may apply to the 5-year medical programme if they meet the requirements below.

A/AS LEVELS AND GCSEs

A typical offer for the 5-year programme is AAA at A level, to include Biology and Chemistry.

If three A levels are taken at one sitting, after 2 years of study, plus a 4th subject at AS level or EPQ, the minimum grades required are AAA (b).

If three subjects taken at one sitting, with no 4th AS level or EPQ, the minimum grades required are AAA - A*AA (depending on individual circumstances).

Only one of Mathematics or Further Mathematics may be considered.

Lancaster Medical School will consider applications from applicants who have taken 3 years to achieve the required grades at A-level. In absence of mitigating circumstances, these candidates must have achieved AAB or ABB in their A-Levels at the first attempt.

For GCSEs, students should have a minimum grade B in English Language, Mathematics, and Biology Chemistry and Physics (or Core and Additional Sciences). All other subjects must be at least grade C. Students should also have scored 15 points from 9 GCSEs, where A*/A gives 2 points, and B gives 1 point.

GCSE short courses will receive at most, only half the points of a full GCSE. Except for the sciences, any GCSE subjects which overlap (such as Mathematics and Further Mathematics) will receive a maximum of 2 points. Applicants with 12-14 points at GCSE may be considered if, at the time of application, they have already achieved AAA in Biology, Chemistry and a third subject at A2 level at a single sitting (plus a 4th subject to at least AS-level, grade B or above)

IB

Candidates applying with the International Baccalaureate should have an overall score of 36, including Biology, Chemistry and one other subject grade 6 or above at Higher Level (HL). At Standard Level (SL), three subjects, each at a minimum of grade 5 are required.

Lancaster Medical School will consider applications from applicants who have taken longer than 2 years to achieve the required grades in the IB.

Admissions Exam

The BMAT is required. Note that this test is only valid for one year.

Access to Medicine courses

Access to Medicine diplomas are accepted. Applicants offering an Access qualification will be considered on an individual basis. Note that candidates who have re-taken their A levels may not apply using an Access course but must apply to the 5-year medical programme (if they meet the A level and GCSE requirements above).

A pass at distinction level or equivalent is normally required. The Level 3 components of the Access course will need to offer at least 15 Level 3 credits in Biology, 15 in Chemistry and 15 in at least one other subject.

In addition Lancaster Medical School require students coming via this route to have a minimum of 5 GCSEs Grade B or higher (or equivalent). These must include: Core & Additional Science (or Biology, Chemistry, and Physics), English Language and Mathematics. The qualifications should preferably be achieved at one sitting.

Access to Medicine Courses that Lancaster Medical School recognises:

  • Wirral Metropolitan College
  • Southport College
  • Manchester College
  • Sussex Downs College
  • Staffordshire Access to HE course (Medicine and Health Professionals)

Pre-medical Courses

Applicants from a pre-medical course will be considered on an individual basis. Applicants from a pre-medical course are normally required to obtain a pass at distinction. The pre-medical courses that Lancaster University accept, include their own Foundation Year course (see above), and the Bradford Foundation in Clinical Sciences/Medicine.

In addition, Lancaster Medical School require students coming via this route to have a minimum of 5 GCSEs Grade B or higher (or equivalent). These must include: Core & Additional Science (or Biology, Chemistry, and Physics), English Language and Mathematics. The qualifications should preferably be achieved at one sitting.

Other Diplomas/Qualifications

Note that if a candidate does not have sufficient points at GCSE, they may make up these points if they have some of the following qualifications:

  • Level 2 DiDa: Dist/Merit = 2 points; Credit = 1 point Level 2 CiDa: Dist/Merit = 1 point; Credit = 0.5 points
  • BTEC first Diplomas: Dist/Dist*= 2 points; Merit (or equivalent) = 1 point
  • OCR awards/BTEC First certificates: Dist/Dist* = 1 point; Merit (or equivalent) = 0.5

Note that OCR and BTEC qualifications cannot substitute for the relevant GCSE qualification in English, Mathematics and science subjects.

International Students

There are 4 places available for international students applying to the undergraduate Medicine programme at Lancaster Medical School.

Applicants must have studied Biology and Chemistry in their final academic qualification and are also expected to have studied English, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry and Physics in their secondary education.

All applicants are also required to have grades B in English and Mathematics GCSE; or if English is not their first language, one of the following tests are acceptable:

  • IELTS of 7.0, with a minimum of 7.0 in each component, or
  • Pearson PTE Academic qualification (at least 70 overall and at least 70 in each communicative skill sub-test).

These qualifications must have been achieved no more than two years before the date that they intend to enrol with Lancaster University. Applicants must also include evidence of undertaking relevant work experience and voluntary work which should preferably be in a caring environment. They should document and reflect on these experiences within their personal statement.

International applicants should be prepared to travel to the UK for interview. Interviews will be held in January and February.

If you are applying as an overseas student and taken qualifications other than those listed above, please contact us by email (enquiries@themsag.com) if you would like more information on the minimum grades needed to be considered for a place in Lancaster Medical School.

Widening Participation

Lancaster University Widening Participation Scheme offers a summer school for potential students who meet the Widening Participation criteria. Summer school students who show the most promise and aptitude for the PBL learning curriculum will be offered a guaranteed interview. More information can be found here: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/schools/summer-schools/

Policy on Re-applicants

Applicants who were previously unsuccessful after interview are unlikely to be considered if they re-apply. Applicants who were rejected prior to interview in a previous admissions cycle can re-apply if they can demonstrate additional evidence of their potential. For instance, an applicant who has sought additional relevant work experience in the intervening period and reflected well on these experiences in an updated personal statement.

Re-applications from previously unsuccessful A900 candidates will not usually be considered

Policy on Deferrals

Students may apply for deferred entry for one academic year.

APPLICATION DEADLINES

Applications via UCAS for 2018/19 entry for the 5-year programme are open from 1st September 2017 and close on 15th October 2017.

APPLICATION DOCUMENTS

  • Completed UCAS application form
  • In some cases, a curriculum vitae may be required, eg for applicants with an Access qualification

SELECTION PROCESS

Lancaster Medical School considers applications to both its 5-year medical degree programme, and its Foundation Year in Medicine and Surgery, in a five stage process:

Stage 1: Academic Qualifications: All applicants who meet the academic entry requirements will progress to stage 2. As detailed above under ‘Academic Requirements and Eligibility’, candidates are typically expected to have 15 points at GCSE to progress beyond this stage of the application.

Stage 2: Applicants will be ranked according to their BMAT score with the top ranking applicants moving on to the next stage. For 2017 entry, all applicants with a total BMAT score of 10.5 progressed to the next stage.

Stage 3: Applicants’ personal statements will be assessed for evidence of non-academic criteria.

Candidates applying to Lancaster Medical School should ensure that their personal statement is not simply a list of activities, and demonstrates:

  • Relevant work experience in a healthcare setting
  • Insight into a medical career and applicant’s suitability
  • An understanding of the importance of NHS core values
  • A commitment to society, including voluntary work or significant caring roles
  • For more information please see: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lms/personal-statement

Candidates who have successfully been short-listed after this third stage will progress on to interview.

INTERVIEW

Stage 4 (interview): Candidates who have successfully passed the third stage of the selection process will be invited to interview, in mini multiple interview (MMI) format. The MMI will normally be held in January and February. It consists of 12-14 different stations, most of which are 5 minutes long. Stations include:

  • Short interviews – Answer questions about career choice, work experience or suitability for a medical career.
  • Discussions- Read a short paragraph or watch a short video clip and take notes, then discuss at a subsequent station.
  • Group work- 20 minute station will assess suitability for problem-based learning curriculum.

Those with the highest overall score will be made an offer of a place to study medicine. All offers are conditional upon being deemed Fit to Practice (stage 5).

Stage 5: Fitness to practice. All applicants must have the potential to function as a fully competent doctor and fulfil the rigorous demands of professional fitness to practice.

For 2017 entry, there were approximately 462 Home/EU applicants of which 220 were interviewed. There were 115 offers given for a total of 50 places.

There were approximately 142* overseas applicants of which 23 were interviewed. 6 applicants were given offers for 4 places.

*Note that this is likely to be an overestimate as applicants may be flagged up as being overseas for a number of different reasons, yet may not actually be overseas.

The Complete University Guide ranks Medicine at Lancaster 30th in the UK in 2018.

The QS World University Rankings have ranked Lancaster University within the top 401-450 medical schools in the world in 2017.

Both undergraduate and graduate applicants (UK/EU/International) can apply for a 5-year programme, with the option of taking an extra year after their fourth year of studies to do an intercalated degree.

The intercalated degree may be a BSc, an MSc, an MRes or an MPhil degree. Intercalation provides students with an opportunity to study a subject related to medicine at greater depth or engage in academic research for a year.

The core curriculum at Lancaster Medical School is delivered through problem-based learning (PBL). This is supported by other learning styles, including lectures, clinical anatomy teaching, clinical skills teaching; as well as clinical experience throughout the course.

For more information about PBL, follow this link - http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lms/study-with-us/undergraduate/mbchb/problem-based-learning/

Degree

The minimum requirement is a 2:1 honors degree (transcript marks of 65%).

A/AS LEVELS AND GCSEs

Graduates must have three A levels taken at one sitting, after 2 years of study plus a fourth subject to at least AS level. General Studies and Critical Thinking are only considered as the fourth subject. Only one of Mathematics or Further Mathematics may be considered.

Graduates in a Biological, Biomedical, or Health Science subject are required to have minimum A levels of BBBb.

Graduates of any other degree subject are required to have a minimum of AABb. Biology and Chemistry must be grade A. If Biology and Chemistry A levels have been taken at a later date, the original A levels must be at least BBBb.

For GCSEs, students should have a minimum grade B in English Language, Mathematics, and Biology Chemistry and Physics (or Core and Additional Sciences). All other subjects must be at least grade C. Students should also have scored 15 points from 9 GCSEs, where A*/A gives 2 points, and B gives 1 point.

Admissions Exam

The BMAT is required. Note that this test is only valid for one year.

International Students

There are 4 places available for international students applying to the undergraduate Medicine programme at Lancaster Medical School.

Applicants must have studied Biology and Chemistry in their final academic qualification and are also expected to have studied English, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry and Physics in their secondary education. Those who possess the equivalent of an upper second class (2:1)

All applicants are also required to have grades B in English and Mathematics GCSE; or if English is not their first language, one of the following tests are acceptable:

  • IELTS of 7.0, with a minimum of 7.0 in each component, or
  • Pearson PTE Academic qualification (at least 70 overall and at least 70 in each communicative skill sub-test).

These qualifications must have been achieved no more than two years before the date that they intend to enrol with Lancaster University. Applicants must also include evidence of undertaking relevant work experience and voluntary work which should preferably be in a caring environment. They should document and reflect on these experiences within their personal statement.

International applicants should be prepared to travel to the UK for interview. Interviews will be held in January and February.

If you are applying as an overseas student and taken qualifications other than those listed above, please contact us by email (enquiries@themsag.com) if you would like more information on the minimum grades needed to be considered for a place in Lancaster Medical School.

Access to Medicine courses

Access to Medicine diplomas are accepted. Applicants offering an Access qualification will be considered on an individual basis.

A pass at distinction level is normally required. The Level 3 components of the Access course will need to offer at least 15 Level 3 credits in Biology, 15 in Chemistry and 15 in at least one other subject.

In addition Lancaster Medical School require students coming via this route to have a minimum of 5 GCSEs Grade B or higher (or equivalent). These must include: Core & Additional Science (or Biology, Chemistry, and Physics), English Language and Mathematics. The qualifications should preferably be achieved at one sitting.

Access to Medicine Courses that Lancaster Medical School recognises:

  • Wirral Metropolitan College
  • Southport College
  • Manchester College
  • Sussex Downs College
  • Staffordshire Access to HE course (Medicine and Health Professionals)
Policy on Re-applicants

Applicants who were previously unsuccessful after interview are unlikely to be considered if they re-apply. Applicants who were rejected prior to interview in a previous admissions cycle can re-apply if they can demonstrate additional evidence of their potential. For instance, an applicant who has sought additional relevant work experience in the intervening period and reflected well on these experiences in an updated personal statement.

POLICY ON DEFERRALS

Students may apply for deferred entry for one academic year.

APPLICATION DEADLINES

Applications via UCAS for 2018/19 entry for the 5-year programme are open from 1st September 2017 and close on 15th October 2017.

Application Documents

  • Completed UCAS application form

SELECTION PROCESS

Lancaster Medical School considers applications its 5-year medical degree programme in a five stage process:

Stage 1: Academic Qualifications: All applicants who meet the academic entry requirements will progress to stage 2. As detailed above under ‘Academic Requirements and Eligibility’, candidates are typically expected to have 15 points at GCSE to progress beyond this stage of the application.

Stage 2: Applicants will be ranked according to their BMAT score with the top ranking applicants moving on to the next stage. For 2017 entry, all applicants with a total BMAT score of 10.5 progressed to the next stage.

Stage 3: Applicants’ personal statements will be assessed for evidence of non-academic criteria.

Candidates applying to Lancaster Medical School should ensure that their personal statement is not simply a list of activities, and demonstrates:

  • Relevant work experience in a healthcare setting
  • Insight into a medical career and applicant’s suitability
  • An understanding of the importance of NHS core values
  • A commitment to society, including voluntary work or significant caring roles
  • For more information please see: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lms/personal-statement

Candidates who have successfully been short-listed after this third stage will progress on to interview.

INTERVIEW

Stage 4 (interview): Candidates who have successfully passed the third stage of the selection process will be invited to interview, in mini multiple interview (MMI) format. The MMI will normally be held in January and February. It consists of 12-14 different stations, most of which are 5 minutes long. Stations include:

  • Short interviews – Answer questions about career choice, work experience or suitability for a medical career.
  • Discussions- Read a short paragraph or watch a short video clip and take notes, then discuss at a subsequent station.
  • Group work- 20 minute station will assess suitability for problem-based learning curriculum.

Those with the highest overall score will be made an offer of a place to study medicine. All offers are conditional upon being deemed Fit to Practice (stage 5).

Stage 5: Fitness to practice. All applicants must have the potential to function as a fully competent doctor and fulfil the rigorous demands of professional fitness to practice.

For 2017 entry, there were approximately 462 Home/EU applicants of which 220 were interviewed. There were 115 offers given for a total of 50 places.

There were approximately 142* overseas applicants of which 23 were interviewed. 6 applicants were given offers for 4 places.

*Note that this is likely to be an overestimate as applicants may be flagged up as being overseas for a number of different reasons, yet may not actually be overseas.

The Complete University Guide ranks Medicine at Lancaster 30th in the UK in 2018.

The QS World University Rankings have ranked Lancaster University within the top 401-450 medical schools in the world in 2017.

  1. 1. What are the good things about studying Medicine at this university?

    Lancaster's a very small med school (50 people per year) so most of the med school staff will know who you are. You're not just another number walking around. Also, Lancaster is a lovely place to be in when the weather is good.

  2. 2. What is not so good about studying Medicine there?

    As it is a small medical school, there is a lot of gossiping and everyone wants to know your business. Social life is pretty poor as a medical student. Because it's a new medical school, it has a lot of teething problems, but these may have settled now. Also, some hospital placements take place in Barrow, which means travelling and staying there.

  3. 3. What advice do you have for someone thinking of studying Medicine there?

    I'd advise people to apply to Lancaster if it means that they're more likely to get in or if they're a little concerned about going to a big medical school, which can be overwhelming.

  4. 4. Do you have any tips on how to get in?

    The application process is like jumping through a bunch of hoops. It's important to be able to do every single one of them. Don't bother applying to a university if there is no guarantee you will get the grades they ask for.