Published on September 13, 2023

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University of Newcastle Medical School Guide

Overview of the University of Newcastle Medical School

This guide will cover everything you need to know about Newcastle Medical School. Newcastle University is one of the red-brick universities and a member of the Russell group. The founding of the University occurred with the establishment of the School of Medicine and Surgery in 1834. Newcastle’s industrial heritage, nightlife and its distinct ‘Geordie’ dialect are all important determinants of its reputation. The regional medical school spans the North East of England and Cumbria.

Academic Entry Requirements for Newcastle Medical School

A-LevelAAAThe University also offers a contextual offer depending on what qualifications you have. See the website for more details.
Scottish HighersAAAAA 
Scottish Advanced HighersAA 
IB38 points with a minimum of grade 5 in all subjects 
Academic Entry Requirements for Newcastle Medical School

Graduate Entry Medicine at Newcastle

Newcastle has a Graduate Medicine and Surgery Programme. This allows for accelerated completion of Years 1 and 2 of the 5-year programme in one extended academic year (45 weeks). The course has an integrated cased-based approach. In years 2-4 students rotate through clinical placements in varying areas of Medicine and Surgery. There is some element of student choice with two four-week student-selected components and an eight-week elective.

Newcastle requires a minimum of a 2.1 Honours degree or an equivalent.

UCAT Score Needed for Newcastle Medical School

Newcastle medical school requires all applicants to sit the UCAT. The UCAT threshold of those who get invited to interview will vary year on year. For 2022 entry, the threshold for home applicants was 2800. As such, Newcastle is relatively competitive and should only be applied to given you have a high UCAT score. Applying strategically to medical school is essential to maximise your chances of receiving interview invites.

Life as a University of Newcastle Medical Student

At Newcastle, you will have at a few hours of contact hours with half a day of contact hours likely being the most you’ll get. There is lots to get involved in within the University and in the city generally. Most of the accommodation is quite close to the University with the furthest being a 30-minute walk away.

The case-based learning may not be for everyoneYou may need to move out of Newcastle during the later years of Medical School for placement
The city and its proximity to amenitiesThe case based learning may not be for everyone
Ability to travel around the North East on regional placement 

University of Newcastle Medical School Ranking

The Guardian ranks Newcastle University as 17th in the UK for Medicine. It’s important to keep in mind that university rankings are subjective and can be based on different criteria. Rankings can be a factor when deciding which medical schools you apply to, but make sure to have a holistic approach when making your decisions and consider which universities you would thrive in the most.

Home and International Student Places at Newcastle Medical School

There are 367 students every year, 26 of which are overseas students.

Home and International Student Fees at Newcastle Medical School

Home students pay £9,250 and international medical students pay £34,800. This is subject to change each year.

Course Structure at Newcastle

In Years 1 and 2 you study the basics of medical sciences, clinical skills, ethics and professionalism. You are based in Newcastle with some placements around the regional medical school. You will cover twenty-four clinical cases to act as a supplement to the content that is covered in the core teaching. The integrated approach uses a range of lectures, group seminars, clinical skills, and dissection. Anatomy is taught in the dissection lab, however, only prosections are used.

Years 3 to 5 are where you will gain the bulk of your clinical skills. This includes a series of rotations in different areas of Medicine and surgery. In the final three years of the programme there is some opportunity for student choice. There are two four-week student-selected components and an eight-week elective. 

Newcastle Medical School Interviews

Newcastle uses an MMI style of interview. The following areas are assessed in the interview:

  • Integrity (honesty and probity)
  • Communication
  • Empathy and Self-awareness
  • Motivation and commitment to being a doctor
  • Compatibility with the MBBS programme
  • Personal Organisation
  • Persistence and resilience

Some example Newcastle interview questions are below, with a brief answer guide underneath each.

What steps have you taken to further your interest in a medical career?

Work experience is a great way to demonstrate an interest in medicine, and this question is the ideal situation to discuss this. What did you do or see that inspired you to pursue a medical career? Other ways of demonstrating an interest in medicine include attending talks/conferences, talking to current or former medical professionals about their careers, and researching the field.

What is your biggest strength? What is your biggest weakness?

Everybody has a weakness, and it is important not to shy away from it in this question. When discussing your strength, ensure that you touch on its usefulness to you in your medical studies and future career. For example: if you were to discuss communication as one of your strengths, discuss the importance of good communication in a medical setting. When reflecting on your weakness, discuss how you know this and what steps you are taking to improve/work on this.

Tell me about a current issue affecting the NHS.

Keeping up-to-date on medical ‘hot topics’ is a great way to demonstrate and interest and understanding in medicine. Issues such as industrial action, changes to UKFPO job allocation, and the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic are good examples of topics to discuss in your answer to this question. Ensure that you explore both sides of an issue where appropriate, and discuss what steps are being taken or could be taken to mitigate this issue.

How will you cope with the step up from school to university?

It is important to recognise that medical school is a big change from sixth form/college; it is likely that your way of working will be very different. Understanding Newcastle’s course will help you tackle this question, as you will be able to discuss how you plan to adapt to the specific style of teaching. Reading up on the support systems available at Newcastle will also give you a good idea as to what frameworks will be in place to support you as you make this transition.

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