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Canadian Interested in Australian Med Schools

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TheShowGoesOn

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Hello to all,

Background: Currently working as an RN in Canada at one of the top hospitals in the nation. Unfortunately for me and my med school dream, I had some life issues that hindered my success in my first and second year of study. As a result of this, I finished my degree with honors and a GPA of around 3.0 on the Canadian GPA scale of 4.0 so around (72%). It's unfortunate because I know that I am capable of much more and this is reaffirmed when I am practicing nursing. So, I have to decide whether I want to allot X amount of years into raising my GPA OR going overseas and chasing an acceptance from an Australian Med School after writing my GAMSAT/MCAT. I've got great ECs and the nursing background supplies ample clinical experience to date. I have some questions and I am hoping that some of you can answer them in an honest manner. I am looking at UQ right now but I will be applying broadly.

1) How do you find the learning at an Australian Med School? I have friends who graduated from my nursing program who are currently enrolled in Canadian med schools and they find it easy; years 1-3 at this point anyways.

2) What is the lifestyle like? Typical day during MS1? MS2? etc

3) What kind of opportunities are available? Networking?

4) I am open to stay in Australia afterwards right now, I have read that no IMG is guaranteed anything but I find it hard to believe that a graduate would have difficulty finding work somewhere; how "rural" are these rural medicine areas I've heard speak of? I am interested in EM, FM, IM.

5) How many years of residency/internship for say EM/FM/IM? Are they paid?

6) Are you happy with your choice?

Thanks in advance,
 
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mcat_taker

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Hello to all,

Background: Currently working as an RN in Canada at one of the top hospitals in the nation. Unfortunately for me and my med school dream, I had some life issues that hindered my success in my first and second year of study. As a result of this, I finished my degree with honors and a GPA of around 3.0 on the Canadian GPA scale of 4.0 so around (72%). It's unfortunate because I know that I am capable of much more and this is reaffirmed when I am practicing nursing. So, I have to decide whether I want to allot X amount of years into raising my GPA OR going overseas and chasing an acceptance from an Australian Med School after writing my GAMSAT/MCAT. I've got great ECs and the nursing background supplies ample clinical experience to date. I have some questions and I am hoping that some of you can answer them in an honest manner. I am looking at UQ right now but I will be applying broadly.

1) How do you find the learning at an Australian Med School? I have friends who graduated from my nursing program who are currently enrolled in Canadian med schools and they find it easy; years 1-3 at this point anyways.

2) What is the lifestyle like? Typical day during MS1? MS2? etc

3) What kind of opportunities are available? Networking?

4) I am open to stay in Australia afterwards right now, I have read that no IMG is guaranteed anything but I find it hard to believe that a graduate would have difficulty finding work somewhere; how "rural" are these rural medicine areas I've heard speak of? I am interested in EM, FM, IM.

5) How many years of residency/internship for say EM/FM/IM? Are they paid?

6) Are you happy with your choice?

Thanks in advance,

1 and 2) Interesting questions, hard to answer because we don't have anything to compare it to directly. In my opinion learning at an aussie med school (at least at UQ) is largely self directed. Lectures are all recorded so you can watch them on your own time if you want and consolidate information using whatever your preferred resources are- assigned readings, textbooks, videos, etc. The curriculum is a blend of traditional lectures and CBL (case based learning) in small groups with a physician tutor 2x per week. Sometimes there are mandatory workshops during the week. There is clinical coaching 1x per week with another physician tutor starting in the classroom in year 1 and moving to the hospital wards in year 2. In general you have loads of free time to study and do whatever you want provided you are relatively efficient with your time. It is not uncommon for students to take several days off to travel etc. Whether you find it easy or hard largely depends on how good of a student you are and how easily the material comes to you. There are always lots of complaints about assessment but grades are adjusted accordingly where around 95 percent of the class passes regardless.

3) not sure what you mean? There's research to get involved in and volunteer activities and clubs if you want. There are sporting teams.

4 and 5) cant answer as I'm an Ochsner student so I don't know the training particulars for Australia. In the U.S. EM/FM/IM are 4 years of residency post graduation. Our students match into those fields regularly.

6) Yes because it gave me an opportunity to pursue medicine. Living in Australia for 2 years was a dream. My class is awesome.

If you want to get back to Canada my understanding is that it is possible but still challenging. There are plenty of posts written about this with particular stats for people going back etc. UQ has a sizable canadian cohort around 60 students (which is good for fellow support) which are fairly split on wanting to stay in oz or going back to Canada/north america. Many Canadians do well on the USMLE/Canadian boards from UQ so it is possible to do well.
 

TheShowGoesOn

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1 and 2) Interesting questions, hard to answer because we don't have anything to compare it to directly. In my opinion learning at an aussie med school (at least at UQ) is largely self directed. Lectures are all recorded so you can watch them on your own time if you want and consolidate information using whatever your preferred resources are- assigned readings, textbooks, videos, etc. The curriculum is a blend of traditional lectures and CBL (case based learning) in small groups with a physician tutor 2x per week. Sometimes there are mandatory workshops during the week. There is clinical coaching 1x per week with another physician tutor starting in the classroom in year 1 and moving to the hospital wards in year 2. In general you have loads of free time to study and do whatever you want provided you are relatively efficient with your time. It is not uncommon for students to take several days off to travel etc. Whether you find it easy or hard largely depends on how good of a student you are and how easily the material comes to you. There are always lots of complaints about assessment but grades are adjusted accordingly where around 95 percent of the class passes regardless.

3) not sure what you mean? There's research to get involved in and volunteer activities and clubs if you want. There are sporting teams.

4 and 5) cant answer as I'm an Ochsner student so I don't know the training particulars for Australia. In the U.S. EM/FM/IM are 4 years of residency post graduation. Our students match into those fields regularly.

6) Yes because it gave me an opportunity to pursue medicine. Living in Australia for 2 years was a dream. My class is awesome.

If you want to get back to Canada my understanding is that it is possible but still challenging. There are plenty of posts written about this with particular stats for people going back etc. UQ has a sizable canadian cohort around 60 students (which is good for fellow support) which are fairly split on wanting to stay in oz or going back to Canada/north america. Many Canadians do well on the USMLE/Canadian boards from UQ so it is possible to do well.

I know said questions may seem vague but they are intended to be; i'm looking for some depth so I can try and get a feel for things as opposed to one or two word answers. That being said I appreciate your post. Question 3 is just asking if there are opportunities for a Canadian to open doors for themselves in Australia if they are wanting to remain there post grad.

Thank you for your time and response.
 

Domperidone

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Hey there,

So, I'm a grad/ex-international student and now working in Australia. I'll try to help out with your questions. But don't use the answers as the end all be all, rather, they serve as place to start.

Try the search function too, a lot of your questions have been addressed in other forums and threads over the last 10 odd years now. It's worth exploring.

Look through the other international threads too, while not identical there's often a common theme to having an off-shore medical degree. it's good to know sometimes, just as a sort of off-label warning. Also as option, have a look at DO schools in the US, some people don't like DO (and that's fine, to each their own), but grads of those schools have a 99% match rate with American residency programs no matter their background. If that's the sort of reassurance you're after.

I would really encourage reading more and researching thoroughly. I wouldn't take this decision lightly or spend little to no time considering whether it is appropriate for you and your situation. It is a huge commitment which will affect the rest of your life.

Everyone is going to be different, so read as many stories as you can, from the uber negative to the extremely positive. Weigh them out. Ask questions. :) within a balance, perhaps try not to expect too much spoon-feeding where you can easily look something up.

1) How do you find the learning at an Australian Med School? I have friends who graduated from my nursing program who are currently enrolled in Canadian med schools and they find it easy; years 1-3 at this point anyways.
It's learning out of a hose, a lot of information being thrown at you in a very condensed amount of time. You have to be able to handle the pressure. For instance, you may get 1-2 days to cover cardiac physiology on your own, cardiac pathology may be 3-4 weeks tops. In an undergrad course, cardiac physiology is covered over an entire semester. I would not call this "easy". Personally. It was hard work. Whenever someone says it's easy, either they're brilliant, they're lying or they're doing it wrong and it may come back to haunt them. I've known people who've failed medical school in Australia or have had to repeat the year. Have also known people who have graduate degrees in human physiology or anatomy - needless to say, it was much easier for them. Pathology could be a bit of an equalizer, but a background in pharmacy, physiology, or anatomy gives you a head start.

Generally speaking, the minimum requirements are there (at least in North America) to select the students who will be able to adapt to this environment. It's not meant to create competition necessarily nor is it always a result of competition that selection criteria becomes so 'high'. That said yes, medicine is (perhaps overly) competitive and popular. So you have to stand out to get in as a domestic student anywhere vying for a domestic spot. It's a bit different when you're a full-fee paying international student. Try to separate the two groups out in your mind. The rules are different for the two groups. Then you have to kinda ask why, and be comfortable with the conclusions you make for yourself.

For off-shore schools such as those in Australia and Ireland, the government unfortunately does not fund them well. Actually, federal budget for medical schools is 2-3x less than that of the UK, the US and Canada and that is according to a report by the Medical Deans of Australia and New Zealand.

Hence the massive reliance medical schools in Australia has on full-fee paying international students, for whom they have no obligation to provide jobs for. Selection criteria is lower and schools like UQ have no interview at all, Some schools do not select students at all, as long as your entrance exam scores or GPA meets their minimum cut off then you get in. A couple of schools only require a high school diploma, they tend to be 6 year programs, so yea... I feel bad saying it, but if you pick the right Australian school, they will actually take just about anybody, so long as you can pay their fees.

Also, the medical schools in Australia do not manage the "residency programs" at all. They have no control over programs or have any say in resident positions, numbers or recruitment. So, students are a wholly unregulated market for the schools, and there generally isn't any planning done ahead of time for full-fee paying students. Usually it's an after thought. Despite the fees and under budgeting by governments, the university overseeing the schools take away a substantial portion of tuitions and none of this trickles to the hospitals. Again, this according to government reports to this effect, happy to link them - just ask.

Whether this is sustainable..
It's open to debate.

Who controls residency and vocational training? The hospitals themselves and the royal colleges. Which again, do not see any of your tuition.

2) What is the lifestyle like? Typical day during MS1? MS2? etc
Depends on the school.
Typically, there's lectures and PBLs, and perhaps some exposure to clinical medicine about once or twice a week (skills labs) during MS1 and MS2. I'll defer to the students to respond to this, as it's been a while for me. Expect generally 8-5 days of contact hours.

There's no USMLE step 1 equivalent in Australia, so bit less stress if you're not preparing to go to the USA.

3) What kind of opportunities are available? Networking?
Don't entirely know what you mean by this either. Opportunities specifically in what?

Research?
If you pick a research-oriented school or a school with more research opportunities such as those in the big cities, then you have more research opportunities.

Networking with doctors is more accessible to you as an MS3 and MS4, even then, they're less excited about medical student networking as you do not go directly into vocational training after medical school.

I.e. you don't go into "IM" training directly after medical school. you do at least an intern year +/- 1-2 or more resident years (where you work as a resident, but are not dedicated to particular field yet).

Networking for internship is doable, but will not help you with vocational training so much if you're attempting this as a student. As stated before.

I think your question is more about how do you apply to Australian hospitals and optimize getting an internship? PGY1 only, is that correct?
Usually a lot of premeds come to these forums asking that, 'how hard is it to get an Australian internship and what do I need to do to get one.' which is a fair enough question.

One option is to do rotations and electives with rural hospitals that may or may not hire you. Caveat is, they don't always accept international students for rotations. If you go to UQ, you won't be able to rotate at any rural hospital. If you go to say, JCU which is a rural medical school, you will because they have a near exclusive partnership with the surrounding rural hospitals they do send their international students to. UQ is a primarily metropolitan based school. While it has some rural schools connected with it, they accept domestic students only to these programs only.

The other alternative is that many final years (highly variable on the state however) will travel or fly to rural hospitals and spend a day visiting the recruitment officers or admin there. Particularly in states like QLD, the rural hospitals expect international students to make contact with them directly. You just can't blindly or passively apply.

Like the real or rest of the world nowadays, looking for jobs as a very junior doctor means calling around, visiting hospitals you're interested in working with (and will realistically consider you) and asking if they have vacancies, would they be interested in your CV etc. People complain about the match in the US, but I don't know, it can be even trickier in Australia because there's no nationalized system.

Try to think beyond 'attaining' an internship.
I mean, research the hospitals you want to work at a bit more, do they offer rotations in what you need or have an interest in? Will it allow you to progress in the field you want and help you apply for vocational training later?

4) I am open to stay in Australia afterwards right now, I have read that no IMG is guaranteed anything but I find it hard to believe that a graduate would have difficulty finding work somewhere; how "rural" are these rural medicine areas I've heard speak of? I am interested in EM, FM, IM.
it remains to be seen how this will pan out. Everyone has different opinions, outlooks and predictions or speculations on this. It's a hot topic.

What I can say is that there is a government report out that has stated that we are now in doctor oversupply. What has not changed yet is that the rural areas are still chronically short of doctors. Whether this will continue to be the case in 4 years. Who is to really say? Also, you can argue perhaps the government is wrong. Doesn't matter, because the government will respond to its own reports accordingly, currently it's led to adjustments in the VISA process which are still evolving. Certainly, none of the current medical students could have foreseen this before they started. Similarly, it's becoming increasingly competitive to get into some fields of medicine. etc.

Generally, you have to accept risk. Have back-up plans. Like, do your away rotations back home or in the US, and at least prepare to do board exams even if ultimately by final year you find you don't have to go overseas. Be at least ready in a way that is reassuring for you. Because in 4 years a lot can change, some people adjust well, others simply don't.

Rural in Australian terms refers to catering a population of between 10 000-100 000. Regional is sometimes in need of doctors too, the farther they are from cities anyway, and these are areas of <100 000. There's also remote medicine for populations < 10 000. Hopefully i've got that right, my internet is currently having issues or I'd pull that up for you.

You could consider Rural Generalist - which is FM on steroids, it allows you to work as rural/remote FM with upskilling in Emergency for example, so you independently run a rural outpost in an under-resourced area. Unfortunately if you transfer from this to a city again, you have to practice only within the limits of FM. Pitman is currently a rural generalist, somewhere in this forum.

Oopps, hit reply before intended.

To finish -
5) How many years of residency/internship for say EM/FM/IM? Are they paid?
Bit confused by this question. You are paid for all them, in all fields.
Also, there is no such thing as "EM only" or "IM only" internship in Australia. Going back to what I said earlier, you do not go directly into vocational training after medical school in this country. Some schools have a sub-internship year, which tries to be similar to the sub-I in the US, and you aren't paid for that as you're technically a student without a medical degree.

Have a look at the AMA website -
Becoming a Doctor.

This is also a fabulous resource by the NSW government:
Map My Health Career

FM will take at least 4-5 years in Australia on average. There's an entrance exam now, which they introduced last year. increasingly they're favoring those with more experience (so intern year + PGY2 or even PGY3 years who have done hospital rotations in OBGYN and Pediatrics for example).
IM minimum 7 years, longer if you wish to subspecialize. You can only apply to this after you've done at least an internship year.
Pure EM also 7 years minimum. You cannot apply without sitting an entrance exam and have two resident years after intern year under you belt.

6) Are you happy with your choice?
Hard to answer this for me personally anyway.
I mean, it's still work at the end of the day with degrees of repetitiveness, lot of paperwork, politics etc. I get good and bad days.

I've come to recognize and appreciate over the years, that there's no one size fits all answer to this type of question. At least, not when you're asking in order to see if it will be suitable for you. There's so much variation in the international students that come out here (there's that many). On whether you'll be happy and have no regrets coming out here, it really depends.

For instance.
Rural medicine is noble, rewarding and respected, but is not for everyone. If only it were, we wouldn't have an issue recruiting doctors there universally (not an Australia only issue). Just like saying, off the top of my head, psychiatry is not for everyone.

Similarly, working in Australia is not for everyone.
Studying medicine in Australia is not for everyone either in the sense that I've known people who have loved it but also those who hated it, and those who had no opinion at all. Were just blase about it.

Training in Australia after medical school is almost certainly going to be different to North America. I had some classmates solely focus on returning home partly because they were dissatisfied with what Australian training could potentially offer them. One thing that puts people off is that the number of years of 'residency' or training is double that of North America. Also again, you cannot go directly into vocational training in Australia the way that you can in the US and Canada. If you can't live with some degree of uncertainty, fair enough, this may not be suitable for you. Others loved the potential for flexibility, if you look at it another way. It's great if you're indecisive. Hours and lifestyle are relatively better than North American counterparts, but it means the years will be longer to make up for lost time.
Responsibilities are more gradual in Australia etc, which is not everyone's cup of tea.

To stay in the cities now, it's increasingly difficult and subspecialty training is getting harder to obtain every year. It's also becoming harder for finishing trainees to find attending or consultant positions, depending on their vocation.

I'm throwing that out there, because a lot of premeds or even med students start out thinking they are happy to take a job anywhere, even if it means rural. (how do you really know until you've tried working in it?) Undeniably it's an important thing - being employed particularly after medical school. But if you later find out your personality is not suited for this type of medicine, you don't want to realize you've entrapped yourself later. You may not come out happy at the end of it, despite having a job. As touched on earlier.. there are great things to this career, but it is still work. You have to be able to envision yourself doing the mundane parts to it everyday and still be able to enjoy even the most repetitive things.

~~~~~~~

TL:DR Things are fluid and changeable. Rules that apply to today, maybe different in a year or 4 years' time. You can plan, but there's always going to be something that comes up that you couldn't foresee. By going off-shore under any circumstances, you have to accept a level of risk and live with this. Be flexible, be un-entitled.
 
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TheShowGoesOn

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Hey there,

So, I'm a grad/ex-international student and now working in Australia. I'll try to help out with your questions. But don't use the answers as the end all be all, rather, they serve as place to start.

Try the search function too, a lot of your questions have been addressed in other forums and threads over the last 10 odd years now. It's worth exploring.

Look through the other international threads too, while not identical there's often a common theme to having an off-shore medical degree. it's good to know sometimes, just as a sort of off-label warning. Also as option, have a look at DO schools in the US, some people don't like DO (and that's fine, to each their own), but grads of those schools have a 99% match rate with American residency programs no matter their background. If that's the sort of reassurance you're after.

I would really encourage reading more and researching thoroughly. I wouldn't take this decision lightly or spend little to no time considering whether it is appropriate for you and your situation. It is a huge commitment which will affect the rest of your life.

Everyone is going to be different, so read as many stories as you can, from the uber negative to the extremely positive. Weigh them out. Ask questions. :) within a balance, perhaps try not to expect too much spoon-feeding where you can easily look something up.


It's learning out of a hose, a lot of information being thrown at you in a very condensed amount of time. You have to be able to handle the pressure. For instance, you may get 1-2 days to cover cardiac physiology on your own, cardiac pathology may be 3-4 weeks tops. In an undergrad course, cardiac physiology is covered over an entire semester. I would not call this "easy". Personally. It was hard work. Whenever someone says it's easy, either they're brilliant, they're lying or they're doing it wrong and it may come back to haunt them. I've known people who've failed medical school in Australia or have had to repeat the year. Have also known people who have graduate degrees in human physiology or anatomy - needless to say, it was much easier for them. Pathology could be a bit of an equalizer, but a background in pharmacy, physiology, or anatomy gives you a head start.

Generally speaking, the minimum requirements are there (at least in North America) to select the students who will be able to adapt to this environment. It's not meant to create competition necessarily nor is it always a result of competition that selection criteria becomes so 'high'. That said yes, medicine is (perhaps overly) competitive and popular. So you have to stand out to get in as a domestic student anywhere vying for a domestic spot. It's a bit different when you're a full-fee paying international student. Try to separate the two groups out in your mind. The rules are different for the two groups. Then you have to kinda ask why, and be comfortable with the conclusions you make for yourself.

For off-shore schools such as those in Australia and Ireland, the government unfortunately does not fund them well. Actually, federal budget for medical schools is 2-3x less than that of the UK, the US and Canada and that is according to a report by the Medical Deans of Australia and New Zealand.

Hence the massive reliance medical schools in Australia has on full-fee paying international students, for whom they have no obligation to provide jobs for. Selection criteria is lower and schools like UQ have no interview at all, Some schools do not select students at all, as long as your entrance exam scores or GPA meets their minimum cut off then you get in. A couple of schools only require a high school diploma, they tend to be 6 year programs, so yea... I feel bad saying it, but if you pick the right Australian school, they will actually take just about anybody, so long as you can pay their fees.

Also, the medical schools in Australia do not manage the "residency programs" at all. They have no control over programs or have any say in resident positions, numbers or recruitment. So, students are a wholly unregulated market for the schools, and there generally isn't any planning done ahead of time for full-fee paying students. Usually it's an after thought. Despite the fees and under budgeting by governments, the university overseeing the schools take away a substantial portion of tuitions and none of this trickles to the hospitals. Again, this according to government reports to this effect, happy to link them - just ask.

Whether this is sustainable..
It's open to debate.

Who controls residency and vocational training? The hospitals themselves and the royal colleges. Which again, do not see any of your tuition.


Depends on the school.
Typically, there's lectures and PBLs, and perhaps some exposure to clinical medicine about once or twice a week (skills labs) during MS1 and MS2. I'll defer to the students to respond to this, as it's been a while for me. Expect generally 8-5 days of contact hours.

There's no USMLE step 1 equivalent in Australia, so bit less stress if you're not preparing to go to the USA.


Don't entirely know what you mean by this either. Opportunities specifically in what?

Research?
If you pick a research-oriented school or a school with more research opportunities such as those in the big cities, then you have more research opportunities.

Networking with doctors is more accessible to you as an MS3 and MS4, even then, they're less excited about medical student networking as you do not go directly into vocational training after medical school.

I.e. you don't go into "IM" training directly after medical school. you do at least an intern year +/- 1-2 or more resident years (where you work as a resident, but are not dedicated to particular field yet).

Networking for internship is doable, but will not help you with vocational training so much if you're attempting this as a student. As stated before.

I think your question is more about how do you apply to Australian hospitals and optimize getting an internship? PGY1 only, is that correct?
Usually a lot of premeds come to these forums asking that, 'how hard is it to get an Australian internship and what do I need to do to get one.' which is a fair enough question.

One option is to do rotations and electives with rural hospitals that may or may not hire you. Caveat is, they don't always accept international students for rotations. If you go to UQ, you won't be able to rotate at any rural hospital. If you go to say, JCU which is a rural medical school, you will because they have a near exclusive partnership with the surrounding rural hospitals they do send their international students to. UQ is a primarily metropolitan based school. While it has some rural schools connected with it, they accept domestic students only to these programs only.

The other alternative is that many final years (highly variable on the state however) will travel or fly to rural hospitals and spend a day visiting the recruitment officers or admin there. Particularly in states like QLD, the rural hospitals expect international students to make contact with them directly. You just can't blindly or passively apply.

Like the real or rest of the world nowadays, looking for jobs as a very junior doctor means calling around, visiting hospitals you're interested in working with (and will realistically consider you) and asking if they have vacancies, would they be interested in your CV etc. People complain about the match in the US, but I don't know, it can be even trickier in Australia because there's no nationalized system.

Try to think beyond 'attaining' an internship.
I mean, research the hospitals you want to work at a bit more, do they offer rotations in what you need or have an interest in? Will it allow you to progress in the field you want and help you apply for vocational training later?


it remains to be seen how this will pan out. Everyone has different opinions, outlooks and predictions or speculations on this. It's a hot topic.

What I can say is that there is a government report out that has stated that we are now in doctor oversupply. What has not changed yet is that the rural areas are still chronically short of doctors. Whether this will continue to be the case in 4 years. Who is to really say? Also, you can argue perhaps the government is wrong. Doesn't matter, because the government will respond to its own reports accordingly, currently it's led to adjustments in the VISA process which are still evolving. Certainly, none of the current medical students could have foreseen this before they started. Similarly, it's becoming increasingly competitive to get into some fields of medicine. etc.

Generally, you have to accept risk. Have back-up plans. Like, do your away rotations back home or in the US, and at least prepare to do board exams even if ultimately by final year you find you don't have to go overseas. Be at least ready in a way that is reassuring for you. Because in 4 years a lot can change, some people adjust well, others simply don't.

Rural in Australian terms refers to catering a population of between 10 000-100 000. Regional is sometimes in need of doctors too, the farther they are from cities anyway, and these are areas of <100 000. There's also remote medicine for populations < 10 000. Hopefully i've got that right, my internet is currently having issues or I'd pull that up for you.

You could consider Rural Generalist - which is FM on steroids, it allows you to work as rural/remote FM with upskilling in Emergency for example, so you independently run a rural outpost in an under-resourced area. Unfortunately if you transfer from this to a city again, you have to practice only within the limits of FM. Pitman is currently a rural generalist, somewhere in this forum.

Oopps, hit reply before intended.

To finish -

Bit confused by this question. You are paid for all them, in all fields.
Also, there is no such thing as "EM only" or "IM only" internship in Australia. Going back to what I said earlier, you do not go directly into vocational training after medical school in this country. Some schools have a sub-internship year, which tries to be similar to the sub-I in the US, and you aren't paid for that as you're technically a student without a medical degree.

Have a look at the AMA website -
Becoming a Doctor.

This is also a fabulous resource by the NSW government:
Map My Health Career

FM will take at least 4-5 years in Australia on average. There's an entrance exam now, which they introduced last year. increasingly they're favoring those with more experience (so intern year + PGY2 or even PGY3 years who have done hospital rotations in OBGYN and Pediatrics for example).
IM minimum 7 years, longer if you wish to subspecialize. You can only apply to this after you've done at least an internship year.
Pure EM also 7 years minimum. You cannot apply without sitting an entrance exam and have two resident years after intern year under you belt.


Hard to answer this for me personally anyway.
I mean, it's still work at the end of the day with degrees of repetitiveness, lot of paperwork, politics etc. I get good and bad days.

I've come to recognize and appreciate over the years, that there's no one size fits all answer to this type of question. At least, not when you're asking in order to see if it will be suitable for you. There's so much variation in the international students that come out here (there's that many). On whether you'll be happy and have no regrets coming out here, it really depends.

For instance.
Rural medicine is noble, rewarding and respected, but is not for everyone. If only it were, we wouldn't have an issue recruiting doctors there universally (not an Australia only issue). Just like saying, off the top of my head, psychiatry is not for everyone.

Similarly, working in Australia is not for everyone.
Studying medicine in Australia is not for everyone either in the sense that I've known people who have loved it but also those who hated it, and those who had no opinion at all. Were just blase about it.

Training in Australia after medical school is almost certainly going to be different to North America. I had some classmates solely focus on returning home partly because they were dissatisfied with what Australian training could potentially offer them. One thing that puts people off is that the number of years of 'residency' or training is double that of North America. Also again, you cannot go directly into vocational training in Australia the way that you can in the US and Canada. If you can't live with some degree of uncertainty, fair enough, this may not be suitable for you. Others loved the potential for flexibility, if you look at it another way. It's great if you're indecisive. Hours and lifestyle are relatively better than North American counterparts, but it means the years will be longer to make up for lost time.
Responsibilities are more gradual in Australia etc, which is not everyone's cup of tea.

To stay in the cities now, it's increasingly difficult and subspecialty training is getting harder to obtain every year. It's also becoming harder for finishing trainees to find attending or consultant positions, depending on their vocation.

I'm throwing that out there, because a lot of premeds or even med students start out thinking they are happy to take a job anywhere, even if it means rural. (how do you really know until you've tried working in it?) Undeniably it's an important thing - being employed particularly after medical school. But if you later find out your personality is not suited for this type of medicine, you don't want to realize you've entrapped yourself later. You may not come out happy at the end of it, despite having a job. As touched on earlier.. there are great things to this career, but it is still work. You have to be able to envision yourself doing the mundane parts to it everyday and still be able to enjoy even the most repetitive things.

~~~~~~~

TL:DR Things are fluid and changeable. Rules that apply to today, maybe different in a year or 4 years' time. You can plan, but there's always going to be something that comes up that you couldn't foresee. By going off-shore under any circumstances, you have to accept a level of risk and live with this. Be flexible, be un-entitled.

Hey, I want to thank you for taking the time to respond to my post. At this time I am unable to apply to the 2019 cycle because I have not written the GAMSAT or MCAT. As a result I actually have some more time to research and construct an educated opinion that will influence my decision as it is not one to be taken lightly. Unfortunately, the Canadian medical school system has evolved into something that rejects qualified applicants regularly; many have tried to get into a med school with a 3.8, masters, plenty of ECs and have still had no luck- despite multiple attempts! Originally, I had intended on taking courses a-la-carte to raise my GPA to a formidable number but after hearing stories about 3.8s being rejected I got uneasy; we're talking at least 15 courses here to raise my current GPA to said number and that is around 650+ a course. So I looked into other options- I love medicine and nursing doesn't provide me with the challenge, monetary funds or autonomy that I desire; despite currently working at one of the top hospitals in my province albeit country. I can't see myself climbing towards anything besides MD. That being said, I would like to avoid going to the Caribbean and UK if possible. Why? Because I am not entirely sure that I want to come back to Canada to practice. Australia is a beautiful country with plenty of opportunity and the work-life balance priority has a pull on it's own. I would most likely try to stay in Australia and if I really don't enjoy my time there then I could work towards making it back to Canada.

I think that premeds who think off-shore medical schools will provide them with equal opportunity to their domestic medical schools are sadly mistaken. It's common sense really. Yes you can get accepted with ease but where there is one shortcut, there is certainly another hoop to jump through. I already understand this and it's something that I have come to terms with. Nothing in life is easy, nothing in life is free and nothing in life goes as planned.

Basically, to summarize my thoughts and put things into reason- by attending an off-shore medical school in Australia, I would be saving years of my life that would otherwise be spent taking courses to raise my GPA, volunteering and working in a profession that for me, is much to be desired. Now if I were to take this route, there would be many hoops to jump through, much of which have been touched on by your response and mcat_takers'. So would the pros outweigh the cons? I think so. I wouldn't be applying to medical schools for years if I remained in Canada. If I do go to Australia with the intention to stay and practice medicine after, I will do my best to formulate a pathway to success and ensure that the investment pays off; as i'm sure it has for many.
 

Domperidone

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Hey, I want to thank you for taking the time to respond to my post. At this time I am unable to apply to the 2019 cycle because I have not written the GAMSAT or MCAT. As a result I actually have some more time to research and construct an educated opinion that will influence my decision as it is not one to be taken lightly. Unfortunately, the Canadian medical school system has evolved into something that rejects qualified applicants regularly; many have tried to get into a med school with a 3.8, masters, plenty of ECs and have still had no luck- despite multiple attempts! Originally, I had intended on taking courses a-la-carte to raise my GPA to a formidable number but after hearing stories about 3.8s being rejected I got uneasy; we're talking at least 15 courses here to raise my current GPA to said number and that is around 650+ a course. So I looked into other options- I love medicine and nursing doesn't provide me with the challenge, monetary funds or autonomy that I desire; despite currently working at one of the top hospitals in my province albeit country. I can't see myself climbing towards anything besides MD. That being said, I would like to avoid going to the Caribbean and UK if possible. Why? Because I am not entirely sure that I want to come back to Canada to practice. Australia is a beautiful country with plenty of opportunity and the work-life balance priority has a pull on it's own. I would most likely try to stay in Australia and if I really don't enjoy my time there then I could work towards making it back to Canada.

I think that premeds who think off-shore medical schools will provide them with equal opportunity to their domestic medical schools are sadly mistaken. It's common sense really. Yes you can get accepted with ease but where there is one shortcut, there is certainly another hoop to jump through. I already understand this and it's something that I have come to terms with. Nothing in life is easy, nothing in life is free and nothing in life goes as planned.

Basically, to summarize my thoughts and put things into reason- by attending an off-shore medical school in Australia, I would be saving years of my life that would otherwise be spent taking courses to raise my GPA, volunteering and working in a profession that for me, is much to be desired. Now if I were to take this route, there would be many hoops to jump through, much of which have been touched on by your response and mcat_takers'. So would the pros outweigh the cons? I think so. I wouldn't be applying to medical schools for years if I remained in Canada. If I do go to Australia with the intention to stay and practice medicine after, I will do my best to formulate a pathway to success and ensure that the investment pays off; as i'm sure it has for many.

You know, nearly everyone has the same story right?
Lol.

Please don't take this the wrong way, but I've heard it many times over before.
If you go some place like UQ, class of 550-600, half the class is North American. There's 100 Canadians alone.
And nearly every other school in Australia has a dozen Americans or Canadians. It's not unique. The Singaporeans and Malaysians have a similar one too. There are 1000s of international students in Australia.

That's just Australia, if you browse the other off-shore threads, it's a similar story again.

Sense of time wasted. Wanting to move to another country - that you've never been too, never lived in.

Then some arrive, and it works out, for others, there's a sense of betrayal they have.

Do you know anything about Australia's medical system?

Canada's a public system right? It's partly private and partly public here, as in private hospitals and public hospitals. Ever shadowed or spoken to an Australian doctor? (I don't count haha)

So... I mean, this really shouldn't be convincing me or anyone else about how you feel.

It's always so weird for me to reflect.
So, I was wanting share things that you may not have thought of before, and certainly most premeds don't know before starting. Which is normal, not like it makes for great advertising for the schools. What sometimes happens is as students, they ask why no one told them before.

Most go into it thinking much of the pathway and system will be exactly like home and it just isn't. Some are happy and roll with it, others aren't. (and then the rest of us have to live with it :p)

And because I don't know you personally. I don't know how it will turn out for you or how you will feel when you actual put a couple of years into it. I do know that there's a wide variety of premeds and med students attending schools here as internationals. It is not what they had in mind when they started. Things happen that will not go according to plan. That's okay..but are you going to be okay with it? LIke even after graduating, I don't 100% have a sense of job security here, for instance, every year I have to apply for my own job. "The match" happens every year for junior doctors here.

Bear in mind that it's very easy to say you like something, but have you any experience? It's okay to say no, virtually 99% of off shore students have never been to Australia prior to starting medical school. It always make go wow a bit, because you're putting 300k into chance. Obviously some exceptions apply.

I can tell you've already made a decision, even from your first post. I don't know if you realize that. There's a desperation there that every off shore student here has. I almost got the sense that you wanted someone to confirm that you're making the right decision with the questions you've had. And that's okay, but I mean not all of us are going to be able to provide the exact answers you'll want to here. It's a subjective thing.

Anyway, I'm going to stop here :)

Good luck with the MCAT!
Did not realize you hadn't taken it yet and haven't even applied anywhere yet, so all the very best!
 
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TheShowGoesOn

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You know, nearly everyone has the same story right?
Lol.

Please don't take this the wrong way, but I've heard it many times over before.
If you go some place like UQ, class of 550-600, half the class is North American. There's 100 Canadians alone.
And nearly every other school in Australia has a dozen Americans or Canadians. Practically everyone has the same story. It's not unique. The Singaporeans and Malaysians have a similar one too.

There are 1000s of international students in Australia. I went to school with them, I was one and I teach them.

That's just Australia, if you browse the other off-shore threads, it's a similar story again.
Sense of time wasted. Wanting to move to another country - that you've never been too, never lived in.
Then some arrive, and it works out, for others, there's a sense of betrayal they have.

Do you know anything about Australia's medical system?
Canada's a public system right? It's partly private and partly public here. Ever shadowed or spoken to an Australian doctor? (I don't count haha)

So... I mean, this really shouldn't be convincing me or anyone else about how you feel.
It's your own decision. I sorta responded to tell you things that you may not have thought of before, and certainly most premeds don't know before starting. Most go into it thinking much of the pathway and system will be exactly like home and it just isn't. Some are happy and roll with it, others aren't and then the rest of have to live with it :p lol.

And because I don't know you personally. I don't know how it will turn out for you or how you will feel when you actual put a couple of years into it. I do know that there's a wide variety of premeds and med students attending schools here as internationals. It is not a success story for everyone or not what they had in mind when they started. Things happen that will not go according to plan. That's okay..but are you going to be okay with it? LIke even after graduating, I don't 100% have a sense of job security here, for instance, every year I have to apply for my own job. "The match" happens every year for junior doctors here.

Bear in mind that it's very easy to say you like something, but have you any experience? It's okay to say no, virtually 99% of off shore students have never been to Australia prior to starting medical school. It always make go wow a bit, because you're putting 300k into chance. Obviously some exceptions apply.

I can tell you've already made a decision, even from your first post. I don't know if you realize that. There's a desperation there that every off shore student here has. I almost got the sense that you wanted someone to confirm that you're making the right decision with the questions you've had. And that's okay, but I mean not all of us are going to be able to provide the exact answers you'll want to here. It's a subjective thing.

Anyway, I'm going to stop here :)

Good luck with the MCAT!
Did not realize you hadn't taken it yet and haven't even applied anywhere yet, so all the very best!

I honestly haven't made a decision yet. Life is good right now but i'm wondering what could be. I'm not applying this year, maybe in 2020; I have time to study for GAMSAT/MCAT if I do so choose this route. I understand that coming to SDN can be helpful but I also know, from being on the site for a number of years now that it's not always the best source of information. It's a forum, you can post and get responses with relative ease. Having literally no prior knowledge of Australian Medical schools, SDN is one of the many resources I will be using to inform my opinion. Tuition, living expenses- 300K+ is indeed a lot of money, so i'm not just jumping into things. I may ask, why did you go off-shore? Similar situation? Were you initially gung-ho about it but realized it wasn't the best decision after all? I'm not trying to get people to confirm my "feelings" or push me through the door; i'm a big boy and educated enough to decide what's right for me in the long run. It's just nice to converse with individuals who have been there and done that- whether their opinion is jaded or not. I've read many of your posts just by scanning other threads and although many don't seem to be positive, they do provide some insight on the process itself. Is pursuing an MD really a poor investment? Is the market so poor that all of these current students from Canada/USA at off-shore medical schools are in for certain doom and are wasting their time and money? Or is the reality brighter than what some make it out to be and these off-shore trained physicians do in fact have a fair chance and in due time the vast majority of them will be working as a doctor? I'm just very curious. So many individuals go to these schools... Do they hang the piece of paper worth 300K up in their studio apartment for show as they admit defeat and work as something entirely different after all is said and done? I hope not to see individuals who graduated from these programs driving Taxi back home
 

Domperidone

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So, those are good questions.

I may actually come back to this later when I remember previous posts and discussions with other premeds.

It's easy to assume that my own personal experiences color my responses. Not that it's ever possible to be 100% objective.

So, where I come from is having done a lot of work in student council and advocacy while I was in med school. Lot of tutoring. Lot of pastoral care. It is quite possible I'll have bias, because working in council you are exposed to a lot of anxiety and disappointment. A lot of different experiences and stories, for a time I was getting a lot of essay long emails. A lot of 'complaints' because that is what council attracts. It was very strange to have that much responsibility as a student who hadnt even graduated yet and in some cases the premeds and students took what I had to see very seriously.

So, I'm very careful in the sense of holding myself accountable and not leading anyone down blind alleys to be taken by surprise later. I do actually get a tremendous sense of guilt when **** happens and I failed to help them prepare. That includes reflecting on the negatives because it isn't really addressed by the schools or recruitment agencies. Not enough students assess their sources critically despite most having science degrees.

The thing I'm trying to get at overall is that the job market here is unpredictable across the board. From start to finish. No one is immune. It's now becoming a thing for residents or attendings to do PhDs to get jobs in cities. There's no easy way to answer.
As someone else said, you have to roll dice of your own accord. Don't get lost in stats or other people's stories as everyone is different. Should you read and consider them - always.

Even I worry a little bit about my own future. To the extent where even now I always make back up plans or exit strategies. The positive is that I try not to take things I have now for granted. And this doesn't mean I spend time feeling anxious. It's in the background and I acknowledge it and move on.

My outlook was shaped by seeing a lot of change occur during my 4 years of school alone. And it's still changing.

The circumstances I had as a premed are so different now. My decisions then were based on a different situation in Australia entirely, I wouldn't be able to recognize the landscape now as a premed then. On my background and premed motivations ages ago - I barely remember what I felt.

I also realize it's incredibly easy for me to give any bull**** answer I like and there's no way to verify lol. It's funny reflecting on the nature of SDN and the internet in that sense. Not to mention it's a public forum, despite it being an anonymous one I don't want to spill too many personal details. You can PM me, if you're really curious.

I find the majority of North American off shore students fall under the following categories
1. Stellar grades, could get into med school at home but got unlucky or were interviewing poorly. Gave up after 2-3 cycles and came here. Typically they don't have problems with exams or board exams - they already demonstrate they can do it. They know off shore is it, no other options.
2. Did not meet cut off to apply at home, not going to "waste time" to improve grades or scores, not when it's so easy to go off-shore. So, not willing to wait or try at home. I often worry about this group. The cut offs being so low and some schools requiring no prereqs there's always a number in here who struggle and barely pass (or repeat/fail) during med school and after, wherever they end up. That's hard when you are spending 300k++ in loans. Some just needed a second chance but they do really have to reflect on their study habits and discipline and turn things around.
3. Subgroup of 2 - but had attended an undergrad program that was notorious for dishing out low GPAs. Did well on MCAT. No chance except off-shore. May or may not have tried to apply at home.
4. <1% were already unrooted or merely wanted adventure (or claim they do) or decided they were already going to migrate here. They were living abroad or in Australia already or are in a relationship with an Australian.
 
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TheShowGoesOn

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So, those are good questions.

I may actually come back to this later when I remember previous posts and discussions with other premeds.

It's easy to assume that my own personal experiences color my responses. Not that it's ever possible to be 100% objective.

So, where I come from is having done a lot of work in student council and advocacy while I was in med school. Lot of tutoring. Lot of pastoral care. It is quite possible I'll have bias, because working in council you are exposed to a lot of anxiety and disappointment. A lot of different experiences and stories, for a time I was getting a lot of essay long emails. A lot of 'complaints' because that is what council attracts. It was very strange to have that much responsibility as a student who hadnt even graduated yet and in some cases the premeds and students took what I had to see very seriously.

So, I'm very careful in the sense of holding myself accountable and not leading anyone down blind alleys to be taken by surprise later. I do actually get a tremendous sense of guilt when **** happens and I failed to help them prepare. That includes reflecting on the negatives because it isn't really addressed by the schools or recruitment agencies. Not enough students assess their sources critically despite most having science degrees.

The thing I'm trying to get at overall is that the job market here is unpredictable across the board. From start to finish. No one is immune. It's now becoming a thing for residents or attendings to do PhDs to get jobs in cities. There's no easy way to answer.
As someone else said, you have to roll dice of your own accord. Don't get lost in stats or other people's stories as everyone is different. Should you read and consider them - always.

Even I worry a little bit about my own future. To the extent where even now I always make back up plans or exit strategies. The positive is that I try not to take things I have now for granted. And this doesn't mean I spend time feeling anxious. It's in the background and I acknowledge it and move on.

My outlook was shaped by seeing a lot of change occur during my 4 years of school alone. And it's still changing.

The circumstances I had as a premed are so different now. My decisions then were based on a different situation in Australia entirely, I wouldn't be able to recognize the landscape now as a premed then. On my background and premed motivations ages ago - I barely remember what I felt.

I also realize it's incredibly easy for me to give any bull**** answer I like and there's no way to verify lol. It's funny reflecting on the nature of SDN and the internet in that sense. Not to mention it's a public forum, despite it being an anonymous one I don't want to spill too many personal details. You can PM me, if you're really curious.

I find the majority of North American off shore students fall under the following categories
1. Stellar grades, could get into med school at home but got unlucky or were interviewing poorly. Gave up after 2-3 cycles and came here. Typically they don't have problems with exams or board exams - they already demonstrate they can do it. They know off shore is it, no other options.
2. Did not meet cut off to apply at home, not going to "waste time" to improve grades or scores, not when it's so easy to go off-shore. So, not willing to wait or try at home. I often worry about this group. The cut offs being so low and some schools requiring no prereqs there's always a number in here who struggle and barely pass (or repeat/fail) during med school and after, wherever they end up. That's hard when you are spending 300k++ in loans. Some just needed a second chance but they do really have to reflect on their study habits and discipline and turn things around.
3. Subgroup of 2 - but had attended an undergrad program that was notorious for dishing out low GPAs. Did well on MCAT. No chance except off-shore. May or may not have tried to apply at home.
4. <1% were already unrooted or merely wanted adventure (or claim they do) or decided they were already going to migrate here. They were living abroad or in Australia already or are in a relationship with an Australian.

Another worthy post, thanks. Let's be honest, medicine in general is much more competitive than it used to be. There seems to be some struggle wherever you go- the struggle can be a result of failed applications towards a domestic medical school resulting in lost time that could be used elsewhere, difficult time passing and keeping up with medical school content (rarely the case as the fail rates are next to nil), clinical rotations and learning, matching, getting a job (basically every stage can have it's trials and tribulations). Again, life isn't easy. I, along with many others who look into the off-shore route may just be like the individuals like you quoted above- yourself included. I'm not so much worried about the school part, if i'm paying that kind of money it has to take priority, more so the aftermath aka what comes after graduating. At this time i'm flexible. I know that I want to be a physician and I have a preference for specialty but that's just a result of shadowing and working in the hospital environment and talking with physician colleagues. Obviously no premed knows what it takes to be a physician. We're all generally after the same thing, or idea rather. I plan on keeping my options open and honestly at this point in time I am leaning towards off-shore, Australia specifically. Might sit the GAMSAT so I have that option and go from there. We'll see
 
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I'm not so much worried about the school part, if i'm paying that kind of money it has to take priority,
Lol, you say that now. Some themes to medical schools everywhere:
tumblr_n6zc9gqzo31svlvsyo2_250.gif

Particularly on rotations, the exams and evaluations are very subjective. If you check out the MD or DO forums, all the issues that med students ventilate about in there - we have the same ones.

what comes after graduating. At this time i'm flexible. I know that I want to be a physician and I have a preference for specialty but that's just a result of shadowing and working in the hospital environment and talking with physician colleagues. Obviously no premed knows what it takes to be a physician. We're all generally after the same thing, or idea rather. I plan on keeping my options open and honestly at this point in time I am leaning towards off-shore, Australia specifically. Might sit the GAMSAT so I have that option and go from there. We'll see
Take the MCAT. Just focus on that. That's more than enough.
The MCAT is widely accepted in multiple countries, the GAMSAT is not. If you change your mind later and go, well actually i want Ireland or DO in the US, at least you left those options open.

Perhaps consider finding an Australia rural practitioner to shadow too? If you're that serious about Australia. Alternatively, find a rural FM doctor to follow at home. My point is, medical systems are different and the responsibilities of medical students in Australia in the clinical years are different too, just like how post-grad training is. Rural FM is not going to be like city FM or IM. All very different fields.

How to put it...
When you go off shore you have to work harder than domestics everywhere to attain the same end goals. After you grad, you have to have higher scores on your boards on average to return home. Staying in Australia means that your application will only be looked at after all domestic students have job offers. You're always at a lower priority group relative to your domestic classmates. That is government legislation in Australia. Or your options are going to be comparatively more limited because of the above reasons. Which you may be already aware of. It's good that you're flexible now, but also be aware of the possibility that you may want specific things later. It not that it's good or bad, but just that you may leave yourself open to disappointment later on as you progress.

I touched on it before - but it can be an opaque process in Australia with how international students are hired as interns. A lot of it ends up being based on luck of the draw. Preferably, ditch any sense of entitlements. It hurts your resilience later. The hospitals and royal colleges that run "residency" will not see your tuition. So they aren't necessarily going to feel like they need to provide you a job just because you paid the medical schools a huge sum. You weren't accepted to medical school off-shore to be their on-shore doctor. Versus, all domestic students in government subsidized spots were planned - their intake was conceived to be the future generation.

Does it mean life will be impossible? No. Far from it.
But you have to be okay with a lot of things that won't be fair and that are out of your control.
You're going to have to learn to roll with the punches. Some did it with grace, or no effort at all (their outlook was that positive), or did it kicking and screaming.

Ironically, the more resilient types were the ones that knew that they had no other option other than Australia. That was is it. No point in being disappointed, when there was never any other choice to begin with, nothing to regret, because it was either that or nothing. Not everyone you will attend class with are going to feel that way. And in no way is it a bad thing if this describes you, because it will allow you to survive the unpredictable nature to this path.

I forgot another category -
5. Probably had the stats for applying to domestic schools at home. But didn't think they would have gotten in or only applied 1 cycle and didn't want to apply for further ones. Or fell in love with the idea that the Australian school they applied to had 'higher' international world rankings. Then found it more effortless to apply off-shore and here they are. Very rarely, individuals in here continue to apply for spots at home and leave when they get in, part way through their Australian degree. If anyone was at risk of experiencing loss and disappointment, this group was at greatest risk.
 

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Dom, you forgot a group - the group that doesn't have time or disposable income to sit around and play the application game once they have an acceptance.
 

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Also, I feel like maybe this point wasn't covered, but there was many walls of text so I might have glossed over it - regardless of where you do your training, western medicine is western medicine independent of where you practice it. It is all evidence-based. What you do here, it's the same as the UK, the US, Canada, or every other country that practices EBM. The procedures are the same, the drugs are the same (with few minor exceptions), the way you go about dealing with patients is similar. The training pathway that Dom touched on is obviously different, but you end up with the same skills as any other doctor practicing in that field in any country that has that training.
 

Domperidone

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Dom, you forgot a group - the group that doesn't have time or disposable income to sit around and play the application game once they have an acceptance.
Ah yea, I was getting lost in the fact that the OP's a non-trad with a career or life before med. They're in nursing now. I just assumed they're actually working as a nurse.

But yes,
Part of 5 or 6. Subset of 5. above (if you will) traditional grads out of undergrad with loans from undergrad too. or nontrads who put life on hold. Would rather accept risk of off-shore than continue to apply for on-shore. On-shore - requires more effort and waiting. Regardless, emphasis on greater risk or delaying it. Risk of not getting in domestically, v.s. not getting a job to their level of satisfaction afterwards with an off-shore degree. It's a fairly high stakes group, particularly the fresh from undergrad crowd. There's no fall back career and mounting debt. Imagine 4 years of being told you have no job guarantee and how this will eat away at you. Obviously, you can choose not to ruminate.

Forgot to add a disclaimer - UQ Ochsner would be an exception to things, it's just such a different entity (for American citizens only so OP wouldn't be eligible). Whereas OP is going to be limited by a full 4-6 years off-shore.

Also, I feel like maybe this point wasn't covered, but there was many walls of text so I might have glossed over it - regardless of where you do your training, western medicine is western medicine independent of where you practice it. It is all evidence-based. What you do here, it's the same as the UK, the US, Canada, or every other country that practices EBM. The procedures are the same, the drugs are the same (with few minor exceptions), the way you go about dealing with patients is similar. The training pathway that Dom touched on is obviously different, but you end up with the same skills as any other doctor practicing in that field in any country that has that training.

Yea, I really gotta work on my walls of text. :S

Back up plans and transferability:
Those are fair points. EBM's generally commonly accepted practice.
There will be guideline variations, but overall similar. Australia tends to be more conservative and resistant to accepting newer medications, but the traditional things will be the same.

Adding to the reminder of transferability -
OP, don't solely put all your eggs in one basket.

It might not be that Australia has "no jobs" or an unpredictable market.
It might be that you won't like how the training is structured here or that you want to get into vocational training sooner. Which I've discussed before. Great to be flexible now..rotations here may change your mind.

Australian v.s. American or Canadian clinical rotations
So.. I don't 100% agree that what you do in Australia will be the same everywhere else. Or that learning will be identical. It's just not structured to allow for this. Point I'm making is not that..it makes you unqualified to work in a residency program in another Western country. But sometimes the electives or SubIs done in North America later on, fill in the gaps for what you lose out here. It can depend on what field you're after. In terms of, if you intend to make it transferable to another country - do a rotation in that country. Get up to speed with what they're doing and their expectations.

The rotations themselves will not be as practical as the US or Canada. Not for the average student on rotation in Australia.

Materials and EBM that you will have to learn to pass exams will be the same. But to end up with the same clinical skills, it kinda depends. H&P or the basic skills that make you an acceptable intern anywhere will be equivalent enough. And that's what rotations prepares you for in Australia. The Australian intern year. The emphasis is also more on book learning, less on actual practice on patients relative to North America.

Moreover, it's not like North American clinical rotations are 100% practical either, but it's going to be even less in Australia. I don't think most North American pre-meds know this. It may cause them to question whether they've made the right decision - depending on what their own expectations are for medical school.

There are some exceptions.
If you end up rotating at a remote hospital as student anywhere it's always more hands-on, but this actually isn't available to all international students in Australia. The government dumps a lot of funds into sending domestic students to some rural hospitals, so it becomes exclusive to them.

Some like the laidbackness to Australian clinical rotations.
It is more relaxed, there's more downtime.

On some rotations - you find that you only need to 'interact' or be physically there for 3-4 days a week. Attend ward round from 7 or 8 till 10 then disappear to the 'library', and on other days attend clinic or the OR for half a day.

If you're a good student, you try to be proactive. But if you're wanting the immersive effect of being treated like a junior doctor, there's even less opportunities for this in Australia compared to the US and Canada.

On the flip side, it does translate to more time studying for boards at home. Or it means you can have a part-time job (bonus if it's a job that will grant you PR in Australia by the way). Or do extra-curriculars. Have a life. But it's a trade off.

Satisfaction around this will be determined by how you personally feel about it.

Direct examples (kinda anecdotal for the most part - so grain of salt)
It's embarrassing, but I had classmates who had never placed cannulas or had never done foley catheters by the time they became interns. Not only did I know them or of them, but an entire state government had to implement this rule that new interns needed to pass a cannulation evaluation prior to doing them independently. I don't know if the rule is still in place, as for obvious reasons it wreaked some havoc on the wards. To clarify - if you're proactive about cannulation and get procedures, you can get them. Just illustrating how things are less enforced and more relaxed for students.

Another example - I knew MS3s who finished general surgery core rotations having only scrubbed into surgery once or twice the entire time. It's not that they couldn't do more..they just didn't want to and still passed, without having to do much. They definitely did not know how to suture on patients, and had never closed before. I'm sure not all schools are like this, certainly not all students. But it's just to illustrate the differences. It's a different focus in Australia. They could of course, do H&P on surgical patients, they have to pass written exams on post-op care etc.

(The savvy internationals who want to do things like surgery at home will have their electives locked in at home to get LORs and try be more proactive than that while they're in Australia. But the fact is, they rarely let students do much beyond holding a retractor on average at many Australian sites, maybe suture but it wouldn't be as much as their North American counterparts)

Being a proactive student in Australia and it's limitations
If you wanted acquire skills or practice, like foleys or cannulas etc. the opportunities are there. You just have to ask. The times that you're on a good team or at hospital, you make it count and you will get something out of it.

Some schools have what they call "pre-intern" months or years.
Where you are expected to be delegated ward or clinic jobs and work with interns or residents who supervise you.
Unfortunately, not all schools do this.

Generally on most rotations, there's a limit to how proactive they'll let you be too, unless you're at a remote/rural hospital. Again, that may also dampen your enthusiasm for Australia. For students who want more out of rotations, whether domestic or international, I always end up pushing them to do one elective in North America so they get more fulfillment from having greater responsibility as student there. For internationals, it also ensures having back-up for any reason.

On whyyyy
The reason why it works and is the way it is, is because there is an intern year and rotating-resident years after medical school before you can even apply for vocational training. (Or at some schools the pre-intern)

So there's many more "people" ahead of you that will be doing 'the things' around the hospital. Many more years of opportunities, because your post-grad training isn't as 'condensed'. For example, those interns who can't do Foley's, are going to have to learn and they're going to teach them before teaching the students. etc.

(Again, disclaimer - none of this applies to UQ Ochsner, with 2 clinical years in NOLA - but OP can't apply there).
 
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Dom, I meant by the time you finish reg training, not med school. I 100% agree that the med school opportunities are different. My rotations in the US were vastly different than those at Australian hospitals, especially surgery. I closed or helped close almost every case I was on. Hell, I got a ton of opportunities that I think even some US students didn't based on what I've been told. I just meant that the OP shouldn't feel like they're settling for something lesser by doing their reg training in Australia.
 
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Dom, I meant by the time you finish reg training, not med school. I 100% agree that the med school opportunities are different. My rotations in the US were vastly different than those at Australian hospitals, especially surgery. I closed or helped close almost every case I was on. Hell, I got a ton of opportunities that I think even some US students didn't based on what I've been told. I just meant that the OP shouldn't feel like they're settling for something lesser by doing their reg training in Australia.
Oh ****, sorry man!
Yea that's true.

As in, I also totally see what you mean now by it sounded like I was bashing registrar/vocational training! Oops
 
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Ah yea, I was getting lost in the fact that the OP's a non-trad with a career or life before med. They're in nursing now. I just assumed they're actually working as a nurse.

But yes,
Part of 5 or 6. Subset of 5. above (if you will) traditional grads out of undergrad with loans from undergrad too. or nontrads who put life on hold. Would rather accept risk of off-shore than continue to apply for on-shore. On-shore - requires more effort and waiting. Regardless, emphasis on greater risk or delaying it. Risk of not getting in domestically, v.s. not getting a job to their level of satisfaction afterwards with an off-shore degree. It's a fairly high stakes group, particularly the fresh from undergrad crowd. There's no fall back career and mounting debt. Imagine 4 years of being told you have no job guarantee and how this will eat away at you. Obviously, you can choose not to ruminate.

Forgot to add a disclaimer - UQ Ochsner would be an exception to things, it's just such a different entity (for American citizens only so OP wouldn't be eligible). Whereas OP is going to be limited by a full 4-6 years off-shore.



Yea, I really gotta work on my walls of text. :S

Back up plans and transferability:
Those are fair points. EBM's generally commonly accepted practice.
There will be guideline variations, but overall similar. Australia tends to be more conservative and resistant to accepting newer medications, but the traditional things will be the same.

Adding to the reminder of transferability -
OP, don't solely put all your eggs in one basket.

It might not be that Australia has "no jobs" or an unpredictable market.
It might be that you won't like how the training is structured here or that you want to get into vocational training sooner. Which I've discussed before. Great to be flexible now..rotations here may change your mind.

Australian v.s. American or Canadian clinical rotations
So.. I don't 100% agree that what you do in Australia will be the same everywhere else. Or that learning will be identical. It's just not structured to allow for this. Point I'm making is not that..it makes you unqualified to work in a residency program in another Western country. But sometimes the electives or SubIs done in North America later on, fill in the gaps for what you lose out here. It can depend on what field you're after. In terms of, if you intend to make it transferable to another country - do a rotation in that country. Get up to speed with what they're doing and their expectations.

The rotations themselves will not be as practical as the US or Canada. Not for the average student on rotation in Australia.

Materials and EBM that you will have to learn to pass exams will be the same. But to end up with the same clinical skills, it kinda depends. H&P or the basic skills that make you an acceptable intern anywhere will be equivalent enough. And that's what rotations prepares you for in Australia. The Australian intern year. The emphasis is also more on book learning, less on actual practice on patients relative to North America.

Moreover, it's not like North American clinical rotations are 100% practical either, but it's going to be even less in Australia. I don't think most North American pre-meds know this. It may cause them to question whether they've made the right decision - depending on what their own expectations are for medical school.

There are some exceptions.
If you end up rotating at a remote hospital as student anywhere it's always more hands-on, but this actually isn't available to all international students in Australia. The government dumps a lot of funds into sending domestic students to some rural hospitals, so it becomes exclusive to them.

Some like the laidbackness to Australian clinical rotations.
It is more relaxed, there's more downtime.

On some rotations - you find that you only need to 'interact' or be physically there for 3-4 days a week. Attend ward round from 7 or 8 till 10 then disappear to the 'library', and on other days attend clinic or the OR for half a day.

If you're a good student, you try to be proactive. But if you're wanting the immersive effect of being treated like a junior doctor, there's even less opportunities for this in Australia compared to the US and Canada.

On the flip side, it does translate to more time studying for boards at home. Or it means you can have a part-time job (bonus if it's a job that will grant you PR in Australia by the way). Or do extra-curriculars. Have a life. But it's a trade off.

Satisfaction around this will be determined by how you personally feel about it.

Direct examples (kinda anecdotal for the most part - so grain of salt)
It's embarrassing, but I had classmates who had never placed cannulas or had never done foley catheters by the time they became interns. Not only did I know them or of them, but an entire state government had to implement this rule that new interns needed to pass a cannulation evaluation prior to doing them independently. I don't know if the rule is still in place, as for obvious reasons it wreaked some havoc on the wards. To clarify - if you're proactive about cannulation and get procedures, you can get them. Just illustrating how things are less enforced and more relaxed for students.

Another example - I knew MS3s who finished general surgery core rotations having only scrubbed into surgery once or twice the entire time. It's not that they couldn't do more..they just didn't want to and still passed, without having to do much. They definitely did not know how to suture on patients, and had never closed before. I'm sure not all schools are like this, certainly not all students. But it's just to illustrate the differences. It's a different focus in Australia. They could of course, do H&P on surgical patients, they have to pass written exams on post-op care etc.

(The savvy internationals who want to do things like surgery at home will have their electives locked in at home to get LORs and try be more proactive than that while they're in Australia. But the fact is, they rarely let students do much beyond holding a retractor on average at many Australian sites, maybe suture but it wouldn't be as much as their North American counterparts)

Being a proactive student in Australia and it's limitations
If you wanted acquire skills or practice, like foleys or cannulas etc. the opportunities are there. You just have to ask. The times that you're on a good team or at hospital, you make it count and you will get something out of it.

Some schools have what they call "pre-intern" months or years.
Where you are expected to be delegated ward or clinic jobs and work with interns or residents who supervise you.
Unfortunately, not all schools do this.

Generally on most rotations, there's a limit to how proactive they'll let you be too, unless you're at a remote/rural hospital. Again, that may also dampen your enthusiasm for Australia. For students who want more out of rotations, whether domestic or international, I always end up pushing them to do one elective in North America so they get more fulfillment from having greater responsibility as student there. For internationals, it also ensures having back-up for any reason.

On whyyyy
The reason why it works and is the way it is, is because there is an intern year and rotating-resident years after medical school before you can even apply for vocational training. (Or at some schools the pre-intern)

So there's many more "people" ahead of you that will be doing 'the things' around the hospital. Many more years of opportunities, because your post-grad training isn't as 'condensed'. For example, those interns who can't do Foley's, are going to have to learn and they're going to teach them before teaching the students. etc.

(Again, disclaimer - none of this applies to UQ Ochsner, with 2 clinical years in NOLA - but OP can't apply there).

Yes you were right. I am currently working as a registered nurse in the ICU at a major hospital in Ontario, Canada so i'm not a nursing student and I do have some knowledge of healthcare/medicine. But definitely a non-trad though as i'm still in my early 20s and did not go straight into medical school form an undergrad. There is much to go over, and i'm sure to read over what all of you have posted multiple times as it does seem to be solid information. I appreciate it, truly do.
 

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There are stats but how they are done and kept isn't very helpful or reliable. Not for the reasons you're after - which is reassurance and I'd be guarded about giving that to you or any premed. It's set up to keep track of domestic numbers and not international.

Each year the intern match is held primarily to place domestic grads (with federally funded med school spots) in internships. But internationals and IMGs can and are welcome to apply, and they have the usual priority group system for everyone applying. There are private schools and they do not have internship guarantees for their domestic students. Match applications open in May. Then everyone preferences their hospital. Match occurs in June. Federal govt does an audit.

Since 2012, every year there's been 200 more applications than there are state internships. Traditionally, internships are only funded by state government, hence being called state internships. I can't locate the last reports but you can google "medical interns miss out" or battle for medical internships etc.

From intensive lobbying years ago, a new set of internships were created. Roughly funding 80 spots a year in the private and rural hospital sectors. The rationale by lobby was internationals are happy to go rural, the govt holds them to it by sending them there and auditing outcomes. But very strict eligibility. So that has kept massive fall out at bay for eligible students. The govt itself has said it's not permanent, pending review each yr on whether it will renew funding. So make your own conclusions. I don't like speculating so I'm not going to comment further.

To add further complicating layers, after the match in June, many final years continuing call around persistently to pick up on any new vacancies hospitals have. So there's hiring year round but depending on if another intern quits etc so you can take their spot.

It's not wrong in saying that everyone who gets a job will get one. I heard that since I was a premed and all through med school. But the phrase could be corrected as everyone who self reports having a job gets one.

UQ has about 50-60 students each year who fail to finish on time. At least. Usually they have to repeat a course or rotation and then finish in March or July. That's why there's been extra state spots each year in QLD. States plan based on numbers of 3rd yrs. Accumulation of repeaters who then lose their spot. Not surprisingly they make a quiet bunch. and so are the ones who fail to match. A small number will contact their medsoc's or student councils seeking active support.

Put it this way.
As long as you continue to work hard and have a strong CV (leadership things or research etc in med school) aren't an asshat, and actively reach out to hospitals in your final year - like the qs you had on networking - you theoretically should be fine.

Finally... class sizes have continued to grow the last 4 yrs. the grad numbers now are smaller than 1st yr numbers. More new med schools have opened and more are opening. All have increasing domestic and international numbers. So again, don't put all your eggs in one basket. I can't say this enough. Maybe you can relax a little in final year but not before and not as a premed.

The govt report on oversupply hasn't affected money coming in. It may tighten on spending, and it has on IMGs (not international students, but people with non Australian degrees).

On whether it's possible to not have conscience. Ireland long ago reached a point where it has to tell it's international full fee students not to expect training without EU citizenship. I've no idea if Australia will follow but there's precedence and it hasn't affected international student interest in Irish schools.
 
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Domperidone

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Yes you were right. I am currently working as a registered nurse in the ICU at a major hospital in Ontario, Canada so i'm not a nursing student and I do have some knowledge of healthcare/medicine. But definitely a non-trad though as i'm still in my early 20s and did not go straight into medical school form an undergrad. There is much to go over, and i'm sure to read over what all of you have posted multiple times as it does seem to be solid information. I appreciate it, truly do.

I've worked with a few ex-nurses-now-doctors. Ironically, they were all ex-ICU and ex-Emergency nurses. Not sure med school was like for them, but they were always ahead of the curve as a interns or residents. They were confident, had some very legitimate practical knowledge and had all the procedural skills.

I really feel like it'd be a pity if you didn't at least try to apply at home for one cycle after you take your MCAT. I still really suggest the MCAT over the GAMSAT. Maybe post the scores on the Canadian forums or even the US MD-what are my chances thread afterwards. See what the Canadian and American doctors & faculty think. It's possible the MCAT & CV (as a non-trad with ICU nursing experience) could make up for the GPA. I can't say for sure :S But you're intending to wait until 2020 anyway.

Alternatively, you could look into applying for PR for Australia.
ICU nurses are on the skills & occupations list of need for this country, so it's a possibility. It may mean you'll have to work casually or part-time, but that's actually doable during med school in Australia. Exams are hard, but there's more downtime.
I've known other healthcare providers and engineers who took this route - but that's the extent that I know and it's anecdotal.

Don't get me wrong, I don't regret being a doctor in Australia right now, personally.
I just don't know if I would recommend taking the path I did looking back. At least not as a first option, only do it if it's absolutely necessary for whatever the reason (can't afford to wait, too many cycles etc.) There's already a lot of bureaucratic stuff to healthcare already, and there's extra hoops to go through as an international. Whereas, your life is so much easier as a domestic student if you can get that.
 

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@Domperidone Applying for permanent residency through obtaining a visa with nursing and then PR in one to two years after work does seem like a good option, but unfortunately I don't think that timeline works out in my favor. Realistically I would apply for 2020 matriculation so I doubt that I would receive my PR before then. Now if I could apply for PR during my second or third year, I wonder if the tuition would change to a domestic fee/I would then be treated as a domestic student for match etc? Interesting. It seems confusing at first because i'm really not familiar with the process at all and I don't know if such things are viable but it could be an option...
 

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They won't change your tuition. As far as your rank in the Australian match, it would likely depend on the state you are going to med school in. In QLD it wouldn't matter, you'd be with groups B-D which is everyone not native to Australia that went to med school in Queensland.
 
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@Domperidone @sean80439 Do you guys have a link to any statistics for IMGs securing internship/officer positions in Australia?
Check out HETI for New South Wales. There is an internship audit report there for 2017 that shows almost all their IMGs got in except for 2 and also those IMGs that applied for rural hospital also all got their 1st option.
 
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They won't change your tuition. As far as your rank in the Australian match, it would likely depend on the state you are going to med school in. In QLD it wouldn't matter, you'd be with groups B-D which is everyone not native to Australia that went to med school in Queensland.
Darn. Well I'll stay in Canada until I get accepted into a school then if it really won't benefit me. I figured that they wouldn't care enough to change my tuition or include me into the domestic match if I acquired PR while in med school. Doesn't change anything as far as my presumed plan goes though so that's ok.
 

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Really? Where in the priority groups does it say group A excludes PR holders I can't find that.
Applicant groups for intern positions | Queensland Health

I'm tempted to email QLD state.
But there are other schools in other states too that have their own priority groups.

Depends on the school. Tuition can change, what happens if a federally funded domestic spot is vacant (someone drops out or fails), that spot is usually up for grabs on application to internationals who become PR holders. some schools allow this. Then you pay domestic fees.

Priority groups - I still know ex-students who managed to get PR and this changed their priority group and are now interns. So that's recent.

In the past it was Group A - I don't know about now, but it still makes a difference.
They got offers at tertiary sites without much effort. Whereas it takes effort for an international to just get a rural position, let alone tertiary.

You can consider schools outside of QLD.
The priority groups are kinder in ACT or VIC to their international students, right now anyway. 4 years I don't know. Outcomes are roughly the same... you end up rural or maybe regional. ACT is tiny.

Out of curiosity, why UQ?
 
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Oh I might be wrong. I was thinking he might be B.
I'll email them, apps are open now so they should respond. Unless they changed it, which I wouldn't put past them. But recently it was A.

You may not have to have PR when you start school. I cant remember clearly but it either has to be before 3rd yr or before intern apps open. So you do have to get on it quickly.
 

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Really? Where in the priority groups does it say group A excludes PR holders I can't find that.
Applicant groups for intern positions | Queensland Health

I'm tempted to email QLD state.
But there are other schools in other states too that have their own priority groups.

Depends on the school. Tuition can change, what happens if a federally funded domestic spot is vacant (someone drops out or fails), that spot is usually up for grabs on application to internationals who become PR holders. some schools allow this. Then you pay domestic fees.

Priority groups - I still know ex-students who managed to get PR and this changed their priority group and are now interns. So that's recent.

In the past it was Group A - I don't know about now, but it still makes a difference.
They got offers at tertiary sites without much effort. Whereas it takes effort for an international to just get a rural position, let alone tertiary.

You can consider schools outside of QLD.
The priority groups are kinder in ACT or VIC to their international students, right now anyway. 4 years I don't know.
So that's interesting. I'm not set on UQ, so maybe i'll have some wiggle room but the fact that this PR option for me as an RN might still be viable leading to decreased tuition is tempting
 

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So that's interesting. I'm not set on UQ, so maybe i'll have some wiggle room but the fact that this PR option for me as an RN might still be viable leading to decreased tuition is tempting
lol I would really recommend it. tuition for domestics is like 10k a year vs 50-60k full fee paying. That's if you're lucky and the school does that system - you'd have to ask. Do consider all your options and see what fits if you're set on Australia.

Not to mention how much PR simplifies having a job. You could even apply for scholarships or the rural generalist program in med school early and cut down your training years. They hardly offer scholarships to internationals, need money too much.
 

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lol I would really recommend it. tuition for domestics is like 10k a year vs 50-60k full fee paying. That's if you're lucky and the school does that system - you'd have to ask. Do consider all your options and see what fits if you're set on Australia.

Not to mention how much PR simplifies having a job. You could even apply for scholarships or the rural generalist program in med school early and cut down your training years. They hardly offer scholarships to internationals, need money too much.
Who do you suggest I contact to ask about said situation? I almost feel as though contacting school X wouldn't do me any good because they'd be, for lack of a better term salty about losing out on international tuition fees and maybe not have a definitive answer
 

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I just googled and found it for UQ. ..
I'm too lazy too copy and paste it for you on my phone. Google changes to residency, visa or citizenship status. Fairly sure other schools have a similar process.

Try to use Google as much as you can.
Find things for yourself as you go along until you get stuck.

I doubt they'll get salty, it's admin you would be talking to. not a selection committee in Australia.

You should never be fearful about asking these schools critical questions - it's also your life and 300k. It's not exactly loose change. I can never really wrap my head around how some premeds would rather go into that debt than ask or try harder to avoid it :s. I just don't get the resistance.
 
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I just googled and found it for UQ. ..
I'm too lazy too copy and paste it for you on my phone. Google changes to residency, visa or citizenship status. Fairly sure other schools have a similar process.

Try to use Google as much as you can.
Find things for yourself as you go along until you get stuck.

I doubt they'll get salty, it's admin you would be talking to. not a selection committee in Australia.

You should never be fearful about asking these schools critical questions - it's also your life and 300k. It's not exactly loose change. I can never really wrap my head around how some premeds would rather go into that debt than ask or try harder to avoid it :s. I just don't get the resistance.
Found it. So this would be an option for myself- if I can in fact get a job as an RN and apply for PR. Time to do some more research! Thanks @Domperidone
 
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Also, I was told that UQ will be revamping their admission requirements for 2020 from top to bottom... I wonder what will come out of that. They're expecting some "significant" changes.
 

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God I hope they are.
For instance they do a great disservice to students about no prereqs whatsoever and it led to complaints. As in accepting Arts or Business students who have never done science in their life (not even high school) then offering no support when they attend. So they struggle or repeat the semester or the year for another 50k. Anyway that's beside the point for you.
 

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Found it. So this would be an option for myself- if I can in fact get a job as an RN and apply for PR. Time to do some more research! Thanks @Domperidone
If it works out that way, the work ex even PT will help you get familiar with the Australian system. Set up networks early with hospitals and staff in them. So when your name comes up for jobs (it's merit based for everyone except for grp A in QLD), they may know who you are. If you leave a good/strong impression at work :)

Just be careful about "ICU positions" at rural hospitals, in Australia in actuality many of the rural "ICUs" are really just high dependency units or units with 1:1 nursing. They don't do what a tertiary ICU does.
 
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TheShowGoesOn

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If it works out that way, the work ex even PT will help you get familiar with the Australian system. Set up networks early with hospitals and staff in them. So when your name comes up for jobs (it's merit based for everyone except for grp A in QLD), they may know who you are. If you leave a good/strong impression at work :)

Just be careful about "ICU positions" at rural hospitals, in Australia in actuality many of the rural "ICUs" are really just high dependency units or units with 1:1 nursing. They don't do what a tertiary ICU does.
Yeah, i've got some experience in a rural ICU and during my time there we called it a medical step-up unit ;). I googled the process for a Canadian RN to migrate to AUS and it seems easy enough. Safe to say I will most likely be taking this course of action now... The more you know...

As for UQ, it will be interesting to see what changes they make as I know personally, a friend of mine is looking to apply but he comes from a business background- I may just suggest that he take at least a university level biology/anatomy & physiology course before applying.
 

Domperidone

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As for UQ, it will be interesting to see what changes they make as I know personally, a friend of mine is looking to apply but he comes from a business background- I may just suggest that he take at least a university level biology/anatomy & physiology course before applying.

Or he really should go somewhere with more support like JCU. :/ JCU is 6 yrs and has in built courses that cover more of the basics. It's a small rural school, so extra supportive versus a large one.

Or consider a smaller class size like Monash post grad. I wouldn't recommend UQ in his specific situation. It's not a good fit right now for him.

It's really awful what happens to some of those students at UQ, it's a very large school. Even with passing, to have that type anxiety or imposter syndrome that early in your career. Most in the class have science backgrounds or degrees. The domestics in particular, most of them have biomedical or premed undergrad degrees. You're always compared to everyone else. It's possible to catch up but it's challenging the first couple of yrs.

UQ has more services relative to other schools for going overseas for residency (out of Australia). Don't interpret that as lots of resources, however. But if you end up struggling or accumulate red flags on your record, there's no almost point to having them at all.

If he does extra courses at home, which isn't a bad idea, he could probably still consider trying to apply at home if does well in them.
 
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mcat_taker

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Also, I was told that UQ will be revamping their admission requirements for 2020 from top to bottom... I wonder what will come out of that. They're expecting some "significant" changes.

I know that they are planning on doing interviews for domestic students moving forward. Or at least that's what I heard is in the works. Currently only ochsner cohort interviews for UQ med.
 

sean80439

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interviews are really useful at determining thumbs. You’d be surprised at the number of people with zero ability to have a normal conversation with a peer let alone a patient.
 
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Domperidone

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interviews are really useful at determining thumbs. You’d be surprised at the number of people with zero ability to have a normal conversation with a peer let alone a patient.
Tell me about it.

Imagine working closely with some of the personalties or sharing patients later.

I'd had the odd classmate previously who required security escort off premises. For. Things. That was extreme though.

UQ used to conduct interviews before it blossomed to 500 students per yr. Then they couldn't handle it, not to mention, at the time they got rid of them they weren't fulfilling their international student quotas anyway.

They even did a research paper to justify getting rid of interviews (well, that's my perspective on it). There's no selection committee for applications either, it's just, you meet cut off you get in. That simple until quotas are filled. Staff used to chickle about how premeds would ve anxious about getting in - I didn't know whether to be reassured by this or kinda disturbed. Some yrs they don't meet quotas for full fee paying internationals some years they do. Turning away even UQO candidates is a new thing in recent yrs.

The main rationale they pushed is that if they're too selective they'd miss the quiet but brilliant medical scientist or researcher who could be the next nobel winner or something (but is super awkward). You can get away with minimal patient interaction in path or rads. Sure. Regardless, all have to do clinical rotations, apply for resident yrs and treat patients.
 

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UQO interviews are there because UQO faculty have to work with those students. They can full stop an application before it even makes it to UQ admissions. They are very proud of what previous students have accomplished, especially with a match rate that's comparable to US matches, and don't want to give up their successful record by ending up with students who can't interview. I know for sure a guy that didn't match in the year above me (pretty sure there were only 4 that didn't match that entered) and his personality was very eccentric and probably rubbed the interviewers the wrong way.
 

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Also, yeah the class size is 500 - but 120 of that leave to go back to the US, so the class size is really only 350ish by 3rd year, and probably 100 of those are Canada/Singapore/elsewhere.
 

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UQO interviews are there because UQO faculty have to work with those students. They can full stop an application before it even makes it to UQ admissions. They are very proud of what previous students have accomplished, especially with a match rate that's comparable to US matches, and don't want to give up their successful record by ending up with students who can't interview. I know for sure a guy that didn't match in the year above me (pretty sure there were only 4 that didn't match that entered) and his personality was very eccentric and probably rubbed the interviewers the wrong way.
I was just reflecting on UQ trad, but yea agree re UQO. There were a few strange personalties in the UQO class in my year as well (before they started interviews) we were relieved they were weeded out. (So 500 back then, without interviews, which went on for yrs. No interviews on 350 a yr now is a luxury). They couldn't survive rotations at NOLA like that, at the level of expectations for students there. No way would they be suitable for residency. And generally UQO in NOLA does a lot for its cohort.

I'm not trying to be mean, for the premeds reading this. Just that it's such an ethical quandary. I wouldn't want them to treat my family, how is appropriate to let them treat someone else's. You don't have to have a high EQ just "normal", able to communicate and reliable. But it is still a healthcare profession, not a clerical desk job. Which means, maybe the schools have few standards on entry, but eventually the hospitals will and do have standards/expectations when they inherit the students whether on rotations or as interns/residents. [NB not that hospitals are awful to you, but we're talking a high pressured, high intensity environment]. The extreme personalities they shouldn't have taken in, get weeded out and they've now wasted their time, money and resources. Hopefully I haven't given any premeds a complex now thinking about this.
 
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Domperidone

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Yeah, i've got some experience in a rural ICU and during my time there we called it a medical step-up unit ;). I googled the process for a Canadian RN to migrate to AUS and it seems easy enough. Safe to say I will most likely be taking this course of action now... The more you know...
Easy now!
take it slow while you're contemplating it, you've time.
Don't get buyer's remorse later. Like some students do.

Feels super sketchy to say this.
But double check the entry requirements for domestic and internationals that whatever schools you look in. Depending on school, the requirements maybe higher or different for domestic applicants.

So.. if you want an "easy in" you may well apply for international entry.
then get PR after you start. Unless it's more important to have less debt, but it doesn't sound that way.
 

TheShowGoesOn

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Easy now!
take it slow while you're contemplating it, you've time.
Don't get buyer's remorse later. Like some students do.

Feels super sketchy to say this.
But double check the entry requirements for domestic and internationals that whatever schools you look in. Depending on school, the requirements maybe higher or different for domestic applicants.

So.. if you want an "easy in" you may well apply for international entry.
then get PR after you start. Unless it's more important to have less debt, but it doesn't sound that way.
@sean80439 @Domperidone Thanks for the ongoing conversation, i'm soaking it up like a sponge.

You're absolutely right when you say that. I would most definitely be applying as a international student, and upon being accepted I would then use whatever time I have before classes start to get an Australian nursing license and secure a job there. Best case scenario I accomplish this and am able to switch to PR status come second year.
 

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Glad to have helped. good luck with everything, if you have to go off shore, try to make it easier for you in the long run as much as you can in the beginning.

Continue to bear in mind that it isn't going to be what you think it is, many pre-meds have a tendency to idealize med school. They get disappointed later and it can make it hard to push through with mounting debts. It's easy to then be negative about things - what I'm trying to say is don't. There are rewarding aspects to it, but also things what are humbling. Are like the saying, be careful what you wish for.

Stay humble and stay positive about the situation if you end up off-shore. And again, stay un-entitled. Because you will be in someone else's country, sharing their resources to get your education. The fees you pay do not go to the hospital, they go to the universities. Treat it as a privilege when you can.

There are going to be moments that you will feel treated like 'a number', particularly at the larger schools. Minimize thinking that you're paying a lot to be there, which you are. But the domestic students have to undergo the same things everyone else does and they didn't ask for this situation either.

I'd also suggest that should you end up doing this path, that when/if you end up in an Australia school: perhaps don't overly share with your domestic classmates how you got in as an international to take advantage of the easier entry requirements and less competitive quota situation. and then swapped into a domestic spot with PR. Some of them may not like it. It's kinda rubbing in their faces that you did less work to get the same result. And some of them will have done extra course work or even degrees to get to where they are :S

For instance, I remember hearing a couple of international students complain how they ended up off-shore because their home country allowed international students to attend their schools. Because of being able to charge higher fees. Failing to recognize that they're doing that very thing in someone else's country. Granted, given the chance a lot of people would take advantage of whatever loop holes and situations they have. It's life.

But for Australians, there kinda isn't an off-shore option that is the equivalent of what Australian or Irish schools are to North Americans or Singaporeans. Australia is harder for any holder of a non-Australian degree compared to the US anyway, in terms of how many hoops they make you go through. At least that's based on what the IMGs tell me and the odd Australian who attends the Oceania school of Samoa in the Polynesian islands or something. The fact that Australians with non Australian degrees are prioritized behind the 1000s of international students at Australian schools says something.
 
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Laetare

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Also, I was told that UQ will be revamping their admission requirements for 2020 from top to bottom... I wonder what will come out of that. They're expecting some "significant" changes.

Who told you this?
 

Domperidone

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Who told you this?
There's talk of it every year, to be honest. I wouldn't fret.
If it doesn't look as though they'll be able to fill quota, they most likely won't change anyway.

And personally, it would be nice to see UQ set some actual standards for a change. But I really don't expect that they will. So, be reassured. :p
 
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mcat_taker

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There's talk of it every year, to be honest. I wouldn't fret.
If it doesn't look as though they'll be able to fill quota, they most likely won't change anyway.

And personally, it would be nice to see UQ set some actual standards for a change. But I really don't expect that they will. So, be reassured. :p

It's possible they will make bigger changes in the near future. I have heard similar rumblings. The ochsner side of admissions has already drastically gone up in the standards they have set. First bringing in interviews and then increasing the MCAT score each year for 3 years straight. I can see the international side of admissions slowly catching up. They are receiving more and more applications each year as the program becomes better known (at least on the ochsner side). I don't think they are having issues with meeting quota currently. Thats why tuition keeps going up as well each year with no drop off in demand. Medical school degrees still seem to be relatively in-elastic as a commodity. But again that would be just a guess as I don't have any numbers to go off of.
 
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