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Discussion in 'General International Discussion' started by apen, Nov 29, 2002.

  1. apen

    apen New Member

    Nov 26, 2002
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    I have seen some discussions in the forum about going to Oxford or Camebrige for medical education, and thought I should make a small note.

    Going to these schools following the traditional 5 year course will, for most 'elite' students, result in graduating twice; firstly from Oxford or Camebridge after the two first years and a year of research (intercalated degree), and then from a different medical school after three years of clinical medicine. Why is this you may ask, are these not the best schools in the UK, and the most famous?

    Yes, they are the best and the most famous in most ways, including the pre-clinical subjects and in research, but not in clinical medicine. The reason for this is that the teaching hospitals has a relatively protected environment, providing their clinicicans time to do lots of research (more important than teaching, don't forget), and that the clinical population is relatively small (and very homogenous) in comparison to those found in larger cities (London, Birmingham etc.).

    It is a tradition (expected) for these students to leave, altough the University is keen for them to stay. The remaining places, which has historically been filled by students from other schools, are now filled by those in the new 'fast-track' course (4-year) for graduate students, who only has a 1-year course before their pre-clinical finals.

    The bottom line is that if you are interested in getting the best clinical education, while living in a more 'normal' environment, and you are not planning on a super-career in research, go elsewhere.

    Good luck
  2. Spinola

    Spinola Member
    7+ Year Member

    Sep 22, 2002
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    Most of the clinicians teaching on the clinical medical courses at Oxbridge are just like clinicians at any other medical school in the UK; they only actively involve themselves in research if they feel moved to do so. Whilst the populations of Oxford and Cambridge are smaller than those of larger cities, their University hospitals act as tertiary referral centres for their counties or even regions, so their catchment area is larger than many other hospitals in larger cities; clinical populations are likely to be similar to any other teaching hospital.

    The majority of places on the clinical courses are filled by those who were pre-clinical students at the respective institutions. The fast-track courses have provided additional places and have not taken places away from students on the traditional course.

    The fast-track students also have more than one year before their pre-clinical finals.

    In summary, there are a few shreds of truth in what you've posted.

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