BA Medical Sciences leading to BM BCh Medicine
Image courtesy of Jim Friedman via Wellcome Images
Average intake at Wadham: 5
The practice of Medicine offers a breadth of experiences impossible to find in any other subject. Every day brings different patients with different needs. It’s a great choice for scientists who strive to understand and apply research findings to improve the lives of the patients in their care. It offers a meaningful career that is prestigious, secure and well paid.
Medicine students complete a three-year degree course, the BA in Medical Sciences, before proceeding to their clinical studies. This three-year course includes a pre-clinical qualification (First BM). A further three years are then required to complete the full medical qualification (BM BCh).
Please note that all applicants to the Oxford Medicine degree must be at least 18 years old by 1st November in the year they intend to start the course.
Pre-clinical Medicine and Medical Sciences at Wadham
For the first half of the course, emphasis is placed on regular tutorials from Fellows and Lecturers who are able to teach broadly across the course. Professor Farmery is a Respiratory Physiologist and Consultant Anaesthetist, who teaches the Physiology and Pharmacology course in the 1st and 2nd years. He also supervises students taking the Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Renal options in the 3rd year.
Professor Monika Gullerova is an Experimental Pathologist who works on the genetics of cancer. She teaches the Principles of Pathology course in the 2nd year, and supervises students taking the Infection and Immunity, and Molecular Medicine options in the 3rd year.
Tutorials are also given by our College Lecturers in Anatomy and Neurophysiology.
Clinical Medicine at Wadham
Only Oxford pre-clinical students may apply to Oxford for clinical study. The majority of Wadham's pre-clinical students stay in Oxford to complete their clinical course. During the 3rd year of the course, students are invited to apply to Oxford Clinical School or one of the medical schools of London University. All suitably qualified Oxford pre-clinical students will be guaranteed an offer from the Oxford Clinical School should they so choose or if their application to the London Medical Schools is unsuccessful. If our pre-clinical students move to other Oxford colleges or to London, Wadham welcomes clinical students who may have completed their pre-clinical years at other Oxford colleges. The Clinical School advises suitable applicants on the procedure for applying to join a specific college; information can be found on the Medical School website.
A Student's Perspective
Lia - 2nd Year Pre-Clinical Medicine
'The medical course at Oxford is split into two parts - three years of Preclinical followed by three years of Clinical Medicine, both of which you can do at Wadham.
The first two years are lecture and practical based, focussing on the science that underpins clinical medicine. Third year is slightly different. You get to join a lab team of your choice to complete a novel, supervised project; you also choose to specialise in one of five fields (based on courses taught in BM Part 1), giving you the opportunity to become an 'expert'; and finally, you get to write an extended essay on whatever medical topic you fancy, allowing you to explore the most up-to-date literature and analyse it critically.
There is, however, plenty of time to engage in extra-curricular activities (I spend half my life rowing!) and to relax with your friends in the bar of an evening. It's definitely important to unwind now and again, whatever your vice.
I chose medicine first and foremost because I find the subject fascinating: I always loved studying the human body at school and couldn't really imagine myself doing anything else. I chose Oxford predominantly because of the course structure; first we are taught to become great scientists, and then we are given the opportunity to apply this knowledge in a hospital setting. Moreover, the academic provision is second-to-none, and you can feel relaxed around your peers during the more 'nerdy' moments.
Another thing that sets Oxford apart is the emphasis, from day one, on experimental and clinical evidence. You begin to question everything: how we know what we know, how it was discovered in the first place, and what implications it has in the real world.
Equally, this strong grounding in science allows those that may have an interest in academic medicine and research, rather than in becoming a practising doctor, to explore these fields in depth. Nevertheless, for the majority that pursue a clinical career, you can enter the wards equipped to deal with any medical problems you may encounter.
At Wadham both the preclinical and clinical tutors are very experienced; at each stage you will be taught by both clinical doctors and research scientists, which gives you a broad perspective on your studies.
Every term there is at least one Wadham Medical society event to get to know tutors and people from other years on a personal level. On top of vast intelligence, it's humbling to have such a tight-knit, friendly medical community at our college.
Another perk of studying medicine at Wadham is that the faculty building is only a five minute walk from college!'
Image of Pills and syringes by Jim Friedman, Wellcome Images