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The Recruitment team
For your Nursing degree I am aware that you accept the extended diploma in health and social care. Do students need to have studied particular modules within this so that they cover the science knowledge neccessary for nursing? Is your preference biology A level?
Applicants do not need to offer an A Level if they are undertaking the Extended Diploma (in either Health and Social Care or Applied Science – grade requirements are DDM). No particular modules need to be studied. They do need to offer an A Level if it is the Diploma qualification.
When A Levels are the main qualification, one of the subjects should be Biology, Psychology or Sociology. In other words, Biology A Level is not preferred and an applicant who offers this is not at an advantage over applicants who offer other valid qualifications.
as public health will be a new course, will there be any subject specific requirements? What will you be looking for in a personal statement?
Due to the epidemiological and statistical elements of the course we are asking for one science A-level which could be Biology/Human Biology, Chemistry, Economics, Geography, Maths, PE/Sports Studies, Psychology, Physics, Statistics, Geology (other qualifications are considered and students can contact the Admissions Tutor for further information).
Public health is a broad subject and therefore a wide range of experiences would be applicable for a personal statement, for example:
– Relevant volunteering or work experience (e.g. within the NHS or a local authority)
– Demonstrating an understanding of what public health is and which particular modules the student is looking forward to and why
– Examples of leadership, advocacy and communication skills
– Long-term goals after the BSc
Could you tell me a little bit more about the Foundation Pathways in Medical, Life and Geosciences please? Are these appropriate for students who have missed the grades for medicine for example?
What work experience opportunities does the University of Birmingham consider as ideal oipportunities for prospective students interested in medicine, Public Health and Psychology?
Thank you for your question.
For prospective applicants who are interested in applying for BSc Psychology, we do not currently have set work experience requirements that applicants need to meet as part of our entry requirements. We consider applications as a whole and would look at all of your skills and experience demonstrated in both your personal statement and listed on your application. Work experience or paid employment does not necessarily need to be within the realm of Psychology, as we appreciate it is difficult to source clinical based work experience for example, and we would look at a wide range of experience from varying backgrounds. If you are specifically interested in finding work experience related to Psychology, then you can perhaps take a look at community volunteering initiatives such as charity helplines or project based work working with young people for example. It is more important for you to demonstrate your motivations for studying the course and the skills and personal development you have gained from your various life experiences as a whole.
From the perspective of medicine….. healthcare experience (broadly defined) is very important. An applicant does not need to offer shadowing – in fact, though this can be very helpful to the individual, it says nothing to us about the qualities of the applicant. Rather, we would prefer an applicant to take on some kind of caring responsibility for vulnerable people. This doesn’t have to be in a classical healthcare setting but it should not be only experience gained with family members. There are various ways that medical schools might assess this in the selection for interview but we would all be trying to measure how well an applicant can demonstrate empathy. The ability to present considered, rational views on an issue at the same time is also important. A candidate will be expected to convey the understanding the have gained from their own experiences in trying to provide care and support.
Public health is a very broad subject and so a variety of volunteering/work experience would be valuable preparation for the BSc. The main organisations with public health responsibilities are the NHS, local authorities and Public Health England but there are also numerous third sector organisations that supply a growing amount of public health interventions (e.g. via community groups, working with the homeless etc.). The key is highlighting which element of public health the experience is related to (e.g. healthcare public health, mental public health, health protection etc). There also is a strong emphasis on global health during the BSc and any international exposure should be highlighted in personal statements.