Thursday, 27 December 2012

Ok, Its been a while, right!


Hey guys, its been a while right?! I've noticed my last post was in November and it is now Dec 27th ! So over  month! And what a month it has been!

I haven't been posting because its been a busy month preparing for Jan exams and mock interviews and stuff. I also had no internet for the last month either and posting on my phone was really annoying. I had mock interviews in Nov/Dec and I went to a lecture at the RSM (Royal Society of Medicine in London - Central, that is) by Max Pemberton himself! I was excited! The famous doctor who wrote "Trust Me, I'm a Junior Doctor" and its sequel, "Where does it hurt?" What an awesome lecture it was. 

And in terms of my UCAS application, nothing so far! I've had a few emails from Leeds saying we wouldn't hear anything until the new year and I'm guessing its the same now for my other medical schools so I really won't be posting until then. Right now, it has just been revision, stalking The Student Room stalking threads and waiting.

Waiting is really draining. Hopefully I get some results in the new year though.

Until then, Happy New Year!

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

A major post about what I've learnt so far from the job...

So you guys know I got a job at a GP as a receptionist, right? Its pretty good and the pay is decent for my age, the only problem is that its like a (maximum) 2 hour journey to get there! But thats fine, I can live with that. I could do some reading or extra revision on the journey to and from work. But this is a post on things I've learnt whilst working there. This will be a majorly long post, sorry about that! :)

One of the first things I'll talk about is work one Saturday I did. Firstly, there were a few weeks where I'd be left on my own, running the GP with no one to help me. This was quite a scary few weeks as I hadn't received any formal training of any sort. So I had to go with my initiative on things, which of course is really good because this is the way (I believe) you'd learn on the job whilst you're doing your F1/F2 years. Someone isn't going to be there to constantly tell you what to do, so being able to learn how to take initiative during the job has really helped me. I've also learnt to be more of a independent learner as I had to learn certain things pretty quickly. For example, writing up blood test forms for the patients to do blood tests at the local hospital or learning how to use the Vision system (software on the computer) to book or cancel patients' appointments.

Anyway, that day I was working alone as I said earlier. On Saturdays, the clinic usually starts at 1 and ends at 3, so that is when the GP would come in and see all the patients booked in between then. On this particular day, the GP calls 20 minutes before he is due to come in to see the patients and tells me he is going to be late and will be there around 2pm. So it was left to me to call up the patients and try to reschedule their appointments. I used the system to find out who was booked in for that day and I called them up. I told them calmly and reasoned with them if it was possible for them to come in at a later time. But the GP eventually came in at 1:30 so it was kind of an inconvience but at least he wasn't really late. Surprisingly, there were no angry patients and everything went fine for that day.

But it reminds me of another time, when I had to call patients to tell them to reschedule their appointments as the GP for that day had cancelled her appointments due to prior engagements. That was the first time I had to deal with angry patients over the phone, but to be honest it is far easier than dealing with angry patients face to face (as seen in this post..). What had happened is that this patient had an appointment for a certain time, I asked her since the GP was engaged in other things, would it be possible for her to see the doctor at a later time but on the same day. She got really angry! She mentioned how this is not possible as she has kids (which is understandable) and she has to travel a long distance and stuff. I spoke to her in a calm tone and tried to reason with her but she wasn't having it! She eventually got so angry, she dropped the phone on me. I still wonder if she did have her appointment eventually. Through these experiences I learnt that I had to be able to deal with angry people often. In medicine, you will have to work and deal with people with a wide range of emotions. Through this process, you do have to keep a calm and poised exterior even if you are shaking inside (I know I was!) and try to speak in a calm voice. If one of you is calm and collected it makes the situation so much easier to deal with. Try to sympathise with them and see things from their point of view. Eventually this should work and you should be able to sort out everything.

I'll do more posts on what I've learnt and things I've experienced more often actually - well, when I have time to. I had to cut this post quite abruptly because I have a lesson in 5 minutes. I'm actually writing this post from school.

But thanks for reading this post. Comments will be appreciated!


Monday, 5 November 2012


Just a really short reminder for myself and an update for you guys!

First day back after half term. Even harder work begins today. We're in the last weeks before January exams! Ahhh scaryyyy!

Plus, I need to do posts on 

  • Work, maybe some stories and what I've learnt a few weekends ago
  • Interview tips! Yes, I went to a mini session on interview tips given by a speaker from Nottingham university. Very interesting.
  • Health stories? I'm going to see if I can start posting up some recent health and medical news up on here for myself and for you guys as well! Including background research and stuff
  • Some of my interview prep stuff.
  • General things
But yeah, those are coming up very soon - as soon as I'm free! I'm so busy trying to stay on top of my work.

Until then, just got to push myself!


Wednesday, 24 October 2012


I was supposed to do this yesterday but things got in the way...

But yes, as my title suggests, yesterday (23/10/12) I got an email from UCAS. "Something has changed on your track" - when I saw it, my heart started beating fast, I was shaking, I was so nervous! I quickly logged onto to track and what do I see....


Queen Mary, University of London has only gone and given me an offer of ABB in 3 GCE subjects! WOOOP! For Biochemistry, mind you!

So I've DEFINITELY got a chance of getting into university next year. The way I'm seeing it, if I don't get into medicine next year (God forbid) I'll go do the biochemistry degree and see where life takes me!

Now I have to wait until the others start giving out interviews, hopefully I have a shot then!

Plus tomorrow, I have a medical interview prep thing tomorrow at a grammar school local to mine, so I'm looking forward to that. I haven't really done much practice with interviews to be fair, so doing this should give me a kick in the right direction.

But its late, and I do have to be in school early, so I'm off.
I'll post tomorrow with some interview advice and tips!


Monday, 15 October 2012


Ok so since my application was sent off, I've been able to log into track (even though I haven't got my welcome letter yet). I was really excited.

But heres how it looks at the moment:

So now all I can do is wait!

But yesterday, I got an email from Queen Mary university, stating that they've received my application and it will take 6-8 weeks for a reply on a decision!

So yeah, now I play the waiting game. Hopefully, this waiting doesn't make me anxious!

Saturday, 13 October 2012


Ok, its official.
My college sent off my application today, in fact this morning. I got the email whilst at work! This is what they emailed today:

We are pleased to let you know that your school, college or centre has sent us your UCAS application, which we received on 13 October 2012.

What happens next?
It will usually take up to 48 hours for us to process and send it to the universities and colleges that you have applied to. At deadlines this may be longer.

We will send you a welcome letter and a Your UCAS Welcome Guide in the post when we have processed it. The letter is important as it lists all the courses that you have applied to as well as your Personal ID and username.

So UCAS 2013 has officially started. All I've got to do now is just wait for the welcome letter and wait for interviews/offers to start rolling in! Let the anxiety and waiting begin!

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Okay, guys I've got a dilemma...

Right, as you all know I've sent off my UCAS form, but thankfully my reference hasn't been added yet. From my previous posts, I told you guys that I went to the BSMS open day and I loved it! But unfortunately, my AS grades (I thought) weren't good enough but I recently received an email from one of the admissions tutors saying :

Hello Satta

Sorry for the delay

We prefer to see AS grades, but if they are missing or poor then we will look at GCSE’s.

I sent him an email asking about whether they prefer to see AS results. I'm not sure if mine are poor - BBBCD, B's in Bio, Chem and Maths - but my GCSE grades are far better. I've been predicted AAA as well. I really loved BSMS when I went to the open day. What do I do? I need to ask for my college to send back my application form so I can change my fifth option anyway, I'm changing from chem and biochem at Queen Mary's to just biochem. Plus I'm really considering changing Nottingham to BSMS. But is it worth the risk? What do I do? But applying to medicine is a risk in itself anyway but I'm so confused!

I need some advice please!


Monday, 1 October 2012

Dudeee, Work on Saturday was just...

Sorry, I haven't been posting as regularly! A2 is taking over my life and really does require a lot of dedication and stuff. So yeah, doing three subjects, I assumed will be so much easier than doing 5 AS's but boy, was I wrong! My A2 subjects require so much time! Its really draining, but by God's grace, I will be able to survive, and you will too! Just less than a year to go!

Right, onto what this post was really about. Work on Saturday. 

Its Saturday morning, 9am, I collect the GP's keys from the local corner shop and open up the surgery. As time goes on, I realise I'm manning the GP surgery all by myself. Oh. My. Gosh. A whole GP surgery left to a 17 year old again! Suddenly I started to worry, oh my gosh, what if things go wrong? What do I do? What if I make a mistake? But I had to calm myself down, and take it on the chin. I was only there until 4pm, what's the worst that could happen, right?

It is now 1pm and the clinic starts. Patients start coming in. One patient comes in with her son, he's expecting a pre-school booster. First of all, the doctor who does the clinic on Saturday does not do injections without them being prepared for him, because otherwise he wastes time preparing them. But me being me, I assumed he'd prepare this one on his own. Just before she was due to go and see the doctor for her son, the doctor calls me through the telephone from his office into the reception and tells me he cannot do it without the injection being prepared for him. Unfortunately, I was not trained to prepare the injections! And I was alone, so who else would prepare it, certainly not the doctor.

So guess who had to break the news to the patient? Me, of course. With the drop of the phone, I called the patient over to the reception desk and told her the news. It went something like this:

Me: I'm really sorry about this, but I'm afraid your son cannot get his injection because we don't have someone to prepare the injection for your son today but I can reschedule another appointment for it to be done, is Monday fine for you?

Obviously, she flipped out! Well, of course she would, she had been waiting to see the doctor and at the last minute this was cancelled on her. So her being angry was totally justified. But this was my first time dealing with an angry patient! Inside, I was panicking, terrified and upset at the same time, but I couldn't show this emotion. So how did I deal with it? I apologised profusely and carried a calm tone when speaking to her even though I was the total opposite inside. I tried to calm her down by offering an appointment for Monday and it worked! It was a total relief when she left though. I guess, I'm not used to such anger towards me. But I used it as a lesson, as obviously if I want to be a doctor, I do have to learn to deal with such patients at times, not all patients will come in happy as rainbows and unicorns.

Thursday, 20 September 2012


Wow,wow, wow, oh. my. gosh

The day has arrived.
Today I sent off my UCAS form.
It is finished.
It is done.
Well, except for the part where the college now receives it and adds my reference to it. But besides that (which will probably take a week), I've done it.
I've applied for medicine.
Wish me luck guys!

For the next few weeks, my posts will mainly be on stuff for interview prep!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Catch uppppppp

Oh. My. Gosh. Guys. 

September 2012 is here, which only means one thing. Medical deadlines are next month. But first off, let me start with how A2 is going. Well, we only started like 6 days ago (not including weekends) and I'm already soooo tired! I honestly believe I've done more work in this week than in my whole AS year. Its that tiring, believe it or not. A2 requires a lot more effort and hard work. Just chilling is not going to get you by! I'm practically trying to extend the hours I'm awake so this means roughly 6 hours sleep so I have 18 hours to put as much work in as possible. The workload is a lot, so much dedication is required. I can't what until school ends so I can just sleep!

You guys remember I have a job at the GP, right? Well yes I'm still working there. I do mainly Saturdays  The only thing is Saturdays is really quiet! Not many patients come in, so its mainly just scanning and filing for me. The summer hols were way busier! But I'm still learning about how the GP works and stuff, so its still an interesting experience for me.

Its going to be such a busy week for me, I have volunteering tomorrow, I meet my mentor on Wednesday (from SMF; see previous posts all about that), that day I also meet my mentees in the lower sixth which I'm excited about and Thursday I return to my drama classes after school. I've really missed them. Finally Saturday, I have work again. But its all good. I'm happy I have a lot of free time in my timetable because I can catch up with homework and stuff.

Back to the whole medical school application thing. A lot of people I've met who wanted to be doctors have all fallen out of the game. That is how serious and competitive medicine is. It actually hurt me, so many who seemed so much more passionate than me have all dropped out due to one reason of the other. Sometimes, I still question whether it will soon be me dropping out soon too. But the support I've received from my friends, family and even some readers here have been immense, and I'd like to say thank you for the support and for reading the blog! But on another positive note, I'm very close to finishing my UCAS application, it should be ready to submit by next week or so.

Heres where I've decided to apply:

  • Leeds A100
  • Bristol A100
  • Nottingham A100
  • Kings EMDP (Extended Medical Degree Programme)
  • Queen Marys (Chemistry + Biochemistry)
So yeah, those are the luck 5 universities I've chosen. If I do get rejected, I'll be more than happy to take a gap year and reapply. It will give me a chance to focus more on my grades which are really important. 

So thats really been a catch up of September so far. Its going to be a long 9 months or short; my teachers keep saying it will whizz by. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't petrified. To be growing up so fast, woooow. Time really does go fast.

I really do wish every other medical applicant (or non medical) the best of luck in this UCAS cycle. I'm sure you'll do well and get offers! 
Good luck!!!


Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Ok sooo....

I've been reflecting on this journey and I've realised a lot of friends of mine who wanted to do medicine have all dropped out. I've survived this long, and I feel like its time for me to bow out of the race too. I've been having doubts whether to continue as others around me doubt whether its possible for me to get in. Of course, leading to me in believing them and just feeling like its time to end this journey. I'm seriously contemplating whether I want to continue this journey or not; its been a great ride and all, but it is a lot of stress but that's what I love. But I love medicine as a whole but I'm seriously doubting my abilities now. I'm losing hope.

If I was to continue heres where I'd apply to now:

  • Hull York
  • Bristol
  • Lancaster/Leeds
  • Keele
And Queens as a back-up to study Chemistry and biochemistry. Whether its time to let the journey end, I cannot be sure....

Tuesday, 28 August 2012


Right, first things first, my UKCAT score!!

I know I was supposed to post it after doing the test, but I was upset about it. Even though its not bad, I thought I had no chance with my score! But eventually I got over it, and realised I still have a shot at getting in - no room for negative thoughts here!!!

Heres what I got:

Verbal Reasoning - 570
Quantitative Reasoning - 590
Abstract Reasoning - 660
Decision Analysis - 660

Average - 620

When I worked out the average, I panicked and was like "Oh no! I have no hope!" I instantly started planning a gap year. but I believe I still a chance! How could I assume I have no chance if I hadn't applied yet? My grades can be predicted AAA, I've had work experience and voluntary work. My personal statement is coming along great! Why would I not have a shot? 

Thursday, 23 August 2012

UKCAT DAY!!!!1!!!1!

Today is the big dayyyyy!

Doing my UKCAT later on today. My test is at 5pm.
Quite nervous, but whatever happens, happens.

I'll post my score on later!

Friday, 17 August 2012

Day at work?

If you don't know, I got a job at a GP working as a receptionist, BONUS I get money and I get to put it on my personal statement! Anyway today was my second day and guess what?

I was left on my own with a work experience girl! Initially I wasn't worried because it seemed quiet today but then the patients started rolling in! It was quite difficult because we didn't know everything, but it was a very good learning experience.

I've touched on this before but communicating with foreign patients is extremely difficult, especially if they don't speak or understand a word of english. But to overcome this today, I had to write a note and the patient gave to someone they knew who spoke english so that was ok. We tried signing when we spoke but it was clear she wasn't understanding what we were saying so the note method was used.

But today was an enormous learning curve and it was an amazing feeling to be trusted to lock up the GP. I really did learn a lot, medicine is a whole lot more than just doctors and diagnosing. Theres a whole team of people who help with the healthcare of others. I feel I have gained more understanding of the career I'm going into and it is an amazing feeling.

Now, just need to keep preparing for the UKCAT. I may still have a chance. My journey into medicine is not over yet.

My Results!

So heres what I predicted a few days ago what I'll get:

Biology - A
Chemistry - B
Maths - B
Religious Studies (Philosophy and Ethics) - B
Further Maths - U

Heres what I actually got:

Biology - B (aac)
Chemistry - B (abc)
Maths - B (aac)  - 2 UMS from A :(
Religious Studies (Philosophy and Ethics) - C (bc)
Further Maths - D (bdu)

Initially I was upset with what I got. But now that I've slept on it, I'm ok because I still have a chance to get AAA in the main subjects! So obviously I'll be continuing biology, chemistry and maths at A2. I'll be working REALLY hard to get A's next year - possibly even an A*? It did hurt, now I have to forget about applying to UCL, because I've heard they like high module grades so I have no chance. So now I have to do more research into what medical schools I can apply to. I still have my UKCAT to do, so no rational decisions will be made until I've done my UKCAT. But I do believe I still have a chance because I will have a strong profile before I apply! But hey, life goes on, my AS grades will not stop me from achieving my dream, even if I do end up doing post-grad medicine. 

The thing is with medicine, it is never 100% definite! You may have the strongest profile but there is still a chance you won't get it, so why should I give up! Regarding the further maths grade, my maths teacher said that he'll allow me to resit the certain modules that brought my grade down even though I'm not continuing it for A2. But overall I'm quite pleased with the B's in the main subjects - it means I still have a chance and shouldn't give up!

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Results Morning


Its 8:16am and I'm waiting for the right time to left the house to get to college to collect my results.
I'm sooooo nervous, I'm actually shaking. Oh my gosh. I've lost my appetite as well.
I've been on twitter all morning after a 3 hour sleep and it seems everyone is doing well and getting into university! Its weird that'll be me next year and to think, if I'm this nervous for my AS results imagine the state I'd be in for A2 results! I'm going to keep this post short because I'm actually shaking, its kinda hard to type this up.

Good luck for everyone else who haven't got their results and well done to those who have!


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Results day jitters

Ok, today is the 14th August 2012 and its two days until results day arrives.

I'm doing this post to predict what I will get on results day because I have just seen the grade boundaries and now I'm scared. I wasn't before but seeing the grade boundaries have made it sink in more. So here are my predictions for my AS results:

Biology - A
Chemistry - B
Maths - B
Religious Studies (Philosophy and Ethics) - B
Further Maths - U

Not too bad but does this limit the medical schools I can apply too if I can still apply to medical school? This worries me. Now the grade boundaries have put a big fear in me. Will it be the end of my journey into medicine?

Good luck to other AS/A2 students getting their results on Thursday!
Lets all hope for the best!

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Day 4 - 5 Work Experience 9/08/12 - 10/08/12

As you can see day 3 isn't there, I didn't turn up for my third day as I wasn't feeling well. I felt really bad about not going but I was finding it hard to even get up and do anything. Female troubles, eh *hint hint*. I'm doing a joint post of Day 4 and 5 because its like a hazy blur and I can't distinguish what happened on each day. I was basically doing the same thing for both days anyway.

Scanning. Filing. Scanning. Filing. Occasional call from patient.

Yes, it that order repeatedly for 6 hours. It was slightly dull but I did learn a LOT about patient interface whilst being a receptionist at the GP. A lot of patients do have high expectations for the GP practice and from being in the receptionist's seat, it is quite difficult trying to deal with such problems. For example, we have a patient around 80 years old and is house bound. Has constant complains about her ear and legs. She lives alone. The doctor has done a home visit and thought she was fine but yet she keeps calling in requesting for the doctor to come and visit her, we suggested a district nurse so we said we'll contact them and get back to her. It was quite difficult getting through to the local hospitals requesting a district nurse, yet the patient keeps calling in claiming we aren't doing enough. Through this I've learnt, that as patients we underestimate and underappreciate the hard work doctors and staff alike do. They try their hardest but we can't see it. So I really do appreciate what the staff do. 

So that was a patient that really stuck in my head, so at the end of the day, the doctor was pleased with the work we had done during the week and offered us a job there. :) So I've sent in my stuff ie NI Card, proof of address etc. Hopefully should hear from them soon. Although it may seem silly, I'm not sure if its a paid one though. I hope it is!

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Back up?

Over the last few days, I've been thinking I do need a back-up because anything could happen in a course of a year, so I've been looking around for what course I would like to do as a back-up just in case.

Previously, I was against it because I was thinking that if I didn't get in next year, I'd go into a gap year and reapply again. But what if I don't get in again? Would I be stuck in the same cycle of being rejected for years? In that time I could have got a degree! But now I think applying for a back up degree makes sense, so I'd try for graduate entry even though that is fiercely competitive it is a risk I'm willing to take! So that would mean I'd have to do the back-up degree, work for a few years to save up money for the fees of course, then reapply for graduate entry. And who knows, maybe I won't even apply for medicine anymore, I might really enjoy this degree and it sounds great by the way, so I wouldn't mind.

I've decided I want to do a dual honours course at Keele, I really like the sound of the neuroscience and biochemistry combination. It seems so interesting! To be honest, my back up degree would have been neuroscience anyway but I went on UCAS and it showed some dual honours courses as well so the neuroscience and biochemistry option seemed perfect for me! I love what the courses are offering so I wouldn't mind studying these two for three years. The offer for this is BBB so I pretty much believe I have a chance of getting in! I've ordered Keele's prospectus to get more of an idea of the university, so I'm looking forward for that to arrive in the post!

Day 2 - Work Experience 07/08/12

Well, today was another long day at the GP. Literally spent all day calling up patients to come in to get their blood pressure readings done just to update the system as they hadn't had it done in 9 months. So when they do come in, we get their blood pressure reading done by using an digital sphyhmomanometer (I don't believe anyone can actually say this word, let alone remember it!) and then record it on their system.

Today, again we had patients calling up and asking to book appointments and whatnot which we had to do as well. But today seemed to be a day for angry patients because there were a lot more today. Through this, I watched and learnt how to deal with angry patients; you've just got to talk calmly and not raise your voice to try and calm them down. 

I haven't really got much to say about today, it was kind of repetitive with what I was doing. If I do, remember anything I'll probably add it.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Day 1 - Work Experience 06/08/12

This is a post about my first day of work experience. I  got a placement through Target Medicine - an awesome scheme ran by UCL (my dream university, well one of them anyway) and it is at a medical centre all the way in North London even though I live in South East but an opportunity is an opportunity, you've got to grab it with both hands and run with it!

Firstly, I woke up around 4:45am to get ready, left the house at 6am and got to the area around 7:50 (so I'm writing this post kind of half dead, from the nap I just had) and I was really early - I was supposed to get there for 8:45, but after 30 minutes of aimlessly wondering around the place, I decided to go in and just start the day. So, nervously, I went in and met a lovely girl who works as one of the receptionists, she showed me around, got me to sign a confidentiality form and hey presto, I was ready to begin!

She showed me how to collect calls and book appointments for patients calling in. It was a really good experience because I get to communicate with the patients a lot, which is practice for the future. So doing this for most of the day, improved my confidence in speaking to strangers, I'm definitely a shy person which causes me to be quiet most of the time but doing this, I believe, helped my confidence and communication skills! Unfortunately, we were told that we won't be fortunate enough to shadow an actual doctor which to be honest, miffed me off. I was thinking isn't that the point of this but as we're working in reception, its still a way of learning how GP's are ran and to be honest, most of the work does rely on the reception. They are the port of call for the patients as we are the first and last thing they see when they leave the practice. So communication again is very important, there was an example shown to me today, two Romanian women and a young boy came in with a lack of english speaking skills so to be able to communicate with them would be quite difficult  so you do have to speak slowly and clearly so they understand what you are saying. So I understand now the difficulties of having patients whom english is clearly not their first language. 

Later, we were asked to file some documents under a specific patient. This is all done digitally now on the computer, the documents are scanned onto the computer and then filed and summarised. This does take a lot of time to do, so computers are pretty much very valuable as they contain most of our medical data, if anything goes wrong you have to rather back to the paper notes. Which we all know, is not fast and efficient like a computer.

Overall, today I learnt medicine isn't fast paced and there is so many aspects of teamwork and communication between the doctor and the receptionist staff. Literally if the doctor needed anything, they'll come to the receptionists will do it for them and so I believe GP's would be a shambles if they didn't have good receptionists!

So tomorrow day 2 of work experience, we have a list of patients to call to get them in and get their blood pressure to keep the system updated for the audit, which should be exciting. This is going to be a long week but I think I will definitely learn (or it will be reinforced) that medicine has also a lot of documents and paperwork that are really important, so you have to be capable of doing things correctly otherwise you run the risk of messing up the system which is something you definitely don't want to do!

Friday, 3 August 2012

More UKCAT practice *sigh*

Sorry if the image is not clear!
Its really annoying to post pictures sometimes.

I just did one of the practice exams on the UKCAT website. The link is available here. I did the short version, and it is quite short! I just wanted to get used to the timings to be honest. I feel like practising loads of questions are in vain if you can't stick to the time limit! Its great practice to get used to the pressure!

If you can't see them, here is what I got:

Verbal Reasoning; 12 Questions : 6 Incorrect
Quantitative Reasoning; 12 Questions : 4 Incorrect
Abstract Reasoning; 15 Questions : 4 Incorrect
Decision Analysis; 11 Questions : 4 Incorrect

Really happy with what happened. Not too shabby, not too shabby at all! Especially my abstract reasoning! I'm really chuffed with that! I guess practice does help! I'm seeing patterns far much more better and clearer than before. Much more practice is still needed in my abstract and verbal reasoning. But still I'm happy with that! I guess its looking up, eh? Woop, now I look forward in doing more practice, shockingly I'm starting to enjoy it!

If you have any tips, I would be more than grateful if you could leave them in the comments section!


Wednesday, 1 August 2012


Well, as part of the UCL Target Medicine scheme, they obviously prepare us for entry into medicine. So a few weeks ago (11 July 2012) we did a timed UKCAT mock, which I eventually found out was the mock in the back of the 600Q book but that doesn't matter its practice and I could do it again. But anyway here is my results:

Abstract Reasoning: 375
Decision Analysis: 731
Quantitative Reasoning: 310
Verbal Reasoning: 368 
Average: 446

As you can see, this isn't a great average! But it was my first time, so I'll take this as a learning curve, and obviously practice makes perfect. The timing is quite difficult especially in the AR and QR sections, they definitely require more thinking time, so I need to practice those sections more. But I am well chuffed with my decision analysis score so I'm not so much worried about that, I have my technique and it clearly does work!

Summer's nearly over update 1/08/12

Hey guys, just doing a mini update heard some very exciting news!

I've just been offered a work placement for next week! I'm beyond happy! This is down to the Target Medicine programme I'm part of with UCL! I'm relieved and excited at the same time. I thank God for this opportunity truly. I had actually given up looking for work experience and now this happens! I'm really happy and excited, so more exciting posts coming your way!

As you all know, today is the first of August so that means 15 days until results day which I'm kind of worried, nervous and calm at the same time. Results day makes you feel all sorts of emotions at the time. But I also want to see how the A2's receive their results, and to think that will be me next year! The first of August also means 22 days until my UKCAT exam. I'm totally nervous but I do need to practice more, so today I'll be doing some questions from my UKCAT book. I've been also working on my personal statement  and so far I have roughly 3000+ characters so doing well so far, but I'm far from finishing! Hopefully after next week I have more to put in (or take out).

The first of August also means that school is, unfortunately, closer and the UCAS process will officially begin. Its just scary to think that this time last year I was anxiously waiting for my GCSE results and now I'm applying to university! Time goes amazingly fast. All this is actually real now and I have to face the reality that I will be going to university and I will have to grow up (I don't want to, wahhhhhhh). Adulthood is soon approaching and I have to be responsible for myself. I'm going to miss childhood.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

17/07/12 Volunteering was amazing!

Today, volunteering was amazing!

(If you see any red, don't worry its just me being reflective, helps me to spot it later for my personal statement)

So today, me and my buddy finished our jobs and were looking for something to do. So we were like lets just ask the doctors if we could shadow them, and one of the doctors were like yeah, I'll place you each with a doctor today. We were so happy and excited! We spent months there, being frightened of asking the doctors (although we have ask questions, but to shadow them was beyond a no-go area) because they looked so busy so we were surprised when he said of course! So we stayed after for an extra hour and a half for a little shadowing and what a fantastic hour and a half this was!!

I shadowed a FY2 doctor today, she went to UCL, which is really weird because I want to go there too. I'll refer to her as L. Me and L were in the doctors office and the consultant came in and asked her to go with him to check out a patient at ward 20, (we were in ward 1 btw). So we went up there to see the patient. First, they read the history of the patient, so that involved skim reading a lot of the text in her folder so I see how the verbal reasoning section of the UKCAT is useful. They just collected information on how she ended up in the hospital, any medicine she take etc. The patient was around 50+ years old and of an asian background. She came in with symptoms of fainting and breathlessness. The consultant introduced himself and asked with was wrong with her in order to get the correct diagnosis of what may have been causing these symptoms. Through this I learnt that during diagnosis, as a doctor, you do need to have patience because it will take a long time (sometimes) getting sufficient information needed to diagnose someone properly especially if english is not the patient's first language. Also you do need to be able to think on your feet because her symptoms could have been anything! So you have to be able to ask the correct questions as well to diagnose well but I'm sure they'll teach that during the clinical years at medical school.

She has hemolytic anaemia which is where her red blood cells were being broken down by antibodies. She previously had jaundice (yellowish pigmentation of the skin) which is also due to her anaemia, so her treatment was to continue being on blood transfusion to replace her red blood cells. Unfortunately, her blood will be have to checked for the rest of her life because there isn't a treatment out there for this. So for now, she has to rely on the blood transfusions and drug prescriptions. She was prescribed some steroids and immunosuppressant drugs to decrease the amount of antibodies breaking down the red blood cells and her usual diabetic drugs. Afterwards I had to meet L at the doctors office because she had to perform a rectal exam on the patient.

So then, L took me to the CT scanning rooms where I got to see on of these bad boys:
They truly are amazing pieces of equipment, giving 3D images of a patient's body. I can see how medical diagnosing has improved over the years because technology is getting better. Imagine, when I graduate, what kind of technology will be around! Don't you ever wonder would we even need doctors anymore? But it was getting late so I had to go :( I didn't really, I wanted to stay and see more!

Overall, it was an amazing half and hour and I actually learnt a lot in terms of disease and clinical skills as well. I would love to do it again. I can see how the diagnostic side of being a doctor is an enjoyable part of the job. So much fun and so fascinating.

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Summer Reads!

I recently went to the library to pick up some books to read over the summer! Woooo!
I really enjoy reading so I'm looking forward to it!

I've got:

Blood & Guts: A Short History of Medicine - Roy Porter
Angel of Death: The Story of Smallpox - Gareth Williams
The Story of Medicine - Anne Rooney

They're all medical books so they should be good reads. I'll be making posts as I go along through the books, sharing my thoughts and views and also what I've learnt! So let the reading commence!

Catch up time! 14.07.2012

I went to the Kings open day on Tuesday (10th July 2012). Well, what can I say, I was actually disappointed and I ended up not wanting to go there. First we had an accommodation tour, which particularly wasn't great. Then a talk about admissions and stuff from the Sub-Dean of the medical school. I think it was just one of those universities where you just don't comfortable in or "at home". I didn't get the same feeling as I did at BSMS. So I won't be applying to Kings this September unfortunately. I feel bad though, I did and still do want t like it, but I just can't.

So I'm left pondering what universities I actually want to go to. This is going to be really difficult deciding where I want to go this summer and the tough thing is, I have to be totally sure by September! So I definitely have to be looking out for more universities. I've had my eye on Southampton, just received their prospectus a few days ago. It looks like a really good university. But I've heard you have to have a really amazing profile to get in, especially since they don't interview! But I'm up to the challenge. Most medical schools open days aren't until September which is not great considering I have to submit my UCAS application to the college by the end of September. But that is something I will have to deal with.

Practice UKCAT?

I just did a practice UKCAT test at the following link - which is free! I've attached my results as you can see. Heres more detail if its not so clear (oops, sorry):

In total = 59/87 67.81%

Verbal Reasoning 18/24 75%
Abstract Reasoning 11/25 44% SUCKS
Decision Analysis 12/14 85.71% BOO YAHH! My favourite section
Quantative Reasoning 18/24 75% I'm ok with this

As you can see, I totally suck at the AR section. I just can't recognise the patterns! I really need to practice this section a lot. But to be fair this practice was quite easy. I just need to prepare to the UKCAT daily, so when I'm closer I'll do some intense prep for it. Hopefully I do really well! I'm aiming for a score of 700+ to make up for the fact I've only got 4A*s at GCSE. *sighs*

Saturday, 30 June 2012

A little time for reflection maybe?

School is coming to an end for the summer holidays, so a lot of things need to be done before then! Still need to get some work experience. I must continue searching around! It really annoys me, I really have slacked off getting work experience and left it too late. Although I have applied to certain places just need to get a reply from them, and I worry about finding more in case any dates of work experience clashes. But what happens if I have no work experience for the summer?! This is why I am annoyed and angry at myself for delaying and slacking off my search for work experience. I have applied to UCLH through the Target Medicine Scheme I do with UCL, applied directly to the local hospital - got a reply saying they hope to get back to me within 6 weeks (Which is far to long!) and also through SMF (Social Mobility Foundation, another scheme I'm part of) who claims to be looking for internships for us! So hopefully something does come through and I manage to get work experience.

Personal statement needs to be drafted up. My tutor wants our first draft next week. 4000 characters to do before next Tuesday - Can I write that much about myself? Eeeek, hopefully it turns out alright. I need it to be perfect for when I return back to school in September. Plus I need to make sure I'm fully aware of where I will be applying to and whether I'm roughly sure I stand a good chance of getting in. So my UCAS form needs to be somewhat nearly complete by the time I get back to school in early September.

I also have to do more UKCAT preparation. I find myself becoming lazy with it. *Sighs* The UKCAT actually frustrates me, probably it may be that I have a fear of it? Can anyone actually advise me how to overcome this potential fear of the UKCAT? I just feel like every time I open the 600 UKCAT Q's, I feel like I can't be bothered and give up and end up closing the book again. I feel like it is to difficult and way above my ability. But mind you, this is not how I react to every difficult situation, I usually push through it and ignore the fact that giving up exists, but why am I doing this when it comes to the UKCAT? Things do need to change. Hopefully when school closes for the summer next week, I can dedicate at least 30 minutes each day doing some UKCAT prep.

But Good Luck to everyone else sitting their UKCAT this summer. And to results day!
Hopefully we all get what we want. I should be doing more frequent posts as school is closing for the summer next week and I need to update you guys on my UKCAT progress! Wahey! I hope I grow to love the challenge of the UKCAT, which I think I will. ;P


Thursday, 28 June 2012

Brighton and Sussex Medical School Open Day!

Wow, today was interesting!

I loved the medical school, so definitely applying!

Main Presentation

First we had a presentation from the Dean of the medical school. He mentioned that the medical school has more of an hands on clinical experience - which is perfect - and its a small, friendly and supportive atmosphere which is fantastic considering they only have a small year group meaning that everyone will get to know each other and obviously support one another so it'll be like a small medical family - d'awwww. The course is more patient focused so there is earlier clinical contact. So you get to brush up on the social side of being a doctor from early on in the course - Brilliant! There is a strong science base with research-informed teaching. The course structure is an integrated systems based approach and is modular. So for example, in the first year, you'd do foundations of health and diseases for 10 weeks, then heart lungs and blood for 10 weeks then nutrition metabolism and excretion for 10 weeks. So I really like the whole systems based thing because everything is closely linked together! A high proportion of the years 1 and 2 is taught in small groups which is good because you don't get as easily distracted as you would in a huge lecture!

Dissection room tour

We had a tour of the dissection room! This opportunity made me so excited as many medical schools don't show this during their open day. There were some cadavers there but they were wrapped up in plastic and we weren't allowed to touch them due to Human Tissue Authority regulations. So another bonus point of BSMS is that the anatomy teaching is that is it so intergrated so you'd do cadaver dissection, living anatomy (which I talk about on the BSMS roadshow in a previous post), imaging, prosection, models and so much more! So all different types of learning styles are tended to.

On the way there!

Uni of Sussex buildings

Again, Uni of Sussex buildings

Anatomy model

Sphygmomanometer - Used to check blood pressure, which my mum did on me!

Giant heart model

Uni of Brighton building

View of the Sussex campus from the Brighton Campus
There was also a clinical skills talk and Uni of Brighton tour where we got to see the Paddock Field halls of residence. Its so nice. Its really cool that the two universities are directly opposite each other.

Overall, I really liked BSMS. So I'm DEFINITELY applying here!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

BSMS open day tomorrow!

In college, wasting time before I go to my voluntary work at the hospital. The BSMS open day is tomorrow, which I'm really excited about. I'm taking my camera so hopefully I should be uploading pictures from the day and making a post about it!

Plus in college, we've started our UCAS application. Its so complex! I really don't want to make a mistake on it. Now we have to start writing our personal statements, and they want our first drafts by next Tuesday! I've started but it isn't that great! I'm worried! My personal statement just needs time and I need some stuff to fill it out. Hopefully, by September it comes out perfect!

So this was just a post updating you guys on whats been happening so far. Not much really. A2 is going great, although I don't know what I'm going to drop yet. But results day will help me clear that up. So looking forward to results day, I hope I get the grades I want! It's quite scary, I feel as if I have a lot of pressure right now because EVERYONE is expecting me to do well. So what happens if I don't? Arghhh so worried. Everyone expects me to get A's in all of my subjects. I feel people will look down on me if I don't. I really don't want to get my hopes up just in case I don't make the grades. And now because of this blog and all the hard work I've put in, people expect me to become a doctor. I'm terrified I won't make it into medical school.

What happens then?


Thursday, 14 June 2012

In other news...

I have to get a lot done by the end of term!

  • Have to start research DEEPLY in the course content and structure of each medical school I'm interested in
  • Start  drafting personal statement.
  • Still look for work experience
  • Print of some stuff regarding open days.
  • Read some books - I want to get back into reading more about stuff relating to medicine, like interesting diseases and stuff.
  • Start doing research for Realising Opportunities assignment!
Wow, this is going to be a busy next few weeks! Oh and the open days are soon, really excited!

Top Universities Conference! 14th June 2012

Wow, today has been a very long informative but tiring day. What a day to kick off with, had no sleep the previous night! Luckily I wasn't going to school!

So today, me and three other students from my college, attended a conference at a grammar school local to our college about applying to the TOP universities. I'm talking about universities like Cambridge, UCL, Oxford and Imperial College London. Bloody hell, when I got invited I was like "huh?" Why have I been invited? I'm nowhere near as good to apply to these universities especially after exams. I just simply didn't understand why I had been selected to go! But an opportunity is an opportunity so I might as well take it. It was a good day though, I enjoyed it so it was worth going because I learnt a lot! Other local grammar schools attended as well so being surrounded by more intelligent looking & sounding, articulate and well-spoken students intimidated me! From the moment I walked in, I knew they were just a small sample of the competition I was facing (and fighting) for a place in medical school.

First we had talks from people who represented the universities and they discussed what admissions tutors were looking for and how to get into the top universities. So Oxbridge have a collegiate system with colleges which I really like the sound of. I would love to aim for Oxbridge but its simply the case of the fear of my grades not being good enough and the fear of not fitting in. I mean, how could I, a state educated child from a school which is closing down fit in with students from better state schools and private schools! So Oxbridge gets a no from me, or is it the other way round? UCL you wouldn't be surprised gets an average of 10 applicants for every space. On an even competitive course it was 48 - Can you imagine 48 bloody applicants for 1 place?! As you could imagine, places for the other top universities would be the same! But, alas, UCL is my love, I'm willing to fight for a place!

In terms of what admissions tutors are looking for are:

  • Passion and talent in subject - HARD WORK
  • Likely success of the course
  • How likely you are to succeed in reaching the offer made.
  • Academic ability and deep interest of the subject
  • Motivation and enthusiasm

Handy advice was given - "Show it, don't say it" Always show how passionate you are of the subject, not just saying that you are. The proof is in the pudding, mate. Also 75% of your personal statement should be about what you want to study and why. The remaining 25% on the extra-curricular.

Then it was a question and answer session with students who had received offers from Cambridge and Oxford or were at Oxbridge. It was a very interesting session. We then split off into groups according to the career path we wanted to go into. Obviously I was in the medicine group. We then discussed how to get into medicine.

A later session was detailing on what to put into our personal statements and did little mock interview questions. I hope I was good at them! Some questions were difficult, such as "Give an example of a time you were empathetic" and "Why do you want to do medicine?" but if you are really passionate about studying what you love then the interview should be quite easy although you'll be nervous! I think with more practice, I'll get more better with my answers and stutter less and be more fluid.

A previous student who went to that grammar school who had just finished their first year at Kings, even came in and answered our questions - although this was by accident! But I really learnt a lot from today's conference. I've learnt that the hard work hasn't finished now that exams were over. There was still more to go and I'm even more determined to reach that ultimate goal of becoming a doctor. This day has just refuelled my motivation tank and I'm ready to start working hard again!


Saturday, 2 June 2012

Open days!


Right here are some open days I'll be attending soon! Quite excited actually!

  • Kings College -10th July
  • University of East Anglia - 7th July
  • Brighton and Sussex Medical School - 27th June
Its actually not that many when I think about it. But I've already been to UCL. Its ok, since we only  get 4 choices and I do have to be realistic about my choices.

2nd June 2012 - Post exam update

So today is the 2nd June (Obviously, going by the post title) and I have officially finished all my exams!!
WOOOOOOOP! Had my final exam yesterday which was a further maths module FP1 (Edexcel), it was alright. But now just looking forward to results day to see what I actually got.

Right so since it is half term next week, I have a lot of things to do. Yesterday, I printed out a list (about 4 pages) of GPs local to me. I plan to go round to them during half term so ask if there is a possibility of getting work experience during the summer. I might as well give it a try anyway, and besides I need to be a bit more pro-active when it comes to getting work experience. So hopefully I manage to tempt a doctor round to giving me work experience!

Also, need to start preparing for the UKCAT, since we're already in June and mine is in August! Not really feeling confident about to be honest. I'm honestly petrified of it! I really need to practice the quantitative reasoning and abstract reasoning! They are quite difficult sections. I think with a little more practice the other 2 sections should be fine.

Plus when we go back to school after half term on the 14th (I'll be going back on the 15th, have to go to a conference - more about that later), we have to start all our UCAS stuff, so that means opening an account and filling all the details on the form. This is quite an exciting prospect but also scary! It means that all this is real and  it is going to happen eventually. I still kind of feel like it should be pushed back, time is moving to quick for my liking! But this was inevitable - it has to happen at sometime, whether I'm ready or not. I suppose its the fear of not making it. Travelling so far but never reaching the goal. I guess I have to think positively, right?

I also have to start thinking about my personal statement! I have one drafted but its not exactly good, so the summer will be spent on drafting up a perfect medical personal statement - perfect for me, anyway.

Plus going back to school means we start the A2 syllabus which I'm really excited for! So this time I have to focus harder and right my revision notes earlier! I received my new timetable yesterday via post, I don't have to go to my RS lessons anymore, so more free periods which I'll spend preparing for the UKCAT or just doing research into some medical news/NHS/progressive medical research etc. So really looking forward to more free time!

But now, exams are over, the hard work is not exactly finished, but I'll find the strength to continue working hard. I'll relax during the summer holiday of 2013. :P I'll love to hear more from my readers so leave comments on the blog!

Good luck to any A2s with exams still to go!


Friday, 18 May 2012

Mid-Exam Update


Just a short update.
I've done 5 exams this week (F321, G571, G572, C1, S1), 5 exams left.
I really don't know how I've done. C1 kind of demolished my confidence though.
I have serious doubts on whether I'll get the grades. All my teachers believe I can get A's in their subjects, so I'm seriously doubting it. But we'll see how I'll get on in August.

Also, this blog was spotted by a website recently.
They're interested in me doing a weekly blog, similar to this on their website.
The website is Career Gym. They do UKCAT practice, which we all know is quite vital for entry to med school!

Good luck on the rest of your exams (if you have any)!
I hope you all do well.

God knows I've tried.


Tuesday, 1 May 2012


Just a short post on it.

Just literally booked my UKCAT. I'm taking it on the 23rd August 2012 at 2pm.
Booking it just made me realise this is all real now. I'm not in year 11 just fantasising about becoming a doctor. I'm actually taking the steps towards it. Its all too fast for me.
I booked it for that date so if results day doesn't go well, I could just cancel it and get my money back. If all does go well, its clear motivation to do extremely well! Everybody happy!

But closer to the time I will be practising and stuff, but for now just concentrate on my upcoming exams!
During the weekend, I shall do a lengthy post about my time volunteering so far!

Happy Revising!
Satta x

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Updateee! 29th April 2012

On Tuesday 24th April 2012 (earlier this week) I got to meet my mentor since I do the SMF programme (Social Mobility Foundation), he's a consultant in emergency medicine. So that was cool. We spoke a lot and he gave me a lot of information on what happens after you graduate. Its now put in perspective how medicine is a lifetime career (but you can leave anytime you want) but its exciting to see what lies ahead in the next couple of years!

Plus exams start in 2 weeks - yikes! So I'm getting nervous, I'm working really hard at the moment, I'm seeing a lot of good grades I'm happy with, so hopefully my August results can reflect that. So I'll be off here for quite some time!

Plus UKCAT booking open next week!! So I will be booking my UKCAT for the end of August, so if all goes well on results day, I'll continue forth to do the test, if all doesn't go so well then I can cancel it and hopefully get my money back. Plus more time to prepare!!

So yeah, thats pretty much it for the update. Just few more weeks til exams season gets here. I'm going to work immensely hard. Hopefully its all worth it!!!

Good luck with any exams you have! (if you have any)

Happy Revising! =)

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Update - 11th April 2012

So just a quick update before I go and revise.

Right, so half term is nearly done - I'm really sad to see it go. Meaning that exams are coming and time is running fast! Exams start in just under 3/4 weeks - absolutely terrified on the inside, calm on the outside. I need to make sure I work really hard to get and secure those grades so in September I know whether medicine is a definite and accessible option for me. I honestly have no back-ups if everything goes wrong, I really can't see myself doing biomedical sciences, so they would be no point in applying to university this year and paying 9K fees for a course I don't enjoy.

So 10 exams to prepare for and the first is on the 15th May, I need to be prepared. Totally dedicate time towards my studies. So afterwards I can relax and par-tayyyy! *cringe* - but realistically probably start preparing for the UKCAT, making sure I ace that too.

So I'm going off now, just a quick update from me.

Be sure to leave comments, I love hearing other opinions and tips.
Good luck with any exams (if you have any)
Happy Revising! =)


St George's Medical School - A Taste of Medicine Yr12 Spring School

Its only now I've managed to find time to make a post about the last two days of the taster course so the 4th and 5th April 2012 so this post is about a week late! Didn't manage to take pictures so this is a text based post I'm afraid!

4th April 2012:

So we had a later start (10am - Hellz yeah!) and we had some interesting sessions that day. We had a pathology practical, where basically we had stations where we had a "patient" who had died and we had to work out the cause of death using the history of the patient and some clues lying around them. So a woman who had died of skin cancer had some tanning lotion bottles around her, a picture of her and her husband in a tropical country, all hints leading to the skin cancer causing her death. I suppose I really loved the investigative side to it because you are supposed to use your brain and think outside the box of how someone could have died. So a very interesting session.

Later, we did medical ethics. So when I saw "medical ethics" on the timetable, I was like "ughhhh, I hate ethicsss" because I do RS as one of my subjects. But I really enjoyed that session as it made me questioned my opinions and beliefs which is why I chose to do it at AS level. That session made me enjoy ethics and has motivated me to work harder in the RS exams in June. So one of the cases that came up was Tony Nicklinson, who suffers from locked-in syndrome which is where the patient is awake and concious but cannot move or communicate because their whole body is paralysed. Nicklinson thinks his life isn't worth living anymore and would like the option for an assisted suicide. So one of the questions we had to debate was "Should physician assisted suicide be made legal?" - Ah, now this is a tough one to debate! We also had other dilemmas such as you're a GP and a 14 year old girl comes to you and tells you that she and her boyfriend are contemplating having sex and requests the pill, do you give it to her? And the usual organ donor - who do you give the organ to. How it usually works for the organ donor is on the basis of who is the most likely to survive after the transplant and who has been on the waiting list the longest.

Then lunch (Yum!), then we had a surgical session where a brain surgeon gave us a talk and showed us a couple of videos of brain surgery and heart surgery. Really interesting, nearly convinced me to become a surgeon! Then we had a practical where we had a fake wound and we had to stitch it up! Good fun, but I think suturing on a real person might be quite difficult!

5th April 2012:

This was the last day :( . Not much to talk about on this day, it was very relaxed.

Had a talk from the student mentors about research, one of them even got her work published in the BMJ (British Medical Journal) - Amazing! Then I talk from Professor Julian Ma about medical research, this was really fascinating I found myself contemplating doing research when I'm older. Found out some interesting facts too, like how they are currently doing research into putting vaccines into food such as potatoes so vaccinations are easily accessible in developing countries which is really cool. I feel research puts forward very intelligent ideas that can potentially change the world so I am very interested in doing research when I'm older.

Then a reflection, just had to put down some ideas down on how the spring school went and what we learnt from it because of course, reflection is a very important skill in medicine.

Afterwards we had a talk from a neo-natal doctor and a tour of the paediatrics department at St Georges Hospital. Seeing all the cute little babies made me want just cuddle them and treat them so they can lead healthy, happy childhoods.

End of the day, we got certificates and letters to prove that we've done the spring school and have completed all four days! - SWEET!!!