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.