Among the three, I am sharing the track record of MANCAT in successfully progressing mature students to medical schools. But it must be noted that an Access to Medicine course at MANCAT or at any other place for that matter would not enable a guaranteed interview or progression to medical schools as there are lots of factors that dictate the success of an individual application, to mention some: GCSE grades (in terms of relevance to the specific medical school applied), predicted access grades, performance in previous degrees or any other sort of prior education (for instance, those with poor A levels or less than 2:1 degree are rejected by most medical schools straight-away during the initial screening process regardless of their performance on the access course or on UKCAT ), work experience (mandatory and depends on the willingness of the applicant), a very good personal statement to stand out from the crowd (depends on the applicant’s awareness to the area of study and preparations to realise it), sitting UKCAT (which puts off or screens out so many intelligent mature students because of an average performance on an aptitude test, which is dependent on how fast you would work out questions in little time) and finally interview performance.
That being said, it must not be forgotten that the table below only shows offers made by medical schools; hence, it is understandable that a significant proportion of the access group who met the entry requirements were called for interview each year. The Access to Medicine course used to be given in the generic name – Access to Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmacy before that the number of applicants was correspondingly few in the early years after the introduction of access courses as a valid entry requirement to higher education. Given the fact that competition for medical schools is so intense and the universities prefer those with traditional qualifications (A levels), some mature students who finished their access course with distinctions, without being put off by the early rejections during the years they were active on the course (who did apply with predicted grades), have later managed to get a place to medical schools (unconditional offers), having reinforced their application in various ways a year after.
Track records for the Access to Medicine course from The Manchester College (MANCAT)
This table was taken from an induction day, organised by the Access to Medicine department at MANCAT. It must be noted that there were fringe places (of maximum people 1) admitted to some institutions like Cardiff, Leicester, St. Andrews , Hull and York (HYMS), Brighton and Sussex (BSMS), dispersed through the various entry years.
What is included is the list from consistent universities that had made offers for MANCAT students, and it is evident from the above trend that getting into medical schools had become harder and harder. It could be attributed to more and more entry requirements being added by medical schools, including the introduction of UKCAT in 2006, that would reduce mature students’ participation, though it is evident that statistics has shown that mature students would make better doctors in so many occasions. Following the announcement for the rise of tuition fees once the Tories came to power, admission to English medical schools is expected to be tough for mature students given the problems funding issues would pose