The River Thames outside DLD College London

What A-level subjects should you choose if you want to start preparing for a career in Medicine

Importance of A- Level Subjects 

A Level Subjects are very much necessary to enter into a university for any degree course. In short it is not at all possible to enrol for a degree course without qualifying the appropriate A Level Subjects with high grades as specified by the university. The criteria for the choice of A Level Subjects and the grades that have to be scored by an individual vary from university to university. Hence the students should be well aware of the requirements of the university regarding their area of interest, before starting their A Level Subjects and a detailed study of the same is also a must. 

Criteria for joining A- Level Subjects   

Anyone who is of 16 years of age can start their A Level Subjects, provided they have completed their GCSE with appreciably good grades. Students have the flexibility of choosing A Level Courses which are offered in different duration for the benefit of the students. 2 years A- Level course is the most sought out by students. For students who want to cover the A- Level Subjects 18 months course is also available. 1 year short duration A Level Courses are also offered which covers all the A Level Subjects. Usually A- Level Subjects are covered in 360 guided learning hours. 

Pre-Requisite for selecting A- Level Subjects for Medicine 

  • First and foremost the student should be very clear about the subject in which they are interested and should decide whether they are really focussed towards studying Medicine. The student should exhibit a keen wish to know how science works, a good knowledge of chemicals and the human anatomy. 
  •  A healthy attitude to do Medicine is very important because the students have to do hard work and get best grades in A- Level Subjects. 
  • The student should have secured, a minimum of A* or A grades in subjects  (preferably Sciences)  and B grades in English and Maths, out of the 7 GCSE subjects. This means that the student should have maintained good and consistent academic record right from their school. 
  • If the students are having a doubt in selecting their A- Level Subjects, they should not hesitate to approach their teachers who can guide them correctly. 

What are the A- Level Subjects to be chosen for studying Medicine? 

By making a detailed study of the criteria for joining Medicine, prescribed by top most universities like Oxford and Cambridge, it is very clear that the  2 most important A- Level Subjects  are Biology and Chemistry. The student can select Human Biology instead of Biology in the A- Level Subjects. The other 2 most wanted A- Level Subjects are Physics and Maths. Instead of Maths, the student can select Further Maths from the A- Level Subjects. Out of the four A- Level Subjects required, students can choose Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Psychology also.   

Moreover a pass in the Practical Element of Science is a must to enter into a university. 

What are the Grades to be achieved in A- Level Subjects for Medicine? 

Top most universities require that the students should score A* grade in Biology and Chemistry in the A- Level Subjects. They have to secure A grade in Physics and Maths in A- Level Subjects. Apart from this the students are expected to get a GPA higher than 3.0 by most Medical Schools. Many universities set a cap of  3.0 GPA,  below which it is certainly not possible  for the student to enter into a Medical course. Most of the students who have already enrolled in Medicine in renowned universities have got their GPA higher than 3.5. 

What are the A- Level Subjects to be avoided to join Medicine? 

If a student wants to join Medicine in any of the universities, some A- Level Subjects should be avoided. Most of the universities declare that General Studies and Critical Thinking are some of the A- Level Subjects which are not at all acceptable to enrol in Medical Course. Some top universities state that Global Perspectives and Research, Critical Reasoning and Citizenship and Key Skills in the A- Level Subjects are to be totally avoided if a student wants to have a career in Medicine. Few renowned universities inform students not to select A- Level Subjects such as Applied Sciences and Statistics to pursue Medicine. Some prestigious universities have asked students to avoid A- Level Subjects like Thinking Skills and any Native Language if they are passionate to do Medicine. 

Furthermore one should remember that overlapping of the same content in the A- Level Subjects is not at all permitted to apply for medicine. For example one cannot opt for both Biology and Human Biology together. Either one of these A- Level Subjects could be chosen. Similarly, A- Level Subjects like Maths and Further Maths cannot be chosen together. Anyone of them is allowed for enrolling in Medical course. 

Is it possible to gain an entry into a Medical School with B Grades in A- Level Subjects? 

It is indeed very hard to join a Medical school with a B Grade in A- Level Subjects. All universities expect either A* or A Grade in the main 4 A- Level Subjects and a good GPA. Therefore if the student has secured 3.5GPA and has got one B Grade in the A- Level Subjects, it is still possible to get an admission in the Medical School, provided you are having a very high aptitude to become a Doctor.  

Can a student join Medicine without Maths as a A– Level Subject? 

student who aspires to join Medicine, ought to score A Grade in Maths. Therefore Maths cannot be replaced with any other third A- Level Subjects and  the student has to work hard to get a higher grade in Maths and cannot forego the subject. 

Is there a way for a student who is weak in Science to become a Doctor? 

Unfortunately, a Medical course is full of Biology, Human Anatomy and Chemistry. Hence if a student is very weak in Science, which is one of the A- Level Subjects, it is very hard to cope up with the subjects. Therefore the student should create an interest in Science and work hard or can choose some other A- Level Subjects to pursue some other  degree in the subject of their passion. 

Which is the hardest A- Level Subject to qualify for Medicine? 

Chemistry is indeed the hardest of all A- Level Subjects. In a worldwide survey conducted by a prestigious institution, among students and teachers, most of them have declared that Chemistry is the hardest to study as well as to score higher grades among all A- Level Subjects. 

Is studying Medicine too hard? 

A systematic and well organized time management is really required for studying Medicine, similar to preparing A- Level Subjects for Medicine. The students are expected to work harder than other students pursuing some other degree course. In medical course the contact hours in the School is more because the students should cover many practical classes and theory lectures to complete the syllabus. Therefore most of the days they have to attend full day classes to complete the Medicine course.  

Is it advisable to do Medicine after 40 years of age? 

There is no criteria for age limit to enrol in medical course. If the individual has a great aptitude, keen enthusiasm, undying spirit and the mind to work harder he can join medicine even at the age of 50. Still it is very hard to get higher grades in  the A- Level Subjects at an elder age to get qualified for joining a university. 

Few useful suggestions to select A- Level Subjects to pursue Medicine 

  1. Just think about the subjects you studied for GCSE in your school. What are the subjects you enjoyed studying? What are the subjects you found harder to study? If you have shown lot of enthusiasm for Science subjects then you can dream of studying Medicine, because A- Level Subjects will be relatively easy for you to learn. To make the right choice of A- Level Subjects, it is wiser to listen to your instinct. 
  2. Try to get the help of teachers in your school. They are very well aware of your strength and weakness. Hence they are the right persons to help you choose the right A- Level Subjects and the right degree course for you.
  3. All the Universities declare the details about all the courses, their duration and entry level requirements for each course. They display in detail, what is the eligibility, what are the A- Level Subjects to be chosen for each degree, what grades are expected in the A- Level Subjects, what are the subjects to avoid and what should be the GPA. The student is expected to do a research and a detailed study of the pre-requirements of all the universities well in advance to select the right and appropriate A- Level Subjects for pursuing Medicine.