So why should you apply to Edinburgh for Medicine?

It would be very difficult to find a medical student at Edinburgh who wishes they had gone anywhere else! If the beautiful city and prestigious international reputation aren’t enough for you, the high standards of research, broad selection of intercalated subjects and world-class facilities consistently place Edinburgh Medical School high in the league tables. The range of extracurricular activities available is huge, both university-wide and medic-specific, and medical students run their own sports clubs, comedy show and even annual musical! Edinburgh graduates continually place amongst the best in the UK in postgraduate specialty exams and its academic ethos offers medical staff who are keen to teach and encourage research projects.

Please explore our website to find out what it might be like to be part of the Royal Medical Society at Edinburgh and read some tips and comments about applying to medical school from RMS council members below! If you still feel unsure about whether to apply to Edinburgh, you can email your questions to with the subject ‘Prospective Student Questions’ and we will do our best to help! Please bear in mind, however, that we cannot help with specific questions about individual applications and the application process; the Medical School Admissions Team will assist with queries.

Hints and Tips

Jason, 3rd year, Northern Ireland
  • Draw as many experiences from your volunteering as you can: it will help you in your application!
  • If you know of people from your school who have gone on to do medicine before you, ask them how they found their experience and what they think of the city.
  • Come along to our open day for the chance to see the medical school for yourself – representatives from the RMS will be there to chat to you.
Chris, 4th year, England
  • Edinburgh’s a fantastic city! There’s lots going on, but it isn’t at all scary and is very picturesque.
  • The course is well considered, with a nice mix of problem-based learning, traditional teaching (lectures and tutorials) and anatomy taught by prosection.
  • The 6 year programme, with an intercalated degree, will make you more employable in the future, and give you useful research and other transferable skills. There’s a wide range of courses to choose from, so you will definitely find something you enjoy.
Mat, 2nd year (postgraduate), Republic of Ireland
  • Edinburgh is a great university as a postgrad. It has a fantastic reputation and is at the cutting edge of research.
  • Interviews for postgrads are sensible discussions about why you want to do medicine, your motivations and understanding of the career as well as a test of your communication skills.
  • There is really useful early clinical exposure (such as ‘Introduction to Clinical Practice’ in 2nd year where you learn examinations/history taking).
  • Anatomy is taught by prosection. You don’t waste loads of time dissecting, cutting the wrong things and only seeing one of each organ. You get to see many versions of the same thing expertly dissected allowing you to really appreciate the anatomy. Dissection seems fun and exciting, but as someone who has experience of both, prosection is a much better way to learn!
Emma, 2nd year, England
  • Start looking at different unis early and try and figure out which course is right for you.
  • It’s wise to apply to universities that highly value the better aspects of your own application e.g. UKCAT, extra-curriculars, etc. to give yourself the best possible chance.
  • Make sure you go apply somewhere you can imagine yourself living in for 5/6 years, and where you think you will feel comfortable within the city.
Michael, 3rd year, England
  • Make sure you choose a city which you will enjoy living in. Edinburgh, as a capital city, is a buzzing and bustling city with many hidden gems and, of course, festivals!
  • Be proactive during the application process. Give your personal statement to as many people as possible and get feedback (including an English teacher, as medics sometimes forget about grammar!)
  • Read around the subject; if you get interviews at other universities, this will come across well.
  • Make sure you have evidence of care in the long term as well as your work experience; this can come from volunteering, for example, in a nursing home, hospice or a school.
Douglas, 4th year, England
  • Edinburgh is one of the top universities in the country to study Medicine for good reason!
  • There are around 200 students in your year, making it easy to get to know everyone (as opposed to other universities where there can be up to 500 in a year).
  • When carrying out work experience, think about whether you could see yourself in the future working in this area.
  • Buy the UKCAT book to help you do as well as you can.
Alisha, 3rd Year, International Student
  • Edinburgh has a great international student community. There are many societies for different countries, and also the international student centre is very active. At the same time, students from the UK and other countries are all very welcoming!
  • The best part of studying here is being able to experience the beauty and culture of Edinburgh! Also the medical school plays a huge role in this city’s history, which is exciting to be involved in.
  • As an international student it is important to be aware of current news about the NHS and medicine in the UK for interviews. BBC health is a great website to use!
  • Try to get some work experience in the UK as well to boost your application

Useful links

Applying to medical school

Organisations in Edinburgh