Writing your personal statement for medical school can be a daunting experience.
It can feel like you are lying there naked in front of the admissions panel, opening yourself up to criticism. You have to explain your true motivation behind pursing a career in medicine whilst making yourself sound like the most desirable person on earth!
For many of you applying for medical school you may have experienced failures and set backs so putting yourself out there can feel awkward and difficult, like going on a first date after a difficult break up.
This blog brings together our top tips from writing a collective five personal statements and advice from leading universities and application specialists.
Follow this advice but if you need more help, we run UK personal statement review service HERE-->
It’s important to get your personality across in the style that you write. It needs to be formal but not like you’re writing a letter to the queen. Keep your sentences short, sharp and punchy.
You need to come across as an intelligent and eloquent applicant but they are fed up of long meandering sentences, that go on and on, fitting in as many large medical words as you possibly can. The aim is to fit in the most amount of information in a very small space, just 2000 characters so keep it to the point and don’t go off at a tangent.
Your motivation to study medicine is arguably the most important thing on every admissions tutors mind and in all honesty, it should be in yours too. If you don’t have a good motivation to study medicine then you really need to have a good chat with yourself and think about what you’re going though this whole process for! Lots of people assume that you need an emotive personal story or defining/inspiring moment as your motivation for medicine. If you actually have one of these to talk about then that’s a great start, eg my younger sibling having heart surgery. You must say why this experience lead you to want to be a doctor specifically.
If you don’t have a personal story that’s totally fine too but please don’t make one up! The last thing they want is insincere cliches. In my personal statement I actually started by saying that my motivation was not down to one defining moment or experience but a long standing passion for science and humanity.
Next you need to prove that you have explored the realities of being a doctor. Write about your work experience. This doesn’t need to be in chronological order and you should have done so much that you wont be able to fit everything in! I feel that the best way is to choose some key moments that resonate with you and use them to demonstrate your awesome attributes I would also show that you were committed to something for a longer period of time. Eg during the 6 months I spent volunteering at a nursing home…
Ultimately being a medical student and then a doctor is challenging and not everybody will make it through so show them that why you would.
There are some key points that the majority of universities will recommend you show in your personal statement. They can fit in anywhere but you should be able to finish writing your statement and be able to tick them all off. Stating, I am a good team worker, I have good communication skills will make admissions tutors want to avoid you like the plague so use examples of you demonstrating these qualities in your life or experiences.
☐ You’re suitability for a career in medicine
☐ You can deal with the academic demands of medicine
☐ You have good communication skills
☐ You are empathetic
☐ You understand the demands of medicine as a career
☐ You can work in a team
☐ You have expressed your motivation to study medicine above all other careers
We hope this helps provide you with a framework to think about writing your personal statement. If you’ve got any advice yourself that could help applicants add a comment below or if you have any questions find us on Instagram and send us a message.
Need some more help?
Still feeling unsure about your personal statement? Don’t worry. We offer a full review service for UK personal statements. Your statement will be discussed by two medical students from top London universities. You will then be given written feedback and the chance to ask any more burning questions. If that’s not enough we also re-review another draft for a significantly discounted price. Check it out here —>