Established in 1920, Swansea University is a research-led university that has been making a difference in the world’s health, wealth, culture, and well-being. As the healthcare industry evolves, the university follows suit.. Every year, it prepares a diverse cohort of graduates who meet the growing needs of the medical sector.
Ranked among the top 21% of global universities by the QS University World Rankings 2024, Swansea University excels for various reasons. It is 12th in the UK for student satisfaction, has 130 nationalities represented in its vibrant campus community, is Wales’s top university (The Guardian University Guide 2024) and is ranked 25th in the UK to name but a few.
It’s this reputation that draws some of the world’s most talented students to its Faculty of Medicine, Health, and Life Sciences every year. The faculty is a leading provider of health professional and life sciences education dedicated to enhancing the well-being of communities locally, nationally, and globally.
It is home to the Swansea University Medical School which ranks among the top five in the UK (as per the Times Good University Guide 2023). The school offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes that are tailored to specific areas of study in the field of medicine.
For those who have yet to qualify for an undergraduate course, the school provides a Pathways to Medicine programme. Here, students are given five options to choose from: Applied Medical Sciences, Medical Biochemistry, Medical Genetics, Medical Pharmacology, and Population Health and Medical Sciences.
Whichever option they choose, students benefit from bespoke modules, health or related observations and specialist preparation for applications to Graduate Entry Medicine, as well as a guaranteed interview for the school’s Graduate Entry Medicine course.
“What makes the Pathway to Medicine so special isn’t the formal learning and experiences you get from studying a degree, but the preparation the Pathways to Medicine Module (Doctors Patients and the Goals of Medicine) will give you,” says Gloria, a second-year medical student. “From shadowing doctors to writing a good application and preparing for an interview, the Pathways to Medicine gave me the edge I needed when making my Graduate Entry Medicine Applications.”
The Pathways to Medicine is the best “5th Choice” on your UCAS Medicine Application. “The 5th Choice option exists in a number of competitive areas such as applying for Medicine or Dentistry. It exists because Medicine is so competitive (for every one space there are around 100 applicants),” explains Gloria.
“This means not every applicant will get into Medical School on their first try, once the interview process has selected the lucky few who will get a conditional offer, the rest will be rejected (usually around spring). People in this pool are probably set on going to university so the 5th Choice keeps an avenue open for medicine applicants to find a route into higher education and ultimately in my case a back-up route into Medicine.”
Impactful options that are more than just a back-up plan to Medicine
Each option in the Pathways to Medicine programme equips you with comprehensive knowledge and practical skills to achieve your ambition to pursue a medical career. .
Medical Pharmacology explores drug science, its impact on health, and its role in treating illnesses. Through a BSc (Hons) in Medical Pharmacology, students will comprehensively understand medication development, effects, mechanisms, and potential side effects in clinical practice. Graduates are prepared to navigate the intersection of pharmacology and healthcare, ensuring safe medication use in practice and research.
Medical Genetics, a rapidly evolving field, focuses on genetic disorders and their influence on human health. A BSc (Hons) in Medical Genetics prepares students to work at the junction of genetics and healthcare, contributing significantly to diagnosing, treating, and preventing hereditary diseases. What’s more, you’ll learn gene expression analysis, protein interactions, DNA structure, damage analysis, biomolecule/cell image analysis, and advanced computational methods.
Medical Biochemistry is a specialised programme emphasising biochemistry in the context of medicine and healthcare. It delves into the biochemical processes and molecules relevant to human health and disease, exploring how disturbances at a molecular level can lead to medical conditions. This degree, available as a BSc (Hons) in Medical Biochemistry, enables students to grasp cellular, tissue, and organ functions at a molecular level.
“Studying Medicine at Swansea has been such an incredible experience. I couldn’t have wished for a better place to come to. Swansea has set me up to thrive,” Dr Serah Mungai says.
The BSc (Hons) in Population Health and Medical Sciences programme offers a multidisciplinary approach blending medical sciences, public health, and social sciences. Students gain a holistic understanding of health and healthcare systems, nurturing a new generation of healthcare professionals adept at understanding the broader spectrum of healthcare.
Applied Medical Sciences (AMS) is another multidisciplinary field focusing on the biological aspects of human health and disease. By combining principles from biology, chemistry, and various scientific disciplines, students explore the underlying mechanisms of diseases and contribute to advancing medical knowledge and healthcare. Through BSc (Hons) in Applied Medical Sciences, students master a comprehensive range of topics, including human anatomy and physiology, cell biology, genetics, pharmacology, and neuroscience, together with their clinical and applied relevance. Such depth gives students a strong foundation, just as it did with Hope Henry.
“My foundation year in Applied Medical Sciences prepared me for the rest of my degree, giving me a better grounding and a larger wealth of knowledge to build on throughout my course,” Hope says. “Without my time as an AMS student, I truly would not be the person I am today.”
Click here to learn more about Pathways to Medicine at Swansea University.