MBBCh Graduate Entry Medicine

Course Overview

Swansea University Medical School's Graduate Entry Medicine Programme (MBBCh) is unique in Wales, and one of a small group of similar programmes of medical study in the UK. Our MBBCh degree is an innovative, 4-year accelerated medical degree open to graduates of any discipline.

The curriculum has been structured to reflect the way in which clinicians approach patients and how patients present to doctors.

Key Features

The Graduate Entry Medicine Programme is a fully independent four-year programme based primarily in Swansea and west Wales, although students may also undertake some placements in north Wales .  We have designed an integrated medical curriculum, where the basic biomedical sciences are learnt in the context of clinical medicine, public health, pathology, therapeutics, ethics and psycho-social issues in patient management. This, together with a high emphasis on clinical and communication skills, will provide you with everything you'll need to practise medicine competently and confidently.  

The curriculum, with its learning weeks and clinical placements, is intentionally not structured in a conventional ‘body systems’ approach but is designed to reflect the way in which clinicians approach patients and how patients present to doctors.

This innovative approach will help you to develop a way of thinking and of engaging with information that mimics that used in clinical practice. As you work your way through learning weeks, clinical placements and practical sessions, you will acquire knowledge and build up your repertoire of clinical understanding and skills. Themes and strands, which run longitudinally throughout the Programme, will help you make links with other aspects you are learning, and with things you have previously considered as well as how all this relates to clinical practice.


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

FHEQ 4 Undergraduate / HECert

Students choose 150 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-239FSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as Scholar and Scientist 1
PM-240FSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Practitioner 1
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 50 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select according to English or Welsh speaking placements.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-241FSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Professional 1
PMW241FSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Meddyg fel Gweithiwr Proffesiynol 1

Year 2 (Level 5)

FHEQ 5 Undergraduate / HEDip

Students choose 150 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-349DSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as Scholar and Scientist 2
PM-350DSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Practitioner 2
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 50 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select according to English or Welsh speaking placements.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-351DSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Professional 2
PMW351DSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Meddyg fel Gweithiwr Proffesiynol 2

Year 3 (Level 6)

FHEQ 6 Undergraduate / Honours

Students choose 150 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-358ISemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as Scholar and Scientist 3
PM-359ISemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Practitioner 3
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 50 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select according to English or Welsh speaking placements.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-360ISemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Professional 3
PMW360ISemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Meddyg fel Gweithiwr Proffesiynol 3

Year 4 (Level )

Students choose 150 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
PM-367CSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as Scholar and Scientist 4
PM-368CSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Practitioner 4
Optional Modules

Choose Exactly 50 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select according to English or Welsh speaking placements.

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PM-369CSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Doctor as a Professional 4
PMW369CSemester 1 and Semester 2 (Sep-Jun Taught)50Meddyg fel Gweithiwr Proffesiynol 4


The Programme consists of Phase I (Years 1 + 2) and Phase II (Years 3 + 4).  Each year is mapped onto the GMCs Outcomes for Graduates (2015) where 3 Modules – Scholar and Scientist, Practitioner and Professional, reflect the outcome areas.

The programme involves a spiral, integrated curriculum structured around 6 body system ‘Themes’ - Behaviour, Defence, Development, Movement, Nutrition and Transport - with 93 clinical cases presented in 70 ‘learning weeks’

There is a high level of clinical contact:

  • Clinical Apprenticeships, including one week of nursing practice
  • Junior Assistantship
  • Specialty Attachments
  • Community Based Learning
  • Senior Assistantship / Shadowing period
  • Elective

Phase I
Learning Weeks (Case based, includes Integrated Clinical Method)
Community-Based Learning (CBL) in General Practice for one day every third week
LOCS - Learning Opportunities in the Clinical Setting

LORS – Learning Opportunities in a Research Setting
Early Apprenticeships (1-3)

Phase II
Case of the Week (Case Based Learning Weeks)
Clinical Apprenticeships and Assistantships(Medicine, Surgery and Primary Care) (4-8) including 8 weeks in CBL

Specialty Attachments– Eight 5 Week placements in Medicine (at Singleton and Morriston Hospitals), Acute Surgery,  Women’s Health, Child Health, Mental Health, Sub-Specialities of Medicine and Surgery, and Frailty.  These include Integrated Clinical Method and simulation.
Elective in Year 4 (5 Week Clinical Placement mostly taken overseas)
Senior Assistantship / Shadowing period at end of Year 4 prior to F1 (5 Week Clinical Placement where students “shadow” F1 doctors in their allocated post in Wales or join the all-Wales ‘shadow’ programme)

Entry Requirements

In order to be eligible to apply for Graduate Entry Medicine, you must have achieved, or be predicted to achieve, the following (or equivalent) by 31st July of the year of intended enrolment:

  • either an upper second (2.1) or first class degree in any subject
  • or a merit or distinction (equivalent to 2.1 or first) in an integrated undergraduate masters degree
  • or a lower second (2.2) PLUS a Postgraduate Masters or PhD 
  • GCSE Mathematics and English/Welsh at grade C or above
  • IELTS 7.0 with no less than 7.0 in speaking and 6.5 in listening, reading and writing (all candidates from non-English speaking countries)

Degrees awarded in countries other than the UK can be accepted if they are confirmed to be equivalent to awards in the UK system.  If you hold more than one undergraduate degree, the result from the most recent degree is considered.


You must sit the GAMSAT prior to applying. GAMSAT is a professionally designed selection test for medical schools offering graduate entry programmes.

You must achieve a minimum overall GAMSAT score of 50, together with a minimum of 50 in Paper 3 (Reasoning in Biological and Physical Sciences) in order to be considered.  

Interviews will be offered to candidates that meet an overall cut-off score in the GAMSAT, which is determined annually once all scores have been received.  

Graduate Entry Medicine is not open to:

  • Applicants who have previously enrolled on a medical degree
  • Transfers from other medical courses

How To Apply

With competition for places on the Graduate Entry Medicine Programme so fierce, and only 75 places available each year, it's good to know that you've got everything in order before you start. Here's how the process works...

All candidates should apply via UCAS by 15th October each year.    

All applications are scrutinised and considered on their own merits and selection is based upon three main factors:

  1. Your academic achievements
  2. GAMSAT score*
  3. Performance at interview 

*You must sit the GAMSAT in advance of applying through UCAS.  Only those who meet the eligibility criteria explained above are eligible for consideration.  


You must have a suitable reference in place on your UCAS form, this can be:

  1. an academic reference
  2. or an employment or work experience reference

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2018/19 are as follows:

UK/EU International
MBBCH Full-time £9,000 £35,700

Fees for full time Undergraduate UK/EU students may be increased in subsequent years of study by an inflationary amount determined by Welsh Government.

Fees for full time Undergraduate International students will increase by 3% for each subsequent year of study.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

You may face additional costs whilst at university, including (but not limited to):

  • Travel to clinical placement locations across Wales, depending on distance and bursary eligibility. 
  • Travel to and from campus and Morriston Hospital / Cefn Coed hospital / Neath Port Talbot hospital for learning week teaching and clinical placements. The costs of travel within Swansea are not reimbursed by Swansea University and may not be reimbursed by bursary companies.
  • Buying a stethoscope
  • Books, course materials and printing or photocopying costs
  • Hiring robes for graduation
  • Costs of elective placement

Many recommended textbooks for this course are available in the University or hospital site libraries.  

Students will find a Smart phone to be of benefit on placement but this is not currently a course requirement.

Free wireless internet access is available across the whole of the University campus  and most Health Board sites. However it might not be fast enough to allow streaming in all placements.

For further information, please contact the Student Information and Education Office at mededucation.unit@swansea.ac.uk  

Welsh Language Provision

There is an opportunity for non-welsh speaking students to enroll on our Welsh for Medicine 1 + 2 courses, that have been uniquely developed alongside Swansea Bay-Learn Welsh, to introduce basic welsh lessons for a healthcare setting. here will be support for any student wishing to learn more about Welsh language and culture as they live and study here in Wales.

Welsh speaking students have the opportunity to study a 50credit module in each year through the medium of Welsh - Doctor as a Professional 1-4. The Welsh provision within these modules include:

  • A Welsh speaking Academic mentor
  • Welsh medium tutoring sessions
  • Clinical Placements with welsh speaking practitioners
  • Clinical Placements in areas with a high percentage of Welsh speakers
  • Opportunity to complete long projects including Family Case Study, Living with a Diagnosis and Developing Professional Practice in Welsh.

Any prospective students can request to be interviewed in Welsh.

The Medical School is working toward enhancing and developing their Welsh language provision.

Students who choose to study at least 40credits a year in Welsh are eligible to apply for a Coleg Cymraeg Incentive Scholarship of £500 a year - the closing date is in May.

Academi Hywel Teifi offers an internal scholarship of £300 a year to students choosing to study at least 40credits a year in Welsh, or a bursary of £100 a year to students choosing to study at least 5credits a year in Welsh. These may be applied for on a yearly basis, at the start of each Autumn term.

For more information, please contact Dr. Heledd Iago - h.f.iago@swansea.ac.uk 

UCAS Application Checklist

We have created a checklist to help you know which information is vital to our selection process.  Please ensure that you supply all of the relevant information to support your application as failure to do so may invalidate your application.

Swansea University Medical School - Checklist for Graduate Entry Medicine (A101)

Rural and Remote Health

The Rural and Remote Health in Medical Education (RRHIME) Track aims to increase the numbers of students and doctors practising in rural Wales and raise awareness amongst the GEM students of the benefits and realities of living and working in rural and remote areas. 

Practice in rural, remote and underserved areas can offer varied and interesting benefits to a doctor’s career. However, these areas are often perceived as challenging environments in which to practise medicine and this perception contributes to difficulties recruiting doctors to such areas. This is a particular challenge for Wales, which has large rural areas and a shortage of speciality trainees and qualified doctors, particularly in some specialities. Research indicates that early and deep (‘immersive’) experience of rural healthcare by medical students and trainee doctors may facilitate their retention in the rural environment, . There is also demonstrated value to teachers and preceptors of having medical students and trainees in rural practice.

International Applicants

Swansea University Medical School is delighted to welcome applications from International Candidates for Graduate Entry medicine (UCAS Code A101) 

This sought-after medical degree has a fantastic pass rate and, with less than 80 students per year, it offers a nurturing and supportive environment to study medicine.

Successful students are awarded MB BCh Medicine from Swansea University, having joined the General Medical Council’s (GMC) distinguished list of UK medical schools entitled to award UK primary medical qualifications (PMQs).  This qualification allows our graduates to practise in the UK and many other countries.  

All applicants are advised to ensure that Swansea University's PMQ is recognised by the medical standards authority of the country in which they wish to practise.  

Fees for International Students in 2018 are set at £35,700 and will increase by 3% for each subsequent year of study.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

International Applicants - Tier 4 Visa

UK Visas and Immigration limits the time you can spend studying in the UK on a Tier 4 Student Visa. Usually international students on this visa can only study five years at Bachelor Level (NQF 6) and Master Level (NQF 7) in the UK. This is called the ‘Five Year Cap’. Medicine courses are exempt from the ‘Five Year Cap’ therefore if you have studied previously in the UK at Bachelor level on a Tier 4 visa then you can progress onto Graduate Entry Medicine without running out of time.

If you are an international student and have completed a previous course at Bachelor degree level or above in the UK and are intending to obtain further Tier 4 leave, please provide us with a detailed personal statement demonstrating how this course benefits your career aspirations in combination with the previous course for which you had Tier 4 leave.

If you have studied in the UK previously at Master Level (NQF 7) in the UK on a Tier 4 Visa you will have to apply for your visa overseas as Graduate Entry Medicine (NQF 6) is at a lower level than your previous course on Tier 4 leave.

Please note: We may ask you for evidence to prove that you are overseas before we issue a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) Statement to you.

For more information please see the UKVI Policy guidance and the UK Council for International Affairs.

When applying for a Tier 4 visa overseas, you are likely to be subject to a Credibility Interview during the Visa application process. Our International Student Advice Service (ISAS) have some detailed information about what to expect in a credibility interview.

International Applicants

Attending the Selection Centre

All candidates will be required to attend in person for the Selection Centre. A Visiting Visa may be required and this can take approximately 1 month to secure. Please check with UK Visas and Immigration.

A programme of events may be offered in the days surrounding the interview that will give an insight into living and studying in Swansea and all interviewees are encouraged to attend.  Full details will be included in our correspondence to help you plan your visit.

Offer Holders

Successful candidates will be required to show proof of funds equivalent to 9 months cost of living in order to accept a place and secure a Visa. Currently, this stands at £1015/per month and must be held in the applicant’s bank account.

Successful candidates will be required to pay a £2000 deposit within 10 days of accepting any offer of a place, which will be deducted from the first fee instalment.

Upon receipt of the deposit, Swansea University will issue a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) within 5 working days.  You will need your CAS number to secure a Visa, which can take approximately 1 month.

Starting the Course

The course starts promptly on 3rd September 2018 without exception.

Tuition fees will be due in two instalments: 50% at enrolment in September (minus £2000 deposit) and 50% in the following February.

Placements take place across the region. Transport between sites is at the expense of the student. Please contact the Medical School Student Information and Education Office for further information.

Equal Opportunities

Swansea University is an equal opportunities institution and actively encourages applications from persons of all ability. For Medicine, each application is assessed on an individual basis, on the candidate’s ability to fulfil the learning outcomes and skills and competencies required to complete the MB programme and as required by the GMCs Outcomes for Graduates. The GMC requires all medical schools to ensure that the applicant is able to complete in full the medical curriculum, and when considering applicants with disabilities, the College follows the advisory guidelines set out by the GMC in their document ‘Gateways to the Professions’ (this can be accessed on the GMC website). The University monitors carefully the selection process, in order to ensure that no applicants are disadvantaged.

There is no fixed upper age limit for entry onto the Graduate Entry Medicine Programme.  However, we do advise that all applicants carefully consider not only the length of the programme, but the subsequent demanding nature and intensity of a career in medicine, and the long term commitment that is required after successfully completing the course.


GAMSAT is a professionally designed and marked selection test for medical schools offering graduate-entry programmes open to graduates of any discipline. You will need to sit GAMSAT if you intend to apply for entry to the GEM Programme here in Swansea.  There are no exemptions from the GAMSAT test.  

GAMSAT evaluates the nature and extent of abilities and skills gained through prior experience and learning, including the mastery and use of concepts in basic science, as well as the acquisition of more general skills in problem solving, critical thinking and writing. For more information visit GAMSAT.  

We accept results from GAMSAT UK, Ireland and Australia dated within the two years prior to your application.  

For more information, or to apply for the GAMSAT examination, please contact GAMSAT UK directly.  

How We Decide

Applicants, who meet the minimum entry requirements are ranked based upon their GAMSAT scores. The applicants who have scored most highly are then invited to attend the Selection Centre at the Medical School in the Spring. Please note that all candidates must attend in person and that we do not have the capacity to offer remote interviews, for example via Skype.  

Swansea University Medical School also has a broad, ongoing package of measures in place to meet the recommendations of the National Assembly for Wales Health, Social Care and Sport Committee's 2017 Report to increase the provision of Doctors for Wales, which includes the provision of additional interviews.  Eligibility for remaining interview places will be determined based on domicile, secondary school attended and region of origin with preference for remaining places will be given to students applying from Wales.  Full details can be found in our Doctors for Wales Strategy .  

We aim to inform all applicants whether they have been successful for interview by the end of January.  All candidates who are successful in gaining an interview will also be invited to attend a Visit Day at the University's Singleton Campus, where there will be opportunities to meet with academic staff and students, find out more about the Selection Centre and the Course and take part in taster sessions.  

Format of the Selection Centre

After an introduction and a “setting the scene” session, you will be asked to sit a written assessment of 30 minutes duration. This situational judgement test is not designed to assess your academic ability, but to try and identify those applicants whose personal and academic qualities are suitable to a career in medicine.

Following the written assessment, you will have a tour of Morriston Hospital. You will learn more about the course and see life here at Swansea through the eyes of a medical student. It is not just about Swansea deciding if you are right for our course, but also the opportunity for you to see if Swansea is right for YOU.

After lunch, you will then be invited to attend two separate interviews, each of 20 minutes duration.  They are conducted by pairs of trained interviewers taken from our highly trained panel of clinicians, academics, medical students and members of the public (lay) interviewers. Your personal statement will be considered and discussed during your interview.

The interview process is designed to take account of the personal and academic qualities needed as a doctor, as set out in ‘Good Medical Practice’, and the capacity to meet the outcomes of ‘Tomorrows Doctors’. In summary these are:


  • Communication Skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • Coping with pressure
  • Insight and Integrity
  • Passion for medicine/resilience to succeed


Once the interviews are completed, we will assess the overall performance of each candidate. Due to the very competitive nature of the selection process, it is only those candidates who score highest who will be offered a place at Swansea. Formal offers will be made from March 2018 onwards.

Are you fit to practise?

All medical students during their training, and all doctors once qualified, remain subject to scrutiny regarding fitness to practise throughout their professional lives. This ensures that they are fit to continue in their chosen career. 

For your safety, as well as the safety of your future patients, you will be required to undergo an Occupational Health Assessment, which includes a Fitness to Practise assessment, as well as a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check prior to beginning your studies on the Graduate Entry Medicine Programme. The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) offer an update service which lets applicants keep their DBS certificates up to date online and allows employers to check a certificate online. For more information, visit the DBS website

GMC Important information for applicants


At the end of the undergraduate programme you will receive your MBBS (or equivalent) degree, which is a primary medical qualification (PMQ). Holding a PMQ entitles you to provisional registration with the General Medical Council, subject only to its acceptance that there are no Fitness to Practise concerns that need consideration. Provisional registration is time limited to a maximum of three years and 30 days (1125 days in total). After this time period your provisional registration will normally expire.

Provisionally registered doctors can only practise in approved Foundation Year 1 posts: the law does not allow provisionally registered doctors to undertake any other type of work. To obtain a Foundation Year 1 post you will need to apply during the final year of your undergraduate programme through the UK Foundation Programme Office selection scheme, which allocates these posts to graduates on a competitive basis. All suitably qualified UK graduates have found a place on the Foundation Year 1 programme, but this cannot be guaranteed, for instance if there were to be an increased number of competitive applications from non-UK graduates.

Successful completion of the Foundation Year 1 programme is normally achieved within 12 months and is marked by the award of a Certificate of Experience. You will then be eligible to apply for full registration with the General Medical Council. You need full registration with a licence to practise for unsupervised medical practice in the NHS or private practice in the UK.

GMC Important information (cont)

Although this information is currently correct, students need to be aware that regulations in this area may change from time to time.

There is some discussion about whether to remove provisional registration for newly qualified doctors. If this happens then UK graduates will receive full registration as soon as they have successfully completed an MBBS (or equivalent) degree. It should be noted that it is very likely that UK graduates will still need to apply for a training programme similar to the current Foundation Programme and that places on this programme may not be guaranteed for every UK graduate.

The GMC is currently considering the introduction of a formal assessment that UK medical graduates would need to pass in order to be granted registration with a licence to practise. Although no final decision has been taken as to whether or when such an exam will be introduced applicants should be aware that the GMC envisages that future cohorts of medical students may need to pass parts of a medical licensing assessment before the GMC will grant them registration with a licence to practise.

GMC provisional registration

GMC provisional registration for newly qualified doctors

The relevant paragraphs from the General Medical Council publication 'Medical students: professional values and fitness to practise' are shown below.

Point 60. Medical schools should inform students, as part of their admissions procedures, through student handbooks, and also as part of their fitness to practise guidance and procedures, that the GMC is responsible for decisions regarding registration. It must be made clear to students that the GMC will consider any issue that calls their fitness to practise into question. This includes anything that happened before or during their undergraduate years, and any decisions made by a fitness to practise panel or university. Medical schools should make students aware, before they apply for provisional registration with a licence to practise, of the requirements in the GMC’s declaration of fitness to practise.

Point 61. If there is a concern that a student may be refused registration, the GMC may be able to give advice on the possible outcomes of registration based on the disclosed facts of the case. In these circumstances, the GMC may be able to indicate whether a student would be able to register at some point in the future; but this would not bind the GMC to a particular decision at the point of registration. Given the tight timelines for entering the Foundation Programme, advice should be sought as early as possible before applying for registration with a licence to practise.

IMED Directory

The International Medical Education Directory (IMED) is a free web-based resource for accurate and up-to-date information about international medical schools that are recognized by the appropriate government agency in the countries where they are located.

Click here to see Swansea's entry

MSC Excluded Students Database

In the interests of patient and public safety, and to prevent fraudulent applications to courses which lead to entry to a registered profession in the UK, Swansea University Medical School will share some of the information provided in your application form with the Medical Schools Council in order to verify your fitness to practise. If a fitness to practise outcome is made against you in the future, your information and a copy of the decision against you will also be stored on a central database which is accessible only to other schools with courses leading to entry to a registered profession in the UK. It is used only for proper fitness to practise purposes to protect patients and the public, and to prevent fraudulent applications. Any offer of a place on the programme is conditional on you having disclosed any previous fitness to practise outcomes against you, and your consent being given to this use of information. You have a right of access to any information held about you on the database and to correct any errors.’