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How to Become a Doctor in Scotland

Updated February 21, 2017

Medicine is one of the most demanding yet rewarding careers. Continually developing technologies and scientific breakthroughs ensure that students entering the medical profession have an exciting and varied career ahead of them. In Scotland, a doctor's training and certification falls under the British medical system. Following graduation, doctors usually choose to concentrate their career on one speciality, such as paediatrics or surgery. Entry into the medical profession is very competitive in Scotland, but once doctors are qualified they can expect to earn a relatively high salary.

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  1. Achieve high grades in high school. Each medical school defines their own individual admission criteria, however high grades in chemistry and biology are essential. The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) publishes the admissions requirements for each degree (see Resources).

  2. Take the required pretests. Most medical colleges require that entrants take one or more tests to determine potential students' aptitude in skills such as critical thinking. Depending on your degree of choice, you may be required to undergo one or both of the following: UK Clinical Aptitude Test and Biomedical Admissions Test.

  3. Complete a medical degree. Undergraduate degrees usually require five years of study, after which no further formal classroom education is required to become a doctor. See the UCAS link in Resources to browse medical degrees by university or location.

  4. Complete foundation years one and two. Similar to an internship with clinical rotations, these years provide on-the-job training following your medical degree, and the opportunity to explore different areas of medicine. Following the completion of the first of these two years you will be eligible for full registration with the General Medical Council.

  5. Undertake three to eight years of specialist training. This period gives you increasingly advanced training in your chosen field. The speciality you choose determines the length of the training period. At the end of this period you are qualified as a senior doctor in your chosen speciality.

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About the Author

Charlie Higgins

Charlie Higgins is journalist, editor and translator based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He has written for a variety of lifestyle and niche market websites, including International Food Trader, The Olive Oil Times, microDINERO, Sounds and Colours, Connecting Worlds and The Buenos Aires Reader.

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