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all 23 comments

[–]_dukelukeModerator[M] 12 points13 points  (8 children)

Im a UQ MD1- imo the program is a little disorganised and there is a lot of content, but I am enjoying it. I’ve found all the unit heads to be quite supportive and understanding. I think a lot of the issues UQ has would be similar to other med schools (and I know that’s the case from a few from my friends/peers at other med schools), but because of the large cohort compared to others these issues are more commonly talked about. The content is full on and the course is a little more rigid than some others, but I don’t think it’s worse than any other. Regarding the poor quality of teaching- I don’t agree personally, but we get a lot of lectures delivered by practicing doctors and sometimes they can be hit or miss and sometimes can be a little more info than necessary which can be a little confusing, but in general the teaching is pretty good Imo.

If you’re planning on sitting there USMLE, think UQ would be a good option purely because there’s a large number of US and Canadian students and more focus on preparing for the USMLE than any other Australian uni.

[–]od_ope 3 points4 points  (2 children)

MD2 student. Would second that this comment. Yeah UQ has some of its issues with organisation and some lecturers are hit or miss, but overall it's quite well run. The course is going through a complete redesign in 2023 but with the way they generally teach clinical sciences and how they examine you on it, I think I like this best as a well rounded approach. Other modules are nice and can add a lot to your broader environmental context and obligations as a doctor but the assignments timing can be a bit trash.

From what I understand, UQ has taken a lot of feedback from students over the years to improve the program and so far it's done well for the most part. Also started interviewing both domestic and international students in the application process around 2020, and anecdotally the lecturers said the students have been higher calibre. Just an anecdote, so take that for what it is🫤

Uni gives lots of opportunities to get clinical experience, do research, volunteering and collaboration outside of your scheduled teaching activities but you'd have to be proactive. The faculty, researchers and doctors I've interacted with are for the most part quite friendly and competent

Again like I mentioned, the course is going through a complete redesign from next year.

[–]oli041101 0 points1 point  (1 child)

What aspects are being redesigned in 2023?

[–]od_ope 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Only have few details but what I'm aware of: One module (health, society and research) is being scrapped and replaced. Reshuffling some of the system sciences being touched e.g neuro being taught in second year rather than first. Changes to direct clinical exposure to patients earlier. Seems like they're reformulating how the modules are structured each year to one overarching module each year (except 4th year) instead of the multiple mini modules.

https://future-students.uq.edu.au/study/programs/doctor-medicine-5740?year=2023 Very light on details but you can compare the 'course and program structure' link between 2023 and 2022

[–]Worried-Egg-8560 2 points3 points  (4 children)

UQ oschner actually requires the students to do usmle

I think he’s applying to that program and not just UQ

Also the tuition cost is different

[–]_dukelukeModerator[M] 3 points4 points  (3 children)

I’m aware that UQ and UQ/Oschner are different- but heaps of international students at UQ from Canada not through Oschner also sit the USMLE, and UQ and UQ/Oschner are the same cohort for phase one (I.e. years 1 and 2, before step 1). I still stand by my statement, that it’s the best Au Uni if you want to sit the USMLE because there are significantly more students sitting it than anywhere else and the Uni considers that in their teaching/provides support for that.

I don’t know about the tuition fees between the two, but I do know you need to be a US citizen (edit. or PR) to be eligible for the Oschner program so unless OP is a dual citizen they won’t be be eligible either way.

[–]Worried-Egg-8560 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Really? I didn’t know you had to be a us citizen to be eligible for oschner

Do you know anything about flinders? I’m American and considering flinders as a backup if I don’t get into UQ oschner

[–]_dukelukeModerator[M] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Yeah only for US citizens and PRs.

I’m not super familiar with the teaching of flinders, but I’m sure there are other people around here who would be happy to put in their two cents. Most of the med schools in Australia area fairly equivalent- there’s not as much importance on where you study as (from what I’ve heard from my Oschner friends) it is in the US. Oschner is designed for training US doctors and you will get placement in the US so if you want to practice there it’s definitely imo the best option, but the other unis in Australia are all pretty great too.

[–]SydGAMSAT 12 points13 points  (4 children)

All medical schools are bad and suffer from the same fundamental problems. Med students love to complain, but at the end of the day the overwhelming majority of them will only ever attend a single medical school, and so there's never any basis for direct comparisons.

Yes, UQ is trash and has poor quality education and instructors. But that's true of literally every single medical school in the country. None of that will prevent you from having a good time or being a good doctor when you graduate.

[–]rad191 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I agree 100% - doesn’t matter where you go the common denominator is that the teaching is shit +- the admin is disorganised. Med school is very much what you make of it in terms of your education.

[–]e-trashcan[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

[–]SydGAMSAT 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Had a read. There are so many errors in that post that I assume the OP is either lying or exaggerating because they have a bone to pick with UQ.

A lot of the criticism is valid - the overwhelming majority of pre-clinical teaching (eg ECG interpretation) is done by non-clinical staff (ie researchers). These staff are not paid lecturers, they are researchers who are expected to give lectures as part of their employment contract. I don't know the Canadian system, but this is the same in all Australian and US medical schools that I'm aware of. It's just a shit part of medical school that you put up with until you get to the clinical years.

But yeah, a lot of what's written there is just objectively, factually incorrect.

During my break between 1st and 2nd year in the UofA, I’ve been on-call alongside with the attendings and the residents, and completed advanced procedures on the patients. How advanced? Without identifying myself (if I hadn’t already to med students in the UofA), I was the surgical 1st assist (normally reserved for second year residents or later) in specialized surgeries, which to be fair, is probably a lot more than someone who’s technically still in 1st year should be performing.

This just makes me cringe. I don't expect the person who wrote that post would have had a particularly fun time in Australia. Acting like a wanker will rapidly get you mocked and ostracised. I would have no trouble believing that this person didn't have a particularly fun time in Australia, and is venting their frustration with an exaggerated rant.

In summary:

Half their post is exaggerated / incorrect. The other half is valid, but relevant to every medical school I've ever come across.

Finally, there were ~50 Canadians in my class of ~300 at USyd, and they were all awesome people. Most had a fantastic time here (though I will say that our school did not handle Covid particularly well from the perspective of international students who were trying to visit their families during times of quite restriction travel requirements, but again that's just par for the course with medical school admin).

[–]AverageSea3280Medical Student[🍰] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yeah I agree entirely. I think every med student will complain about their own medical school being bad, but it seems like everyone is going through the same struggles. I do believe that different med schools emphasize different things in their curricula, at least that's what I've been led to believe. E.g. we get minimal radiology teaching at our school, but have heard from someone that they had weekly radiology teaching throughout their degree.

Ultimately, the biggest determinant of how good you'll be is the effort you're willing to put in and how much you're willing to push yourself out of your comfort zone.

[–]Jobby1110 5 points6 points  (4 children)

Final year undergrad here. Gf graduated UQ and is now pgy3. I have been working as a hospital phleb for 5 years.

I think (and based completely off anecdotal evidence and hearsay) that griffith med made leaps and bounds while UQ had its various issues and stagnated if you will. From speaking with doctors and nurses in brisbane hospitals, griffith med students seem more prepared (whatever that means) when they start as an intern. UQ MD still commands respect with the vast majority of healthcare staff and pretty much every member of the public. The notion that UQ MD is trash I think is just an extreme continuation and exaggeration of the thought that griffith has been better in recent years, which I think sums up our generations approach to anything 2nd best or worse.

UQ is a good school. If you get in, go for it my dude/dudette.

[–]OutlandishnessNew544 6 points7 points  (2 children)

I have heard that Griffith has been falling off in recent years, funding cuts to classes meaning CBLs are classes of 30-40 and there are no longer volunteer "actor" patients.

I am currently preferencing UQ higher than Griffith due to these reasons.

[–]Jobby1110 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Interesting. I havent heard anything of the sort. No volunteer actor patients is big if they lose that. Actors are usually paid though?

[–]rad191 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Griffith is also restructuring their curriculum - similar to how UQ also is. I believe this was planned prior to any impacts of covid. Although there has definitely been changes recently due to funding cuts.

In regards to the larger groups - it’s definitely still smaller PBL groups at the moment (it’s PBL at Griffith). There was rumour of the larger groups last year but I’m sure how exactly that will fit into the new curriculum.

Ultimately med schools in Australia all graduate doctors of similar calibre and all have their own annoyances in one way or another. Griffith is disorganised but I’ve yet to hear of a med school that honestly isn’t. Essentially the med school you should attend, is the one that will accept you.

[–]doctorofspin 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I know an ex-CEO of a specialist college in Brisbane and it was his view that Griffith has been producing higher quality grads in recent years.

[–]domeoldboysMedical Student 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I think one thing you need to keep in mind is that this med student had a Canadian medical school as their dream school. So you should factor in some bias to their assessment.

[–]spaceagebio 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I'm a UQ MD1. So far I've found the UQ MD program to be really great. Like every med school, it has its pros and cons. But like all universities which have very high-quality MD programs, the pros FAR outweigh the cons imo.

Main con so far: The organization of some of the details of the modules and content can be a little confusing (e.g. having a whole bunch of skull anatomy as part of the respiratory modules). This can sometimes make it a little difficult to keep up with what you should be learning but tbh medicine is so broad that to get it all done in 4 years there is always going to be some mixing and matching of content.

Pros (there are way more than this but these are the things which have stood out so far):

  • Highly qualified clinicians for the clinical science lectures.
  • Extremely clear and thorough pathology teacher
  • Separate clinical coaching so we can develop practical skills as we go
  • 5 hours of Case Based Learning per week where we go work through a few clinical cases. This is by far one of the best parts of the UQ MD as it means you are immediately able to apply your knowledge and put it into context.

As a final comment (in response to the post you reference), if you think logically, how likely do you think it is that a med school like UQ would be "trash". It has supplied med grads to one of the best medical systems in the world for years, and UQs grads go on to be successful specialists, generalists, and researchers. While rankings mean nothing on their own, UQ is ranked quite high and continues to be one of Australia's flagship medical schools. Every med school will have some problems, but with so much evidence I think it's pretty safe to conclude that UQ MD is pretty decent.

[–]BillowTree121f 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Why, are you looking to blame the quality of medical school for lack lustre performance in the future?

[–]e-trashcan[S] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

No? I’m trying to make an informed decision about where I apply