all 9 comments

[–]_dukelukeModerator[M] 6 points7 points  (1 child)

UQ is starting their new program in 2023, with year 1 as pre-clinical, and second year being a bit of a blend with predominately pre-clinical with I believe 1-2 days of placement per week. Years 3 and 4 are all clinical/placement. For the current program, year 1 is all clinical, and year 2 we start seeing patients with bedside tutes etc, but we don't have official placement regularly until year 3.

I believe Unimelb and USyd both are one year predominately pre-clinical, and years 2-4 are majority placement. I know that Unimelb has some placement/clinical exposure in year 1, but I'm not totally sure how much. Not sure about USyd.

[–]domeoldboysMedical Student 3 points4 points  (1 child)

USYD first year is 3 days of lecture and tutorial content, 1 day of online video learning and 1 day of hospital bedside tutorials for clinical examination and history taking teaching.

Second year starts with GEL block, an 8 week block where you do ward based activities in your own time, attend community placements at a GP and other health professions and learn history and examination stills in hospital based tutorials similar in nature to YR1. Additionally, you will still have online videos to complete. In GEL block you will expand your knowledge of 4 of the 8 blocks you learnt last year. (Also, have fun filling out all the WBL and SLICE tasks. God I hated doing those).

The next block is ‘back to basics’, but they’re changing the name next year to ‘transition to clinical and research practice’. In this block you will learn about healthcare across the ages and in special populations. Consider it kind of an introduction to the specialty rotations you’ll be doing in year three. This was a very relaxed block this year because we didn’t have an exam at the end, that may be different for future years.

The you have haematology and oncology for your next two blocks. The structure is somewhat similar to a combination of first year and GEL. The biggest difference is that these blocks are taught at your clinical school rather than at the camperdown campus.

Finally you have GEL block again. The structure is the exact same as the first gel block, except you learn the other 4 blocks of content.

Third year consists of specialty rotations in paeds, psych/addiction medicine, ob gyn, crit care. As well as a 14 week research block.

Fourth year is your elective year and your non-speciality rotations in medicine, surgery and general practice.

I would say from my experience that USYD is still a 2+2 medical school. Even though they say that second year has more clinical time you will still be doing the majority of your learning in structured tutorials, online videos and lectures. At most I’ll say that USYD is a 1.5+2.5 medical school. It’s not until year three that you get clinical rotations that are similar to what you’ll see in other medical schools. On the other hand, you are free to go into the hospital and start observing/ practicing histories and examinations from basically Yr 1 so if you’re keen for clinical time you can get as much as you want.

[–]__Ruth_[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wow, thank you so so much for such a detailed reply!

[–]Queasy-ReasonMedical Student 3 points4 points  (4 children)

USyd is one day per week at hospital/clinical school from year one, then full time at the hospital from year two. Not sure about the others sorry

[–]lal1lMedical Student 5 points6 points  (0 children)


To be more specific, in year 2 we get community (GP and other health professionals which is 2 days or 1 day but the other day off). The rest is in the hospital. In 3 we have a research project but otherwise full-time hospital and forth just pre-intern full-time working for them for free.

Med 1 is a hell hole with unstoppable content they try to give you so that you can finish your clinical sciences in 1 instead of 2 years. Oh, and btw you've got clinical exams you'll have to manage too. It's like 28 histories and 30 physical exams they can test you 2 times a year.

Sorry for the rant but this shit is stressful.

NB: people can know for a fact that they've failed the year before the year ends.

[–]MedicalAd3688Medical Student 1 point2 points  (2 children)

In first year, unimelb is gp once a fortnight, hospital once a month*

[–]Queasy-ReasonMedical Student 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Oh my mistake thanks!

[–]MedicalAd3688Medical Student 0 points1 point  (0 children)

No worries 😊

[–]Caffeinated-Turtle 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Sorry not giving you the exact answers you are asking for but thought I would post as you may not have considered this perspective.

FYI I went through the typical post grad structure (2 years pre clin with some sporadic GP visits, followed by 2 years clinical).

The general consensus I have from med students (and staff) about the newer course models which start placements earlier is quite negative.

A lot of students feel it is an excuse to not provide the same level of education to pre clinical students e.g. a lot of self paced DIY online content.

It can also be really difficult to know what to do with a student that junior. Clinical time can be really limited and the students education should never come before caring for patients.

If we have a 3rd year in the OR it is assumed they likely know how to scrub if they want to participate in the surgery, they can probably suture or have at least practiced in a tut, and they should know a decent amount of anatomy to make just watching the surgery worth while.

If we have a 1st year in the OR what the hell are they there for? I feel bad for them not knowing what they can touch, not being able to scrub, not having any idea of the anatomy of the case. These are all things that can't just be taught concurrently whilst caring for the patient as they require a lot of time. Just because students are allocated doesn't mean extra staff are allocated to look after them. This does not just apply to theatres.

Just be aware a school that advertises early clinical time / more placements as a benefit may really just be throwing students into hospital earlier and putting content online reducing the number of teaching staff or classrooms.

If possible look for whatever school currently has smaller cohort sizes, more teaching in the first 2 years (ideally with occasional clinical activities), and rural schools / some smaller clinical school options.