2024 Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Study Day: Follow-up resources

Thank you for attending the 2024 Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Study Day.

Our Medicine and Biomedical Sciences tutors and students have collated a set of resources to introduce the courses here at Oxford, and our students have answered some FAQs in the videos below! You can find out about careers related to Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and how you can comment on your work experience and super-curricular activities most effectively.

Additionally, the Access & Admissions team have included some resources which offer guidance on applying to study at the University of Oxford – particularly, the application process and admissions tests, including some demonstration interviews. These resources are aimed at current Year 12 and 13 students.

We’ve separated these resources into nine areas – you can choose these resources in the way that helps you most: look at the areas of most interest to you, work through them in order, or do some sessions today and come back to look through the others another time!

Use the video and links below to find out more about our Medicine and Biomedical Sciences courses. Learn about a typical week on one of our courses, the course structure for Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and how the College tutorial teaching system at Oxford works.

Studying Medicine at Oxford, Dr Sandra Campbell, Supernumerary Fellow in Physiology

Two of our current medicine students, Jola and Susie, answer some FAQ about life and studying at St John’s College, as well as discussing applications and interviews. Watch their videos below – you may wish to refer back to hear their perspective on applications and interviews after learning about these processes in more detail below!

Studying Medicine at Oxford University

Life at St John’s College

Pre-Interview Applications

The Interview Process

Quota for International Students

This talk focuses on introducing pupils to the University of Oxford, the courses and societies it has to offer and the application process. It includes information on financial support available at the university, the practicalities of picking a course and a college, and illustrates practical ways in which pupils can engage with their subjects outside the classroom.

This video offers a simple step-by-step guide to Oxford admissions and completing your UCAS application. Watch to find helpful tips to ensure your application runs smoothly, including the key dates for admissions tests and the deadline for submitting your UCAS application. For more information on applying for Biomedical Sciences and Medicine, have a look at the Admissions Test and Interview sections below.

Stage 4a: Admissions test – why and how?

What is the UCAT? When do I have to register by and when do I take the test? You can find all the answers on this page that deals with test requirements, how to register, how to prepare and much more.

Stage 4b: Key dates

If you are applying to either Oxford or Cambridge Universities, the deadline for submitting your UCAS application form is 6pm on the 15th October.

  • The final registration deadline for the UCAT is 19 September. No late registrations will be accepted after this date.

Invitations to interview are normally sent out between late November and early December. Interviews (2024) will be held from 1st-20th December.

Offers are normally sent out in mid-January.

Stage 4c: Interviews

Why does Oxford interview pupils? Who gets invited to interview? How will I find out if I have been invited to interview? Find the answers to these questions and many more by visiting the University of Oxford Interview webpages. You can also watch the demonstration interview videos below to see what an interview is like for yourself, or visit Inspire Digital to find out more about how to prepare for interviews and some useful resources.

Medicine Demonstration Interview

Biomedicine Demonstration Interview

Going further...

Biomedical Sciences

Graduates in Biomedical Sciences go on to a wide variety of careers. Particularly common options are to pursue further academic studies (as a Masters or a PhD/DPhil), work in pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry as scientists, or study medicine at graduate-entry level. For a full list of the careers pursued by the students who graduated in 2020, click here.


Although many students who study Medicine go on to practice medicine or work in a medicine-related field, students also pursue careers in scientific research, lecturing, journalism and more. An idea of the range of careers that medicine graduates nationwide can be found here, on the Prospects website.

Andreas is one student who is applying his knowledge to Medical research. After completing the pre-clinical medicine stage of his course at St John’s College, Andreas opted to pursue a DPhil in Medicine & Machine Learning. A strong advocate of medicine’s application to other subjects, he is part of a European wide clinical research collaboration using statistical insight to enhance COPD diagnosis. Alongside this work, Andreas is a Pathology tutor for second year medical students at St John’s. This compliments his passion for outreach, sharing both his love for medicine and desire to make study accessible to all.

More recently Andreas has co-founded Oxford Cancer Analytics, using machine learning to aid early cancer diagnosis. Developing algorithms to assess patient blood samples, he hopes to inform clinicians in their prognosis of disease. Watch Andreas’ career interview below.

Careers Interview: Andreas Halner, Medicine BA, University of Oxford

Oxford University Careers Service

During their time at Oxford, students are supported by the Oxford University Careers Service (OUCS). OUCS helps students explore ideas for future careers, gain work experience and internships, and also supports students in making applications for internships and jobs. Visit the OUCS home page by clicking here.

In your university applications, you should aim to demonstrate that you are enthusiastic about your subject, and motivated to learn more. Reflecting on ‘super-curricular’ activities is an excellent way to show this.

Super-curricular activities are things that are related to academic work, which are beyond the scope of your current studies. Super-curricular activities might include things which are directly related to your subject, such as work experience or watching a TED talk, or things which promote academic skills relevant to your studies, such as critical thinking.

In addition, when applying for medical related degrees, it is typically a requirement to show some examples of work experience. This is to demonstrate that you understand what a career in medicine looks like. Visit the links below to learn good places to find work experience or volunteering experiences:

Attending a St John’s Study Day to explore a subject further is an example of a super-curricular activity. You can discuss the event, and how it impacted on you, in your personal statement. The resources below give examples of how to include this event, when applying for university or for work experience.


When writing your university application materials, it is important to articulate the skills which you have learnt or developed, rather than simply listing the activities that you have taken part in.

Think about that skills you have used over the course of the St John’s College Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Study Day. These might include:

1) Critical thinking and reflective practice

2) Teamwork, communication and collaboration

3) Applying theoretical knowledge to practical situations

4) Commitment and self-discipline

5) Engaging with complex concepts and arguments

6) Improved comprehension of contemporary ethical concerns in medical practice

7) Mature engagement with sensitive material

Can you think of any other skills that you have used?

Think about the different sessions that you have attended as part of the study day. Which of the sessions helped you develop these skills? Are there any sessions which you found particularly enjoyable or useful? Remember, you want to explicitly state why these sessions were valuable to you, rather than leaving your reader to guess.

Personal Statements

Personal statements are an excellent opportunity to show your motivation, experience, and commitment to medicine or biomedical sciences. In a personal statement you want to be as specific as possible, and relate particular experiences to distinctive skills. For example, you might include:

  • The name of the event or activity you took part in
  • The organisation which ran the event (this might be a university, a medical organisation, or a particular practice).
  • The skills which you learnt or developed by taking part
  • The benefits which you have experienced from taking part (Was it inspirational? Did it improve your knowledge? Did it widen your understanding of a particular field? Did it develop your ability to communicate with others, or encourage you to work independently?)

The following examples show how you could write about the Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Study Day in your personal statement:

‘When attending a Medicine Study Day at St John’s College, University of Oxford, I was particularly influenced by a session on the ethics of CRISPR, which helped develop my ability to engage with sensitive material.’

‘I attended a Medicine Study Day at St John’s College, University of Oxford, which introduced me to the benefits of sporting activity to those with psychiatric disorders. This session encouraged me to consider the practical application of theoretical knowledge, and the value of holistic medical interventions.’

‘At the Medicine Study Day at St John’s College, University of Oxford, we received talks from various medical and biomedical sciences professionals. Dr ______ spoke about her career in ________medicine, and I have since independently researched _________, which is of particular interest to me and has encouraged me to reflect further on the value of this research.’

Note: Remember not to copy these examples word for word, they need to be adapted to your individual experience.

Cover Letters for Volunteering or Work Experience

Cover letters are often asked for when applying for a volunteer role, or trying to secure work experience. When writing a cover letter, it is important that you include several things:

  • Who you are (Which school or college do you attend? Which A-Levels are you studying? What are your career aspirations?)
  • Why you want to work or volunteer at this particular Trust, practice, or organisation
  • Your experience and skill set (you can think laterally about this if you don’t have much yet – what kind of skills have your hobbies, A-Level studies, or private research developed?)
  • What you can offer to the organisation or practice (think about those skills you read about earlier, how can you show that you are motivated and committed?)
  • What you would like to get out of your work experience (are there any particular experiences you would like to have, or skills that you would like to develop?)

For example, you might write that:

‘I took part a Study Day in Medicine at St John’s College, University of Oxford, where I attended a lecture on sport and psychiatric disorders. This heightened my appreciation for the role of sport in mental health, which I know is a value your charity shares. I would be delighted to contribute to your efforts, and believe my knowledge and interest in mental health would make me an asset to your organisation.’

‘I attended a Study Day in Medicine at St John’s College, University of Oxford, where a current medical student explained how valuable her time on work experience with the Riverside Practice had been to her studies. I know from your website that two of the doctors in your practice specialise in musculoskeletal medicine, which I am particularly interested in.’

‘When attending a Study Day in Medicine at St John’s College, University of Oxford, we were required to reflect on some of the ethical concerns of genetic research. This developed my ability to engage thoughtfully with sensitive material, and I would like to shadow you to learn more about how doctors communicate difficult subjects to patients in a way that is empathetic and professional.’

Note: Remember not to copy these examples word for word, they need to be adapted to your individual experience.

For further examples of cover letters, and a guide to writing a cover letter for medicine work experience, visit the links below:

When applying for work or volunteer experience it is important that you are organised and follow-up any applications that you have made. Work experience places are often oversubscribed, so it is worth applying to several places.

CVs for Volunteering or Work Experience

A Curriculum Vitae (CV) is a concise summary of your education, experience and skills. A CV should be tailored towards the work experience you are applying for – you shouldn’t send out the exact same CV to all places. You will normally be asked to submit a CV alongside a cover letter when applying for work experience, or voluntary experience.

A few key things should always be included on a CV, and you should list these in reverse chronological order (i.e. the most recent things are nearer the top of your CV).

  1. Your personal details
  2. A brief statement of who you are
  3. Education and Qualifications
  4. Work experience/relevant experience
  5. Relevant key skills
  6. Hobbies and interests (only if these are relevant)
  7. References – this should be someone who can comment on your work ethic and suitability, such as your Form Tutor, Subject Teacher, or Head of Year Group. You should ask someone before using them as a reference.

The formatting of your CV is also important – this document represents you! A CV should be:

  • Clear and concise
  • Ordered logically
  • Professional looking (clear, sensible font size; use headings and bullet points)
  • Accurate (no spelling or grammar mistakes!)

An example CV, including the St John’s Medicine and Biomedical Science Study Day, can be seen by clicking on the PDF link below:

Click here to see an example CV.

For further information on writing a CV, and some examples, use the links below:

There are two ways you can explore our facilities here at St John’s.

Click here to explore an interactive map of the College.

You can also explore our quads, old library and chapel here.

Digital Prospectus

Browse the University of Oxford’s first digital prospectus.

Inspire Digital

Our online resource platform for secondary school pupils. Inspire Digital is an interactive resource, with new material, hints and solutions to the questions posted on a regular basis.

St John’s College Super-curricular Resources

Students are welcome to browse our extensive range of super-curricular resources and programmes.


Oxplore is an engaging digital resource from the University of Oxford. As the ‘Home of Big Questions’, it aims to challenge those from 11 to 18 years with debates and ideas that go beyond what is covered in the classroom. Big questions tackle complex ideas across a wide range of subjects and reflect the kind of critical thinking students undertake at university.

Springboard Videos

Discover your new favourite topic with our Springboard videos, bringing you cutting-edge research from Oxford’s graduate students on topics from climate change and colonialism to microbiomes and mathematical logic. These videos are intended for school pupils in Years 11, 12 and 13. Each offers an introduction to a new topic, plus lots of activities and further resources to explore.

Virtual Tour of Oxford

An excellent resource created by the Chemistry department where students who are unable to visit Oxford can get familiar with the ins and outs of the city and colleges.

More outreach events

See how else Oxford can support can support your application by looking at the Oxford Outreach Calendar.

For further information, or if you have any specific questions about St John’s College, admissions or welfare and disability support the college offers please use the contacts listed below:

For information about St. John’s College: access@sjc.ox.ac.uk

Admissions: sarah.jones@sjc.ox.ac.uk

Welfare and disability: elaine.eastgate@sjc.ox.ac.uk

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