Peninsula Medical School

BMBS Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery

Do you want to make a difference? With patient experience and student satisfaction at its heart, this hands-on, forward-thinking degree from one of England’s top four medical schools will give you the knowledge, skills and confidence to become an outstanding doctor primed for tomorrow’s healthcare needs. Nurturing critical thinking and a caring approach to your medical practice, we’ll help you develop the clinical and communication, teamwork and leadership skills for a top career in medicine.

You will benefit from close relationships with our principal NHS hospital partners. You will practise your clinical and communication skills in the safe setting of our Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC), which features specially designed replicas of hospital wards and emergency rooms, with high-specification patient-simulators. You will also learn from real patients from the outset, with clinical placements starting in the first two weeks of year one.

First choice for health logo

First choice for health

Delivered by professional experts, our programmes are tailored to you and your career. Together, we address today's most challenging healthcare issues, through research-informed teaching and active, real-world learning.

#firstchoiceforhealth

Closed for Clearing

Please note this course is not included in Clearing 2021.

Key features

  • Benefit from close relationships with our principal NHS partners – University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, Taunton & Somerset NHS Foundation Trust and local General Practices – who have helped develop the course and provide wide-ranging placement opportunities
  • Learn from real patients from the outset, with clinical placements starting in the first two weeks of Year 1. 
  • Ensure your learning is always current and follows best practice, through the internationally renowned research that constantly feeds into our teaching, to reflect today’s dynamic healthcare delivery environment.
  • Take part in expert-led discussions around clinical case studies and the latest medical science breakthroughs, through our Structured Small Groups teaching approach, including Enquiry Based Learning. These are also a great opportunity to learn from other students’ knowledge and experience.
  • Practise your clinical and communication skills in the safe setting of our Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC), which features specially designed replicas of hospital wards and emergency rooms, with high-specification patient-simulators.
  • Develop your leadership and management skills, essential for effective teamwork and for ensuring high quality patient care.
  • Utilise online systems to support your learning including the student logbook, custom-made for our students to access lecture notes, online assessment systems and lecture sessions. 
  • Deepen your understanding of the structure and functionality of the human body with our Life Sciences Resource Centre (LSRC), which includes radiographic imaging and expert-led life science sessions.
  • Choose the subjects that most interest you to study in-depth and build your own interests, specialisms, and research, scientific and analytical skills over the five years of your degree with our Special Study Units (SSUs). There are over 200 to choose from – see a sample list of current SSU titles.
  • See how clinical medicine or research is practised in different social and cultural contexts in other parts of the South West, UK or the world, and further your experience through our elective opportunities.
  • Explore another discipline at degree level – from history of medicine to music, psychology to statistics – through our Intercalated degrees programme. Our BSc (Hons) Urgent and Emergency Care – developed with local emergency department/consultants, is a unique opportunity in the UK to work in and learn about the area of emergency care alongside your medical degree. External intercalation opportunities are also available.
  • All students will spend Years 1 and 2 in Plymouth. In Years 3-5, students will spend at least one year either in Torbay, Taunton or Plymouth, and rotate around these sites. Travel to GP practices from these main hospital sites will also be required. 

We’re very proud of our National Student Survey (NSS) 2020 return showing an overall course satisfaction of 86 per cent and 94 per cent of students agreed that the course is intellectually stimulating*. 

Course details
  • Year 1

  • In the first two years, you’ll learn the core scientific foundations of medicine within a clinical context. We’ve structured our curriculum around the human life cycle, so in the first year you’ll study human physical and psychological development from conception to old age. You’ll learn from real-life clinical case studies and experience healthcare in a range of community settings, meeting patients and service users, and learning from health and social care professionals.

    Core modules

    • Medical Knowledge 1 (MED410)

      This module enables students to demonstrate the integrated application of basic human and biomedical sciences at the level appropriate for a first year student

    • Clinical and Communication Skills 1 (MED411)

      This module deals with the acquisition of the basic core clinical and communication skills underpinning modern clinical practice.

    • Personal Development and Professionalism 1 (MED412)

      This module deals with personal & professional development including team working, reflection, time management, ethical practice, feedback and professional skills.

    • Student-Selected Component 1 (SSC1) (MED414)

      This module focuses on research skills. The module aims to emphasise the development and achievement of skills in: searching sources, critical evaluation, synthesis, presenting evidence, effective planning, developing research questions and problem solving.

  • Year 2

  • In the second year, you’ll revisit the human life cycle, this time with an emphasis on disease, pathological processes, and the human and social impact of illness and disease. You’ll do a series of placements in a single general practice, enabling you to learn about long-term health issues and see teamwork in action.

    Core modules

    • Medical Knowledge 2 (MED520)

      This module enables students to demonstrate the integrated application of basic human and biomedical sciences at the level appropriate for a second year medical student.

    • Clinical and Communication Skills 2 (MED521)

      This module deals with the further acquisition of the core clinical and communication skills underpinning modern clinical practice.

    • Personal Development and Professionalism 2 (MED522)

      This module deals with the continuing further personal and professional development including team working, reflection, time management, ethical practice, feedback and professional skills.

    • Student-Selected Component 2 (SSC2) (MED524)

      This module focuses on research skills in addition it evaluates the role of doctors as educators. The module aims to emphasise the development and achievement of skills in: searching sources, critical evaluation, synthesis, presenting evidence, effective planning, developing research questions, problem solving and project management.

    Optional modules

    • Outstanding Clinical Skills (Year 2) (MED655)

      This is a zero credit weighted module for students unable to complete assessments in the 2019/20 academic year due to the disruption caused by COVID-19.

  • Year 3

  • In your third and fourth years, you’ll learn more about clinical practice and spend more time in a patient-centred learning environment. Completing a series of hospital and general practice-based community placements, you’ll gain valuable experience in a wide range of clinical settings and see first hand how the NHS works as a team to deliver patient care. Year three focuses on three ‘Pathways of Care’: Acute Care, Ward Care and Integrated Ambulatory Care.

    Core modules

    • Medical Knowledge 3 (MED630)

      This module deals with the further acquisition of the core knowledge of the sciences underpinning clinical practice.

    • Clinical and Professional Development 1 (MED631)

      This module deals with the further acquisition of the core clinical skills and professional behaviours underpinning modern patient centred clinical practice and their application within a real clinical setting.

    • Student Selected Component 3 (MED634)

      This module further develops the students' written and verbal communication as well as research and critical thinking skills. In addition, it evaluates the role of doctors in quality improvement and health promotion. The module aims to emphasise the development and achievement of skills in: communication, project management, technological application, patient and public engagement and peer assessment.

    Optional modules

    • Outstanding Clinical Skills (Year 3) (MED656)

      This is a zero credit weighted module for students unable to complete assessments in the 2019/20 academic year due to the disruption caused by COVID-19.

  • Year 4

  • You’ll continue working and learning in hospital and general practice settings, further developing your communication, clinical, problem-solving and analytical skills. The three ‘Pathways of Care’ continue in year four with a focus on: Acute Care, Palliative Care/ Oncology and Continuing Care.

    Core modules

    • Medical Knowledge 4 (MED640)

      This module deals with the further acquisition of the core knowledge of the sciences underpinning clinical practice.

    • Clinical and Professional Development 2 (MED641)

      This module deals with the further acquisition and refinement of the core clinical skills and professional behaviours underpinning modern patient centred clinical practice and their application within a real clinical setting.

    • Student Selected Component 4 (MED644)

      This module focuses on team skills and self-evaluation. There are two equally weighted and equivalent coursework summative assessments, encompassing both the study and practice of teamwork.

    Optional modules

    • Outstanding Clinical Skills (Year 4) (MED657)

      This is a zero credit weighted module for students unable to complete assessments in the 2019/20 academic year due to the disruption caused by COVID-19.

  • Final year

  • You’ll now be all set to apply the knowledge, skills and confidence you’ve acquired over the first four years by working ‘on the job’, as part of a healthcare team in action, based in either Derriford or Torbay hospital. You’ll become more assured when dealing with clinical situations, and develop an in-depth understanding of the principles of practice in the NHS. Supplementing your independent learning with a portfolio of indicative presentations, you’ll also have the opportunity to do an elective in a different social or cultural context.

    Core modules

    • Medical Knowledge 5 (MED650)

      This module deals with the further acquisition of the core knowledge of the sciences underpinning clinical practice.

    • Clinical and Professional Practice (MED651)

      This module enables students to demonstrate their clinical and professional ability to carry out clinical procedures, investigations , analysis and interpretation of evidence and production of a clinical management plan for a range of core acute and chronic conditions. It will include demonstration of a professional and ethical approach to clinical practice, working in a patient centred manner and as part of a multi disciplinary team in the delivery of health care within the NHS.

    • Student Selected Component 5 (MED654)

      This module builds on and refines skills in independent learning, team working and critical thinking through the planning and execution of an elective period of study of the student's own design.

    Optional modules

    • Outstanding Clinical Skills (Year 5) (MED658)

      This is a zero credit weighted module for students unable to complete assessments in the 2019/20 academic year due to the disruption caused by COVID-19.

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BMBS Programme Specification 4601

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

In light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the changeable nature of the situation and any updates to government guidance, we may need to make further, last minute adjustments to how we deliver our teaching and learning on some or all of our programmes, at any time during the academic year. We want to reassure you that even if we do have to adjust the way in which we teach our programmes, we will be working to maintain the quality of the student learning experience and learning outcomes at all times.
Entry requirements

In order to meet the academic requirements for this programme, you must have one of the following combinations of qualifications:

  • GCSE, A Levels and UCAT
  • GAMSAT
  • A Levels and stage 1 of either Biomedical Science or Human Biosciences with the University of Plymouth.
  • A degree programme through the University of Plymouth School of Biomedical Sciences.

View full details on the subject and grade requirements for these qualifications


None of the typical offers listed below are necessarily the threshold for interview selection. Other factors including the number of applications received and performance in the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) influence the threshold for interview selection.

Fees, costs and funding

The UK is no longer part of the European Union. EU applicants should refer to our Brexit information to understand the implications.

2021-22 fees

Please note the fees listed are per annum.

Faculty of Health - Undergraduate Medicine (BMBS)

Full-time pre-clinical (year 1 & 2)

Home International/EU
£9,250 £21,500

Full-time clinical (years 3 - 5) 

Home International/EU
£9,250 £39,900

BMBS international fees are not fixed at the point of entry, annual inflationary rises will apply. All other UG courses under the Faculty of Health are subject to the standard International fee and fee capping policy. 

How to apply
All applications must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All applications for the BMBS and BDS courses must reach UCAS between 01 September and 18.00 on 15 October annually. Applicants should apply to no more than four of the same clinical degree courses but may wish to consider BSc (Hons) Dental Therapy and Hygiene, BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography, or one of our School of Biomedical Sciences courses as their fifth choice.

The UCAS code for the Faculty of Health is P60 PLYM.

For more information contact the Admissions Team:

Admissions Team
Faculty of Health
The John Bull Building
Plymouth Science Park
Plymouth
PL6 8BU

General Medical Council 

Information for applicants

At the end of the undergraduate course you will receive your BMBS 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 course through the UK Foundation Programme Office selection scheme, which allocates these posts to graduates on a competitive basis. So far, 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.

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

Medical Licensing Assessment

The GMC has decided to introduce a Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA) to demonstrate that those who obtain registration with a licence to practise medicine in the UK meet a common threshold for safe practice. The requirement to have passed the MLA will apply to UK students entering their final year in autumn 2023 for graduation in 2024 and after. Applicants should be aware that to obtain registration with a licence to practise, medical students will need to pass both parts of the MLA, pass university finals and demonstrate their fitness to practise.

The MLA will be in two parts: there will be a knowledge test, which will be set and run by the GMC, and an assessment, delivered by medical schools, that will evaluate students’ clinical and professional skills.

Find out more about the MLA

Facilities

From the very latest electronic patient simulators and 3D human anatomy models to our web-based Managed Learning Environment and extensive library and learning facilities, you'll benefit from exceptional facilities throughout your degree.

Find out more about our facilities

Teaching and learning

Our teaching approach balances the core knowledge and skills you need to practise as a doctor with the flexibility to focus on the specialist themes and topics that interest you the most.

Find out more about teaching and learning

Dr Abigail Lewis – graduate profile

After graduating from the University of Plymouth in 2020, I'm currently working at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, where the COVID-19 vaccine is being developed.

Find out more about Dr Abigail Lewis

“It has been an incredible life experience” – Joe Parvin 

“I am currently in my final year at Plymouth Medical School and I can honestly say that this very nurturing and intimate environment has allowed me to feel completely ready to work as a doctor. 

It has been an incredible life experience and it is clear Plymouth and its staff work endlessly to promote compassion, empathy and real-life skills to become top-quality clinicians in the NHS.

I have found the BMBS course here in Plymouth a fantastic way to develop my problem-solving skills and to build on my team-working. This is clear from day one where the problem-based learning sessions allowed me to work with my peers to explore a huge variety of clinical scenarios. 

It was during these sessions that I learned how to start thinking like a doctor and this has been a massive help throughout medical school to be able to deal with clinical placements on the wards and in the community where we are faced with real-life problems daily. 

I would not have been able to process all my experiences without this PBL approach.

Plymouth and its team of lecturers are incredible at broadening our horizons through encouraging wider activities and I have become involved in some great extra-curricular opportunities, including both local and global health initiatives. 

However, something I have become passionate about is diversity and equality whilst being at Plymouth. I have joined their Athena Swan group which works to recognise and celebrate good practice in higher education and medicine towards gender equality.

Joe Parvin

Joe Parvin

I feel very passionate about making a positive change for the future and Plymouth medical school is really good at encouraging students to get involved and make these changes with constant support. 

They are definitely student-focused and make every effort to commit to their students’ progress by making them part of the team. Due to the benefit of being a smaller medical school, I have been lucky enough to get to know my peers and make great friendships along the way, who I know will be life-long ones. 

I have also been grateful for getting involved with the promotion of getting to work alongside great clinicians and teachers to develop our curriculum and communicate a student perspective on the way we learn and how to improve this for future years. 

I would recommend Plymouth Medical school to anyone who wants to become a great doctor to come to where they make every effort to encourage wider, integrated learning.

Tackling planetary health: Madhumita Kolluri and Niamh McCormack

We are leading a fantastic team of 10 students and staff who all believe that future physicians and leaders need to understand the relationship between climate and wellbeing to effectively treat patients...

Medical students Madhumita and Niamh discuss how they are bringing the Planetary Health Report Card (PHRC) initiative to the Peninsula Medical School.

Find out more about the PHRC initiative

Enquiry-based learning in the Peninsula Medical School: Emmanuel Opara

With the help of my EBL group and tutor, I have broken out of my shell and am contributing much more, volunteering to share my thoughts and ideas and helping to promote group discovery.

Medical student Emmanuel explains how the learning methods promoted in the School helped him develop his skills in the middle of a pandemic.

Find out more about teaching and learning at the School

The interview

Before receiving an offer to study on one of our programmes you will be invited to attend an interview.

This attempts to find out whether you have the personal attributes required to become a doctor or dentist of tomorrow.

Find out more about the interview process

Partners

We have close partnerships with the region’s leading NHS Trusts and independent healthcare providers

You'll have unrivalled access to a wide range of patients, clinical settings and specialist knowledge.

Find out more about our partners

Careers

Whether it’s working as a doctor in the NHS or taking your skills to developing countries, we’ll work closely with you throughout your degree to give you all the advice you need to take your career in the direction you’d like.

Find out more about your career opportunities

Sporting Excellence Scholar - Laura Donaghy

Learn how the University of Plymouth is inspiring and enabling Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery student and National Irish fencer, Laura Donaghy to achieve her sporting and academic goals.

People

* These are the latest results from the National Student Survey. Please note that the data published on Discover Uni (Unistats) is updated annually in September.

The results of the National Student Survey (NSS) and the Graduate Outcomes survey (GO) are made available to prospective students and their advisors through the Discover Uni (Unistats) website.