MORE than 500 people have applied for just 70 places on the UK’s first private university medical degree, at a cost of £36,000 a year.
The University of Buckingham Medical School opened earlier in January and says it has been “absolutely staggered” by the level of interest in its four-and-a-half-year £162,000 degree course.
The school’s MB ChB is said to be designed to appeal to a “global market” with no cap on international student numbers. However, the current intake of 70 students is said to be 60 per cent UK-based and 40 per cent from overseas countries including India, Iraq, Zambia and Norway.
Professor John Clapham, chief operating officer at the University of Buckingham Medical School, said: “We have been absolutely staggered by the huge response to the course. And we are already getting double the number of applications than we did for this year for the 2016 course.”
Their admission criteria is said to be comparable to other UK medical schools and the annual fee of £36,000 is “within the range of fees being charged by other UK medical schools for overseas students.”
The first two years of the course will offer a mix of clinical and biomedical science teaching followed by two and a half years of clinical work based at Milton Keynes Hospital. Buckingham have said teaching and governance will be delivered to General Medical Council standards.
Professor Clapham added: “The ethos at Buckingham has always been to put the student first and at the medical school we will add to this by making the patient the central focus.
“Small group sessions and one of the smallest medical school courses in the country means that Buckingham students will get all the help and expertise they need to become first class doctors.”