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Which is the Right School for You – Programs to Enhance Your Educational Experience

dropperAre you trying to decide on which medical school to attend?  The cost of tuition and services available on campus are some factors to consider when making this decision, but there is something that may sway you even more – what programs and practical experiences are offered at the school. You know that you are working towards a degree in medicine; beyond this, however, you want to know about programs offered that will supplement your coursework and may allow you to work with health professionals or researchers so that you get the most out of your coursework with beneficial practical experience.

Find out about opportunities to work with faculty.  There may be research projects that post-graduates or professors are conducting that require the assistance of students.  Exposure to this research, its methodologies and the staff will give you experience that will boost your academic training.  Some schools may have this and others may not – this will help you to narrow down your choices, should this be something you are interested in.

You will receive practical training through the required internship and residency that follow medical school, but if you have an interest in it while you are there, it could open doors to more career options.  Knowing what you would like to do while you are in medical school, outside of the classroom, to gain more experience can be an aspect that helps you choose which school suits you best.


HPAT Scoring and the Right to a Re-Check    Re-check     

There has been a great deal of controversy surrounding the HPAT in terms of how fair it is, does it really measure a quality necessary for medical students and has it been structured and scored properly.  The HPAT was introduced as another qualifier to determine the aptitude of a candidate to enter the medical profession.  Instead, it has ignited arguments that it shuts out candidates who have the smarts to become doctors.  The issue comes to light when high-achieving students score well on the Leaving Cert exam, but do not get similar results on the HPAT.  Meanwhile, students who scored an average on the Leaving Cert and score well on the HPAT are awarded acceptance to medical school.  Such occurrences spark questions and arguments as to whether the HPAT is doing its job.

Because of the controversy and protests that followed, ACER began offering a re-check of a person’s exam papers.  ACER maintains that it does not offer any appeals to results on the HPAT-Ireland exam, and that it conducts careful examination of results during the scoring process.  During the re-check, the papers are examined a second time, carefully, and the results are then compared against the original scoring, to note if the error was in calculating or collating marks.

There is a cost to have your papers re-checked, but if an error is found in the original scoring of your exam, you will be refunded.  The new scores will be sent to designated schools and the incorrect scores will be thrown out.

January 11, 2013

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