Currently only one private / independent medical school exists in the UK: The University of Buckingham. Being an independent medical school means that no government funding is received to fund the course.
What are the differences between a private medical school and a non-private medical school?
· Higher fees: as no government funding is received, the course is fully funded by the fees paid by students. For example, the Jan 2023 entry at Buckingham fees are £38,000/ year meaning that for a 4.5 year course the total cost is £171,000 (fees liable to increase with inflation).
· No cap on international students: as the course is funded by student fees, the Government has no say in the ratio of UK to international students unlike other UK universities where international places are capped. This makes the course suited to international students.
What are the entry requirements for a private medical school - Buckingham Medical School?
Private medical schools also have competitive admission criteria consisting of both academic and non-academic (interview) criteria. Read more here.
Is a degree from a private medical school the same as a degree from a non-private medical school?
Yes. Medical degrees awarded by UK universities are required to be accredited by the GMC. This means that a degree from an independent medical school is worth the same as one from a non-independent school and graduates can go on to participate in the UK foundation programme following graduation with no additional hoops to jump through.
When should I consider an independent or private medical school?
· Financial costs aside, independent medical schools can be an excellent option for students.
· If applying internationally, you will be paying international fees even at non-independent schools which will be paying a similar amount overall so they are worth serious consideration.
· Independent medical schools will be newer if more are created, therefore the latest technology will be available to students to assist their learning.