Today, Monash University is the leading undergraduate medical school in Australia.
As many medical school hopefuls are looking to apply to Monash, we have approached one of our QC mentor who is currently studying in Monash medicine to help us answer some of the frequently asked questions about the medicine course in Monash University.
We hope that his answers will answer some of the questions you may have!
What subjects did you do at high school (e.g:IB/A Level/AP etc) and what did you score?
I did IB at SJI, and I took Higher Level Economics, Chemistry and Biology and Standard Level Mathematics, Language and literature, Mandarin Ab Initio. I managed to score an overall 44 points, with an A for my Extended Essay as well as my TOK
What were your CCAs and Leadership positions in high school?
I was part of the student council and the soccer team in SJI. I planned a variety of events for my school, such as orientation and Hair for Hope.
How does the workload of university compare with IB?
I believe that the workload of university is similar in some senses to IB, as we are exposed to wide variety of topics. However, it is different in the sense that there is a lot more self-studying and it is important to constantly manage your time well.
How did you decide on your final university? Did you get offers elsewhere?
I decided to go to Monash university, as it is a really prestigious university renowned for its medical degree. It is also the only university in Australia to offer an MD program for 5 years as an undergraduate program. I managed to get offers to other universities such as university of Adelaide and UNSW, as well as Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. However, I decided to study in Monash given that it is the most prestigious and provides a great pathway in terms of building your career once you graduate.
What is the cost of living and cost of school fees for the entire duration of the undergraduate degree?
The school fees is around AUD$80,000 per year for 5 years, and that would equate to AUD$400,000 in total for tuition fees. The cost of living is manageable, and everyone cooks their own meals as groceries are relatively cheap in Melbourne.
How is the teaching and learning work in your school? Are the faculty accessible?
The faculty well supports your learning, and facilitates discussions that are beyond the scope of the examinations, and they encourage you to learn more and acquire more knowledge regarding the various topics.
How large is the cohort for your courses? How many Singaporeans are there?
There are about 300 students in my cohort, and roughly around 50 Singaporeans in each batch.
Are people very competitive academically?
There is a very inclusive and supportive culture at Monash Medicine faculty, and everyone tries to support one another. There are study groups organised by the locals as well as the Singaporean seniors to help the juniors understand their materials and help navigate through the school year.
How many exams are there in a year? What happens if one fails the year?
There are two written papers per semesters and a practical exam as well, and the school tries their best to help you get through the year. Even if you fail the papers, the school administration tries their best to help you progress as long as you been actively attending all the classes and completing the assignments.
How would you describe the school culture?
The school culture is really welcoming and inclusive and there are alot of social events to meet different people and make connections. There are also alot of various committees to get involved in, and you get to interact with a fair bit of students as you have various tutorials together.
Is there an established Singaporean presence at your university? How many Singaporeans are there per batch?
There is a well established Singaporean presence in Monash, and there are around 50 Singporeans in each batch studying medicine, and there are quite a bit of them studying other degrees as well.
How are freshmen/freshers welcomed to your university?
There is an orientation fair to get to know the medicine faculties as well as all the various clubs and societies in the university.
Is your school “cliquey”? Do people tend to hang among people of their own major, social class, race and nationality only, or is there a high degree of integration?
I would say there is a high degree of integration between various groups, and there are lots of events to get involved in and spend time with people outside of your close group of friends.
How would you describe the following “scenes” in your college and its surroundings: shopping, drinking, clubbing, fine arts, and sports?
There are a lot of clubs and societies that cater to the common and niche sports and fine arts. There is also quite a few shopping malls nearby, with the biggest mall in Australia only a 15min drive from the campus.
How’s the accommodation? Do most people stay in college dorms/halls, or independently? How should one look for accommodation?
Many of the Singaporeans stay on campus for the first two years in the school hall, before moving out to stay off campus during their clinical years. Monash usually sends out emails regarding the accomodation options via email after you have enrolled in the school. Furthermore, given that there is a great support network of Singaporean seniors, they help to provide assistance to juniors seeking off campus accomodation.
How is the transport like? Does one need a car? If so, how should one go about getting a car?
For the first two years, every class will be on campus, so there is no need to get a car. There is a grocery store on campus, and other grocery stores are easily accessible via public transport. Students in their clinical years tend to get a car as they have to travel to various hospitals for various rotations, but again the Singaporean seniors are really helpful with this!
Is Asian food readily available? If one is to cook, where can we get the Asian food from?
Yup! There is an Asian grocery store nearby, which is about 10min away via bus or taxi.
Do most people cook, eat at a catered facility or cafeteria, or eat out? How’s the catered food?
Most people cook their own food, as there is no catered food in the halls, and it is cheaper to cook than spending quite a fair amount in restaurants.
What are the laundry arrangements like?
There are a lot of laundry machines in the accomodation on campus and there are no extra charges for using the laundry services.
What’s the best experience you’ve had so far in college?
I would think that spending time in various discussions and exploring unique aspects about healthcare, and learning more about people’s backgrounds and getting to know people through the various events and discussions planned by the school has been amazing!
Any final things you’d like to tell juniors about your school?
Definitely Monash has positively shaped the way I think about medicine and opened my horizons regarding healthcare, and I enjoy expanding my circle and getting to know more people! There are so many different ways to get involved in Monash!
Is there anything else that you want to learn about Monash University? Let us know by leaving a comment!