Several good professions in the world are very much known ever since we were all little. May it be teachers, dentists, doctors, nurses, and other related professions. These professions are mostly known because they are the ones that little kids like us, before then, had the longest interaction with. This is the reason why many children, when asking a question of what they would like to become when they got older, answer that they want to teach, they want to heal the sick, or they want to help the community. They tend to follow and adapt to the duties of the profession they know because these professions could also become their role models, heroes, who will be their inspiration to take the same career path.
Doctors, especially, and other professions in the field of medicine, are one of the most popular jobs since ages. The honor, respect, and reputation that the doctors get are very much deserved because of the countless lives that they have saved. That is why it is not surprising why many students aspire to study medicine and find a good medical school where they can hone their skills and fill their knowledge with medical facts and theories to help other people. With that said, a good medical institution is what an aspiring medical student needs to satisfy his or her desire of becoming a fully-pledge practitioner in the medical field. The question now is where to find that institution that meets your condition and definition of a medical school.
There are many factors that you must consider before choosing to study medicine in the Caribbean and which schools to go to. Of course, having a high-quality education ranks first, good medical facilities and equipment are also needed, and a high passing rate of those who took the Medical Licensure Exam. One country that got checks to all these factors is the Caribbean. Aside from the good education, services, and facilities that the institutions in the country offer, they have a much lower GPA and MCAT score requirements for programs related to the medical field. Therefore, here is some information that will surely be a big help, if you consider studying medicine in the Caribbean.
1. What are the requirements to study medicine in the Caribbean?
The usual admission requirements to study medicine in the Caribbean, which is most likely administered by the institutions in the country, include at least four to five documents plus other supporting documents. Of course, if you are from a country other than the Caribbean, you will need several additional documents to process before you could enter and apply for a medical school.
The first thing you need to prepare is your proof of identity and nationality (if you are an international student). These are the most important documents that you will need, so, do not forget to pack these before anything else. Examples of such documents include a birth certificate, passport, or any of your government-issued IDs. Moreover, educational or academic background from your previous institution such as report cards, good merits, awards, and certificates are also needed to verify your eligibility to study medicine in a foreign country.
Lastly, documents that are needed to fill out and send are also included in the requirements that you must submit to the institution that you will apply to. Also, remember to process your student visa as soon as you landed in the country to avoid unnecessary legal issues.
2. In what language do you study medicine in the Caribbean?
Medical institutions in the Caribbean follow the common rule that medical schools abroad must use the English language as the common language of instruction. Therefore, to study medicine in the Caribbean, students of medical programs must take and pass an English proficiency test or exam in the form of IELTS or TOEFL.
These tests are necessary not just to have an efficient way of teaching and learning but also to avoid unnecessary misunderstandings with your co-students and the faculty soon. Some schools and universities require these before you could enroll in classes but if you happen to be not good in English, you could take several English supplementary classes for a year, and finishing that will also count as proof of your proficiency in the English language. Universities like the American University of Antigua is one of the few universities who follow this common rule on the language of instruction.
3. Can you study medicine in the Caribbean as an international student?
Absolutely! The Caribbean has always been hospitable, accepting, and good hosts to international guests and residents in the country. Not just by accomodating people and tourists for their beaches but accomodating and accepting the presence of international people everywhere in the daily routines of their lives. The country is well known for their good company, especially for tour purposes.
Also, when it comes to academic and research agendas and reasons, the Caribbean shows the same level of company and acceptance that you will get when you visit as a guest. Moreover, there are also international scholarships available for application. Some of the universities with the same qualities are the American University of Antigua and the American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine. Furthermore, to meet the concerns of their international students, they have also established their own international offices. It is definitely possible to study medicine in the Caribbean for international students.
4. What are the components of the medical curriculum in the Caribbean?
Caribbean’s medical curricula are the same, if not almost similar, to other medical curricula that you could find in any other country. As usual, it is composed of at least 6 years of medical studies, practices, and internships that will hone the students’ skills and knowledge about the medical field. However, in the Caribbean’s medical institutions, the curriculum is divided into two: the Pre-Clinical Sciences and the Clinical Sciences. Pre-Clinical Sciences will be taught for two academic years and will include the general knowledge and practices of clinical science. On the other hand, Clinical Sciences will focus more on the advanced topics and practices of clinical science. Moreover, this curriculum will include clinical rotations and the students will be assigned to every medical specialization.
5. How many medical schools are in the Caribbean?
Surprisingly, there are many medical schools in the Caribbean with approximately 60 being registered in their Department of Health. In all these schools, almost every one of them offers medical programs for international students while only a few do not and only considered teaching local students in the Dutch language.
6. How difficult is it to study medicine in the Caribbean?
The medical school dropout rate in the Caribbean is around 15% because, as experienced by the international students in the country, studying is manageable in the country and the educational load is not much compared to other countries. You should note that this dropout rate differs quite a lot for different medical schools. However, living in a tropical country for 6 years is the usual complaint of many international students in addition to the lack of entertainment available in the country. Yes, studying in the Caribbean is relatively easy but living in the country could be challenging.
7. What do you need to become a doctor after you study medicine in the Caribbean?
After finishing your curriculum in your medical program, you will need to undergo another two years of training or internship in a hospital to gain experience. Until then, you will be eligible to take the licensure exams for doctors that will let you administer medical practices in public and become a doctor.
I hope that this article on studying medicine in the Caribbean was helpful.
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