Welcome to the College of West Anglia
The College of West Anglia (CWA) is one of the largest and most successful education and training providers in the Eastern Region and amongst the top colleges in the country.
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Student services - what do we offer?
Admissions and customer service
How to apply
You must be aged 19 or over on 31st August in the year you begin the course and will need 5 GCSEs or O levels at grades A-C, including English, maths and science (grade BB). Most medical schools require a minimum of grade B in GCSE English and maths. If you have a C in English and/or maths, you will be required to retake and achieve a higher grade.
If you already hold a degree, then acceptance for the access course will be dependant on degree classification. University medical schools do not usually accept students with a recent degree below grade 2:1. Therefore, 2.2 class degrees will not be accepted for this course. Graduates who wish to undertake graduate entry at university will need BBB at A-level.
Applicants who have completed a level 3 course (A-levels or equivalent or Baccalaureates) within the last two years will not be considered.
Applicants will be expected to provide evidence of substantial health care or NHS experience (e.g. supporting references from a supervisor, a minimum of six months experience of fulfilling a role in healthcare etc).
The interview process will involve an interactive group session to ensure applicants receive consistent information, followed by an individual interview in which the interviewer will be looking for further evidence of the applicant's experience in healthcare or the NHS.
Important information for international students
Due to changes in UK Border Agency (immigration) rules in April 2010, we are no longer able to support overseas' student visa applications for this course. Therefore, unless you are an EU citizen (hold an EU passport) or have 'settled' status in the UK such as Indefinite Leave to Enter or Remain in your passport, we will be unable to process your application.
In practical terms, this means that if you need a student visa to come to the UK to take this course, we cannot accept your application.
If you do have 'settled' status and do not require a student visa to come to or stay in the UK, we can accept your application but will require you to bring your passport and any relevant immigration documents as evidence of your right to stay in the UK with you to your college interview.
Please note that if you hold non-UK qualifications, you will need to ensure that these are at least equivalent to the UK qualifications mentioned above. Before we can process an application from an applicant with non-UK qualifications, we require a Statement of Comparability, which you can get from NARIC (please visit their website for further information). You will also usually be able to obtain more information from your local British Council.
If English is not your first language, we will require you to have an IELTS score of 6 (or equivalent) to join the Access to Medicine course. You should also check the requirements of individual university medical schools - some require an IELTS score of 7.
"In 1999 I graduated with a 2:1 degree in English literature and drama and not much idea of what I wanted to do next. I started working as a first aider and became fascinated by the medical field. I realised that I wanted to know more and be able to do more to treat people.
I was hospitalised after dislocating my knee, speaking to medical students they recommended doing the Access to Medicine course as an entry route to medicine. They felt it better prepared you for medical school. I researched the available courses and chose CWA, even though it meant a long commute. It had the best reputation and I stood the best chance of getting into my first choice of medical school at the UEA, through the linked place scheme.
CWA is seen as the market leader and has an excellent reputation, reflected in the fact that more medical schools will accept the CWA Access course as an entry route than any other course. I am enjoying the course and have since been offered a place at UEA. Having not done science since my GCSEs I was worried that I wouldn't be able to keep up. However, hard work, help from fellow students and very supportive teaching staff proved my fears groundless."