BlogUniversityPros and Cons of a Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW

Pros and Cons of a Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW

You now know all the ins and outs of the Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW. If you don’t yet, have a quick look here to help.  

But, are you still curious about how people feel about studying this degree? Wonder no more! 

We chatted with Mikayla, a UNSW Medical Science Student, about what this degree is really like to study. 

Keep reading on! 

Why should you study a Medical Science degree at UNSW?
Top 3 Pros of a Medical Science Degree
Top 3 Cons of a Medical Science Degree
Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make
Things to Know Before Starting UNSW Medical Science
What Makes this Degree Different
Motivations for Studying UNSW Medical Science
Potential Career Paths

Why should you study a Medical Science degree at UNSW?

There are many different reasons students choose to undertake a Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW. Students may choose to do this degree to gain valuable scientific literacy, become lab technicians in the future, or further their studies through taking on a postgrad degree.

“Usually people in my degree didn’t get into undergraduate Medicine so they’re using this degree to be able to gain admission to postgraduate Medicine,” Mikayla says. UNSW Medical Science is often used as a stepping stone by students in order to be able to practice Medicine properly after postgrad studies.

Top 3 Pros of a Medical Science degree

#1: The Broad Range of Majors (you also don’t need to have a major!)

This degree offers many different majors to suit the various preferences and aspirations that students have. Some of the majors that can be taken on by studying UNSW Medical Science include:

Or, you can also choose to not have a major and pick more electives relevant to your own interests. Mikayla tells us about her choice:

UNSW Medical Science - Student Quote

#2: High Quality Skills are Developed 

Within the Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW, a broad and advanced set of skills are made. Students will not only gain scientific knowledge, but will also improve their literary and literacy skills greatly too! 

“You learn to do a lot of research with great technique. We do lots of writing and researching,” Mikayla says. 

This degree is taught in a multitude of class styles, including lectures, tutorials, labs and workshops! Within these classes, lots of different learning styles will be engaged. 

#3: Broad Range of Subjects to Try 

Regardless of the major chosen, the first two years of UNSW Medical Science consists of purely core units. So basically, all students will do the same subjects as one another until their third year of study.

The first and second years are common amongst all majors, it’s completely prescribed. I thought I would hate this but it’s forced me to try out different subjects and areas I had no idea about, it turns out I’ve actually really liked them,” Mikayla tells us. 


Top 3 Cons of a Medical Science degree

#1: Experience with Teaching Staff Can Seem Impersonal Until Your Third Year of Study 

Due to a large cohort studying the same subjects for the first two years of this degree, it is difficult to stand out from the crowd and make lasting impressions and relationships with tutors and lecturers. 

“I found the teachers and lecturers were not very personable until third year. Then they became way more supportive and hands on,” Mikayla says. 

#2: Not a large amount of job prospects without further study 

Students will learn how to become eloquent researchers and writers, however, the job prospects for students graduating with the Bachelor of Medical Science aren’t great. 

You do learn a lot of practical skills in degree, but maybe not enough for the job market. Most of the people in this degree use it to be able to gain admission into postgraduate Medicine. I would be well equipped to continue onto post grad studies. I am using this degree to get into allied health, Physiotherapy,” Mikayla tells us. 

#3: Lengthy Contact Hours

With this degree, you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time at uni — students tend to be on campus for 21+ hours each week. On the bright side, you’ll become familiar with all the good places to eat on campus!

“My contact hours are a lot, a lot more than my friend’s. We normally have three lectures per subject, so 7 hours per course, per week — basically 21+ contact hours a week,” Mikayla reveals. 

Any regrets? 

“I wish I had the chance to talk to someone in Med Sci about the cohort and competitiveness before I started this degree,” Mikayla tells us. 

A competitive cohort can be difficult — it’s not easy having your peers fighting for the top place and not actively reaching out to support each other! However, this doesn’t mean that your uni experience also has to be this way.

Try not to compare yourself to others too much. As long as you are knuckling down and achieving your goals through study and hard work, try not to worry about the competitive stuff! 

What do you wish you had known before starting the degree? 

The Bachelor of Medical Science at UNSW is very competitive, everyone wants to get the highest marks possible to gain admission to their postgraduate courses. 

“I’ve found it very competitive — not UNSW as a whole, just my degree. Med Science students have an ‘every man for themselves’ mentality as everyone wants the best marks and there’s only very limited space. My friends in Engineering degrees and other degrees find their cohort very supportive,” Mikayla says. 

What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities? 

Medical Science at UNSW is different from other universities with their unique scope and methods of teaching. This degree has a major focus on developing students’ writing skills, as well as their scientific ones — UNSW really goes in-depth with content delivery.

What inspired you to choose this degree?

Some students are motivated to choose this degree because of the university’s prestige, but others also look at the prospect of getting into postgraduate studies.

Mikayla chose this degree as it was able to give her the knowledge and foundations she needed to gain admission into her postgraduate degree of choice. UNSW Medical Science was also very flexible with elective spaces, letting her complete the courses she needed to gain admission into postgrad study.

What are the possible career paths? 

UNSW Medical Science - Careers

If you end up with a degree in Medical Science, you may find yourself dabbling in:

    • Medical research
    • Pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries
    • Market research and product development
    • Forensic science
    • Public health policy

What you learn may also prep you for a career as a lab technician or lab researcher. If you continue on with your studies, you could be well on your way to becoming a doctor.

Matilda Elliott is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and a Communication graduate with a major in Journalism at Western Sydney University. You can find some of her published work in a range of platforms including SBS World News, The Music Network and within her own creative exploits with her twin sister. Matilda is a lover of listening, helping people to tell their stories, making genuine connections, clowning around in her circus troupe and dancing like no one is watching at live music shows!


45,861 students have a head start...

Get exclusive study content & advice from our team of experts delivered weekly to your inbox!

AOS Website Asset 2

Want to study Health?

Discover how we can help you!

AOS Website Asset 1