Bachelor Of Medicine And Surgery At University Of Cape Town (UCT)

By | December 29, 2022

Bachelor Of Medicine And Surgery At University Of Cape Town (UCT)

The Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) degree programme at University of Cape Town (UCT) takes six years to complete. Students who graduate with an MBChB and complete two year’s internship and a year’s community service are allowed by the Health Professions Council of South Africa to practise as a medical doctor.

The curriculum for the MBChB at UCT programme produces competent doctors with the requisite attitudes, knowledge and skills to enter the health care field with confidence. The programme offers a comprehensive approach to health care that is balanced between preventive, promotive, curative and rehabilitative health care, in a Primary Health Care or community setting.

In addition, the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) degree programme at University of Cape Town promotes communication skills, teamwork, professional values and competent clinical practice, in the context of the Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Health Care systems. Students are equipped with critical thinking and lifelong learning skills.

The curriculum follows the structure set out below, and the details for each year will be developed during the year before implementation.

All students are admitted to the same Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery programme. Students who by the middle of the first year have not met certain minimum requirements are transferred to an Intervention Programme, which starts in Semester 2 and continues to the end of Semester 3, i.e. the middle of the second year, after which they join Semester 2 of the standard programme. (A semester is half a year.)

The courses prescribed for each semester are as follows:

Semesters 1 and 2 (first year)

  • Becoming a Professional
  • Introduction to Integrated Health Sciences: Part 1
  • Chemistry for Medical Students
  • Introduction to Integrated Health Sciences: Part 2
  • Physics
  • Becoming a Health Professional

A student who fails any first or second semester course must register for the Intervention Programme before continuing with semester 2.

Semesters 3 to 6 (second and third years)

  • Integrated Health Systems Part IB
  • Becoming a Doctor Part IA
  • Becoming a Doctor Part IB
  • Integrated Health Systems Part IA
  • Becoming a Doctor Part 2A
  • Becoming a Doctor Part 2B
  • Integrated Health Systems Part 2
  • Introduction to Clinical Practice

In semester 4, students study Special Study Modules.

Semesters 9 to 10 (fifth year)

  • Anaesthesia
  • Primary Health Care Elective
  • Paediatrics (including Paediatric Surgery)
  • Medical and Surgical specialities (including Dermatology, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Ophthalmology, Otorhinolaryngology and Rheumatology)
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Surgery (including General Surgery, Plastic Surgery and Urology)
  • Pharmacology and Applied Therapeutics
  • Trauma
  • Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Forensic Medicine

Semesters 11 and 12 (sixth year)

  • Surgery
  • Medicine (including Dermatology)
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Family Medicine
  • Psychiatry
  • Paediatrics (including Paediatric Surgery)

The curriculum is subject to change as a result of on-going curriculum development processes.

During the student’s internship and community service training, the National Department of Health of South Africa will employ the student, and the student will receive a salary.

Once registered by the Health Professions Council of South Africa upon completion of your internship and community service, successful graduates may set up their own practice as a medical doctor, or may choose to work in a hospital, clinic, or other institution where a doctor’s services are required.

Graduates may also choose to become a specialist, in which case the student will embark on postgraduate studies (and register for the Master of Medicine or “MMed” degree) in the field of their choice.

Some graduates who have excelled academically may choose to pursue an academic career, involving teaching and research in addition to clinical practice, at a university’s Health Sciences Faculty such as this one.

General Eligibility for consideration32
For degree programmes and for Higher Certificate in Disability Practice 
Admission Requirements – National Senior Certificate32 & 35
At school-leaving level and minimum performance levels to be considered
Admission Requirements – International school-leaving certificates38
Subjects and minimum performance levels to be considered 
Taking a gap year (for school-leavers)33
Tertiary applicants34
For tertiary applicants meeting specific requirements 
How we calculate your Faculty Point Score for degree programmes34
National Senior Certificate (See also guidelines for admission to UCT) South African applicants taking international school-leaving examinations
Number of places available in each programme

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