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The University of Southampton

Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (BMBS) (International Transfer)

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Our Bachelor of Medicine (International Transfer) programme welcomes international students from the International Medical University (IMU) in Malaysia, and the University of Brunei Darussalam (UBD).

You have the opportunity to complete your clinical medical studies at a global university that is ranked in the top 100 universities in the world for Medicine and Life Sciences*. You will start with a bespoke 12-week module specifically designed to introduce IMU and UBD transfer students to undergraduate Medicine at Southampton.

Our staff have been nationally recognised for their teaching innovation and excellence and will enable you to develop critical thinking and independent learning skills that are essential for future leaders and decision makers. 

*Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings 2019

Introducing your course

The Bachelor of Medicine (International Transfer) programme at the University of Southampton is based within a thriving and ambitious, multidisciplinary medical school that has an outstanding reputation for combined expertise in research and teaching.

The University of Southampton is a national leader in medical education and a founding member of the Russell Group universities, and our innovative and inspirational medical education is taught by academics who are experts in their fields, continually embedding the latest research into the curriculum.

You will spend three years learning in a range of clinical environments such as general practice, community medicine, and hospitals within the Wessex region - including the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust one of the UK’s leading teaching hospitals.


One of the most fortunate experience I had when coming to the university was the introductory module. The introductory module has given me an in-depth insight of the NHS system, patient communication skills in UK and most importantly what clinical skills our current batch has experienced. Unlike other partner schools where you start SUDDENLY, we were given a generously fair couple of months to help us blend into the system, culture and the UK before we started our clinical phase. For this I will forever be grateful.

Southampton is one of the UK’s leading medical schools, delivering 40 years of medical education, training thousands of doctors and scientists, and leading cutting-edge research in a range of diverse areas including cancer, genomic medicine, respiratory disease, nutrition and epidemiology.

Programme Structure

You will arrive in September and begin with a 12-week module Introduction to Clinical Medicine in Southampton, before following the same curriculum as the BMBS5 programme for the remainder of year 3, year 4 and year 5. 

The module will introduce you to studying as an undergraduate in Medicine at Southampton. You will be familiarised with key areas of UG study and practice including academic and study skills; communication with peers, teachers and patients; an understanding of the UK National Health Service; hospital and primary care environments; fundamentals of research and the nature of evidence.

You will get the opportunity to undertake intensive work on communication and develop confidence in a wide range of practical and intellectual skills that you will require throughout your placements. Your placements will include:

  • Two-week primary care placement
  • Two-week healthcare support worker placement
  • Five-week hospital placement
  • Consolidation and OSCE workshops 

You will join the rest of the BMBS5 Year 3 students at the beginning of January.

From January you will undertake clinical placements in hospitals and general practice in the Southampton, Portsmouth and Winchester areas. The focus will be on the effects of clinical disorders on patients and their families, continuing the development of your clinical abilities and the reinforcement of systems courses and social science teaching. 

In your second year in Southampton (BMBS5 year four) you will undertake placements in a range of clinical specialities in Southampton and a range of hospitals around the region.  

In your final year you will gain experience in a wide range of hospitals, communities and general practices in the south of England and have an opportunity to undertake an elective placement in an area of your choice. You will be attached to a variety of clinical teams on an apprenticeship basis, learning the skills required to begin your Foundation Programme. Your Final examination will be taken around January and February, after which you will undertake a compulsory "preparing for practice" phase of the programme to ensure you are ready to start work before graduation.

We provide many opportunities for medical students to work and learn alongside other health professional students during their clinical placements.

Intercalated degree

In addition there are a limited number of places available for BM5/6 medical students who wish to take an intercalated classified honours master's level degree (Master in Medical Science). Studying for the intercalated master's degree takes place between years three and four, extending the BM programme by one year. Applicants will be selected on the basis of their performance during the BM programme. This provides a particular opportunity for students interested in pursuing a career as a Clinical Academic doctor.

View the programme specification for this course for 2019/20 entrants

English Language requirements:

All programmes at the University of Southampton are taught and assessed in English (other than those in modern foreign languages).

Selection process:

Every year we welcome up to 14 students from the IMU in Malaysia and two students from UBD in Brunei.

Applicants applying for the BM (IT) must have completed the Advanced Diploma in Medical Sciences at IMU, in Malaysia, or the Bachelor of Health Science at the UBD, in Brunei.

Your first twelve week Introductory Module structure will consist of:

Week 1 and 2 - Introductory teaching sessions
Week 3 and 4 - Primary care placement
Week 5, 6 and 7 - Health care support worker placement
Week 8, 9, 10 and 11 - Hospital placement
Week 12 - Consolidation and OSCE workshops

You will then join the BM5 programme. For full list of modules visit the BM5 module page where you will join in January year 3

You will learn through a combination of teaching and clinical placements from our expert staff who are nationally recognised for their teaching innovation and excellence.

Specific teaching and learning methods used include lectures, tutor-led tutorials, practicals, guided self-study, problem-solving scenarios, role play, projects, group work, portfolios, study packs, eLearning, and patient-based learning

Clinical teaching takes place from the start of the programme, and occurs in groups and singly in a wide variety of NHS and non-NHS settings.

Assessment methods

A range of assessment methods are used depending on the learning outcomes. Coursework will include: essays, reports, posters, project reports and presentations. Examinations will include written tests and tests of clinical performance.

Breakdown of study time and assessment

Responsibilities of Southampton Medical Students

A medical student is studying not only for a university degree but also a professional qualification. Upon successful completion of the training he/she will not only have the BMBS degree but also be able to practice as a doctor. The training, therefore, is conducted in an environment that requires medical students to behave throughout their training in ways that are consistent with the principles of medical professional practice. Find out more

BM (IT) Course Leader

Study locations

Universiti Brunei, DarussalamInternational Medical University, Malaysia
University Hospital Southampton

University Hospital Southampton

University Hospital Southampton is the Trust’s largest location, with a great number of specialist services based here, ranging from neurosciences and oncology to pathology and cardiology.

Life Sciences Building

Highfield Campus

Based on the University's main Highfield campus, Medicine is situated in the Life Sciences Building.

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