If you’re already on the path of becoming a doctor or are debating doing so, then it’s worth familiarising yourself with our Australian medical schools first.
For those who are on the cusp of graduating from secondary school, or perhaps even those who find themselves lacking purpose, pursuing a career in medicine is growing in popularity. Whether your motivation lies in a passion for science, chasing a sizeable pay cheque, or you identify as someone who genuinely wants to make a difference in the world around them, even the most dedicated people can baulk when they learn about how to become a doctor in Australia, and just how much dedication is involved.
However, for those who are willing to make the commitment and do the work, starting your career in medicine from the ground up involves a significant amount of study – but where you choose to study can make all the difference. As such, what are your options when it comes to navigating Australian medical schools?
Get To Know Your Options For Australian Medical Schools
Australia’s health system is without a doubt one of the best in the world. It has been designed from the ground up to provide quality, safe and affordable health care for residents right around our great nation, and is also a key reason as to why we enjoy one of the longest life expectancies in the world. As a result, the standards we place on our medical professionals are high, and a great deal of training is required in order to keep it that way.
However, the path to becoming a doctor is not an easy one. After completing the Year 12 prerequisite studies whilst still in high school, fledgling doctors must then complete a Bachelor’s Degree at university before they’re even permitted to apply for one of the many Australian medical schools. Once complete, students must then sit the Graduate Australian Medical School Admissions Test and apply for entry at their school of choice to complete a Doctor of Medicine, which is an additional four year masters level degree.
If you’re in the early days of your study and are still deciding on which of the Australian medical schools will best fit your circumstances, the good news is that there’s plenty of choice. While each differs slightly in terms of what’s on offer, applicants can rest easy knowing that each of the institutions are some of the most esteemed education facilities in the world.
Australian National University – The ANU Medical School is often viewed as a descendant of the University of Sydney’s Canberra Clinical School. Prior to its inception in 1993, students from University of Sydney, University of NSW and University of Queensland had already been coming to Canberra to complete placements at Woden Valley Hospital. Under the guidance of Professor Paul Gatenby, the Canberra Clinical School developed a strong teaching program to the point of conducting the entire final year of University of Sydney’s five year undergraduate medical degree. In 2002, ANU established its own standalone medical school.
Bond University – While Bond is one of only a few universities in Australia offering medicine as a program commencing at the undergraduate level, The Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine at Bond University is recognised for the excellence of its education and research in the medical, health and sports sciences. The Faculty offers a personalised educational experience where students can expect small class sizes, assured placements and work experience opportunities, as well as comprehensive use of industry equipment and the latest technologies. Located in Robina on the Gold Coast, it also offers students the opportunity of a seachange.
Curtin University – Perth’s Curtin University is ranked in the top one percent of universities worldwide, and according to 2022’s “Good University Guide”, is the top Australian university for undergraduate outcomes of skills development, learner engagement and teaching quality in the field of medicine. In 2009, Curtin announced a proposal to establish a medical school to help address the health and workforce needs of Western Australians and the growing pressure on the state’s health system thanks to a lack of doctors. After conducting a thorough feasibility study, the inaugural cohort of students were welcomed on campus in 2017.
Deakin University – In 2006, Former PM John Howard announced that Deakin University in Geelong would be home to Victoria’s third medical school. Under Professor Brendan Crotty, the first cohort of 120 students commenced their BMBS degree on 7 February 2008. Today, the School has also developed other new undergraduate and postgraduate programs, namely Optometry, Medical Imaging, Agricultural Health and Medicine, Units in the Bachelor of Biomedical Science and Health Science Majors, Bachelor of Health and Medical Science Honours, and a Masters in Clinical Leadership.
Flinders University – Ranked as the number one Australian university for graduates receiving full time offers of work in the field of medicine, Flinders University in Adelaide offers students internationally recognised programs with innovative curriculums. The many medical programs taught at Flinders University are conducted in conjunction with Flinders Medical Centre at Bedford Park, providing early patient contact and the opportunity to interact with and treat real patients. In addition, rural clinical locations throughout Central Australia and stretching up to Darwin in the Northern Territory make it appealing for further hands-on experience.
Griffith University – Although Griffith University has five physical campus sites in Queensland, it’s School of Medicine and Dentistry is a $150 million purpose-built education hub set on the Gold Coast. Students can select from degrees and courses across a wide range of disciplines spanning dentistry and oral health, First Peoples Health, medicine, paramedicine, and public health. For those studying a Doctor of Medicine, the final year presents the opportunity to undertake an overseas elective, such as working with United Nations aid programs in developing countries, or study abroad programs at the likes of Harvard Medical School.
James Cook University – For James Cook University, the fight for its own on site medical school in Far North Queensland began in the late nineties, with key facilitators referring to the process as a “Game of Thrones” style political battle. After opening its doors in 2000 to a new generation of medical professionals, JCU is now the nation’s most successful university when it comes to producing graduates who go on to pursue rural and regional careers in medicine. Now in it’s twenty second year, JCU’s College of Medicine and Dentistry offers world-class training in medicine, dentistry and pharmacy and is home to internationally renowned research.
Macquarie University – The Macquarie University Doctor of Medicine (Macquarie MD) is a new program embedded within an established University, and has a culture of transformative learning. Programs are conducted within MQ Health – an academic health sciences centre that integrates patient-centred clinical care, teaching and research. Conducted out of the cosmopolitan city of Sydney, Macquarie MD includes extended international clinical experiences for all students, recognising the need for future doctors to be globally engaged clinicians, and the significant benefits of these experiences.
Monash University – The Monash University Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences is one of the largest providers of healthcare education in Australia. It comprises ten different schools, numerous teaching and clinical centres and research institutes, and the Faculty offers a wide range of undergraduate, postgraduate and professional education programs in medicine, nursing and allied health. With an internationally renowned reputation for excellence, the Faculty primarily operates from Monash University’s Clayton, Caulfield and Peninsula campuses, all based in Victoria’s capital city of Melbourne.
The University Of Adelaide – Graduates of the Adelaide Medical School are well regarded in the healthcare industry for their knowledge and experience, and are in demand for positions in public hospitals, private practice, public health, teaching, clinical research, aid organisations, the defence forces and more. Students complete their tertiary qualifications in the state-of-the-art Adelaide Health and Medical Sciences building and Adelaide Health Simulation, and have the opportunity to undertake extensive hands-on practice at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Modbury Hospital, Lyell McEwin Hospital and in rural locations.
The University Of Melbourne – The Melbourne Medical School is part of the Faculty of Medicine Dentistry and Health Sciences, operated by The University Of Melbourne. It is actually the oldest medical school in Australia and even has its own on site museum, while still being internationally renowned for global leadership in teaching and training, health research, policy and practice. From the discovery of germs to the invention of the bionic ear, the Melbourne Medical School has been at the centre of innovation, education and medical discoveries in Australia for almost one hundred and fifty years.
The University Of Newcastle – Located on the Central Coast in New South Wales, the University of Newcastle School of Medicine is one of only eight medical schools in Australia that offers an undergraduate medical degree, and is the shortest undergraduate medical degree offered at a public university in Australia. While the first cohort of medical students began in 1978, the School has also educated more Indigenous medical students than any other institution in the nation. Today, the School works closely with the Hunter Medical Research Institute (HMRI) which has pioneered the integration of multi-campus university and hospital-based research.
The University of Notre Dame – As the only medical program offered by a Catholic university in Australia, the Doctor of Medicine aims to develop and train caring and ethical doctors imbued with the values of compassion, respect, and service. All students at Notre Dame undertake a Core Curriculum component of study that involves an exploration of bioethics in the first year of the program. To ensure access to as many prospective medical students as possible, the School of Medicine has seven clinical schools in Sydney and Melbourne, plus a wide range of rural locations in NSW and Victoria.
The University Of Queensland – The Faculty of Medicine combines medical education with two research intensive schools, three clinical medical schools and five hospital-based institutes and centres. In doing so, the University of Queensland has managed to achieve broad coverage of the “translational pipeline” – linking the pre-clinical and clinical sciences with population and global health. Since 2009, The University of Queensland and Ochsner Health System have partnered to offer medical students the opportunity to train across two continents and gain experience in the United States healthcare system.
The University Of Sydney – The University of Sydney School of Medicine, otherwise known as Sydney Medical School, is the graduate medical school of the University of Sydney. Established in 1856, it holds the title of being the first medical school in Australia. Each year, the Sydney School of Medicine teaches more than 2,000 undergraduate students across science, medical science and health science. Another 1,200 are enrolled in our specialist graduate medical program, with more than 1,100 training to become postgraduate researchers. In addition, it’s one of the highest rated education and research institutions in the Asia-Pacific region.
University Of New South Wales – The Faculty of Medicine is a constituent body of the University Of New South Wales. Established in 1960 under founding dean Professor Frank Rundle, today the institution has nine separate schools which include the School of Medical Sciences, School of Psychiatry, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, School of Womens and Childrens Health, Prince of Wales Clinical School, Rural Clinical School, St George and Sutherland Clinical School, St Vincent’s Clinical School, and South Western Sydney Clinical School.
University Of Tasmania – The University of Tasmania’s medical program is one of Australia’s leading medical degrees, with high ratings for the quality of the learning experience as well as the capability of graduates as medical practitioners. With a proud history of excellence in teaching and research spanning over fifty years, the School’s presence is also important and beneficial for the wider Tasmanian community, working closely with the local health system and providing medical, paramedic and postgraduate education to produce excellent practitioners and future health leaders.
University Of Western Australia – Established in 1957, the School of Medicine is the oldest of its kind in Western Australia. With over 6,000 alumni including Nobel prize nominees, Rhodes scholars and Australian Of The Year award winners, the School is well known for its research and clinical teaching. Ranking eighth in the world and first in Australia by the 2019 “Academic Ranking Of World Universities” in clinical medicine, the School is also affiliated with various teaching hospitals in Perth such as Royal Perth Hospital and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. The School also has strong ties with the research from Queen Elizabeth II Medical Centre.
University Of Western Sydney – The School of Medicine of the University of Western Sydney is a constituent body of the College of Health and Science. It became the third medical school offering degrees for medical practice in Sydney, along with the University of Sydney and the University of New South Wales. In 2007, studying a Bachelor of Medicine / Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree was on offer for the first time, before eventually being replaced with the Doctor of Medicine (MD) program in 2019. Clinical teaching of the School of Medicine is conducted at seven separate hospitals across New South Wales.
University Of Wollongong – The Faculty of Science, Medicine and Health offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs designed to meet the needs of a diverse student population. The University of Wollongong carries out world-leading research which is strongly aligned with the Faculty’s teaching program. For students who have every intention of spreading their wings, the UOW Doctor of Medicine is also an internationally recognised medical degree, and students may undertake postgraduate training in a number of countries outside of Australia including Canada, USA, UK and New Zealand.
The process of becoming a doctor in Australia can quickly amount to over ten years of study, training and assessment. While this varies depending on your desired specialty, such as becoming a surgeon, specialist physician or general practitioner, the requirements again vary depending on which state or territory in Australia you wish to practice medicine in.
It’s not an easy career path to follow, but with the abundance of world class Australian medical schools to choose from, at least you have a wealth of options when it comes to programs and locations. After all, the potential rewards that await you after completing your long and no doubt arduous set of studies make pursuing a career as a doctor entirely worth it.
Pursuing A Medical Career With House Call Doctor
If you’re on the hunt for a locum doctor role in the Sunshine State, there’s a chance that you’ll either want to work a little, a lot – or somewhere in between. Queensland based opportunities with House Call Doctor offer flexibility, with shifts that fit around your current workload, personal commitments, or even just lifestyle preferences.
Whether you’re looking to increase your earning potential, gain experience, or even just have a desire for greater job satisfaction, opportunities with House Call Doctor offer local medical practitioners a chance to explore what out of hours and locum healthcare is like, while still retaining a sense of freedom and flexibility. If you’re looking for an opportunity to broaden your career horizons, are you –
- An Australian or Internationally Trained Medical Graduate
- Have full registration with the Medical Board of Australia
- Have two years post graduate experience, including experience in paediatrics, accident and emergency, general medicine and surgery
If you can answer yes to all of the above, then why not consider registering your interest for locum general practitioner doctor jobs with House Call Doctor today, and be a part of the medical revolution.