Shadowing a DoctorJanuary 15, 2014
Planning your finances is an important part of preparing to attend medical school. After all, you do need to figure out how much it is going to cost and where the money is going to come from. Going into med school without any kind of financial planning can create all kinds of problems for you at a later date as you could find yourself getting deeper and deeper into debt.
Determine the total fee amount
Before you take a loan or plan out your finances, it is important to know exactly what the tuition fee will be for the entire programme till you graduate. The tuition fee varies from school to school and it also depends on where you decide to stay. If you live in the same location as your medical school, you may be entitled to a lower tuition fee than students who come from outside of the area. As of 2013, the maximum tuition fee charged by most schools in the UK is £9,000. These fees are for students who live in the UK. If you are residing in Scotland and you decide to study there, you won’t have to pay any tuition fees and in Northern Ireland, students studying within the province pay less than half the fee amount.
Explore funding options
There are various avenues students in the UK can explore to get help with funding their education. You can get loans to cover your tuition fees and maintenance loans to cover your daily expenses. Those who come from a lower income class are also sometimes entitled to maintenance grants which do not have to be repaid. Take the time to look at all the options available in your area to see what kind of loans you may be entitled to.
Make a Budget
Students who get maintenance loans or grants usually get a sum of cash deposited into their account every term or every month. It is very tempting to blow up this money but doing this will cause a lot of problems later. Making a budget is the best way to go about managing your finances. You can find some excellent financial planners available online that will allow you to track your income and your expenses. Creating a budget and sticking to it helps you stay on top of your finances so you know exactly how much you can afford to spend every month.
Get a bank account
All students need to have a current account at a bank if they are going to be receiving money from loans. When looking for a bank, look for one that gives you the best deal and is easily accessible. Ideally, get one which has a branch close to your medical school and if you can get a good overdraft facility which is interest-free with your account it will be an added bonus. Before opening the account, do remember to read all the terms and conditions. This may be boring but it can help you avoid any nasty surprises in the form of additional charges levied for any service.