• Question: Do you think what we learn in school (especially in Biology) is what a career in Medicine would consist of? I've always been attracted to doctors, working in hospitals and generally anything involving diagnosis, disease and medicine! However, I often find myself getting bored in Biology classes and not enjoying learning about organs etc. Do you think this means medicine is not for me? I know the obvious answer is yes but... I'm not sure! Sorry for the very confusing question but I hope you understood it (or at least, some of it).

    Asked by Lucrezia to Dominic, Maedeh, Matthew, Matt, Monica on 10 Mar 2016.
    • Photo: Monica Rozeik

      Monica Rozeik answered on 10 Mar 2016:

      Hi Lucrezia, just because a subject is sometimes boring it doesn’t mean medicine isn’t for you. In maths for example, I like algebra but I don’t enjoy statistics!

      There are also other career options that don’t involve medicine but can get you to still work in the hospital. A diagnostic radiographer, for example, looks at images of the human body like x-rays. You can do that as a university course.

    • Photo: Matthew Oldfield

      Matthew Oldfield answered on 11 Mar 2016:

      Hi! I was often bored in biology classes but when I speak to doctors about what they do I’m always interested. Organs are so complicated that there are lots of things happening where Physics and Chemistry are equally important.

      There is so much more to medicine and treating people than remembering the names of all of the parts of the body too! If you are more interested in Physics then medical imaging could be the field for you. Perhaps you could find a career in researching cell biology or designing surgical tools. These would allow you to be in the medical field without having such a strong emphasis on learning the names or organs (for example).

      A biomedical engineering degree will have some content about anatomy. But it will also share a lot of the fundamental skills (and lectures) with those of Mechanical Engineering and even Aerospace Engineering at the beginning of the course. If you are interested in this then have a look at university websites offering courses in these areas. Most will tell you what subjects are studied in each year and how much each area of Engineering has in common with the others.

      If you want to be a doctor then I would guess you will have to persevere with your biology. But it will only be a small part of your career. Looking back on what I learned at school and university, I think the lessons and lectures were also a bit boring sometimes. The fun part is being able to use the foundations that you learn and apply them. Often I do this without even realising it or giving credit to the long hours spent in the classroom.

    • Photo: Maedeh Borhani

      Maedeh Borhani answered on 11 Mar 2016:

      To be honest, Biology is only the start and you cannot compare the basic biology that we study in school to what you are going to learn in university. Biology is just the fundamental and basis knowledge that you need to have before starting medicine. However the medicine course is more fun.

    • Photo: Dominic Eggbeer

      Dominic Eggbeer answered on 11 Mar 2016:

      Some of the principles of biology, medicine and anatomy can be applied to engineering (hence this zone), so even if you don’t find you want to concentrate on biology as a subject, having some understanding will probably help you in other fields you may be more interested in.

      As other have suggested, radiology could be something to look into. The field of medical imaging and the technology plus interpretation of very detailed images of the human body is fascinating. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a rapidly developing method with huge potential for people at school age to get involved with. It could be made faster and there is still a lot of work to do in how the images are reconstructed into useful 3D data that can help other medical professionals do their job better.

      Identify what you love doing and pick subjects that will help you do it. Sometimes t will be difficult, but it would not be rewarding if it weren’t.