Differences between studying Medicine in Poland and Spain

Álvaro Minguez, medical student At the University of Valencia, he made the decision to complete the fifth year of his degree at the Medical University of Warsaw (Poland), motivated by “getting to know other educational systems in Europe”. A decision that he admits not to regret. This was expressed through several messages on his Twitter account, which in just hours went viral, where he explained the differences in studying neurology between Valencia and Warsaw.

“In Warsaw the subjects are taken through intensive courses”, the student affirms to Medical Writing. That is, instead of taking a subject throughout the semester, you give it intensively for several weeks. “They teach the theory on the corresponding topic and later we carry out practices related to previously learned“He explains.” If one day strokes are explained, in practices you see stroke patients, talk to them and perform a neurological examination, “admits Minguez, who assures that conducting the course in this way” favors that in a same day you see the theory and practice of the same pathology and thus be able to integrate everything better. “” I have learned much more about Neurology in Warsaw than in Valencia, “he says.

Medicine in Poland: intensive theory, related practices and without MIR

Among the main differences found with the Spanish study model, it stands out that “in Spain sometimes you have to do an internship in a specialty that you haven’t studied yet “ or that “the theory is given progressively throughout the semester so that while you are on an internship in December you can find something that was explained to you in September”. But, without a doubt, the great dissimilarity that exists, as the student relates, is that in “Warsaw when you are on an internship with a doctor, he is not consulting or doing his daily work, he spends all his time doing explain things to you “, while in Spain what you do as a student is” see how the doctor carries out his daily work “.

For these reasons, Minguez affirms that the current study plan for Medicine in Spain “would change the extensive agenda”. “It should focus on acquiring a solid base on the most frequent pathologies and developing critical thinking in the student that allows them to reason about the physiopathology of the human body”, he affirms, and assures that “this is the philosophy they follow in Poland”.


“If one day they explain strokes, in practice
from that day you see patients who have suffered
a stroke, talk to them and perform
a neurological examination “


Regarding the way to qualify at the University of Warsaw, the student explains that “at the end of each intensive course an exam is taken that can be multiple choice or oral exam with fairly simple questions that concern general and frequent aspects of that specialty. “However, some subjects” whose syllabus is more extensive do have an exam in January as happens in Spain. ”

As the last difference with Spain, Minguez explains that “in Poland there is a lot of companionship in class in opposition to the spirit of competitiveness, healthy or not, that sometimes arises in Spain.” “In Poland they don’t have a MIR exam, the choice of the specialty is made through other means such as personal interviews, presentation of the ‘curriculum’ or extra academic achievements. This means that Polish students do not worry as much as we do about the grade and focus more on actually learning medicine, “he concludes.

Although it may contain statements, data or notes from health institutions or professionals, the information contained in Medical Writing is edited and prepared by journalists. We recommend that the reader be consulted with any health-related question with a healthcare professional.

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