Medicine introductory reading list

Below are some suggestions for background reading before you arrive in Cambridge. For your information, the main subjects you will be studying in your first year are anatomy, biochemistry and physiology, should you want to start thinking about these topics. As above, we would recommend you waiting until you arrive in Cambridge to purchase any textbooks.

General Medical Council guidance that you should read and be familiar with:

  1. Professional values and fitness to practise . General Medical Council. 
  2. Available online.  Guidance on the behaviour expected of medical students.
  3. Outcomes for graduates . General Medical Council.
  4. Available online.  Guidance on knowledge, skills and behaviours medical students learn at UK medical schools.
  5. Please consider reading a book about optimising your study skills , as the Cambridge Medical Course is challenging even for very highly able students. This book is well worth considering: Cottrell, Stella (2013) The Study Skills Handbook ISBN 1137289252 (Palgrave Macmillan).
  6. Consider subscribing to the Student British Medical Journal – ( ) – an international monthly medical journal aimed at medical students, allowing you to keep up to date with medical research and developments.
  7. If you have not studied A-level biology , we would recommend some background reading around the topics of human physiology and biochemistry.
  8. If you have not studied A-level mathematics , some additional material is available online , to which we can give you access, in order to ensure that you have an appropriate level of mathematics. Please contact Louise Ranger ( to arrange access to this. This opportunity is open to all students, but those with A-level mathematics should have covered all this material already.

Books of general interest to medicine:

Useful websites

There are many websites providing useful information for you both as future Cambridge medical undergraduates, but also as future doctors:

Directors of Studies

As medical students at Churchill your Directors of Studies will be:

If you have any specific questions about the veterinary course before you come into residence please don’t hesitate to get in contact.