How to apply from the UK


Sophia is a medical student in Turin. In this post she will share her experience applying to Turin medical school from the UK.

Hi! I’m a first year medical student at the University of Turin. I was born in Russia and moved to the UK during secondary school. I first looked into the possibility of studying in Italy as an alternative to the Biomedical Sciences course I was undertaking in a UK university, since I didn’t find the structure suited me, I enjoyed the early morning until late afternoon structure much more than a maximum of two lectures per day. In addition to not feeling challenged enough, I came to the realisation that medicine really was what I wanted to do and that I should wait to complete my undergraduate science degree prior to beginning medical school.

IMAT application process in summary 

Essentially there are four main things you need to do.

  • Step 1: Create an account on “universeitaly.it” and register for IMAT in a test centre of your country.
  • Step 2: Prepare all your ISEE documents, ready to be presented at the CAF centre in your Italian city.
  • Step 3: Prepare all your Declaration of Value (DV) documents and send them to the consulate to begin the process of obtaining the DV. The only requirements I am aware of are that you need to “Pass at least three A Level subjects”, it doesn’t matter which.
  • Step 4: Sit and wait for the weekly updates on your personal page on UniverseItaly. Once you hear the good news of having a place you just pack your stuff and go!
  • Once you arrive talk to officials at the university about what further steps they want you to take.


How IMAT application worked for me in the UK

Step 1:

Set up an account on “universeitaly.it”.

Register for IMAT in a test centre, I chose London. I am an EU citizen so I didn’t need to complete any pre-enrolment procedures. The test costs 100 GBP, will vary in EUR and USD.

Step 2:

Whilst you are revising and preparing for the exam you need to think of the two main issues you face, obtaining an ISEE and DV (declaration of value). Let’s first talk about the ISEE, since I am assuming you are a fresh-out-of-high-school student who doesn’t have access to their exam certificates yet.

The reasoning for obtaining an ISEE is so that your tuition fees will be reduced based on your family income. If your family income is above 85,000EUR then don’t bother with this, you will still have to pay the maximum flat rate of fees established by the university. If your family income is not that high (mine wasn’t), then you need to provide the following documents to a CAF centre in Italy.

There are two types of ISEE, the one you should be concerned with is “ISEE parificato”. I have copy and pasted an email I got from an extremely helpful employee of Padua University (one which sadly doesn’t have anything to do with “Medicine In English” courses).

“Dear Sophia
There are two different kind of ISEE certification for foreign students: one for students with Italian residence (ISEE INPS) and one for students without Italian residence (ISEE parificato)
The documentation requested change according to the different ISEE you have to do.
I suppose you don’t have the Italian residence. In this case you have to prepare this documentation:
* Family status, with all your family members (in case of death or divorce you have to present the documentation that explain that)
* Income 2015 of at least your mother, your father and you. If you (or your parents) didn’t work in 2015, we need a declaration of no income in 2015
* Real estates for at least you, your mother and your father. If someone has no estates/properties, we need a official declaration of absence of estates.
This first part of documents must be presented in your Country language, legalized with apostille and translated in Italian
* Balance at 31/12 of all the bank account of your family members
The balances can be presented also in English with the bank stamp.”

Following the obtainment of the above documents, you also need to apostille them and verify them with a solicitor. I used a company called “Hague Apostille” (http://www.hagueapostille.co.uk) again because I didn’t want to deal with the government system. Inclusive of the solicitor ratings I paid another 100GBP for this.

Once you have all the required documents you simply need to arrange an appointment with a CAF/CAAF centre in Italy and submit your application. How long it takes will vary. Milan University page is a good one to go to if you want to double check your information in regards to this step in your application, http://www.unimi.it/ENG/admission/55155.htm.

Step 3:

Since I finished school in 2016, I already had my documents, which I took to a notary in Oxford who then certified them and obtained an apostille through the government. This cost 150GBP for three of my A-level certificates. You can however find a solicitor near you who can certify them for as little as 5GBP per page, but I didn’t want to deal with the government’s bureaucratic procedures so I paid more. The only requirements I am aware of are that you need to “Pass at least three A Level subjects”, it doesn’t matter which. There have been no requests to provide GCSE grades or any other grades aside from final school leaving grades, be that IB, A Level or another foreign qualification.

Essentially once you have certified all your documents, pop them into an envelope and send them off to the address of the nearest consulate, for me it was London. Be warned that communication with these people is beyond horrific, I called them for four weeks straight and they just ignored my calls as well as multiple emails I sent, purely to ask them if they have received anything from me. Basically start the process as early as you can.

Any information they provide is here: http://www.conslondra.esteri.it/consolato_londra/en/i_servizi/per_i_cittadini/studi/dichiarazioni_di_valore

Step 4:

So let’s assume you have all your documents ready. The rankings have been published on the UniverseItaly website and now all you have to do is wait. You can have several statuses next to your name, those being:

Assigned (you have obtained a place in your first choice university)

Booked (you have a place in a university, but not in your first choice)

Wait (you have no place at the moment, you have to wait)

Not Confirm Interest (you didn’t confirm interest in remaining in the rankings, so you have been removed and are no longer competing for places)

Essentially if you do super well you get into your first choice university in the first week (Assigned) and you have to accept it, or you automatically get removed.

If you do pretty well you will be granted a place in one of the universities of your choosing (Booked), you can enrol or you can wait to see if a space opens up in your first choice university. For this you need to make sure you click confirm interest on your own personal page on UniverseItaly.

Most people will be on the waiting list (Wait), since when I applied nearly 7,000 people applied for just under 400 spots. You don’t need to do anything, you will automatically remain in the rankings.  

If you do not click a button to confirm your interest at any point when you have been given a place either in your first choice university (Assigned) or in any of the others (Booked) within the given time frame of four days, then you will be removed from the rankings. Make sure you keep an eye on this as in 2016 I obtained a place and because I didn’t click the button I was removed from the rankings and had to wait another year to get another place through repeating the entire process.

Let’s assume after months of waiting you finally have a place in a university you’re happy with, all you have to do is get your ticket and fly out!

Buona fortuna!

Alex Ochakovski (Pavia)

Alex is a graduate of Harvey Medical course in English, taught in Pavia University and the founder of MEDschool.it. He currently pursuits his carrier in Ophthalmology and ophthalmic gene therapy research in Germany.
Alex Ochakovski (Pavia)