University of Parma – Studying Medicine in Italy

The newest of all Italian medical courses in English, the university of Parma has helped open the door for even more medical students to make the move to Italy.

The City

Size

First of all, you will actually not be located in Parma, but in a small town close to Parma called Piacenza (about 45 minutes by car from Parma). It has 102,000 inhabitants and is located in the Emilia Romagna region.

As a small northern city, life is quite peaceful, developed, and well-functioning. If you like a quiet small town that is away from the hustle and bustle of the city, then this might be your place! If you prefer the big city, energy, good nightlife and an international populace, then look away. 

University Location

You will study at Collegio Alberoni, in front of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart Piacenza Campus. 

The University of Parma, Italy Location

Transport

The best way to get around Piacenza is by bus, but since it is a small town you can also rely on walking and cycling. 

You can find more information about bus passes, travel schedules, lines and fare reduction on the town’s official transport website here https://www.setaweb.it/pc/linee#pc1

Weather

Piacenza has a humid subtropical climate with no dry season. Summers are usually hot and sultry. Snow is rare. Expect highs of around 30 degrees Celsius and lows of about -1. 

Cost of Living

While being a northern city pushes the average cost of living above the southern cities, Piacenza is more affordable than the big cities in the north. Expect around 300 euros per month if you share an apartment in the centre, and around 600-700 if you want a single room. 

Food and utilities are pretty standard while going out is less likely to be as expensive as in bigger cities since you are unlikely to encounter tourist traps.

Safety

Piacenza is safe. It is a small city so petty crime is not high, and violent crime is almost non-existent. Of course, you should still exercise common sense.

Activities

The bad part about Piacenza is the lack of things to do. Being quite far from a big city you will need to be comfortable with a more quiet life. Of course, there are bars and restaurants, but the nightlife is limited. You are also not that close to any noteworthy natural scenery (not to say that the scenery is ugly by any means).

However, the town has its charms. Traditional Italian architecture, old buildings and churches and the traditional way of life are definitely appealing to some people.

The University

The Students

There are 60 EU places and 40 non-EU places, meaning you will have a very large and very international class. You can expect a bit under half the students to be from Italy and the majority being from anywhere around the world. This will be a nice balance for the city since Piacenza is not as international. 

Exam Structure

You have 9 attempts to pass any of the exams you have to do in a given year. There are both oral and written exams. Most of the exams require preliminary exams from previous related courses to be passed before an attempt is allowed. 

Ranking

The university usually ranks around 29th-28th best in Italy for medicine (this would be based on the Italian language course). Note however that this medicine course in English is brand new, thus the experience of the university may be questionable. However, do not let official rankings worry you, they mean almost nothing in terms of future job prospects. 

Tuition Fees

Fees are based on your family’s economic income and can be as low as €0 per year (you will however pay €156 as an annual fee to cover tax and stamp fees). The maximum that you can be charged is €2625.

Scholarships

Regional scholarships are handled by Ergo, which can provide you with lump sums, dormitory accommodation as well as reduced-fare canteen meals. You can find out more on their website http://www.er-go.it/

Competitiveness

The course started in 2021, so there are not many statistics to go by. However, these were the final entry scores for 2021

EU: 35.4

Non-EU: 35.5

Canteen Facilities

There is a Mensa (state-sponsored fee-reduced canteen) as well as a bar, café and restaurant at the university campus.

Attendance

It is mandatory to attend at least 67% of lecture hours and 90% of hours for each clerkship.

What Subjects Will I Study?

First year

  • Physical-chemical bases of life – 8 CFU
  • Cells & tissues – 9 CFU
  • Statistics, research methodology & safety regulation – 5 CFU
  • Molecular biology, genetics & genomics – 6 CFU
  • Elective courses – 2 CFU
  • Biochemistry – 12 CFU
  • Human anatomy & organogenesis – 12 CFU
  • Elective courses – 3 CFU

Second year

  • Human physiology – 12 CFU
  • Immunology & microbiology – 13 CFU
  • Medical humanities – 6 CFU
  • Disease pathophysiology – 8 CFU
  • Clinical microbiology & infectious diseases – 8 CFU
  • Pharmacology – 9 CFU
  • Biomedical research clerkship – 6 CFU

Third year

  • Laboratory medicine & immunogenetics – 6 CFU
  • Endocrine & metabolic & gastrointestinal disease – 9 CFU
  • Neurological sciences – 11 CFU
  • Psychiatry – 4 CFU
  • Hematology & oncology – 7 CFU
  • Respiratory diseases & allergology – 6 CFU
  • Cardiovascular diseases & basic life support – 7 CFU
  • Biomedical technologies & imaging – 11 CFU

Fourth year

  • Clinical immunology & rheumatology – 5 CFU
  • Nephrology & urology – 5 CFU
  • Musculoskeletal diseases – 3 CFU
  • Rehabilitation medicine – 5 CFU
  • Dermatology & plastic surgery – 5 CFU
  • Geriatrics & functional patient management – 6 CFU
  • Head & neck – 10 CFU
  • Clinical surgery & emergency medicine – 15 CFU
  • Medicine & surgery clerkship 1 (Clinical rotation 1) – 6 CFU

Fifth year

  • Paediatrics – 8 CFU
  • Obstetrics & gynaecology – 6 CFU
  • Pathology – 8 CFU
  • Forensic & occupational medicine – 7 CFU
  • Elective courses – 1 CFU
  • Public health, international health systems & economics – 11 CFU
  • Internal medicine, clinical pharmacology & clinical risk management – 11 CFU
  • Medicine & Surgery clerkship 2 (Clinical rotation 2) – 6 CFU
  • Elective courses – 2 CFU

Sixth year

  • Medicine & surgery clerkship 3 (Clinical rotation 3) – 27 CFU
  • Thesis – 3 CFU
  • 15 CFU in:
  1. Licensing internship in internal medicine
  2. Licensing internship in surgery
  3. Licensing internship in community medicine
  • Thesis – 15 CFU

Libraries

You can find many libraries in Piacenza here: https://leggerepiace.it/SebinaOpac/article/le-biblioteche-del-polo-bibliotecario-piacentino/biblioteche-piacenza?pb=PIAPL 

More Information

University website: https://corsi.unipr.it/cdlm-ms 

Course website: https://ilmondochetiaspetta.unipr.it/lmcu-medicine-and-surgery/#toggle-id-6

Guide to the degree: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1C9VvbxzbOZHTodbC_KS5nHXnQMBOfAlazaXzM8rJSYI/edit#

Facebook page of the university: https://www.facebook.com/unipr?sk=app_4949752878

Instagram page of the student representatives: https://www.instagram.com/camici_in_movimento/

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