Who is eligible to apply for the Foundation Programme?
- UK medical school graduates who have been nominated by their medical school.
- UK medical school graduates who graduated more than two years prior to the start of the programme who have applied through the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office and their application has been deemed eligible.
- Overseas graduates who have applied through the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office and their application has been deemed eligible.
How do I apply for foundation training / to the Foundation Programme?
Applicants will either be nominated by a UK medical school or by the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office (please refer to separate guidance for Eligibility Office applicants). Decile scores will be available.
All applications should be submitted through the Oriel (national online application system). Applicants can access Oriel via https://www.oriel.nhs.uk. Applicants are advised to start their applications early to allow sufficient time to complete the necessary sections of the application form and to gather evidence in support of their application.
How is my application scored?
Applications will have a maximum score of 100 points and this will consist of two components: -
1. Educational Performance Measure (EPM) – 50 points maximum
2. Situational Judgement Test (SJT) – 50 points maximum
Can I link my application to another applicant?
You can link your FP application to that of another applicant to ensure you are both allocated to the same UoA, providing you both score highly enough to be allocated to the primary list. Please note that you can only link to one other applicant.
Links will not be considered if either applicant accepts an AFP offer.
You cannot link with someone who is applying for special circumstances.
Links will be broken if preferences are amended following the close of the application window.
The decile score displayed on my Oriel account is different to the one my medical school gave me, what should I do?
You should contact your medical school at the earliest opportunity and they will be able to request for this to be amended prior to 13th December 2018.
How do I apply for less than full-time training?
You will have an opportunity to indicate that you would like to work on the less than full-time basis on your application form. Please speak to your foundation school at the earliest opportunity once you have been allocated.
How will I be allocated to a place / how does the allocation process work?
All applicants will be ranked in score order and given a unique rank on Oriel. In the event of tied scores, the decile score will be used to break the ties. If there are still tied scores, the SJT score will be used to break the ties and then ties will be broken randomly. The unique ranks will be carried forward for the process of matching to groups and individual programmes.
If there are more eligible applicants than places, the ‘n’ top ranking applicants will automatically be placed on the primary list, where ‘n’ is the total number of FP places available across the UK. Applicants who are not allocated to the primary list will be placed on a reserve list and will be allocated in batches on predetermined dates.
Following the national allocation process, local foundation schools manage the process of group / programme matching. Applicants are advised to check the websites of each foundation school to familiarise themselves with local matching processes.
What happens if there are not enough foundation jobs for the number of applicants who apply?
Applicants will be allocated in batches when vacancies arise due to applicant withdrawals.
Is it possible for me to be allocated to my first preference if I am on the reserve list?
Yes. Places will arise due to applicant withdrawals. These places could be located anywhere across the programme.
Can I appeal against the outcome of my application?
You can appeal against national elements of the application process. This includes appeals relating to eligibility for overseas graduated and UK medical school graduates who qualified more than two years prior to the start of the programme, verified educational achievements scores, clinical assessment and special circumstances.
What happens if I do not wish to accept the post?
You must contact your allocated foundation school at the earliest convenience and request for your application to be withdrawn. Please note that if you choose to withdraw your application, you will not be able to work as a doctor in the UK with provisional registration under the GMC guidelines. You will need to apply again the following year.
What is the process for providing references for the Foundation Programme?
Referees will be able to submit references online through Oriel from March – April. After this time, the foundation schools and your employing organisation will chase referees for references. It is not a problem if your referees do not complete a reference online.
What happens if I do not pass my final exams and graduate as expected?
You will not be eligible to commence foundation training and your application will need to be withdrawn. You will be able to apply the following year.
I applied last year but did not take up a post, do I need to sit the SJT again?
Educational Performance Measure (EPM)
What is the Educational Performance Measure (EPM)?
The EPM is a measure of clinical and non-clinical skills, knowledge and performance up to the point of application. The EPM comprises two elements: medical school performance in deciles for which 34-43 points are available, and educational achievements, which are worth up to 7 points. A maximum of 50 points can be awarded for the EPM.
What are EPM decile scores?
Your medical school performance score will be calculated by your medical school, which will divide your year group into 10 equal groups (deciles) based on performance in a number of assessments.
How is the decile score calculated?
Each UK medical school has agreed with its students, which assessments will be included in this measure. This element of the EPM is known as the EPM decile score. If you are in the first decile (the top 10% of your year), you will receive a score of 43; if you are in the second decile, your score will be 42; the third decile 41 and so on. Students in the tenth decile will be awarded 34 points.
If you are graduating from a UK medical school, these scores will be supplied by your medical school and uploaded onto the Oriel system.
If you are applying through the Eligibility Office, your EPM decile score will be calculated from the medical school ranking information provided on your Dean’s Statement. The Eligibility Office will upload your EPM decile score.
How many points are available for additional educational achievements?
A maximum of 7 points can be awarded for educational achievements: -
1. Maximum of 5 points for an additional degree (please refer to the Applicants’ Guidance for details of how many points are awarded for different qualifications)
2. Maximum of 2 points for publications (1 point for each publication).
Can I upload more than one piece of evidence for educational achievements?
No. All documents should be scanned into one combined document.
I have a BSc and an MSc; how can I record both?
You will only have the option to provide details and evidence for one additional degree. You should choose the one that would result in the most points being awarded.
Can I send evidence of educational achievements to the UKFPO for checking beforehand?
No. The UKFPO is unfortunately unable to provide a pre-checking service.
If the verification panel deems that my evidence does not meet the criteria, will there be an opportunity to provide additional / alternate evidence?
No. All supporting evidence must be provided at the time of application.
Is the EPM score used as part of selection for the Academic Foundation Programmes (AFP)?
Scoring criteria for AFP selection is determined locally by each academic foundation school. Some schools will use the EPM score and other won’t. You are advised to the refer to the scoring criteria published on individual foundation school websites.
I have completed all the work required for an additional degree, but I do not graduate until after the closing date for applications, will I still be awarded the points?
No. All additional degrees must have been awarded / ratified by the closing date for applications.
My degree certificate doesn’t state the classification of my degree, will this be accepted?
The certificate will not be accepted. If you qualified from Cambridge University, please provide your transcript as well as your degree certificate to demonstrate your classification.
Will points be awarded for Postgraduate diplomas?
I have been awarded a degree, but I do not have the certificate yet, what evidence can I provide?
You can provide a degree confirmation letter from your medical school. Please refer to the Applicants’ Handbook for specific criteria.
My degree certificate is not in English, will this be accepted?
You will need to provide an official translation.
Do I have to be the first named author on a publication to the awarded the point?
If I am listed on PubMed as a collaborator and not an author, would I still be awarded a point?
I have a publication with a PCMID number, does this qualify for a point?
If I mistype the PubMed ID number, will the verifying panel search for the publication on the website and verify the information by author and title of publication?
No. The panel must be able to click once on the link from your application to reach your publication.
Situational Judgement Test (SJT)
What is the Situational Judgement Test (SJT)?
The Situational Judgement Test (SJT) is a test for employment and not a medical school exam. It is used as part of the selection process for entry to the Foundation and Academic Foundation Programme (AFP) to test the attributes needed to work as a foundation doctor.
When will I have to take the SJT?
All applicants to the Foundation Programme commencing in August 2019, including the Academic Foundation Programme, are required to take the SJT in the UK on either: -
1. Friday 7th December 2018, 10:00 -12:20 AM
2. Monday 7th January 2019, 10:00 -12:20 AM
Who needs to take the SJT?
All applicants for the two-year foundation programme (provisionally registered doctors) need to sit the SJT and achieve a satisfactory score in accordance with the national person specification.
Applicants for stand-alone programmes (doctors who hold or expect to hold full registration) do not need to sit the SJT.
How can I prepare for the SJT?
There are practice papers available on the UKFPO website.
How long is the test?
2 hours and 20 minutes.
Can I appeal against my SJT score?
I have previously applied to the Foundation Programme, can my previous SJT score be carried forward?
Where will I sit the SJT?
- If you are a UK medical school graduate, you will be expected to sit the SJT at your medical school.
- If you graduated from a non-UK medical school or a UK medical school prior to 07 August 2017 (i.e. all applicants who applied through the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office), you will be invited to the sit the SJT at a venue in London.
Can I sit the SJT in another country?
No. All applicants must sit the SJT in the UK.
I usually have adjustments for my university exams, will this be the case for the SJT?
You will have the option to apply for reasonable adjustments to your medical school. Please refer to the reasonable adjustments guidance available on the UKFPO website.
- What happens if I am unwell or there is a serious reason why I am unable to sit the SJT?
You will be able to apply for exceptional circumstances to be offered the chance to sit the SJT on a different date. Please refer to the guidance on extenuating circumstances on the UKFPO website.