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Scottish Medical Training

Scotland - the home of medical excellence

What the East Region SFP can offer you

A feature of the East region Programme is that in F2, all trainees have a four-month block of full-time academic activity. This can be in either research; education and teaching; leadership and management or quality improvement. This block also includes one day per week in clinical practice in any specialty in secondary or primary care. Each SFP doctor has a dedicated academic supervisor who oversees their academic work, providing support and constructive feedback throughout the rotation.

The academic component is co-ordinated by the University of Dundee through the Dundee Clinical Academic Tract (DCAT) team. Through DCAT, the specialised foundation doctor will have access to additional resources including Good Clinical Practice (GCP) in Research courses leading to GCP Certification, research methodology support, projects in teaching and quality improvements and other courses. Additionally, each trainee is given an honorary University appointment, allowing them the opportunity to engage in the teaching of both clinical and preclinical students, as well as participating in the many training opportunities available through the University. During training it is paramount that transferable and documented skills are obtained and those on the programme should aim to publish a paper, present a poster and/or deliver an oral presentation.

Examples of peer reviewed publications from Academic Foundation doctors can be found on the DCAT website.

As part of the programme, the University of Dundee offers each individual access to additional qualifications.  All foundation doctors on the East region Foundation programmes can attend a medical statistics course.

You may also participate in part-time distance learning master’s degrees and associated courses, although it should be noted that funding for these courses is not provided. Further qualifications can be challenging, but they are enjoyable and will undoubtedly increase the chances of securing future jobs. SFP doctors are also encouraged to be involved with the teaching of medical school students.

It can be useful to contact previous foundation doctors to get their advice about the academic programme and how they organised their training. The University of Dundee Lead can facilitate contact with previous trainees.

The aim of the Specialised Foundation Programme is to prepare Foundation doctors to become future leaders in academic and clinical medicine. Every opportunity will be made available to enhance the academic profile of successful candidates.


Opportunities in Education and Education Research

The East region Programme can provide a range of training in the field of education and education research including:

  • Accredited training in Medical Education resulting in the award of the Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education (University of Dundee) – this is the first stage of the Masters in Medical Education programme run by the Centre for Medical Education. Please note that there is no NES study leave funding available for this course
  • Innovation in simulation for training and assessment of skills through the Dundee Institute for Healthcare Simulation
  • Training in research skills applied to education, including critical appraisal of a topic; formulating a research question and qualitative and quantitative research methods


Opportunities in Translational Research

The SFP represents a unique opportunity for early trainees to become involved in translational research in this formative phase of their career. Foundation doctors pursuing a rotation in translational research will be based in one of the Divisions of the School of Medicine within the University of Dundee. The School of Medicine is experienced at offering research projects to clinicians and academic supervisors will be able to advise on suitable projects within fellows' areas of interests. In addition, we encourage SFP doctors to consider part-time distance learning through a Masters Degree or associated course. There is no funding provided, but some trainees have applied successfully for support and funding from their Royal College or other Societies and Charities. Examples include:

  • University of Edinburgh/Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh Masters in Surgical Science
  • University of Edinburgh/Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh Masters in Internal Medicine
  • MSc Certificate Course in Translational Medicine


Leadership and Quality Improvement Opportunities

Collaboration between NHS Tayside and the University of Dundee on Leadership and Quality Improvement has been strengthened by the establishment of the Improvement Academy and the Academic Health Sciences Partnership in Tayside (AHSP). AHSP’s mission is to drive quality improvement by developing capacity, capability and skills to allow the adoption and spread of quality improvement and enhanced safety within the partnership and translation to other stakeholders. Research is led by the Quality, Safety and Informatics Research Group, which aims to deliver eight internationally recognised academic research projects and to ensure that the quality and safety of clinical care is directly changed by its work. The group is focused on translating clinical research evidence into reliable, high quality, safe clinical and organisational practice. The programme on Leadership and Quality Improvement will include online modules, teaching and coaching in leadership skills and quality improvement, in addition to project supervision. The choice of improvement project is very broad. The Foundation doctor in year 1 will be supported to complete the Institute for Healthcare Improvement IHI) Practicum. In F2 the programme will provide enough protected time to complete an improvement project that can be submitted for a national and international conference and as a paper to BMJ Quality Improvement Reports.



For more information about the Specialised Foundation Programme in the East, please contact one of the following: