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Diploma in Geriatric Medicine

The Diploma in Geriatric Medicine (DGM) examination is designed to give recognition of competence in the provision of care of older people.

In offering doctors the opportunity to review and consider all aspects of care, the DGM is aimed at any medical practitioner in the UK whose clinical practice brings them into contact with older people. This may include:

  • GPs
  • old-age psychiatrists
  • trainees in general (internal) medicine
  • doctors intending to pursue specialist training in geriatric medicine.


The minimum eligibility requirement for the DGM written examination is two years’ post-qualifying experience prior to the date of the written examination, or candidates who have had four months’ experience in a geriatrics post in a hospital or in another post (eg as a GP) in which they see a lot of geriatric patients.

If you are an overseas doctor who fulfils our entry requirements you are welcome to sit the examination. However, you should bear in mind that the examination will be held only in the UK and there will be questions related to health and social systems for older people in the UK, and to UK legislation relating to older people.

Candidates must pass the written examination before they sit the clinical examination. They have two years to pass the clinical examination and if they fail to do so they should sit the written examination again.

Number of attempts

Candidates will be permitted a maximum of six attempts at the DGM examination. After six failed attempts, a candidate will be required to undertake additional educational experience for each resit and submit evidence of this. This evidence will need to be supported by a candidate’s educational supervisor, and the training programme director or equivalent.

Please note that this evidence will need to be presented on headed paper and need to be sent from the work email address of either of the educational supervisors to have signed the form. In determining whether a candidate has sufficiently satisfied the requirements to enable them to undertake a further attempt, the decision of the Royal College of Physicians of London will be final.

For more information, you can download the DGM additional attempt FAQs and form, which can be found at the bottom of this page.

DGM calendar and fees

Please be aware there are limited spaces for the Part 2 clinical examination so you should get your application in as early as possible to ensure you get a place. You are advised to keep all dates of the clinical examinations free as no alterations can be made once you have been allocated a centre. Please also bear in mind that travel to provincial centres may also be necessary.

Changes to Part 1 written examinations

There is now only one opportunity to sit the Part 1 written examination each year. The date for the 2020 written examination will be released in due course along with the application window information. Please check back here for further information. 

The clinical examination will remain at two diets each year.

Part 2 clinical examination

Changes to DGM clinical exam for November/December 2020

Diet 2020/2
Application period: 25 September – 9 October
Clinical examination fee: £373
Clinical examination date: 3, 4 & 5 November and 2, 3 & 4 December
Results release date: 18 December

The Part 2 clinical examination will take place in Liverpool, UK.

Please follow the link below to register for the 2020/2 DGM Clinical Exam:

The application period will close on 9 October 2020.

Part 1 written examination

Diet: 2021
Application period: 4 January 2021 - 17 January 2021
Written examination fee: TBC
Written examination date: 2 March 2021
Results release date: 30 March 2021

Please note: Whilst exact exam locations are still to be finalised, and will depend upon COVID-related restrictions in place at the time of the examination, it is anticipated that centres will be in Liverpool and London.


Telephone: +44 (0)151 318 2020
Email: dgm@rcplondon.ac.uk

Please clearly mark any correspondence ‘DGM’.

Changes to the DGM clinical exam in 2015

The RCP introduced changes to the clinical component of the Diploma in Geriatric Medicine in November 2015. These are outlined in a guidance document for candidates which is available below.


  • Candidates are not required to complete any documentation in order to receive their diploma. However, candidates are advised that they should inform the RCP of any changes in personal details to avoid loss or delay of the item.
  • Diplomas are automatically issued within six weeks after result release although timescales may vary.
  • Candidates who require a replacement diploma are advised to submit a request to the email address below. A £35 charge will apply, unless the individual is a fellow of any of the three royal colleges, in which case no charge will apply. A replacement diploma should be issued within two weeks of the fee being processed.
  • If you have any queries please contact dgm@rcplondon.ac.uk.
  • Candidates should receive a reply within three working days of receipt.
  • Please note diplomas will be retained by the RCP for one year from the date of issue, after which time they will be destroyed. Every effort will be made to contact candidates should their diploma be returned undelivered to the RCP. However, candidates are advised to contact the RCP if they are not in receipt of their diploma within one year of passing the DGM exam.
  • Any requests received for a re-print after one year will incur a charge of £35.

DGM clinical marksheets

To help you understand how the DGM clinical exam is marked, sample marksheets are available to download at the bottom of the page.

MSc in gerontology

If you hold a Diploma in Geriatric Medicine (awarded since 2003) you automatically qualify for one-third of the course credits required for the MSc in gerontology at King’s College London (KCL) through our unique relationship with the Institute of Gerontology at KCL. The programme has been described as ‘the premier gerontology master's degree … the gold standard to which others aspire’ by Professor Ian Philp, national director for older people’s services and neurological conditions.

Please email sshm@kcl.ac.uk for further details of the MSc programme at King’s College London.

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