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. The diploma offers doctors the opportunity to review and consider all aspects of the care of older people and to be recognised as having this knowledge.

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 2 years’ post-qualifying experience prior to the date of the written examination, or candidates who have had 4 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 2 years to pass the clinical examination and if they fail to do so they should sit the written examination again.

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.

2017 dates – Part 1 written examination

Diet: 2017/1
The results for the DGM 2017/1 written examination taken on 7 February 2017 are now available on the DGM results page.

Candidates for the DGM Part 2 clinical examination must have previously passed the DGM written examination at an applicable sitting (please see the examination regulations at the bottom of the page for guidance).

2017 dates – Part 1 written examination

Diet: 2017/1
Application period: 26 December 2016 – 13 January 2017
Written examination fee: £231
Written examination date: 7 February 2017

Diet: 2017/2
Application period: 27 June – 14 July 2017
Written examination fee: £231
Written examination date: 8 August 2017

2017 dates – Part 2 clinical examination

Diet: 2017/1
Application period: 13th March 2017 – 3 April 2017
Clinical examination fee: £339
Clinical examination date: 16–17 May 2017

The DGM Part 2 clinical examinations will be taking place in Newcastle, and Royal Devon and Exeter.

Diet: 2017/2
Application period: 28th August 2017 – 18 September 2017
Clinical examination fee: £339
Clinical examination date: 7–9 November 2017

How to apply

You can download the application form for 2017 at the bottom of the page along with the examination regulations and syllabus.

Candidates paying by credit or debit card can send their completed application forms to dgm@rcplondon.ac.uk. Candidates using alternative methods of payment should print their forms and send them to the address below:

DGM Examination
Exams Candidate Office
Royal College of Physicians
11 St Andrews Place
Regent's Park
London NW1 4LE

Examination results can be viewed via the DGM examination results page.


Please clearly mark any correspondence ‘DGM’.

Changes to the DGM clinical exam in 2015

The Royal College of Physicians 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 6 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 2 weeks of the fee being processed.
  • If you have any queries please contact diplomas.queries@mrcpuk.org.
  • Candidates should receive a reply within 3 working days of receipt.
  • Please note diplomas will be retained by the RCP for 1 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 1 year of passing the DGM exam.
  • Any requests received for a re-print after 1 year will incur a charge of £35.

Sample questions and reading lists

A selection of DGM sample questions and a reading list recommended by the DGM board can be accessed below. A further reading list is also available along with more information on the British Geriatrics Society.

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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