MSc in Medical Education

The MSc in Medical Education is a highly popular joint programme delivered by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) and University College London (UCL).

Applications are now open. The deadline for the 2017–18 academic year is 9 May 2017.

Programme overview

The RCP has access to experienced teachers, supervisors and mentors in healthcare, who also hold senior roles such as consultant posts and medical education leads in their hospitals. These doctors join the RCP and UCL faculty of medical educationalists to tutor on the programme and present sessions throughout the taught modules. This is a valuable opportunity for students to learn from other doctors who are leading by example and bringing the taught components of the programme to life.

UCL is one of the top universities in the world with fantastic research strengths, and a genuine commitment to educational excellence. This combination of academic excellence, grounded in the reality of service delivery and development, sets this masters programme apart from others.

This is a flexible, modular masters programme taught at the RCP in London, which can be completed in 3–5 years. This is a cumulative programme and early exit with a Certificate (after first year) or Diploma (after second year) is possible.

This programme is specifically designed for doctors wishing to develop their roles as educators. Participants will learn to use appropriate teaching strategies and educational theories to enhance the way they support learning. The MSc in Medical Education is ideally suited to doctors in any specialty, such as medicine, surgery and public health.

How to apply

Applications for the 2017–18 academic year are now open. The deadline is 9 May 2017.

We can only accept online applications through UCL’s portal. Please refer to the guidance notes for step-by-step information on the online application system. New students can only apply for the Certificate level of the programme, even if they intend to complete the whole MSc.

For information please contact postgraduate@rcplondon.ac.uk.

Entry requirements

This masters programme is exclusively for qualified doctors and we welcome applicants from all grades and specialties. Applicants should have a role in medical education.

This is a very popular MSc programme with more applicants than available places. Due to competition for places at all levels of the programme, it is important that the application form includes details of the applicant's roles, responsibilities and interest in medical education. Students can only apply for the Certificate level of the programme at this stage, even if they intend to complete the whole MSc.

Testimonials and student blog

Find out what past and current students say about the course via our testimonials page or via our student blog.

Fees

Programme fees are paid to UCL, who offer students flexible arrangements to make payments in instalments.

Fees for current students enrolled on the course and progressing onto the 2017-18 academic year are:

  • Postgraduate Certificate (first year of study) Home/EU £3,930; Overseas £9,290
  • Postgraduate Diploma (second year of study) Home/EU £4,210; Overseas: £14,370
  • Masters (third year of study) Home/EU £2,240; Overseas: £5,895.

The fees for students joining the course in the academic year 2017–18 are:

  • Postgraduate Certificate (first year of study) Home/EU £3,933; Overseas £9,180
  • Postgraduate Diploma (second year of study) Home/EU £3,933; Overseas: £9,180
  • Masters (third year of study) Home/EU £3,933; Overseas: £9,180.

Interview with the course director

Read an interview with the course director, Dr Jonathan Cartledge.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the requirements for this MSc?

The Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma and Masters in Medical Education are designed to meet the needs of doctors wishing to develop their roles as educators. The programmes are exclusively for doctors and attract participants from the full range of specialties, including surgeons, general practitioners, psychiatrists and radiologists as well as physicians. Participants are mainly speciality registrars, consultants or other career-grade doctors. This is a postgraduate programme; if enquirers have not completed their undergraduate studies they will not be considered for the programme.

Is attendance compulsory?

Attendance at all face-to-face teaching days is compulsory. UCL regulations require that students maintain a 70% attendance rate for each module. Students must provide extenuating circumstances where they are unable to attend.

FY1 and FY2 doctors with limited study leave, please ensure that you have secured sufficient leave prior to applying to the course.

Is the course full-time or part-time?

The programmes are part-time only, and are taken sequentially, starting with the Postgraduate Certificate in year one, progressing to the Diploma in the second year and finally the masters in Medical Education. The full masters may be taken over a maximum of 5 years.

How many contact days are required for the completion of the course?

In the first year (Certificate level) of the course there are a total of 14 compulsory contact days. These are made up of four 3-day modules, a tutorial day and a viva..

In the second year (Diploma level) of the course there are a total of 14 compulsory contact days. These are made up of four 3-day modules, a tutorial day and a viva day.

In the final year there are 6 compulsory contact days. These are made up of five tutor group meetings and a presentation day. Students will be assigned a personal tutor whilst completing their research project.

Am I able to defer my place on the course?

You are able to defer your place on the course, but the course must be completed within 5 years of when the application is accepted. Please contact postgraduate@rcplondon.ac.uk for further information.

Do I have to complete all 3 years of the course?

No. This is a cumulative programme. You are able to exit after the first year with a Certificate, after the second with a Diploma or after the third with an MSc.

Can I complete this course via distance learning alone?

No. The teaching days (14 each year) are compulsory. However, these teaching days are supported via an online learning environment (called Moodle), where readings are uploaded and you can discuss projects in student forums.

What financial support is available?

There is no funding available through the RCP. Students need to secure their own funding. Some deaneries and trusts do provide financial support, and you should contact them for more information. UCL do have a few scholarships available, details of which can be found at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships.

Please note that this course is not eligible for the Government funded Postgraduate Loan. Should you have any queries regarding funding, please contact UCL Funding at +44 (0)20 7679 0004 or studentfunding@ucl.ac.uk .

Am I able to pay for the course in instalments?

Yes. All fees are paid directly to UCL, who offer students flexible arrangements to make payments in instalments. Further information can be found at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships.

When is the deadline for applications?

The applications deadline for 2017/18 is on 9 May 2017.

Can I apply for the Postgraduate Diploma in Medical Education if I have completed a Certificate in Medical Education at another institution?

No, you must have completed the RCP/UCL Certificate in Medical Education to be accepted for the Diploma.

Can I apply for the Masters in Medical Education if I have completed the Diploma in Medical Education at another university?

No, you must have completed the RCP/UCL Diploma in Medical Education to be accepted for the Masters.

Can I apply if I do not currently have a role in medical education?

Though a formal role in medical education is not required, applicants need to demonstrate a passion for medical education and will need to have access to medical students or trainees during their time on the course. This is important because much discussion during the course draws on participants’ current experiences of teaching and the first assignment involves participants reviewing a teaching session that they have designed and delivered. Students wishing to progress to the diploma will be required to compile a portfolio evidencing their on-going development as a medical educator, therefore need to be involved in teaching and facilitating learning. In addition, it is beneficial that you have some involvement in course or curriculum design and supervising trainees.

Can I apply credits achieved from prior learning at a higher education institution?

If you choose to make an application for accreditation of prior learning (APL) you will be required to demonstrate that you have successfully completed all learning objectives of the module you are claiming APL for. You will not be permitted to attend only part of a module based on prior learning. For further information on how to apply for APL please visit http://www.ucl.ac.uk/registry/acd_regs/

Can I apply to study on an international visa?

As the course is only offered with a part-time mode of study it is not possible to study on a Tier 4 Visa. However, some international students who have the right to live and work in the UK on a working visa may be eligible to apply as overseas applicants.

Where will the modules be taught?

Modules will be delivered in purpose-built teaching facilities at the Royal College of Physicians in London.

How is the course assessed?

Written assignments follow each module at certificate level. The diploma level is assessed by written assignments and a viva, and the masters level is assessed by a dissertation.

What is the realistic time commitment that is needed to complete the assignment?

Each level of the programme carries 60 Masters-level credits, which equate to a notional 600 hours of study time. This includes attendance at face-to-face teaching days, self-directed study and research, and completion of assignments. This is an approximation only, and the hours required may vary according to individuals’ prior experience of the subject. This is in line with all other Masters-level programmes in the UK.

Am I able to receive CPD credits for the course?

Yes. The RCP CPD diary scheme allows you to claim one credit for every 1 hour of learning. Credits obtained from the MSc programme can be entered under the ‘self-certified’ tab in the CPD diary. Please be aware that a maximum of 12 credits will be counted as external. The remaining MSc credits will be counted as personal. If you are registered with another CPD scheme please contact your scheme coordinator to confirm how to apply for credits.

What academic and administrative support is available during the course?

Each module has a module tutor – a member of staff from the RCP who is responsible for the bulk of the teaching. The students are given the contact details for this tutor and should refer all subject-related queries to them.

What resources are available to students on this course?

All students will have full access to the Jerwood Medical Education Resource Centre (MERC) at the Royal College of Physicians. Specialist collections of books and journals are available as well as remote access to a wide range of electronic materials and databases.