Table 1

Summary of UK medical training

Career stageLengthComments
Medical school5–6 yearsStudents typically enter medical school after completing their secondary education. For those who already have an undergraduate degree, there are 4-year graduate entry courses in medicine. Some medical courses last an extra year and allow students to obtain a Bachelor's degree in addition to their medical qualification (intercalated courses)
Foundation programme2 yearsGeneral postgraduate medical training programme, which consists of 3–4 months placements in different hospital specialties
Specialty training6–8 years (3 years for GPs)The programmes vary in length and are tailored to the needs of the specialty. Most programmes start out broad and become specialty focused over time