Academic speciality training
Clinical academic training schemes enable doctors to continue their specialty training alongside continuing to develop their academic career and perform research.
The majority of clinical academic training opportunities are funded by the National Institute for Health and Social Care Research (NIHR) through the Integrated Academic Training Pathway (IAT). The pathway supports training at the Academic Clinical Fellow (ACF) and Clinical Lecturer (CL) levels. Individual Higher Education Institutions (HIE) may have some locally funded posts aligned to the NIHR pathway with opportunities advertised on their webpages.
Academic Clinical Fellowship (ACF) in O&G - England, Northern Ireland
These are specialty training posts that incorporate academic training. Academic Clinical Fellowships (ACFs) in England start from ST1 to ST3. If you are not already in a UK O&G training post, you will have to undergo an additional clinical interview.
In Northern Ireland you have to be ST3 or above to apply. You are eligible for an ACF post even if your specialty training is in a different deanery.
As a rule, these posts are 75% clinical and 25% academic. Academic time may be split into blocks, for example, three months per year, or taken weekly, with one or two days per week. The goal during an ACF post is to prepare you for a successful application for a research training fellowship or an educational programme to undertake an MD or PhD. ACF posts are for a maximum of three years in England, and two in Northern Ireland. If you are not successful in securing a fellowship to follow the ACF post, you will be expected to return to full-time clinical specialty training.
ACFs are coordinated by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) in England and the Northern Ireland by the Medical & Dental Training Agency (NIMDTA).
Applications usually open in January or February. ACF posts offered within each region of England vary from year to year as universities apply to NIHR for funding of these posts Check with NIHR and NIMDTA for up-to-date information.
Scottish Clinical Research Excellence Development Scheme Clinical Lectureship (SCREDS CL) - Scotland
Integrated clinical academic training in Scotland is via the Scottish Clinical Research Excellence Development Scheme (SCREDS). There is national allocation of these posts by NHS Education to the four clinical universities and their associated deaneries. SCREDS Clinical Lectureships have been described as academic ‘run-through’ training. They support trainees to prepare and study a PhD then provide a clinical lectureship on its completion.
To be eligible you already need to be in specialty training, or have an equivalent core training number recognised by a Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board (LETB) (This has closed). Trainees are eligible to apply for SCREDs posts outside their current deanery.
Screds Clinical lectureships
SCREDs Clinical Lectureships vary between universities. Generally year one is 80% clinical and 20% academic, and is spent preparing for a PhD. Three years are then spent out of programme undertaking a PhD. On completion of a PhD you will return to a guaranteed clinical lecturer post. As a clinical lecturer you will continue your research activities alongside clinical work to achieve your certificate of completion of training (CCT).
Applications are managed by the four clinical universities. Contact the clinical academic training departments for details of when and how to apply.
- University of Aberdeen Clinical Academic Training
- Dundee Clinical Academic Track
- Edinburgh Clinical Academic Training
- University of Glasgow Clinical Academic Training
Welsh Clinical Academic Track (WCAT) Fellowship- Wales
Welsh Clinical Academic Track (WCAT) Fellowships are ‘run-through’ clinical research positions directly comparable to SCREDS Clinical Lectureships.
Candidates usually apply when already ST1 in obstetrics and gynaecology although specialty trainees can apply at any stage. Foundation year two trainees are also eligible but their appointment is provisional on securing a national training number at clinical interviews. Year one is 80% clinical and 20% research to prepare for a PhD.
On successful completion of a funded PhD there is a guaranteed four-year clinical lecturer post. Applications tend to open in November.
You can find more information on the Wales Deanery Recruitment Webpage.