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Structure of Training

This page provides a brief introduction to the structure and various levels of medical training in UK. If you are already aware of this please move to next page.


  • House Officer
  • Senior House Officer
  • Specialist Registrar
  • Consultants
  • The Firm
  • Appointment procedures
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Referees

House Officer :

This is a 1-year compulsory training undertaken immediately after medical school. It can be several 3months/ 6 months in various medical/surgical sub-specialties. Appointment is by open competition.

Senior House Officer (SHO) :

Otherwise known as basic surgical training. The duties of SHO include admission of elective/ day case patients and pre and post-operative work-up. The operative experience involves basic surgical aspects.

Appointment is by open competition. The current MRCS regulations require 3 years of basic surgical training to be eligible to sit the exam. It can be multiple postings of 6 months or a 3-year rotation involving A&E, orthopaedics, general surgery, related surgical specialties (breast, GI, colorectal, vascular, paediatric surgery).

Often the trainee develops an interest towards the end of this posting. Those interested in a particular speciality (i.e. urology) often spend 6 months in that. Most of the person specifications for higher surgical training often have these as desirable criteria.
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