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The future of learning and teaching in UK medical schools

The Wellcome-Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine

It is an exciting time to be involved in Undergraduate medical education. Queen’s University is currently completing a full curriculum review which will result in a number of changes to how and where medical students are taught.

The Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC) and the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) have collaborated to produce guidance on the design and delivery of general practice learning and teaching in UK medical schools.

The guidance is based on published evidence and current best practice in UK medical schools and has been refined through consultation with the Medical Schools Council (MSC), General Medical Council (GMC) and the MRCGP Curriculum Development Group. It aims to support implementation of the recommendations of the recent Health Education England (HEE) and the Medical Schools Council ‘By choice – not by chance’ report on raising the profile of general practice at medical schools.

It does not propose a one-size-fits-all curriculum or syllabus, but rather a set of guiding principles providing ample space for individual undergraduate programmes to adapt and innovate. We recommend that medical schools use this document to inform thinking around the quantity, content and process of general practice teaching, both on placements and on campus. This process should integrate with local medical school curricula and also broader GMC curriculum outcomes.