Medical Student

It is never too early to start planning your career and although your time at medical school will be demanding, with the changes in postgraduate medical education it is increasingly important to start your careers research early on. Don’t leave it until your final year.

Although the majority of medical students go straight on to the Foundation Programme, there are choices to be made regarding which Foundation School and whether to apply for the Academic Foundation Programme (AFP).

Some medical students decide they want to take some time out before starting the Foundation Programme and a few may even decide that they do not want a career in medicine.

Whatever your situation, do put some time aside to consider your own career development.

Wherever you are studying medicine you will normally find information on your medical schools or main careers services website.


What's On - guide to events in the UK on the medical careers website
Making the most of your years at medical school - information on medical careers website

Further help and advice
Other useful sources of information include the following:


  • Health Careers website has a wealth of careers information for those considering medicine for medical students as well as junior doctors
  • The BMA produce a guide on how to become a doctor
  • Foundation Programme lots of useful advice on the academic and foundation programme
  • Specialty Training information on applying to specialty including competition statistics, person specifications etc.
  • BMJ Careers lots of useful articles on careers related topics
  • Prospects for those looking at alternatives to being a doctor. The UK official graduate careers website includes a questionnaire which can help to generate ideas regarding different occupations, based upon your skills, interests and motivators. To access Prospects Planner, click through the ‘Jobs and Work’ tab, then through to ‘what jobs would suit me’ in order to access Prospects Planner. Registration and use of this service is free.
  • Target Careers Report again for those looking for an alternative to being a doctor. You'll work through some simple, interactive questionnaires that assess your career strengths, personality and abilities and, based on your responses, you'll get a list of jobs that may suit you.


  • So you want to be a brain surgeon?
    S.Eccles, S.Sanders 3rd Edition (2009)
  • The Medical Student Career Handbook
    E.Cottrel 2009
  • The Roads to Success: A Practical Approach to Career Planning for Medical Students, Foundation Trainees (and their Supervisors) C.Elton, J.Reid 3rd Edition (2010)