Academic Foundation Training

Welcome to the 2018 – 2020 application process for Academic Foundation Programmes (AFPs)

AFPs are an opportunity for doctors to develop their research and/or teaching skills and/or medical and management capabilities.  There is great variety between academic programmes with some focusing on more traditional pathways while others focus on quality improvement and even health informatics.

All programmes have one common purpose and AFPs are designed to ensure that all trainees achieve the core competencies of foundation training whilst simultaneously supporting the development of key skills in other areas of medicine. 


Further information on the structure and purpose of an AFP can be found in the national Rough Guide to Academic Foundation Programmes.


The North West of England Foundation School in 2018 offers a total of 57 AFPs in 10 of our acute employing trusts, across the 3 key areas of academia; Leadership, Research and Education (summary below);


Employing Trust

Total No of AFPs

Academic Component














Central Manchester





East Lancashire





Lancashire Teaching





Morecambe Bay





Pennine Acute





Royal Liverpool








South Manchester






Please click here to download a detailed breakdown of the programmes available in our school for 2018-2020. Please note that the 2018 AFP Programme information shown within this link is indicative only and may be subject to further changes between 21.08.2017 and August 2018 by the acute employing trust as they work towards national requirements set out by Health Education England.

For information on the location of the employing trusts and facilities available please visit our Trust Map page and click on the relevant map pin. 

Academic Programmes in Education 

HEE-NW offers funding for trainees in Academic Education programmes to undertake module 1 of the Edge Hill PG Cert Course in Medical Education.

Please note that as with all programmes these are accurate at the time of publication but are subject to change in line with service reconfigurations and national requirements.

Applying for an AFP

Applications for AFPs can only be made via the national Foundation Programme website and the recruitment portal, Oriel.  The application window is the same as the application window for FP and applicants will be invited to express an interest in applying for AFP during completion of the national application on Oriel.

Once the national application process has closed (on the 13th October 2017) Foundation Schools will begin their local recruitment processes to shortlist and interview applicants for AFPs.


The national timeline for AFP recruitment is as follows:


02 Oct 2017, 9:00 GMT – 13 Oct 2017, 12:00 GMT : National Application window on Oriel.

Applications will not be accepted after the deadline of Friday 13th October 2017 at 12:00 (GMT) under any circumstances. This is a national deadline and Oriel automatically locks after this time, so we advise applicants to plan accordingly to ensure they submit an application in advance of the closure. Failure to submit an application by this deadline will mean they are no longer part of the Foundation Programme application process for 2018 and they will have to wait until September 2018 before they are able to register again for FP/AFP 2019.

It is the applicants responsibility to allow themselves enough time to register, enrol and apply within the application window. The school cannot be held responsible for those who miss a deadline if they have chosen to leave completing their application until the last minute.

16 Oct 2017 - 12 Jan 2018: Local AFP Shortlisting and Interview process


17 Jan 2018: AFP National Offers (48 hours to accept or decline)


24 Jan – 14 Feb 2018: AFP Cascades (weekly, 48 hours to accept or decline at each release)


All AFP offers will be made in the Jan – Feb offer period.  Successful applicants will have the opportunity to accept/decline offers on Oriel by the stated deadlines.  Applicants applying for AFP who are not successful in obtaining an AFP offer by the close of AFP recruitment will automatically transfer to standard FP recruitment.


Full details of the national application process and timeline, including the 2018 national person specification can be found on the national Foundation Programme website


Ranking your AFP Preferences

Please rank all of the programmes you wish to be considered for, in order of preference, under the "Preference" column by using the drag and drop function on Oriel. Any programmes you do not wish to be considered for should remain in the "Not Wanted" column. The more programmes you preference, the greater the likelihood of being offered a programme of your choice, if you are successful at interview. We recommend you rank as many of our AFP Posts as possible to increase your opportunity for a place, but this is entirely your choice.

Local Shortlisting and Interviews


The shortlisting and interview timeline for the North West of England Foundation School is as follows:


2 Nov 2017: AFP Shortlisting Event

16 Nov 2017: AFP Applicants notified of shortlisting outcome on Oriel (latest of 5pm)


14 Dec 2017: AFP Interviews Event

AFP Shortlisting Criteria

Applicants are shortlisted for an AFP interview using a set of scoring guidelines which cover each of the following areas:

i)       Supporting AFP Application Questions 1, 2 & 3...

These supporting white-space questions are locally produced and are scored on the quality of the example and depth of the response given.

Maximum totalized score for all questions: 22 points *


ii)      Additional Educational Achievements

Applicants can record a total of 32 additional educational achievements on their application, aside to their Primary Medical Qualification. These include:

Additional Degrees (max of 2 degrees : points vary). Scores are determined by the qualification type / level.

Presentations – Clinical, Healthcare, Education, Leadership or Research

(max of 10 presentations : maximum 7 points per presentation * )

Publications – Clinical, Healthcare, Education, Leadership or Research

(max of 10 publications : maximum of 10 points per publication * )

Prizes - Clinical, Healthcare, Education, Leadership or Research

(max of 10 prizes : maximum 10 points per prize * )

Maximum totalized score for all Eductional Achievements : 280 points *

Please note that for August 2018 we will not be using the academic decile or EPM score to determine those shortlisted for interview. We will be using the white space application questions (1,2 & 3) and additional educational achievements for scoring only. 

When completing the application, applicants should note that any Educational Achievements which are entered as part of the standard FP application will need to be re-entered under the AFP application section as these will not transfer across from the FP application form.  

AFP Interview Criteria

Applicants who are shortlisted and invited to an AFP interview will be assessed and scored on the day. Interview slots are pre-booked with the applicant and are held across three separate stations. Each of these stations are scored at a maximum of 25 points*  (with a maximum totalized score : 75 points *)

Following the interview, applicants will be awarded a final score. This will consist of the total score obtained from the three interview stations combined with the applicants academic decile.  This final match ranking score which will be used in conjunction with an applicants preferences to determine allocation.   

Please note from the outset that AFP score totals shown above are indicative only and may be subject to further changes between 21.08.2017 and December 2017.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to interview from the end of November (date to be confirmed). Interviews will be held at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on the 14 Dec 2017. The North West of England will not be offering telephone/Skype interviews and shortlisted applicants will be required to attend the interview in Manchester in person as there will be no alternative interview dates on offer.

For information, late arrival at an AFP interview after the pre-arranged time (including any travel disruption or unforseen delays) may also lead to the applicant being declined an interview and their AFP application being rejected, so again we advise all invited candidates to take particular care when planning their travel itineraries in advance. 

Full details of the interview process will be communicated to shortlisted applicants from mid-November 2017. 

AFP Interview Expenses Claims

Please download and read carefully the AFP Interview Expenses Policy before you submit a claim form to us. Expenses claims must be received by the foundation school no later than 28 calendar days after the AFP Interviews have taken place and claims will be processed after this time. When submitting a claim we ask that if you choose to email the completed claim form, all original receipts and travel tickets must still be physically posted to us as evidence. E-tickets can be emailed to us and must be shown as a screenshot wilth the claimants name clearly visible. Email or post your claim form and original receipts to: AFP Interview Claims, North West of England Foundation School, Health Education England, Third Floor, 3 Piccadilly Place, Manchester M1 3BN.

AFP Application Feedback 

Scores and feedback from shortlisting and interviews will only be provided to applicants (on written request only) once the AFP recruitment process has been completed nationally. If you would like to obtain written feedback please email us after Monday 19th February 2018, when we will be happy to provide you with this information. This is to ensure that the recruitment process remains fair and equitable to all applicants.

Appealing your AFP Application Outcome

If you wish to register an appeal regarding the outcome of the AFP recruitment process for 2018, please follow the process detailed in the UKFPO AUoA AFP Recruitment Appeals Process Guide.

Where to find additional information


If you would like to know more about the tracks and programmes on offer at individual trusts then please use the links and contact details provided below. 

Academic Lead: Dr Nicola Goodson 

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at Aintree 

Alder Hey 
Academic Lead: Dr Melissa GladstoneDr Calum Semple


Academic Lead: Dr Mayen Egbe

Please click the following links to access additional information about the academic opportunities at Bolton : Education / Leadership

Central Manchester

Academic Lead: tbc early 2018

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at Central Manchester 

East Lancashire

Academic Lead: Miss Suzanne Gawne

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at East Lancashire 

Lancashire Teaching Hospitals

Academic Leads: Dr Shondipon Laha & Dr Stephen Fowler

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals

Morecambe Bay

Academic Lead and honorary senior lecturer in Manchester & honorary clinical lecturer in Lancaster: Dr Marwan Bukhari

For additional information about the academic opportunites here please contact the trust postgraduate / foundation programme administrator.


Pennine Acute

Academic Lead (acting): Dr Sarita Sochart

For additional information about the academic opportunites here please contact the trust postgraduate / foundation programme administrator.

Royal Liverpool

Academic Lead: Dr Cecilia Jukka

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at the Royal Liverpool & Broadgreen University Hospitals.

Salford Royal

Academic Lead: Professor Shaheen Hamdy

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at Salford Royal

South Manchester

Academic Leads: Dr Sahena Haque & Dr Stephanie Thomas

Please click here to access additional information about the academic opportunities at South Manchester

Integrated Clinical Academic Training (ICAT) 


The aim of the The Integrated Clinical Academic Training programme is to facilitate and support the academic development of both undergraduate and postgraduate clinical trainees who are interested in following a clinical academic career path.


Liverpool ICAT Overview


The Liverpool ICAT is a part of the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at the University of Liverpool. The governance of ICAT is through the Executive Group and the Board, both of which has representations from the University Research and Teaching Institutes, HENW, NHS Trusts and also includes academic trainee members. The nominated ICAT academic lead and local AFP lead for Foundation Years is Professor Arpan Guha, Head of the Postgraduate School of Medicine.  The local lead for Aintree University Hospitals NHS Trust is Dr Nicola Goodson, Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology.


Liverpool ICAT website address


Manchester ICAT overview

The Manchester Academic Health Science Centre (MAHSC) hosts the Manchester Integrated Clinical Academic Training (ICAT) programme. The aim of the ICAT programme is to facilitate and support the academic development of both undergraduate and postgraduate clinical trainees who aspire to follow a clinical academic career path. All aspects of the ICAT programme are overseen by the ICAT Operations Group.

To achieve this aim, the ICAT programme is managed as a partnership between The University of Manchester and Health Education England - North West and in close liaison with the NIHR Trainees Coordinating Centre (NIHR TCC), which oversees ‘Integrated Academic Training’ nationally and is responsible for the allocation of funding to support programmes.

Academic Foundation doctors in the North West benefit from this integrated and coordinated approach to academic training via:

Access to research supervisor’s research within world-class facilities that cover the full healthcare continuum

Attendance at dedicated Manchester ICAT training and networking days held in the University

Access to a University-based academic teaching programme designed and delivered by the Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences training team.

Individual AFP programmes across the Manchester Hospital sites (CMFT, SRFT, UHSM) also offer their own bespoke teaching and support schedules that utilise local clinical researchers and dedicated Clinical Research Facilities.

Further information can be found on the Manchester ICAT website:



ICAT Contacts


Professor Robert Moots (Chair - University of Liverpool ICAT)

Dr Calum Semple (Deputy Director - University of Liverpool ICAT)

Dr Cecilia Jukka (Royal Liverpool ICAT AFP Lead)

Dr Nicola Goodson (Aintree ICAT AFP Lead)


Debbie Sweeney (University of Liverpool ICAT Administrator)


Professor Rachel Lennon  (University of Manchester ICAT AFP Lead)


UoM ICAT Programme Enquiries


UoM ICAT Website


Dr Rachel Isba (Chair and AFP ICAT Lead - University of Lancaster ICAT and Head of Lancaster Medical School )


Mary Mason (University of Lancaster - Administrator)


For any other queries relating to the national or local AFP process that are not covered on this page please send an email to