Developing a trainee-led interview course for aspiring academic foundation doctors

C Wilcox┬╣

┬╣IHR Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility, Southampton

The Academic Foundation Programme (AFP) is a training pathway for newly-qualified doctors which provides the opportunity to develop research and teaching skills alongside core competencies. Selection is competitive and involves a rigorous interview process. 

As a group of early-career clinical academics (senior house officer level), we developed a free one-day interview course for 12 Southampton final-year medical students, covering possible topics that could come up at interviews across the UK.

We designed a variety of lectures, small-group sessions and a mock interview, involving a mixture of clinical and research themes, and interactive teaching resources such as clinical case histories, lab results, scientific journal articles and handouts. Delegates received verbal and written feedback.

100% thought the course was well organised and would recommend it to a colleague. Additional comments praised the quality of the teaching, educational material, and the mock interview. A number also noted that the faculty were knowledgeable and engaging. A further round of feedback post-interviews confirmed the usefulness of the course and the majority of delegates secured a place.

We feel that traditional yet interactive teaching, delivered by a relatively junior faculty, can provide demonstrable educational benefit and we will continue to develop the course over future years.