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2021/22 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

MEDI5215 Elective

Module manager: Dr Carrie Lenton

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2021/22

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

The overall intention of the Elective period is well expressed in the words of an ex-president of the MSRC:- "to provide an opportunity for medical students to pursue an aspect of medicine of their choice, in a recognised establishment of their choice”.Or, in more detail by a recent final year student:The elective is your time to learn more about a speciality of medicine that you particularly enjoy or just haven’t tried before. It’s also a chance to experience something different, meet new people, have a change of scenery and try new things. It can give rise to challenges both in your clinical attachment or outside of it … For me it has been a humbling, eye-opening and extremely fun experience. Others have described it as life changing. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, unique to medicine that can be adapted to your interests and finances.


The General Medical Council’s summary of Elective aims is:
The purpose of the Elective is to provide breadth of experience for students and to increase choice. We wish to see electives continue to enable students to pursue special academic interests, to gain experience in specialised units, or to work with different patient communities. .

The School of Medicine describes the overall aim of the Elective period as ‘to provide an opportunity for medical students to pursue an aspect of medicine of their choice, in a location of their choice approved by the School.’

Although the elective is a Year Five module undertaken in the summer prior to the start of year five teaching, preparation must be done during Year Four. The dates of the elective is usually in the period July to September.

You should arrange a single placement of at least six weeks duration within this eight week time period, and may use the other 2 weeks for self-directed study (or possible travelling to and from placement). Placements arranged outside these dates will not be approved. More than one placement will only be approved if the host for your primary placement cannot provide the full 6 weeks of teaching and this must be stated in writing in your confirmation letter from your host.

Learning outcomes
In order to get the most educational value from your Elective it is important to define the key aims of your Elective before you begin to contact hosts and to review them for accuracy before you depart. This process will require you to consider what you want to achieve from the placement, research your placement in detail to establish if these aims are possible, and define in advance how you will evaluate the extent to which those aims have been met.


As an MBChB student, you'll have the opportunity to take a six-week placement at the beginning of your final year studying with us. The placement can be carried out in the UK or abroad, with some students carrying out cutting-edge research in world-renowned institutions in the USA, for example, and others travelling to remote parts of the developing world.

Past students have worked in health centres, charities, universities and hospitals in many countries including: Australia, China, Italy, Nepal, Samoa, Tanzania, and Vanuatu.
You may also opt to stay in the UK in order to explore a speciality of medicine that you aspire to focus on as you further develop your career, whether it be in clinical research or revolutionary surgery. Whichever you choose the elective is likely to be one of the most enjoyable and memorable components of your study at the University of Leeds.

Private study

The Electives Experience session is a series of short presentations from final year students about their Elective Experience. We hope to have a mixture of presentations ie clinical/ research & wellness projects. The event can be invaluable in choosing where and what you want to do for your elective and is also informative and entertaining.

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 26/10/2021 14:07:57


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