2024 UK Foundation Programme: Major Changes Ahead!

Overview – UK Foundation Programme

The UK Foundation Programme is set to undergo significant changes in its allocation process, starting from 2024. Under the new allocation model, applicants will be ranked using computer-generated algorithms, eliminating the requirement for the Situational Judgement Test (SJT). These changes are scheduled to be implemented in the upcoming 2024 Foundation Programme round, with applications opening in August 2023.

Foundation Programme Allocation Process Changes for 2024

Agreement has been reached among the four UK statutory education bodies to introduce a substantial change in the management of the UK Foundation Programme allocation process for 2024. The change involves adopting a new allocation model that incorporates computer-generated rankings and eliminates the reliance on the Situational Judgment Tests (SJT). These changes will apply to all medical graduates seeking placement in a foundation school in the UK and are supported by the Medical Schools Council, the British Medical Association, and all four UK governments.

Transitioning to Computer-Generated Algorithms and Eliminating SJT

Currently, applicants are ranked based on their Educational Performance Measure (EPM) score and an SJT score, with higher-ranking applicants being allocated their preferred foundation school first. However, the new allocation model will prioritize computer-generated rankings, rendering the SJT requirement obsolete.

Impact on Applicants and the Application Process

As the UKFPO prepares to release the applicants’ guidance for 2024 in July 2023, more detailed information regarding the impact of these changes on the application process will be made available. Stay tuned for further updates and insights on how these modifications will shape the Foundation Programme application experience in 2024.

Background and Rationale for the Allocation Process Changes

The decision to change the allocation process follows an extensive engagement process with various stakeholders, including Foundation School Directors, Foundation School Managers, Postgraduate Deans, foundation doctors, medical schools, medical students, and organizations. The process aimed to evaluate whether the allocation process should remain unchanged or transition to a new system, considering concerns raised about fairness, applicant stress, and lack of standardization.

Key Findings from the Engagement Process

The survey results indicated that a significant majority of respondents (66%) expressed their preference for transitioning to a “Preference Informed Allocation” system for 2024, while only 33% favoured retaining the current “Score-Based Allocation” method. The “Preference Informed Allocation” option eliminates SJT scores and medical school rankings from the allocation process, addressing dissatisfaction with the current system’s reliance on these factors.

Implementation and Review of the New Allocation System

The changes will be implemented across England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, with continuous review to ensure effectiveness for applicants. Guidance for applicants will be updated to provide a comprehensive explanation of the changes and will be made available in July 2023.

A Fairer and More Equitable Foundation Programme Allocation Process

With substantial changes to the allocation process, aspiring medical professionals can anticipate a more equitable and less burdensome experience in securing their placement in the UK Foundation Programme. The transition to computer-generated algorithms and the elimination of SJT scores aim to create a fairer and more inclusive allocation process, addressing concerns raised during the engagement process.

News and Updates

Eligibility applications for UKFP 2024 entry are now open!
The application window for eligibility applications opened at 09:00 AM (BST) on 04 July 2023. The window will close at 12:00 (midday, BST) on 25 July 2023.


Important information for applicants:

Late Eligibility applications will not be considered under any circumstances.

All communication regarding the Eligibility application should be submitted in writing to helpdesk@foundationprogramme.nhs.uk. Applicants should include their Oriel PIN number and full name in all communication with the UKFPO.

For technical issues regarding Oriel, eg. technical difficulties making your application, please contact the Oriel team on oriel@hicom.co.uk.

For more details, visit @ UK Foundation Programme.

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