Clinical electives for visiting undergraduate students

Bristol Medical School offers a limited number of clinical elective placements to visiting students in their final year of study.

Clinical elective placements:

  • are located in one of our Clinical Academies.

  • are between four and eight weeks long. They cannot be extended once dates have been agreed
  • are limited in number: you need to apply well in advance


Who can apply

Undergraduate medical students can apply if they are in the final or penultimate year of study before qualifying as a doctor.

As a visiting student, your qualifications are subject to the same scrutiny that is applied to all students at the University of Bristol.

You will be asked to provide evidence. This may include:

  • a full occupational health check
  • a record of appropriate immunisations
  • criminal record check
  • references

All students are required to sign and abide by the Code of Practice for medical undergraduates.


How to apply

The following Clinical Academies offer clinical elective placements. You should contact the Clinical Academy of your choice to arrange a placement. A non-refundable fee of £125 is payable at the time of acceptance and confirmation of the elective.

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, some Academies are not accepting elective applications at the moment. We will update this page when the situation changes.

  • Swindon, based at Swindon General Hospital (40 miles from Bristol). Placements take place between May and the end of August each year. Contact: Amanda Bell
  • North Bristol, based at Southmead Hospital. Placements take place between May and the end of August each year. Placements are not offered in Emergency Medicine, Paediatrics or Infectious Diseases. Contact: NorthBristolAcademy@nbt.nhs.ukDue to the current uncertainty and until further notice, Southmean Hospital are not accepting applications for medical student elective placements.
  • South Bristol, based either at:
    • Bristol Royal Infirmary. Placements take place between May and the end of August each year. Students need to apply in August each year to be considered for a placement the following year. Any students who apply outside this timeframe will not be considered or processed. Contact: 
    • the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children at the Paediatric Emergency Department. Because of the Coronavirus outbreak, the BRCH are not accepting any elective enquiries at the moment. 

Before making your application to this Academy, you must contact a consultant at the relevant hospital directly and they must agree to supervise you for the elective period: the Academy cannot find a supervisor for you.



Students from outside the European Union


Medical electives are subject to UK Border Agency regulations. These currently permit students from outside the EU to observe medical treatment only. You may not participate in the assessment or treatment of patients.


There are two different types of visa for coming to the UK to study on an elective placement. They are:

  • Short-term study visa- for students who wish to enter the UK for 6 months or less.
  • Tier 4 visa- this requires a CAS number, which takes at least 12 weeks to process.

We expect that most students from outside the European Union who are coming to the UK to study on an elective placement will apply for a Short-Term Study Visa . Please make sure you read this information carefully, including how to apply, and contact Student Visa Services if you have any questions about this. 

If you wish to discuss other visa types, such as Tier 4, please contact Student Visa Services

Let the Medical School know which type of visa you would like to apply for. Contact:

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