Year 3 MB21

This page provides more information about GP teaching in Year 3

This first section refers to teaching in the 2021-22 Academic Year. For teaching in the 2020-21 Academic Year, please see further down the page. 

2021-22 Academic Year

Here is a brief introduction to teaching Year 3 students in the 2021-22 Academic Year. We are anticipating that this will be face to face teaching in practice but would switch to online teaching if required. We will update this page with the new course handbooks as soon as they are finalised.

In Year 3, students have 16 days in general practice on Tuesdays. This placement consists of two blocks, each of eight days. Seven of these are in practice. The final day in each block is the Academy Day which comprises a simulated surgery and an outside speaker. Each day in practice is split into a workshop in the morning with 6 students, facilitated by the GP teacher. In the afternoon, the students split into pairs A, B and C and rotate between consulting with patients, observing consulting and an online tutorial on Microsoft Sway.


Each workshop is themed and has a detailed tutorial guide. The main focus of the workshop is consulting and there will be scenarios each week to work through. We will email you a copy two weeks in advance of each workshop.

Effective Consulting in Practice (Consulting)

Each pair of students will consult for an hour during the teaching surgery. All students will get to consult every week. We suggest booking 30 minute appointments for the student consultations. Each student should consult at least once each day in practice. These can be telephone, online or face to face  appointments.

Health Care in Action (Observing)

Each pair will also sit in with a member of surgery staff for an hour. This could be a GP, nurse, HCA etc. The goal here is for students to observe how the practice works in real time.

Online Sway Tutorial

Each pair will also have an hour to do an online sway tutorial so you will need a spare computer space for this.

Academy Day

This is a biannual, fun and celebratory event at the end of each block. There is an actor based simulated surgery and an outside speaker. Previously this has been face to face but is likely to be online this year. This day is facilitated by the GP tutor so its important you include this in your dates when you are planning your teaching  commitment.

2020-21 Academic Year


Other Useful Documents

Key facts

• Six students per practice.
• Whole days on alternate Tuesdays (see Appendix 1 for dates)
• Each day starts with 90 mins of GP preparatory time before the students arrive. From 9-10AM we (Simon and Ciaran, Year 3 GP leads) will be available on Blackboard Collaborate to answer any questions that you might have. The link to this will be sent with the handbook for the first day.

Introduction (30 minutes)

• All six students
• Via Blackboard Collaborate
• On the first day you may wish to set up a WhatsApp group with your students to help with communication but this is not essential
• Session plan emailed to you two weeks in advance

Actor Session (60 minutes)

• Two 30-minute scenarios relating to theme of the week one student consulting, other students and GP observing
• Via Blackboard Collaborate

Patient Session (60 minutes)

• 30 minute patient appointment for video consultation
• Pair of students – one consulting, one observing. GP observing.
• Via accuRx
• Students will keep a log of consultations observed

Sway Tutorial (60 minutes)

• Whilst their colleagues are consulting with patients, the other students will undertake self-directed learning relating to the theme of the week. This will be in the form of a Microsoft Sway tutorial.
• This will help them prepare for the afternoon tutorial
• This will be done by all students each day in practice

Plenary (60 minutes)

• Central session hosted by the medical school which one pair of students per week will join. Exact content TBC but likely to focus on video recordings of consultations.

Workshop (60 minutes)

• At the end of the day – an opportunity to draw the threads of the day together
• Review the self-directed learning with the students (tutor copy provided)
• You may wish to bring an expert patient in to this session although this is not compulsory. You can also extend this session if you wish.

Teaching dates

Block 1





















Ophthalmology and ENT



Emergencies in General Practice



Academy Day


Block 2









Abdominal presentations including domestic violence












Breast disease






Academy Day

Frequently asked questions

Can more than one GP deliver the teaching? Yes, although we would prefer no more than two regular teachers per block.

Can I change the timings of the day? Unfortunately the timings of the day are rigid due to the need to co-ordinate the actors

If I have a GP trainee, can they help? Yes, we welcome involvement from GP trainees and would encourage you to involve them in training as it is an important part of the RCGP curriculum.

Will we still get emailed in advance of the session like last year? Yes, we will aim to email you two weeks in advance of each session with a handbook for that day.

When do we get paid? Payment is retrospective – we will send out attendance and payment forms prior to the last session of the block. On receipt of these, we will pay the practice. This is the same as our teaching in all other years.

Are the students DBS checked? Yes, the year 3 students have all been DBS checked.

Have the students had information governance training? Yes, the students have had training on the importance of confidentiality and the management of patient identifiable data (PID). A link to the confidentiality agreement that the students will complete is available here.

Is it safe to invite students on to accuRx calls? accuRx is approved by NHS digital as a secure tool for video consultations. The students have undertaken data protection training and CAPC Teaching have written a data protection impact assessment in collaboration with data protection officers from the University of Bristol and Avon LMC. This can be viewed on request.

How should I consent patients for student consultations? We would expect you to obtain verbal consent from the patient as you would for medical student teaching pre-Covid.

What should I do if I am unable to teach for any reason? We would expect you to arrange for a colleague to deliver the session on your behalf. If this is not possible then we would ask that you rearrange the day of the teaching at a time that is agreeable to your students and the academy. It is crucial that the academy is also consulted as the secondary care teaching timetable is very full so to avoid clashes, direct discussion locally is advised. 

Is Blackboard Collaborate safe to discuss patient identifiable data (PID)? We have made as much effort as possible to ensure that Blackboard Collaborate is a secure platform for discussion of patients, including with patient identifiable information. As with any data sharing, the amount of data shared should be what is needed for the purpose (in this case teaching). For example, if you are discussing patients seen earlier in the day with your students, you may not need to use the full name of the patient. In most security breaches, humans are the weak link and we are providing training to students and GP teachers to ensure they know how to use the software.

Can I teach from home? Yes. We realise that people may need to self-isolate at short notice or work from home for other reasons. Providing there are no technical barriers to you teaching from home, we would support you with home working. 

I've been asked to complete a workplace based assessment for my student, what should I do? There is more detailed information on this in the Year 3 handbook. The students should be assessed in terms of where they are expected to be at that stage of the year and must complete 4 Mini-CEX and 4 CBDs in total across all teaching settings at the satisfactory level by the end of the year.

Additional helpful resources

If a patient cancels and you find yourself needing some additional teaching resources, we recommend role playing some of these vignettes from the Bradfort and Pennine VTS training websites.


Academic: Dr Ciaran Conway or Dr Simon Thornton

Administrator: Kirsten Gill


Year 3 Key Facts

  • Tuesdays
  • 6 Students per group
  • 16 days over the year split into two, eight day blocks
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