Developing you as a doctor

Becoming a Doctor

For the first two years on our programme, you will focus on systems-based learning, working in teams for both your academic and clinical teaching. You will learn the core knowledge and clinical skills of a doctor using lectures, tutorials, clinical symposia, cadaveric dissection, e-learning and clinical simulation. We will help you reach your full potential as you will learn in small groups and benefit from using modern and bespoke simulation facilities and learning spaces.

Learning methods

Our programme is based on Brighton and Sussex Medical School’s integrated curriculum. This has been tailored to suit the unique facilities of our universities and develop your knowledge, academic and clinical skills, as well as to take advantage of the innovative developments in the healthcare services across Kent and Medway.

Throughout the programme, you will focus on how you apply your learning to your clinical practice. To help you with this, our patient educators are involved throughout our programme giving you critical guidance and feedback. This offers you a unique patient-centred focus to your clinical training and helps you gain a broad understanding of patients’ experiences and the implications of a range of health conditions and disabilities.

You will use individual patient studies to help you to underpin the knowledge, skills and professional values of a doctor and to understand a patient’s journey and how to practice medicine. As you begin medical school, you will use your ePortfolio as part of your continual professional development, and continue to use this for the rest of your professional medical career.

As our programme develops, you will also learn alongside students from other years on the BMBS programme, as well as with students on other health programmes.

How will my progress by measured?

Formal and informal assessments occur throughout the course. There is a combination of written assessments including essays, short answer questions and single best answers. We will also test your clinical and professional skills through practical assessment methods such as OSCEs (Objective Structured Clinical Exams) and student presentations.

Your professional development will be captured through assessments within the e-Portfolio, including feedback from colleagues and staff and your own reflective writing. Regular meetings with your Personal Academic Tutor and Educational Supervisor ensure that you are given support to keep on track throughout the programme.

Feedback

You will receive regular written and verbal feedback on your progress in the classroom and the clinical environment to help you define your strengths and areas for development. You will be supported throughout by a Personal Academic Tutor and an Educational Supervisor. Both will help you define your personal development plan for each part of the programme. You will have the opportunity to prepare for your summative assessments through formative opportunities.

Our programme is growing with you. We encourage students to feedback to us about the curriculum through formal and informal routes. We pride ourselves on listening to students and where possible  acting on their feedback to continually improve the learning environment.

Facilities and resources

In Years 1 and 2, your studies will be based primarily at both the University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church university campuses, using purpose-built teaching facilities including a modern anatomy laboratory, small and large group teaching spaces, clinical simulation spaces, clinical science laboratories and IT resource centres. After your programme induction, you will do six one week placements in year one and seven in year two, and you will have the opportunity to see, learn and practice the skills relating to the particular body systems you are concentrating on at that time in the programme.

In Years 3, 4 and 5 you will be mainly based in and around one of the seven acute care hospital trusts in Kent and Medway, with visits to mental health, primary and community care and other healthcare providers organised to support your learning. These placement sites all have comprehensive learning facilities including fully stocked medical libraries, computer suites, a clinical skills training area and teaching rooms for large and small group study.

Digital resources

Today’s doctors need to be confident in using information technology effectively. Your degree will include training in digital literacies, information management, electronic patient records and the principles of bioinformatics.

Our web-based virtual learning environment provides you with online access to digital learning resources and study support tools. This enables lecturers to post presentations online along with lecture recordings and direct links to the online library system.

A wide range of digital learning resources, including videos, quizzes, interactive cases and case-based tutorials are also provided. The use of technology is encouraged to support learning, such as through online clinical cases and digital technology in the dissection lab.

Virtual microscopy allows active evaluation of microscopic anatomy and pathology in lectures, helping provide a full perspective on a patient’s illness, and can be accessed for further study or revision through our virtual learning environment.

Along with other IT-based learning, MRI, CT and X-ray images are uploaded digitally from our local healthcare providers and used in interactive sessions. All these methods are supported by regular tutorials.

All university campuses and hospital sites have computer clusters (most with Wi-Fi) providing connections to both the university and hospital networks, ensuring you are always in touch with your learning resources.

Professional applied knowledge, skills and values

During your academic studies and clinical training you will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • the fundamental medical sciences
  • the structure and function of the healthy human body and how it alters in disease
  • pregnancy, childbirth, development and ageing the causes, patterns, treatments and outcomes of common acute and long-term medical conditions
  • the principles of population and environmental health, showing the wider determinants of disease and the impact of ill health on society
  • the principles of health promotion, disease prevention and therapy
  • human relationships in the context of the family, community and culture in health and disease
  • the organisation and provision of healthcare in the UK
  • the ethical and legal responsibilities of doctors.

You will learn how to:

  • take a detailed medical history
  • identify the clinical signs of disease
  • use a patient’s history and clinical examination to reach a diagnosis
  • design an appropriate treatment plan, working with a multi-disciplinary team carry out specified clinical procedures with confidence
  • deal safely with medical emergencies
  • listen to, and work in partnership with, patients, relatives and carers across a range of organisational settings, in order to make shared decisions about the maintenance or improvement of the patient’s health
  • make effective use of laboratory and other diagnostic services
  • understand clinical pharmacology/ therapeutics and prescribing.

You will develop:

  • an understanding of your responsibility for lifelong self-education
  • the habit of critically evaluating your professional performance
  • an awareness of the need to involve patients and their relatives in decisions about their treatment and care
  • the critical use of scientific evidence for medical practice
  • a recognition of the need for you to work as part of an effective multi-professional team
  • the judgement to recognise when you have reached the limits of your own knowledge or skills and need to seek assistance.