General paediatrics training
Paediatric training enables paediatricians to deliver excellent standards of care within an evolving health service. It aims to produce professionals sensitive to the needs of children and their families. All education, training and assessment processes meet the RCPCH and General Medical Council curricula.
On this page:
- About general paediatrics
- Training levels
- Key features
- Membership of the College Specialty Advisory Committee (CSAC)
- Specialty group
General paediatrics is the care of children in hospital. Sick children can have simple or complex diseases. The paediatrician needs to know how to manage these independently or by working with other colleagues. General paediatricians comprise the largest group of paediatricians.
Their work includes:
- seeing children in outpatients departments
- emergency work on the wards or tending to sick babies in special care baby units
- teaching and training
- administration (such as writing letters and reports)
- talking to families
- working closely with other health professionals.
Some general paediatricians have a special interest in a certain area of paediatrics. Some lead on certain areas of training and education.
It is expected that paediatric trainees will take eight years to gain a Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT).
The 2010 curriculum comprehensively details the knowledge, skills and behaviours expected from a trained paediatrician working in the UK. The assessment standards help to focus on the desired outcomes of each level of training.
The curriculum was updated to reflect changes to workplace-based assessments for StRs, trainees who started training from 1 August 2007 to present.
The General Medical Council (GMC) has approved it as of 1 July 2013. It meets the GMC's 17 standards as detailed in its standards for curricula and assessment systems.
What the curriculum includes:
Competences that trainees need to achieve through their training to become a consultant paediatrician
- Assessment strategy through the their training to successful completion and the award of a Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT)
Benefits of using the curriculum:
Trainees can develop their personal development plans and chart their progress through training. This ensures they gain the appropriate experiences and continue to develop towards being a consultant. This contributes to appraisal, self-assessment, self-directed learning and educational meetings.
The curriculum gives the trainee and their tutors guidance about the areas they need to cover. It gives a clear picture of what has to be achieved by the end of each stage of training. It also helps identify areas of practice that need to be improved and that the trainee has confidence in.
Tutors can map local teaching programmes to the curriculum.
Families can see what their paediatricians are working towards in their training.
Download the curriculum and related checklists:
(MS Doc, 89KB, 4 pages)
(MS Doc, 92KB, 4 pages)
- (MS Doc, 84KB, 4 pages)
Paediatric training is divided into three levels.
Level 1 (Specialty Trainee 1-3) - lasts 2-3 years
This level provides basic knowledge of paediatrics and child health. The trainee is placed in acute general, neonatal and community paediatric posts.
Trainees need to pass all parts of the MRCPCH examination before they progress to the next level.
Level 2 (ST 4-5) - lasts 1-2 years
The trainee is placed mainly in district general hospitals (DGHs). Placements use existing core training posts and rotations including community paediatrics and neonatology.
This level has a greater emphasis on outpatient presentations. There is an expectation of a higher performance level in common paediatric conditions, child development and safeguarding.
Level 3 (ST6-8) - lasts 2-3 years
Trainees may choose to stay on in general paediatrics training. Or, they may apply in competition for one of the 17 accredited sub-specialties.
Entry to a sub-specialty takes place at ST6 or ST7, depending on the sub-specialty curriculum.
StRs training in general paediatrics will be matched to ST6-8 by their local Training Programme Directors (TPDs). This is done by local availability of training opportunities, trainee requirements and preferences.
This diagram shows the postgraduate training in general paediatrics
The RCPCH ePortfolio is designed to encourage a learner-centred approach with the support of Educational Supervisors. The ePortfolio contains tools to identify educational needs. It enables the setting of learning goals, reflective learning and personal development.
The curriculum outlines competences that trainees must reach by the end of the programme. It is directly linked to the ePortfolio.
Continuation of good medical practice
Building on Foundation training, the curriculum contains important emphasis on generic competences necessary for practice as a paediatrician.
Each trainee has a series of people with clearly defined roles and responsibilities who oversee their training. These include Clinical Supervisor, Educational Supervisor, College Tutor, Programme Director, and Head of School.
The trainee has regular appraisal meetings and reviews of their competence progression and workplace based assessments, as set out in RCPCH ePortfolio.
Regular workplace-based assessments are conducted throughout training. These build on those used in the Foundation programme with an Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP).
Assesment tools include Directly Observed Procedures (DOPS), Case Based Discussion (CbD), mini-Clinical Evaluation Exercise (mini-CEX) and multisource feedback (MSF).
The three theory examinations and clinical examination that comprise the MRCPCH are mapped to the curriculum for general paediatrics in order to provide a knowledge base for training.
The RCPCHStart assessment is designed to guide trainees as they prepare for completion of training and practice as a newly appointed consultant. It assesses the clinical and non clinical skills needed for effective practice as a consultant paediatrician.
Advanced neonatal and paediatric life support skills
By the end of Level 1 training, trainees need to have demonstrated that they have acquired advanced neonatal and paediatric life support skills.
The RCPCH does not prescribe the methods by which achievement of these competencies should be evidenced. Successful certification from an APLS or EPALS course (for paediatric life support) and an NLS course (for newborn life support) is acceptable evidence.
Successful completion of life support training conducted by other providers, such as an NHS Trust or Deanery (LETB), could also be judged as showing satisfactory achievement. However, the decision whether or not to accept this evidence will ultimately be made by the ARCP panel.
The factors that inform such decisions should be:
- whether the learning objectives, which should be explicit, cover the relevant curriculum items satisfactorily
- whether appropriate teaching methodologies are used and have been demonstrated to be of good quality, and
- whether the validity and reliability of the assessment have been quality assured.
|Chair||Dr Mark Andersonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Chair (BAGP)||Dr Peter Heinzemail@example.com|
|Assessment Advisor||Dr Priya Kumarfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Academic Training Advisor||Dr Colin Powellemail@example.com|
|Quality Advisor||Dr Russell Peek||Russell.Peek@glos.nhs.uk|
|Training Advisor||Dr Swaminathan Kannanfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Training Advisor||Dr Caroline Scott-Langemail@example.com|
|Dr Sairah Akbarfirstname.lastname@example.org|
Council of Reference members
|Respiratory & Rheumatology||Dr Robert Scott-Juppemail@example.com|
|Cardiology||Dr Roy Sieversfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Gastroenterology||Dr Subramanian Mahadevan Bavaemail@example.com|
|Endocrinology||Dr James Bursellfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Nephrology||Dr Susie Minson||Susie.Minson@bartshealth.nhs.uk|
|Adolescents||Dr Lee Hudsonemail@example.com|
|Infectious diseases||Dr Srinivas Bandifirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Emergency Medicine||Dr Ian Lewinsemail@example.com|
|Oncology||Dr Atefa Hossainfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Neurology||Dr Nadira Maharajemail@example.com|
|Neonatology||Dr Prakash Thiagarajan||Prakash.Thiagarajan@nobles.dhss.gov.im|
|Mental Health||Dr Emma Blakefirstname.lastname@example.org|
General Paediatric Regional Training Advisers
|Wales||Dr Yvette Cloetteemail@example.com|
|North Western||Dr Sameer Misrafirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Wessex||Dr Robert Scot-Juppemail@example.com|
|London||Dr Atefa Hossainfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Yorkshire & Humber||Dr Natasha Devereemail@example.com|
|Kent, Surrey & Sussex||Vacant||Vacant|
|Northern Ireland||Dr Andrew Thompsonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
Deaneries who are effectively approving their own training provision need to consider how they might assure external agencies of the quality of such provision.