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Brighton & Sussex Medical School

clinical Education

BSMS > Postgraduate > Clinical Education

Clinical Education

Key facts

MSc, PGDip
Part-time: Normally 1-3 years
Eligible applicants: Open to UK applicants only (and EU applicants who are appointed to a post within Health Education England Kent, Surrey and Sussex
Location: University of Brighton, Falmer campus

Course Leader: Dr Jim Price 

Read Dr Jim Price's profile here >

Course Co-Ordinator: Kirstine Ross

Read Kirstine Ross's profile here >

General enquiries: 

This course is jointly validated by the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex. Applications for 2023/24 entry are now open.

Apply for the clinical education course Here >

Key areas of study

The overall aim of the course is to promote knowledge of and research into learning, teaching and communication in a clinical context, together with facilitating a reflective awareness of participants’ related educational skills and their ongoing development.

  • Professional identity as a teacher
  • Pedagogical practice in medical education
  • Advanced communication skills and strategies in medical education
  • Technology-enhanced learning
  • Simulation studies
  • Leadership and facilitation
  • Evidence-based clinical academic practice
  • Clinical education research and methodology 

“The course was extremely dynamic and included varied content and learning opportunities developed from peer-reviewed teaching practice, group discussions and group communication exercises. The focus on excellent teaching at BSMS also means that you benefit from fantastic practical experience of teaching undergraduate students.”

Dr Camilla Tooley, Clinical Teaching Fellow in Medicine and Surgery at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust


Students in a seminar

Course overview 

The overall aim of the course is to promote knowledge of, and research into, learning, teaching and communication in a clinical context, together with facilitating a reflective awareness of participants’ related skills and their ongoing development. The course allows candidates to progress from initial PGCert level to PGDip and MSc levelq ualifications. The Diploma route will normally take a year, while progression to the Masters degree entails completion of an in-depth research project, normally taking a further year.

This course is flexible in that it offers two entry routes, choices for modular study and appropriate academic targets.

Those who have already completed either the BSMS Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education (or equivalent, if APL requested) or the BSMS Postgraduate Certificate in Simulation Studies, may enter at Postgraduate Diploma Level. These participants would then successfully complete a further three 20-credit optional modules to achieve a Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Education (120 M level credits). Normally these modules would be completed part-time within one academic year.

Participants wishing to progress to Masters level must include Module MDM 10 ‘Research Methods & Critical Appraisal’ in their choice of three.

A 12,000-word dissertation (as well as an academic poster for publication) in the academic field of clinical education completes the Master of Science degree (180 M level credits). This would normally be completed in a further year, but some students with busy NHS jobs find it can take up to two years to complete.


Course structure

The format of assessment throughout the course is varied: some modules are assessed by more traditional 3,000 word written assignments, centred on a topic relevant to the student’s own practice or in-depth analyses of specific case studies or significant educational events. Others feature the development of specific educational tools (e.g. on–line learning or simulation-based assessment), focussing on more practical aspects of clinical education.

Students will also develop a personal educational portfolio of about 5,000 words using an appropriate national professional standards framework i.e. Health Education Academy (HEA) or Academy of Medical Educators (AoME).The Dissertation module involves a personal research project and is assessed by a 12,000 word thesis plus academic poster for publication in an appropriate academic journal.

Career opportunities

This course provides health professionals with a firm base to underpin their role as medical educators.

Formal credentialing in medical and clinical education is currently being considered seriously at national level in the UK and elsewhere, and the ‘Teaching Excellence Framework’ (May 2016) for higher education institutions in the UK also means that careers in medical or clinical education are likely to be enhanced via the acquisition of formal qualifications in clinical teaching.

This course provides an ideal vehicle for participants to pursue an appropriate level of study for their educational commitments and in this national context, should help them in career development.
Any clinician wishing to take a professional approach to their postgraduate studies in medical or clinical education would be strongly recommended to consider this new course.

Entry requirements

The Postgraduate Diploma and Masters courses are open to health professionals who will normally have completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education or Simulation in Clinical Practice at BSMS, or the equivalent from other institutions. It is expected that teaching will form a significant element in your professional role.

This course is open to UK applicants only (and EU applicants who are appointed to a post within HEESE).

Fees and funding

Our fees are the overall costs for full-time courses taken in the academic year 2024/25. Where courses are taken part-time over more than one academic year, fees are usually charged pro-rata for the modules taken during each academic year. If you do not have settled status in the UK and require a work visa, then you will be fee assessed as Overseas and will therefore be subject to the International fee rate. 

Find out more about 2024-25 fees and funding >


All BSMS students on Masters courses accredited jointly by the University of Sussex and the University of Brighton are eligible to apply for University of Sussex postgraduate scholarships in 2024/25. 

Read more about fees and funding here >