Approval process for prior PhDs

Find out if your prior PhD can be used towards the programme.


Prior PhDs

Trainees who already have a PhD, which is considered by the School to be both timely and relevant to the trainee’s pathway through the programme, are permitted to exempt themselves from completing the research project of Section C, if they do not wish to gain the full DClinSci award.

To confirm their exemption status, trainees must send the following information to the School within the first three months of the programme:

  1. Name and full contact details
  2. The HSST specialty
  3. Year of PhD award
  4. Awarding university
  5. Confirmation of award (e.g. certificate or letter from the awarding university)
  6. Title of PhD
  7. PhD abstract in full

Generally it is likely that exemption from completing a research project will be granted for PhDs that are relevant to the trainee’s HSST specialty, or a related specialty, and completed within the last ten years.

Any requests for exemption must be sent to with an email title of HSST: C Research project exemption request.

However, trainees must be aware that it is not possible to gain the DClinSci award without completion of the research project, and they will still be required to complete the innovation component as outlined below.


Compulsory status of the Innovation in Clinical Science component for all HSST trainees

Two key outcomes of the HSST is for trainees to demonstrate their ability in communicating complex science to a lay audience and their ability to conceive innovation in healthcare science practice.

These elements will be assessed by a required submission of a proposal, which provides evidence of:

  • critical reflection of the relevant literature
  • consideration of barriers and enablers for potential implementation of the innovation
  • presenting this to a lay audience.

A full-scale research project with primary research is not essential as the requirements can be met through a business case or literature review, which is presented to a multi-professional panel.

Further details of how your HEI will register you for completing this component, based on your HSST pathway, can be found on the MAHSE website.

Last updated on 27th January 2022