About the Scientist Training Programme

Last Updated: 21st September 2020

The Scientist Training Programme (STP) is a three year programme of work-based learning, supported by a University accredited master’s degree.

The STP is for well-qualified science graduates with a passion for science and patient care, and with the motivation, behaviours and values needed for the NHS of the future.

As a trainee you will be employed in a scientific department, normally in the NHS (or in some cases by an NHS private partner or a private healthcare provider), for a three-year training period. During this time, you will complete

  • a part-time master’s degree (fully funded)
  • a programme of workplace training, using an e-portfolio
  • a final assessment of competence

The training post is salaried at NHS Agenda for Change Band 6 (currently approximately £31k). On graduating, you would be eligible for statutory Clinical Scientist registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and would be able to apply for Clinical Scientist roles in the Health Service.

The curriculum for the programme is comprised of a series of core and scientific modules. Each of these modules is made up of two parts

  • Academic learning delivered and assessed in the university
  • Work-based learning and training where you develop and apply your academic and clinical knowledge and skills in the NHS workplace
Graphic about the structure of the STP

Graphic about the structure of the STP

The academic part of the programme

The accompanying master’s degree is theme based with specialist and generic modules eg. a MSc in Blood Science with a specialism in Clinical Biochemistry.

The generic elements include items such as: 

  • professionalism 
  • patient and carer perspectives 
  • ethics 
  • communication skills 
  • a research project.

Competition ratios 2014  - 2018

The STP is a popular programme and we have many applications each year. We have put together information on how many applicants per specialism, applied for direct entry posts from 2014 to 2018. The data shows you the number of posts available, the number of applicants and the competition ratio for each specialism.

Ethnic demographic data for STP trainee applications

We are happy to publish on our website the ethnic demographic data for the trainee cohorts that entered the programme in 2019 and 2018, by specialty.