Application process FAQs

Common questions and answers about the STP application process.

How many specialties can I choose?

You can select one chosen preference (which is the specialty you would like to train in) as part of your initial application and applicants successfully shortlisted later select and rank sub-preferences for as many locations/employers as there are available.

What happens if I miss the application closing date?

All applicants must complete and submit the application by the closing date. We strongly recommend you submit your application at least the day before the closing date. We do not accept late applications for any reason including technical difficulties.

Will you close all applications prior to the closing date if you reach a certain number of applicants?

No, applications will not close early. However try to avoid submitting your application at the last minute. Typically, most applications are submitted in the last 48 hours, which slows the system down due to high volumes of traffic. Under no circumstances will late applications be considered.

Which STP vacancy do I apply for?

Only applicants who have been nominated by their employer with a confirmed funded position from NHS England, are eligible to apply for In-service. If you have not been nominated by your current employer within the NHS, you should apply for direct entry.

What scientific specialty should I apply for?

Your chosen specialty should be relevant to your choice of future career and your academic qualifications. Applicants can only apply under one specialty therefore before you apply to the STP, do as much research as possible to ensure you choose the specialty you really want to follow. Read more about the individual specialties on the Health Careers website and about the STP curricula in the Curriculum Library.

Is there a maximum word number for the application?

Yes, the maximum word count for the supporting information is 1,000 words.

How many sub-preferences can I choose?

You can choose as many sub-preferences (or locations) as you would be able to work at. The School’s website shows the locations and specialties of all available training posts. This information is updated regularly to reflect any changes to commissions that occur during the application process.

Where do I go to in Oriel to update my sub-preferences?

Once you have selected your choice(s) by sliding them to the wanted column of the sub-preference page, press save. You can come back and edit this section of the application up until the sub-preference deadline.

In the application questions, there is a section asking applicants to say how they meet the person specification for the programme. In the instructions, you tell applicants not to write about their qualifications. Does this mean I can’t write about anything I have done in university?

What this means is that you should not list or identify your qualifications in the statement. You have done so elsewhere in your application and they will be evaluated in their own right by the shortlisters. But you can write about activities associated with your studies, for example your experience of team working or leadership during a university project.

Should work experience or part-time employment be placed in the employment history section or is that just for full-time paid employment?

Yes, you can detail any voluntary work, or work experience is this section. You must however, indicate this is non-paid work.

What will happen if a huge number of people choose one location?

There will be no considerations made if one location has been selected in large numbers.

Do we need to upload a CV as part of the application?

We do not accept CV’s as part of the application.

Can I amend my application once submitted?

No, it is not possible to amend your appllication once this has been submitted. Only personal information as part of your Oriel account can be amended e.g. contact number.

What documents are we required to upload to the oriel platform?

Only upload documents when prompted to by Oriel. You will only be prompted to based on the answers you provide. For example if you require special circumstances or reasonable adjustments you will need to attach your evidence.

Is there an advantage if you apply earlier?

No, there is no advantage. However we recommend not submitting your application on the last day.

Can I request feedback on my application if I'm unsuccessful?

Unfortunately, due to the amount of applications received it is not possible to provide feedback. We would welcome any future applications from you.

Can you apply this year, but defer starting to next year?

No. Deferrals can only be considered for statutory reasons such as maternity. As part of the application you are asked to declare that you are available to start in the coming September.

If unsuccessful this year, can one reapply for the next year?

Yes, we would welcome further applications.

Is the person specification the general specification on the website?

Yes, this is the person specification for all specialties.

How are applicant outcomes at each stage of the process communicated?

We use direct messaging in Oriel to contact you about the progess of your application. We recommend that you regularly check your Oriel account to stay informed. We may also use the email address supplied to us, but your main source of information throughout will be Oriel. Updates will be posted to the NSHCS Twitter account.

Are there any application form tips that you can provide?

Ensure you read all the guidance documents. Tell us how you meet the requirements in the reflective statement. Review the timescales on the School’s website and ensure you check your email junk folder. With the SJT ensure you are free from interruptions and ensure you have a stable internet connection.

Why does the process take so long?

All applications are processed through standardised and strict recruitment processes by a small, but dedicated team. Updates will be published on the School’s website. Some parts of the process requires input from the scientific community in addition to usual workload. We thank you in advance for your patience.