STP Monthly Memo (October 2020)

Our monthly memo for STP trainees and training officers features relevant news, helpful tips, opportunities to promote healthcare science and FAQs.

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STP Monthly Memo 2020
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Here at the School, we always seek to be pragmatic, responsive, supportive and proportionate in adapting programme expectations and requirements where we can. When faced with disruptive challenges like COVID-19, it is important that we make numerous adaptations in order to support trainees to complete their training.

To address challenges in the workplace and university settings, arising from the training disruption in 2020, we put measures in place quickly, reviewed and changed them for effectiveness. Below we summarise a number of key adaptations and changes that we have made and are making.


NSHCS takes over as the HCPC Approved Education Provider for the STP from the AHCS effective 20 August 2020​​​​​​​

This was a welcome move to reduce the bureaucratic burden for STP graduates in attaining registration. As of September 2020, HCPC assumed direct oversight of the School’s delivery of the STP. Trainees completing the STP will be awarded their Certificate of Completion of STP by the School, which entitles them to apply to the HCPC for registration.

STP trainees successfully completing the programme from 2021 will no longer need to wait to receive notification from the HCPC that they’re eligible to register. This will be part of the single notification of successful completion sent by the School.

Read the full statement about the strategic change in the management of completion of the STP.


Changes to OSFA end point assessment

The National School in HEE, like other education and government institutions, continues to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on its responsibilities and in particular on the training of, and completion by, current 3rd year STP trainees.

In light of the continued difficulties involved in running face-to-face events, and also to progress with potential assessment innovations suggested by senior scientists and assessment experts during an OSFA Visioning day held in January 2020, we would like to provide you with an update on the format of the STP final assessment for 2021.

  1. The 2021 mock OSFA and summer OSFA assessment events have been cancelled.
  2. Currently, Education and Assessment experts in the National School and in HEE are working on the design of an alternative STP final assessment for trainees scheduled to complete in 2021. This will retain the successful elements of the IACC. Further details will be released in December pending HEE, HCPC and national senior scientific colleagues’ approval.

In her most recent blog post on the School website, Head of School Professor Berne Ferry provides some reflections on the most recent IACC final assessment and some adaptations to training and to completion requirements.

Read Professor Berne Ferry’s full blog post here.


Adaptations to the Curriculum – Rotations and Electives

  • Elective Module completion is not a mandatory portfolio requirement for 2nd Year trainees who progressed to their 3rd Year on the programme in September 2020.
  • The School recommends that rotations should be between 4-12 weeks long. It is not necessary to notify the School of changes to the length of rotations agreed in the workplace. All the learning outcomes and competencies of that rotation must be met during the rotation length chosen.

Read the full statement about changes to the curriculum.


Completion Requirements and other updates

We continue to keep the completion requirements for those graduating in 2021 under review and will update you once our internal assurance processes are complete. We appreciate the sheer volume of information coming to you and we will continue to summarise the key changes in this Monthly Memo.

Please consider the Monthly Memo your primary source of key programme information.


What you can do to stay up-to-date and in control of your training experience

Here are 3 things you can do:

  1. Always read the Monthly Memo for a run down and highlights of what we are doing and how we are responding to your feedback.
  2. Make time to visit the School website which we continually update with programme-specific details.
  3. We welcome your feedback. Did you know that as a trainee you can feedback to the School via your elected theme trainee representatives and regional trainee network representatives? If you would like to become a trainee representative, please watch this space for imminent updates on the elected theme rep role.

Find out more about the trainee representative group.


Expressions of interest for 2020 STP intake

Due to the current climate, a decision has been taken to extend the deadline for requesting funding for STP posts, for trainees commencing in 2021/22. The online portal will now close on Friday 30th October and can be accessed using the link below. We hope that by extending the deadline this will give your organisation the opportunity to submit your requests for posts.

If you have any questions regarding the commissioning process or completing the online form, please e-mail


STP Train the Trainer goes online

If you have any members of staff that will be new to the role of training officer and will be taking responsibility for a STP trainee, this event is essential and is part of the accreditation process.

The event will help them:

  • Understand the aims and structure of the STP
  • Understand the role and responsibilities of the STP training officer
  • Know the steps to take to plan the training for trainees
  • Learn about assessing competencies and giving feedback
  • Use the functions and features in the STP e-portfolio OneFile
  • Understand how to support trainees throughout the programme
  • Have an awareness of equality and diversity as an educator

Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) we are holding 2020 Train the Trainer events online with each webinar lasting a maximum of 1.5 hours. For accreditation purposes, you will need to attend all three webinars to obtain your STP ‘Train the Trainer’ completion certificate.

  • Webinar 1: Thursday 5th November 2020 at 2pm: Introduction to STP Train the Trainer at 2pm.
  • Webinar 2: Thursday 12th November 2020 at 2pm: Assessing Workplace Evidence at 2pm.
  • Webinar 3: Thursday 19th November 2020 at 2pm: Training Support at 2pm.

If you are interested in joining these events, please contact the School

Find out more about our online Train the Trainer events.


STP training officer resources

We have produced short online guidance for new training officers. It contains really useful information on your responsibilities as a training officer, including resources about good training planning behaviours and assessing workplace evidence.

View our bitesize guidance for training officers

We have also produced short ‘Train the Trainer’ podcasts you can listen to on the go. There are 5 episodes all on different topic areas including, training planning, assessing evidence, OneFile, training support and public and patient involvement.

Listen to our podcasts for training officers


Black History Month

October is Black History Month in the UK and at the National School of Healthcare Science, we would like to acknowledge and celebrate the history of black healthcare workers and their contributions to science and medicine.

We would also love to hear about what you or your departments may be doing to celebrate. If you would like us to showcase and share this with all our stakeholders at the school, please get in contact with us at or tag us on Twitter.


Message from our Head of Assessment and Research Evaluation

A message from Sandie Gay, NSHCS Head of Assessment and Research Evaluation who is retiring and will be leaving the School at the end of the month.

“It’s been an absolute privilege and interestingly challenging to have been involved in the education, training and assessment of new entrants to the healthcare science workforce at all levels and a pleasure to work with such dedicated and committed professionals. Thank you all very much; I wish you all the very best. Please keep doing healthcare science, it means so very much.”


Health and wellbeing support during COVID-19

You might be worried about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it could affect your life. This may include having to stay at home and avoid other people. This might feel difficult or stressful.

But there are lots of things you can try that could help your wellbeing.

Click here for health and wellbeing support.

Last updated on 9th March 2022

This publication is part of STP Monthly Memos (2020)