STP Monthly Memo (June 2022)

The STP Monthly Memo includes the latest programme updates, events and key resources for STP trainees and training officers.

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STP Monthly Memo 2022
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Message from your STP Training Programme Directors

Namir Al Hasso, Dr EMma Bowers, Dr Jo Horne, Jane Lynch and Aarti Makan

This month’s message is from Dr Jo Horne.

Welcome to this month’s STP memo. It’s hard to believe that we are already halfway through the year and approaching assessment season again. I have been working for the National School for nine months now, supporting trainees, trainers and workforce transformation through education and training within my Health Education England (HEE) region. After nine months in the role, I can’t help but reflect on how much I too am learning and growing, alongside the trainees and trainers that I am here to support.

As a Life Scientist, I find Pathology and Life Sciences an easy subject to talk about, but I have also been embracing the recent opportunity to learn about the many amazing specialisms in other areas of Healthcare Science that I am not quite so familiar with. It’s been a privilege to have been introduced to and be educated about other specialisms and it has been fascinating to realise that despite many of our specialisms appearing to be very different, many of the challenges and opportunities that the healthcare science workforce face are in fact similar across specialisms.

This week saw the publication of a new report examining the state of leadership and management in the health and social care sector. The ‘Leadership for a collaborative and inclusive future’, or Messenger Report, provides several findings and recommendations to improve awareness around the impact that good leadership can provide. I would encourage you to read this report and see how it could positively impact your own development and that of the teams and systems within which you work.


Information for third year trainees

IACC interview invitations

You have been invited to attend a 45 minute interview to discuss your critical reflective narrative and two unseen case-based discussion scenarios. All interview invitations have been sent to trainees. If you have not received notification of the date and time of your interview, please email

Guidance on IACC interviews

We have produced some guidance on the IACC interview. Our guidance covers:

  • Assessor panel
  • Content of the interview, including 30 minutes discussing your reflective narrative and 15 minutes discussing two case-based discussion scenarios
  • Marking criteria
  • Reporting an incident
  • What to do after the interview
  • Your results

Click here to view our guidance on the IACC

Guidance on STP completion 2022

You should be at the latter stages of your training plan, be submitting or have already submitted your MSc research project, be preparing for your IACC and have outlined how you will achieve the completion of your e-portfolio.

The key dates for completion of the STP are:

  • IACC Interviews – 4th to 14th July 2022
  • Raise concerns/queries regarding sign off of the e-portfolio to the School – May – August 2022
  • Last date to submit an EEC application – 29th August 2022
  • Complete the Data Audit – August to September 2022
  • STP completion deadline (excluding those with approved extensions) – 5pm 19th September 2022

All the information and guidance on completing can be found on our website.

Click here to read the information on completing the Scientist Training Programme in 2022

Completion 2022 drop-in session

We are holding a drop-in session for trainees and training officers who have questions after or want to learn more about STP completion for 2022 on Wednesday 20th July 12pm – 2pm.

Click here to find the event joining information (Expired link)


Information for second year trainees

Guidance on completion 2023

All trainees are expected to complete as much of their portfolio as possible and it is recognised that in many departments training officers and trainees are now in a position to facilitate completion of all competencies.

The alternative pathways to completion should be by exception when trainees are unable to access specific competencies during their training, or where completion of the rotations would be at the expense of specialist training. Any competencies or assessments that cannot be completed must be discussed and agreed with training officers, including providing evidence to satisfy training officers that lack of completion is due to COVID-19.

Further information and guidance for STP trainees completing the programme in 2023 can be found on our website.

Click here to read the information on completing the STP in 2023

Completion 2023 drop-in session

We are holding a drop-in session for trainees and training officers who have questions after or want to learn more about STP completion for 2023 on Tuesday 28th June 10am – 12pm.

Click here to find the event joining information (Link out of date)


Information for all trainees

Supporting your mental health and wellbeing

Mental health, for most people, is something that fluctuates throughout their life. In fact 1 in 6 people in England report experiencing a common mental health problem, such as anxiety and depression, in any given week. A degree of stigma still exists around mental ill health and learners in the NHS, like anyone else, may often be scared or reluctant to to talk about any mental health problems they may be having.

It is important that those experiencing mental ill health know they can talk about it and receive help if they need it.

Click here to find resources to help support your mental health and wellbeing

Changes in your training – please make sure the School is aware

It is important the School be made aware of any changes to your training which may impact on your ongoing progression, participation or completion of the programme. The School will co-ordinate with commissioning teams and universities to make sure all organisations involved in your training are aware of the latest position to ensure you receive appropriate advice and support so that your training programme can be managed effectively. This applies to all trainees in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Examples of circumstances in which you or your training officer must notify the School:

  • Statutory leave – we will need to know the dates of intended leave (maternity, paternity, parental, adoption leave) and any flexible arrangements requested on return so that your programme and training plan can be reviewed and your revised completion timeline confirmed.
  • Long-term sickness absence – any period of sickness over 6 weeks or more should be confirmed with the School or if there are multiple short-term absences that trigger local employer policies. It is an opportunity to seek advice about processes that can support your training, such as the Exceptional Extenuating Circumstances policy, and to seek support from the training support team in the School to discuss matters with you and your supervisor in more detail. Click here to find the Exceptional Extenuating Circumstances policy.
  • Changes to your training officer/supervisor – this needs to be updated in OneFile but the School also needs to know for accreditation purposes and to ensure that we are communicating with the right people at the right time about your training. Click here to find the change notification form.
  • Decision to leave the programme – it is important that you get in touch with the School if you are considering leaving the programme, particularly if this is as a result of issues with your training. Try to speak to us early to get advice and support so that you can determine if leaving is the right choice for you. We will always support your decision to leave but if we can help with any issues that are influencing that decision then we would like to know to see if we can resolve them with you.
  • Transfer of training or early employment – there is a policy for this so please review and submit an application as soon as you receive the offer, or earlier if possible, so the School can review and confirm if your training can continue to be supported in your new department. Click here to find the transfer of training policy.

Any changes of the above nature should be communicated to and the relevant team in the School will advise you.


Information for training officers

Planning for the 2022 Curriculum

Trainees starting in September will begin on the new curriculum. Are you ready?

Trainees will start in the workplace with the updated rotation modules. Trainees will now spend 4-8 weeks on each rotation undertaking reflective competencies to build their understanding of practice in their own specialty, the specialties they will work with and the wider healthcare environment. You can find out more on our websitewatch our 30 minute webinar focusing on rotations or drop-in to speak to us. Make sure your external rotation centres are also up to date with the changes and know what is required of them. You may want to share this information with them. The rotation competencies ask trainees to reflect on the practice they observe. We have recently published new guidance on reflective practice in the context of IACC. This should also support you preparing for the new rotations. We will be publishing more resources designed to support the rotations soon.

Trainees currently on the STP and those starting the Microbiology STP in September will continue to follow the same curriculum.

The curricula are all available in the Curriculum Library. Select the year training started to find the curriculum for your specialty.

Planning for the new curriculum: drop-in sessions

We are hosting more drop-in sessions for anyone who will be involved in hosting a trainee on the new STP curriculum in September 2022. The drop-in sessions will be an open Q&A forum.

Our next sessions are:

  • Thursday 30th June 12pm to 1pm
  • Thursday 28th July 12pm to 1pm
  • Thursday 25th August 12pm to 1pm

Click here to find the drop-in session joining links

Train the Trainer events

We run Train the Trainer sessions to support training officers that will be taking responsibility for an STP trainee. Attending these events is essential to your training and is part of the accreditation process. Our next series of STP Train the Trainer starts in October. You must attend all three sessions to complete Train the Trainer.

STP Train the Trainer Webinar 1: Introducing the STP

Wednesday, 19th October 2022 10.00am – 12.30pm

Click here to register for webinar 1

STP Train the Trainer Webinar 2: Assessing Evidence in the Workplace

Wednesday, 26th October 2022 10.00am – 12.30pm

Click here to register for webinar 2 

STP Train the Trainer Webinar 3: Training Support

Thursday, 3rd November 2022 10.00am – 12.30pm

Click here to register for webinar 3


​​​​​​​Missed a previous edition of the STP Monthly Memo?

We’ve published copies of the Monthly Memo for STP trainees and training officers on our website.

Click here to view previous editions of the STP Monthly Memo

Last updated on 4th October 2022

This publication is part of STP Monthly Memos (2022)