Medical electives

Temp medical elective

Due to the circumstances surrounding Covid-19, the University of Leeds is not currently able to accept external (none Leeds) students for Medical Electives. We know that this is disappointing however we are aware that this is an issue affecting all institutions both nationally and internationally.

We are hopeful that we will be able to re-open the application process soon,  however this is dependent on the outcome of various ongoing discussions between the University and our Placement Providers. We will update this information as soon as we have more information, however as it stands we are not currently accepting applications for the 21/22 academic year.

Kind Regards
The Medical Electives Team
School of Medicine
University of Leeds


We participate in a successful medical electives programme that will see you take exciting placements both in and outside of the region, with visiting electives joining us here at Leeds.

Medical electives programme

As an MBChB student, you'll have the opportunity to take a six-week placement at the beginning of your final year studying with us. The placement can be carried out in the UK or abroad, with some students carrying out cutting-edge research in world-renowned institutions in the USA and others travelling to remote parts of the developing world.

Past students have worked in health centres, charities, universities and hospitals in Australia, China, Italy, Nepal, Samoa, Tanzania, and Vanuatu. You can also study languages as part of the Students Without Borders programme which will help you become sufficiently fluent to work as a junior doctor in French or Spanish-speaking countries following graduation.

You may also opt to stay in the UK in order to explore a speciality of medicine that you aspire to focus on as you further develop your career, whether it be in clinical research or revolutionary surgery. Whichever you choose the elective is likely to be one of the most enjoyable and memorable components of your study at the University of Leeds.

Visiting electives

The School of Medicine also welcomes applications from visiting electives – undergraduate students from both the UK and abroad who wish to carry out an elective with us here at Leeds. As a visiting elective at Leeds you'll be attached to a named consultant at one of the hospitals of the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, either Leeds General Infirmary (LGI), St James's Hospital or Chapel Allerton Hospital.

During this period you'll be encouraged to observe and contribute to the clinical activities undertaken by your supervising consultant and their team. This will provide you with valuable experience of NHS England clinical practice and will develop your understanding of collaboration with other professionals working in primary and acute care contexts.

The elective is an observer role only and no formal teaching will be offered. Your supervisor will provide structured supervision and a varied schedule, exposing you to a wide range of clinical challenges and NHS treatment protocols.

2019 - 2020 timetable

  Placement dates
Block 1 1st June - 26th June 2020
Block 2 6th July - 31st July 2020
Block 3 3rd August - 28th August 2020

Please note:

  • There is no charge levied on visiting electives and nor will students receive any payment.
  • Six week electives may be available upon request.
  • Electives are only available in one speciality and cannot be split across specialities.
  • Due to limited provision, only one of a visiting elective's placements can be carried out at Leeds.


Applications can be submitted in January 2020 only.

Please consider the visiting electives policy and follow the online applications process, uploading the necessary documents as requested.

In February 2020 a list of clinical specialities will be made available for you to sign up to. This process operates on a first come, first served basis.

Erasmus and Erasmus+

We are not able to enter into Erasmus or Erasmus+ agreements as we are unable to fully guarantee meeting the necessary requirements. Nor are we able to offer internships or placements longer than six weeks in duration.

Visa information

Immigration rules for short-term study were changed with effect from 11 January 2018 to allow visiting electives to the UK to attend via the short-term study visa route, rather than the Student visa.

The relevant UKVI guidance gives further details about the requirements that need to be met.

English language requirement

To carry out your elective at Leeds you must ensure that you have an English IELTS certification with an overall score of 7.0 and at least 6.5 in the speaking component (or equivalent in TOEFL iBT, PTE Academic, C1 Advanced or Trinity College SELTs).

Enjoying your time in Leeds

While visiting the School of Medicine you'll have the opportunity to explore the city and the surrounding area. Leeds is a welcoming city, a thriving cultural and financial centre with many galleries, museums, bars and restaurants. It's also a great place to shop with many independent outlets and high street favourites.

Learn more about living in Leeds

For more information please contact our team at