Academic Training

Out of Programme Research (OOPR).

Under the Gold Guide, Medical Trainees can apply for a period of dedicated research to undertake a higher degree such as a PhD or MD. During this time they move "Out-of-Programme" and their clinical training is paused until an agreed-upon date for return to the specialty training programme.

We would expect the majority of our Academic Clinical Fellows to use the pilot research conducted during their ACF post to apply for an externally-funded fellowship, but any specialty trainee is eligible to apply for OOPR.

The process for application for OOPR is the same as for any Out-of-Programme experience, and is outlined in the policies section.  Trainees must submit an OOP form to the Deanery, countersigned by their clinical Training Programme Director. The Postgraduate Dean or a deputy will make a decision on whether the period of OOP is to be approved.


Health Education England – Yorkshire and the Humber allows academic trainees* a usual maximum of three years of OOPR, with a possible further year extension dependent on individual circumstances.  This contrasts with the majority of Local Education and Training Boards who will usually allow a maximum of two years with a possible extension to three years. 


*Academic Trainees are defined as those who have undertaken an Academic Clinical Fellowship or similar post in the previous twelve months and trainees who have been awarded an externally-funded fellowship from a major research funder e.g. Wellcome Trust, MRC, NIHR. Trainees who are in clinical-only training posts wishing to undertake higher degrees may also be considered for academic status to allow them to take a longer OOPR period on a case-by-case basis.

It is essential that the clinical training programme are given as much notice of intended return to programme as possible. Failure to do this may mean that a training post is not immediately available at the end of OOPR.

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