Undergraduate Medical Course
The Department of Paediatrics delivers the speciality rotation training in Paediatrics for Year 5 students studying medicine through the University of Oxford Medical School.
About this course
Paediatrics is the only medical discipline concerned with all aspects of the well-being of infants, children and adolescents - including their health, and their physical, mental and psychological growth and development. It is one of the most diverse and varied medical specialties studied at medical school - covering everything from babies born more than three months early, to young adults, and from children in hospital for only a few hours to those who spend their whole life navigating the health care system.
It is one of the few areas of hospital medicine where you can still be a true generalist but there is also a full range of sub-specialties and interests. We are limited only by the age of our patients. The different areas of paediatrics – acute general paediatrics, community, neonatology, and the various specialties – often require different skills and strengths so there is often something in paediatrics for everyone, whatever your interests and skills.
The principal aim of the undergraduate course is to equip students with the necessary tools to be able to take a good history from the parent and/or the child, and perform a competent clinical examination; to know about common conditions of childhood as well as rarer but still important conditions; and to understand growth and development, and the impact illness may have on these. We also aim to teach our students to place the child and their clinical problems within the context of the family and society in which they live – paediatricians need to be concerned not just with organ systems and disease, but also with environmental and social influences which have a major impact on children and their well-being. A good paediatrician needs to know about health as well as disease, and also must be advocates for the child, irrespective of culture, religion, race, gender, ethnicity or social status.
From 2021 onwards the course is 7 weeks in length, comprising an initial 2 week block in Oxford of lectures and taught modules, as well as other teaching. This is followed by a central 4-week block during which the students have attachments at hospitals across the region in order to maximise paediatric clinical experience. The course ends with a one week consolidation block in Oxford.
Please also read the following information on the main University of Oxford web pages before accepting an offer from us: Your Contract with the University.