Clinical and Academic Research

For some surgical specialties, a period of full time research is likely to be an important part of your training.

The University unit of Clinical Surgery within the Edinburgh Medical School has excellent research facilities, with fully equipped laboratories and access to all supporting academic facilities.

Clinical Surgical Research

Opportunities for clinical research are available throughout the scheme and trainees are encouraged to participate in clinical research projects including surgical audit.

A period of full-time research is encouraged, though traditionally this had usually been undertaken prior to entry into the Higher Surgical Training programme.

However is anticipated that in the future, trainees will have the option to take time out of their clinical training programme to pursue a period of full-time research.

This is a valuable opportunity, allowing some time away from the busy clinical arena to develop other important skills, such as literature critique, data collection and time management. It provides a chance to interact with clinical and non-clinical scientists and to give you insight into the world of science.

Professor Lorna Marson
Professor of Transplant Surgery and Honorary Consultant Transplant Surgeon, Royal Infirmary Edinburgh

Academic Research Posts

There are also opportunities to secure a higher degree during a period of clinical or laboratory research. The academic unit welcomes trainees who have demonstrated a commitment to research.

Several research posts are available which are advertised regularly.

Spire Resident Medical Officer

The Spire Resident Medical Officer / research posts consist of up to five appointments each year for trainees who wish to embark on a period of research training. These posts carry a commitment to providing medical cover at the Murrayfield Hospital but allow ample opportunity for clinical academic training.

In order for the second or third years of their research to be conducted full-time, previous fellows have generally secured their own research funding from peer review sources such as:

  • Medical Research Council
  • Scottish Hospital Endowments Research Trust
  • Wellcome Trust
  • British Heart Foundation
  • Cancer Research UK

Scottish Liver Transplantation Unit

The academic unit has a research post which is affiliated to the Scottish Liver Transplantation Unit. This post again allows an introductory period of research training which, for successful candidates, has led to longer term research funding.