About the programme

The Foundation Programme is a two-year generic training programme which forms the bridge between medical school and specialist/general practice training.

UK Foundation Programme Office (UKFPO)

The UKFPO faciliates the operation and continuing development of the Foundation Programme. The UKFPO is jointly funded and governed by Health Education England (HEE) and the four UK Health Departments. Click here to read more about the role of the UKFPO. 

Trainees will have the opportunity to gain experience in a series of placements in a variety of specialties and healthcare settings.

Foundation Year 1 (F1)

Foundation year 1 (F1) enables medical graduates to begin to take supervised responsibility for patient care and consolidate the skills that they have learned at medical school. Satisfactory completion of F1 allows the relevant university (or their designated representative in a postgraduate deanery or foundation school) to recommend to the GMC that the foundation doctor can be granted full registration.

Foundation Year 2 (F2)

Foundation year 2 (F2) doctors remain under clinical supervision (as do all doctors in training) but take on increasing responsibility for patient care. In particular they begin to make management decisions as part of their progress towards independent practice. F2 doctors further develop their core generic skills and contribute more to the education and training of the wider healthcare workforce e.g. nurses, medical students and less experienced doctors. At the end of F2 they will have begun to demonstrate clinical effectiveness, leadership and the decision-making responsibilities that are essential for hospital and general practice specialty training. Satisfactory completion of F2 will lead to the award of a foundation achievement of competence document (FACD) which indicates that the foundation doctor is ready to enter a core, specialty or general practice training programme.


The Foundation Programme is shaped by two key documents - the Curriculum and the FP Reference Guide.


FP Curriculum 2012 with minor amends August 2015

The Curriculum is the framework for educational progression and doctors are assessed against the outcomes in the Curriculum.


FP Reference Guide (2012) updated for 2014

This document provides guidance about the structures and systems requried to support the delivery of the Foundation Programme. 


UKFPO position on supervisors in Public Health placements

The UKFPO has recently received several queries from foundation schools regarding the requirements for supervisors in Public Health placements.

Currently, the FP Reference Guide (2012) states that educational or clinical supervisors must be ‘registered and licensed medical practitioners’. However, the UKFPO acknowledges that this is not always possible in Public Health placements; therefore in Public Health placements only we confirm that non-medics, with suitable training and experience, are permitted to act as supervisors. 

This clarification will be incorporated into the next edition of the FP Reference Guide in 2016.


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