Professional Doctorate in Orthopaedics

Bunion surgery

Course tutors: Dr Vivek Mudera | Professor Alister Hart

Administrative contact: Julie Kingsbury


The Doc Orth (Professional Doctorate in Orthopaedics) is designed to train the next generation of academic orthopaedic surgeons. This programme will bring together all three elements of training under one professional doctoral programme:

  1. a taught element.
  2. a reflective clinical competence and
  3. high quality research. 

It complements clinical training, up-regulating the scientific and ORIGINAL research content. Combined with the existing Higher Surgical Training programme, this course will offer students both an excellent preparation for FRCS(Orth) and a doctorate with an original research element. The main driver is greater integration of clinical service, research and education in the NHS, as exemplified by the development of the various Academic Health Sciences Centre models, in order to speed the development of improvements in patient care.

The target group for this course are orthopaedic surgical trainees with National Training Numbers (which implies also GMC registration and the MRCS), who are interested in pursuing academic career and/or those who have a keen interest in research. Intake is restricted to 2-3 per year.  This is a Ph.D level (8) degree. i.e. a professional Doctorate.

Entrance requirements

Medical degree: MMBS and equivalent, GMC registration, MRCS and Higher Surgical Training Number in Trauma and Orthopaedics

Length of Programme

Six calendar years part time (equivalent to three years full time), taught components are expected to be completed by year four.

Course content

Students must complete eight taught modules, assessed by two hour unseen exam or coursework depending on the chosen module; submit one 20,000-40,000 word dissertation which reflects a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of knowledge in Trauma and Orthopaedics, and one 50,000 word thesis of ORIGINAL research which will be examined by viva voce.


*All fees quoted are for the session 2011-12 and are related to the whole session. Fees for subsequent years are subject to increase and this is implicit in accepting the offer of a place at UCL.


An application form is available from the UCL Graduate School web site. Please enclose a copy of your Curriculum Vitae with the application form as failure to do so will delay the processing of your application form. Students can begin their studies throughout the academic year.

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