Oncology PG Cert

London, Bloomsbury

This PGCert Oncology is the ideal first step for future consultants in clinical or medical oncology. Our flexible programme is taught mostly online with short face-to-face teaching blocks on-campus in London each term. You will study cancer biology and evidence-based medicine in detail across two modules: 'Fundamentals of Oncology Science' and 'Fundamentals of Oncology Therapeutics'.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.
5 calendar years
Programme starts
September 2023
Applications accepted
All applicants: 28 Feb – 28 Jul 2023

Applications closed

Entry requirements

Applicants must possess an undergraduate medical degree (i.e. MBBS or equivalent from a recognised institution) and have completed foundation training (or equivalent basic postgraduate clinical training). Applicants must have full and current registration with the UK General Medical Council (or international equivalent) and be in clinical practice in an oncogological specialty with access to patients for the duration of the programme.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

For this programme, please contact our UCL Graduate Admissions team.

About this degree

This postgraduate certificate provides the perfect introduction to oncology. You will study cancer biology and evidence-based medicine in detail across two modules: 'Fundamentals of Oncology Science' and 'Fundamentals of Oncology Therapeutics'. We address four common tumour types (lung, breast, colorectal and prostate) to demonstrate fundamental oncology principles.

Our syllabus maps onto the General Medical Council curriculum for the specialist registrar training for medical oncology and clinical oncology. You will cover the curriculum for the FRCR Part 1 examinations, encountered at the end of the Oncology Common Stem training year.

The PGCert Oncology is taught mostly online with short face-to-face teaching blocks in London each term. It can be studied over 1-2 years, so you can take both modules in the same year or one module per year to complete the award. You will network with colleagues and supervisors on day-release taught days and the sophisticated platforms we use for online learning. The ability to study remotely makes it ideal for busy clinicians wishing to take the next step in their careers.

Once you complete the two 30-credit modules, you can exit the programme with a postgraduate certificate in oncology or progress to the postgraduate diploma or MSc awards.

Who this course is for

We are looking for candidates who can demonstrate:

  • A clear understanding of and commitment to oncology as a career.
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills.
  • You must value dignity, compassion, teamwork, diversity, inclusion, and above all, person-centred care, listening and responding to the specific needs of individuals and communities.

The programme is ideal for busy clinicians / oncology registrars who aspire to become consultants in clinical or medical oncology and are preparing for the FRCR Part 1 examinations, the Final FRCR and the Specialty Certificate Examination for Oncology.

What this course will give you

  • We provide oncology registrars with the essential knowledge of cancer basic science and clinical practice to advance their careers and enhance skills in cancer research.
  • Flexibility: we compress on-campus teaching into termly 3-day blocks, alongside weekly online teaching that will help you fit your studies around other commitments.
  • The foundations for professional qualifications, including preparation for the exam for Fellow of Royal College of Radiology.
  • Network with colleagues and supervisors on day-release taught days alongside distance learning on sophisticated virtual platforms.

The foundation of your career

Students on this course are committed to careers in medical oncology or clinical oncology. This postgraduate certificate will broaden your knowledge and help you to advance your career to a more specialised level or to become more established as a practitioner.

You will develop your knowledge, clinical skills, and gain specialist expertise to help you prepare for site specialist practice.


Most oncology graduates are aiming to become consultants in one or other specialty, either in an NHS based predominantly clinical service role or in an academic position. There are also a range of alternative career paths that will suit graduates - for example, in industry.

Whatever the destination, this postgraduate certificate provides a basis for knowledge and a range of transferable skills that will benefit you in your career pathway.

The certificate can also lead onto a PG Diploma or master's degree. If you wish to pursue this, we will provide guidance and support for the next steps.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of:

  • Intensive three-day blocks of face-to-face teaching
  • Online lectures and clinical examples
  • Research appraisal and journal clubs
  • Practical sessions and group discussions.
  • Self-directed reading and learning, supported by tutorials and workshops.

We accommodate a range of learning styles. Our teaching includes tutorials, group work, online and live lectures, online seminars, case reviews and interpretation of clinical images and data. Recorded lectures and audio recordings of some topics will also be available.

We use the learning platform, Moodle, to direct you to relevant publicly available websites and to other learning materials to support your learning.

You will also receive support and feedback from module leads and lecturers on the course content and your progress.

The assessments include:

  • Short answer exam questions to test your core knowledge.
  • A written review of a clinical trial to develop critical evaluation skills.
  • Written patient treatment plans to apply principles of radiotherapy and pharmacology to specific clinical contexts.

Your contact hours and independent study requirements will depend on the modules you select every year. A certificate comprises 60 credits and can be spread over one or two years.

A 15-credit module includes 18 hours of face-to-face group learning (in a block of three days), 27 hours of online courses, and four hours of tutor meetings. You should allow approximately 100 hours for self-directed learning and preparing for your assessments.

If you study 30 credits per year, you should expect to spend roughly half a day per week towards your award.


In this modular programme, you will cover the 'Oncology Common Stem' modules alongside the PG Diploma and Master's students.

The Postgraduate Certificate covers the curriculum for the FRCR Part 1 examinations, encountered at the end of the Oncology Common Stem training year. The science base is illustrated in four common tumour types (lung, breast, colorectal and prostate) as exemplars of fundamental oncology principles.

You study two compulsory 30-credit modules:

  • Fundamentals of Oncology Science
  • Fundamentals of Oncology Therapeutics.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability are subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 60 credits. Upon successful completion of 60 credits, you will be awarded a PG Cert in Oncology.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time
Tuition fees (2023/24) £3,200
Tuition fees (2023/24) £8,100

Programme only available on a modular (flexible) basis.

Additional costs

  • Travel and accommodation for the termly face-to-face teaching blocks at our Bloomsbury campus in London. We may also travel locally to other sites (e.g. Royal Free Hospital) for some activities.
  • Textbooks: we recommend purchasing core textbooks, but it is not requirement.
  • Equipment: you will need access to a computer and webcam and a reliable internet connection, as most of this course is online. When you come to London for the face-to-face components, you will be able to access computers on campus.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

As this is a flexible-mode programme that allows you to take a break from the end of a year of study, it is not considered eligible for traditional study loans.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Next steps

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

As part of your application, we would like to know:

  • Why you want to study oncology at graduate level.
  • Why you want to study oncology at UCL.
  • What particularly attracts you to this programme.
  • How your academic, professional, and personal background meets the demands of this programme.
  • Where you would like to go professionally with your degree.

Your personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying will match what the programme will deliver.

Further requirements

As you will be working with the public, you will be subject to screening by UCL Occupational Health and through the Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

You will need to consent to vaccinations to protect yourself and patients. You must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

International students who apply to this programme are not eligible for a regular student visa for full-time study in the UK. To attend the on-campus teaching sessions for this course, international students will ordinarily use a UK Standard Visitor visa for study. For any visa queries, please contact the UCL Student Immigration Compliance Team.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Got questions? Get in touch

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