Thursday 22nd September 2022

Written by

Shahid Ghulam

Reading time

8 mins

How to navigate the UK Foundation Program 2022


Congratulations to everyone passing on their penultimate medical school exams and starting final year!

Continuing on from our previous blog posts on UKFPO applications, here we’ll focus on the upcoming 2023 UKFPO application timeline. In future blogs, we’ll discuss more about the foundation deanery selection process.

UKFPO Timeline:

The eligibility application window remains at 3 weeks like last year. This was from the 9th July to the 29th July 2022.

Registering on Oriel begins on the 25th August until the 7th September 2022.

The National Application window for the Foundation Programme (FP), Foundation Priority Programme (FPP) and Specialised Foundation Programme (SFP) starts on the 7th September and ends on 20th September 2022.

SJT bookings begin on the 10th October with two windows to sit the exam (1st window is 7th December to 20th December and 2nd window is 19th January to 23rd January).

The deadline to complete deanery rankings will be the 16th February 2023.

Final allocations will be given on the 9th March 2023.

Here is a link to a more detailed version of this timeline:

First of all, the biggest change to be aware of is that educational achievements no longer count for the main Foundation Programme application.

Your overall FP score will be made up of your EPM and SJT. The EPM will be a score between 41-50 where 10th decile will be 41 and 1st decile will equate to 50 points. The SJT will be scored out of 50, similar to previous years.

How does the application process work?

As before, applications will be done on a system called Oriel. It enables the process to be streamlined, meaning applicants can send one form which allows you to apply for one or multiple foundation programmes e.g. FPP, SFP, pre-allocation. You can also submit SJT reasonable adjustment requests.

The application form begins on the 7th September and the deadline for completing this form will be the 20th September.

What should you be doing now?

Though there is still time before the application process begins, it’s important to be aware of important application deadlines as listed above.

Furthermore, it would be valuable to understand what programme you would like to apply for. The majority of applicants apply for the Foundation Programme (FP), the standard programme. However, it’s important to note that there are other programmes available too.

Programmes available:

The Specialised Foundation Programme – a programme that caters to those who are keen on academics, research or developing leadership skills. We have previously written a blog regarding the SFP so here is a link to our previous blog to try and understand whether the SFP is something for you.

The Foundation Priority Programme – a programme that gives a variety of incentives, be that better pay, teaching opportunities, leadership and/or specialty experiences. The perks offered can be something that entices you into picking this programme. The selection programme would involve applicants selecting in the main application form that they would wish to be considered and then rank the individual programmes.

Psychiatry Foundation Fellowships – a programme that caters for those who are interested in a career in psychiatry. More details are to be released by the UKFPO. In brief, the PFF offers applicants more educational opportunities with regards to psychiatry.

Pre-Allocation – for some applicants, personal circumstances may mean that individuals would benefit from applying to a specific foundation school. Criteria from UKFPO includes:

  1. Parental/guardian responsibilities
  2. Caring Responsibilities
    1. Primary caring responsibilities
    2. Significant caring responsibilities
  3. Medical reasons
  4. Unique circumstances
    1. Educational circumstances
    2. Widening participation.

Like last year, applications will be done via Oriel.


Final year of university will be starting, if not already started, over the next couple of weeks. It’s important for you to find out who your personal tutors/supervisors are so that you can contact them for a reference on your application.

As well as this, you should start thinking as to what order you would like to rank your deaneries. Websites like Messly ( as well as personal experiences from your seniors would be the best way to find out how each deanery is and whether it may be right for you. Focus on things that are important for you; whether it be location, distance from home or if certain specialities are only available in certain areas.

It’s also important to think about the SJT. For now, plan which block you would like to sit the SJT. Some may prefer to sit it in sooner December and others prefer using the Christmas holidays to prepare for the January slot. As well as that, it would be beneficial to start looking at some material and slowly start revising for the SJT.

We wish everyone reading this the best of luck! The application process can be tedious (as well as very stressful), but the PAMSA team are always more than happy to help everyone to get through it!

Wanna add to the discussion?

Give us your thoughts!