We understand that you will be keen to find out more about the Medicine (MBBS) programme, how the COVID-19 pandemic has influenced our teaching, and about our plans for the academic year ahead.  We want to set out our arrangements for delivery of the MBBS programme so that you can make an informed choice about joining us on campus for the Autumn (October-December) term.  

 You will have the following options: 

  • Join us in London, UK for the multi-mode teaching programme (a mix of on-campus and remote learning) 

  • Submit an exceptional circumstance deferral request 

If you are unable to travel to London due to travel/government restrictions, you will be able to study remotely in the autumn term.  For practical elements that cannot be delivered remotely, we will offer a remediation programme when you arrive on campus. 

Please consider these carefully and use the information below to inform your decision. 

The MBBS/BSc curriculum  

The School of Medicine’s MBBS/BSc curriculum has been designed to meet the evolving demands on healthcare systems and the changing pattern of evidence-based medical education.  

You will develop your clinical skills through situational learning in healthcare settings and practical training. You will be learning within a diverse community across our unique range of affiliated university hospitals, primary care providers and community services situated across North West London.  

During the first three years of the MBBS/BSc programme (which we call Phase One), we will teach an integrative model of biomedical science and clinical medicine, with a strong scientific focus underpinned by our world-class research. Your education will be based on local and national needs, addressing our social responsibility and preparing you to meet global healthcare challenges.  

Phase 1a (starting in October 2020)  

 In Terms 1 and 2, you will focus both on the scientific basis of health and disease and the professional skills, values and behaviours needed to be a doctor. You will also have early clinical exposure within primary care during the ‘Patients, Community and Healthcare’ module. In Term 3, you will consider the role of lifestyle on healthy living and disease prevention.  

We will use a combination of on-campus and online learning. Both on-campus and remote (online) learning will include face-to-face learning, as you would experience in tutorials, for example. The online learning will include preparatory work for face-to-face teaching and other study that can be carried out in your own time. This will be approximately three and a half days per week. The on-campus learning, which includes clinical skills teaching, some anatomy and clinical placements, will be between one and two days per week. Should a further increase of restrictions be implemented, where a module would be expected to be delivered on campus, this may be amended to an online delivery or moved to a later date. 

The modules and learning outcomes of Year 1 (which we call Phase 1a) are the same. We do not currently expect to move or amend your Phase 1a modules or any clinical activities outside of this academic year. If government guidance (either national or local requirements) means that it is necessary to reschedule any activities, we will move them to the most appropriate point during your studies to ensure these experiences are undertaken.  

We are planning  your Week 1 and 2 induction programme, which will be announced in the coming weeks on our School of Medicine Induction hub (a portal to support your transition from offer holder to enrolled student). These arrangements will continue to be subject to government guidance and social distancing measures.  

We will provide you with an iPad to support your academic studies. Please note that iPads will be handed out on campus, so students working remotely may need to source and pay for equipment and supplies themselves; this may include computer devices to access teaching material prior to arrival to London. Should a further increase of restrictions be implemented, the handing out of iPads on campus may need to be postponed until such a time as this is feasible again. 

If you cannot travel to campus, we want to reassure you that we will still offer you a high-quality, remote educational experience during the Autumn term and you will not be disadvantaged in your learning experience over the course of your six-year programme. If you cannot travel due to circumstances beyond your control, please confirm this by emailing feo.years1-2@imperial.ac.uk by 27 August 2020. 

On-site teaching will primarily be delivered at the South Kensington and Charing Cross campuses as well as our partner Trust/Primary Care locations, assuming national guidance at the time does not prevent this. These are our partner Trusts, and you may be sent to one or more of these locations: 

  • Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (including Charing Cross, Hammersmith and St Mary's) 

  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (including Chelsea and Westminster and West Middlesex Hospitals) 

  • London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust (including Northwick Park, Central Middlesex and Ealing Hospitals) 

  • The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (including Hillingdon and Mount Vernon Hospitals) 

  • Ashford and St. Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (St. Peter’s Hospital) 

Your GP practices will represent a diverse range of populations in and around London. You may be rotated through other partner NHS locations through later phases on the course. 

If national or local guidance leads to a change of placement site to one not listed above, or necessitates a change in campus, we will let you know in advance.    

You should apply for your accommodation in the normal way. Your accommodation selection will be considered according to your five-choice preference. Arrangements are being made to allow you to arrive in halls two weeks before the start of term, at no extra cost if you are self-isolating or need to quarantine.  

The College does not intend to change the advertised tuition fees for 2020/2021. 

Your assessments   

The School of Medicine has the infrastructure and experience to utilise remote assessment in 2020/21 if additional lockdowns or social distancing measures mean we cannot hold in-person exams and assessments as is currently planned. You will undertake both formative (or “feedback and engagement assessments”, which do not count towards your final year grade) and summative (which do count towards your final year grade) assessments throughout Terms 1, 2 and 3 online. The main summative written assessments occur at the start of Term 3 (at the end of April, and in May), but you will also have in-class, case-based and formative assessments from the start of the academic year.   

We will not change how your degree is awarded. Medicine will continue to be a pass/fail course.   

These changes will not affect your ability to apply for registration with the General Medical Council (GMC) upon successful completion of the programme. 

Spring and summer terms 2020-21 

We plan to continue offering your programme in-person during the Spring and Summer Terms in 2021, and this means that your attendance will be required. We have contingency plans in place in case of further disruption as a result of COVID19 and associated restrictions. Some content will continue to be delivered remotely. 

Your academic suppor

In the School of Medicine, we support your wellbeing from the very beginning. We will provide you with resources to support your move from further education into university through an online transition module and preparatory academic materials, which will be made available to you closer to the beginning of term. Additionally, you will be allocated an Academic Tutor in your first week who will support your academic achievement and your wellbeing. Your tutor will help you to develop a mindset for growth, as well as lifelong learning skillsets to help you work efficiently and effectively, helping drive your academic success. As you move through Phases 2 & 3 of the curriculum, the type of tutor you need will change, so we ensure that your tutors are the best fit for where you are on the course.  

We know that sometimes things happen in life that can affect your health and wellbeing. In these circumstances, the School of Medicine’s team of Senior Tutors supports students going through these more complex stages. The Senior Tutor and the School of Medicine Welfare team ensure that appropriate additional wellbeing/welfare support is offered, including the option to apply for mitigating circumstances.  

We have updated the Student Support Zone specifically in response to the pandemic, and we hope it will be helpful for you as a resource for ensuring your success at university. You can find support for careers, mental health, and disability services, along with study and wellbeing support, and the College chaplaincy.   

We also have a dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) website where updates and guidance are regularly posted.   

Your health and safety 

All on-campus teaching will be subject to public health guidance, College guidelines on social distancing, and any additional health and safety measures. All placement teaching will adhere to NHS policies and guidelines. We are conducting a full risk assessment on our teaching areas and planned activities to ensure that any measures required to meet this guidance are in place for the start of teaching.    

On arrival at Imperial, you will receive a welcome pack that will include three washable cotton face coverings, hand sanitiser and anti-viral wipes.  The College is implementing enhanced infection control procedures, for example, by frequently cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces that are touched regularly including door handles, light switches, furniture, handrails, IT equipment, desks, phones, flush plates, taps and dispensers. Perspex screens will also be used across the College in reception and service areas. Around the College, in teaching spaces and in our halls of residence there will be hand sanitisers and multi-surface cleaning wipes for you to use, as well as plenty of hand-washing facilities. 

Whilst on campus, you should follow the UK Government’s official guidance and College policies. These currently do not mandate the wearing of face coverings, however, in multi-occupancy locations such as laboratories, teaching and communal spaces, wearing a face covering shows our consideration for the safety of those around us. Face coverings should cover both your mouth and nose. Please note that in line with current Government rules, face coverings must be worn for the full duration of journeys on the public transport network across London and the UK if you are required to come onto campus. We expect our students to adhere to UK (national and local) travel advice.  

If there is a further outbreak of COVID19 during your programme, in line with Public Health Advice from the UK Government, we may be forced to suspend on-campus activity. This may be in connection with either national or local requirements. Since we will already be delivering aspects of your programme remotely to some students, we will continue to be able to deliver most of your programme remotely, and you will be able to meet the learning objectives of your programme. Some learning and assessment activities will be very difficult to replace with a remote equivalent. In these cases, they will be moved with minimal disruption to a later date in your programme. 

Your community  

You will be joining a community as members of the Medical Biosciences programme and Imperial College School of Medicine.  Your experience at Imperial goes beyond just your academic studies. With the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19), Imperial has been working with your Union to ensure that we are able to provide, enhance and facilitate all areas of your student experience under all eventualities.   Whilst the Student Union activities may not be quite the same as normal, the dedicated Imperial College School of Medicine Students’ Union (ICSMSU) will still be active and here for you for the years ahead.   

We are working hard alongside the Imperial College Union (ICU) and ICSMSU to give you the best possible welcome to the College via a multi-mode approach. Whether you join us on campus or stay at home, we are making plans for an enjoyable Welcome Week to make sure you feel part of the community at Imperial.  ICSMSU is looking forward to your arrival at Imperial and is busy preparing for the Autumn term.  

The College has identified key pillars of the wider student experience:  academic experience; research culture and environment; amenities and accommodation; student community; wellbeing support; co-curricular activities and extra-curricular activities.   Information on how we will deliver these, along with information on our Library Services, considering current social distancing restrictions, as well as a full lockdown, are set out on our website.

Your School of Medicine  

Our world-leading educators and researchers will be available to teach and support you both remotely and on-campus, where applicable and where guidelines and circumstances allow. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is possible that some staff within the Faculty of Medicine may be temporarily unavailable due to their professional or clinical responsibilities. This will not directly affect your teaching.  

We know that the year ahead is going to present you with more new situations than any of us could have predicted. We know that this will seem daunting, and we wish to reassure you that your student experience is our paramount concern. We have expanded our ability to manage remote learning and assessment, as well as academic and welfare support, to ensure that your educational experience at Imperial is of exceptional quality, especially during these unprecedented times, but also in the years ahead.  

Exceptional Deferment 

The College has set out a series of exceptional circumstances in which a deferment could be granted. These have been set out on the COVID-19 website. The School of Medicine will consider deferments on a case by case basis. Please contact feo-admissions-interviews@imperial.ac.uk for guidance. 

Your Next Steps 

If you wish to join us in October on the MBBS Medicine course in-person, you do not need to do anything further. 

If you are unable to travel to London due to travel restrictions or government guidance in October and need to access the MBBS/BSc course remotely in Autumn Term, you need to email feo.years1-2@imperial.ac.uk by 27 August 2020. Please include your full name and date of birth. 

If in light of these changes you no longer wish to undertake this course of study at Imperial College London, please contact Medicine UG Admissions medicine.ug.admissions@imperial.ac.uk for guidance.  

If you feel that you have an exceptional deferment circumstance, then please don’t hesitate to contact the School of Medicine Admissions Team - feo-admissions-interviews@imperial.ac.uk

For more information on processes and other references made in this letter, please see: 

If you have any questions about any of the information above, please do not hesitate to contact the School of Medicine Admissions Team - feo-admissions-interviews@imperial.ac.uk.  

We wish you all an enjoyable summer and hope to see you later in the year.