Course Administrator
Ms Julia Cork

Surgery and Anaesthesia introduction

Surgery and Anaesthesia introduction
Pathway overview [download pdf]Attend the iBSc Science Fair


This course focuses throughout on the scientific principles underlying surgical and anaesthetic practice - it is the why of surgery and anaesthesia, not the how. The practice of modern surgery and anaesthesia is becoming even more scientific and evidence- based. The course will focus on the science behind the scalpel. Students will be encouraged to critically evaluate scientific evidence from primary sources. It is not the aim of the course for students to memorise large amounts of information on the mechanics of how clinical procedures are performed.

Rather, we anticipate that students will develop improved scientific understanding and analytical skills. Ideally, when introduced to a new surgical scenario they should be able to identify the likely physiological and pathological processes underlying the case, and the possible effects of interventions and how these would be assessed. The content of the modules is closely coordinated so that there is integration without repetition.

This course will comprise three five-week taught modules and either a research project or a specialist course (two five-week modules).

The Course Director (and Head of BSc year) is Professor Alison McGregor (a.mcgregor@imperial.ac.uk).

Aims and objectives

To provide a course that will allow the students to develop an understanding of the important scientific principles that affect every aspect of surgery and anaesthesia from basic molecular mechanisms to the design and interpretation of surgical trials.

Course content will focus on the following key areas:

  • Regeneration, Repair and Cancer Control
  • Perioperative Medicine
  • Technology and Clinical Safety

With the exception of BSc Management and BSc Biomedical Engineering, all of Imperial College's intercalated BSc courses are split into Parts A, B and C. Parts A and B run from September until February and comprise teaching on the BSc course topic. Part C, which runs from March until May, gives students the opportunity to undertake a project.

The BSc project is a ten-week research project, which gives students a valuable opportunity to learn about scientific research. The project is assessed via an oral presentation of the project (25% of Part C marks) and a 5000-word project write-up (75% of Part C marks). Examples of the type of projects available can be found in this list of past BSc project titles (PDF).