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Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Fifth Year Medical Electives

The medical and dental electives that students at Barts and The London School of Medicine undertake in their final year is one of the most eagerly anticipated and memorable experiences at medical school.

A range of destinations

Fifth Year Medical and Dental Electives at Barts and The London are self-organised and can be taken in resource-poor countries (good for those interested in tropical medicine, primary care or public health) or in more developed countries (good for students interested in cutting edge technologies). 

The placement period is approximately six weeks. Placements can be taken in the UK as well as overseas, which can be a more financially viable option for students on a limited budget.

A transforming activity

The elective period forms a very important part of the course, both educationally and experientially and draws upon all the skills developed during medical school. 

It is a unique opportunity to explore medicine in an entirely new environment, both socially and culturally. Working in challenging unfamiliar environments can be a transforming educational and professional activity.


Fifth year MBBS (Malta) students will undertake an elective in Malta or in another country, drawing upon the skills learnt in medical school and offering an opportunity to explore medicine in an entirely new environment, both socially and culturally. The elective can be used as an opportunity to learn more about yourself and to explore a particular area of medicine.

Each year returning elective students write a report on their elective experience. These can provide inspiration for students planning their own elective, aiding the process of deciding where to go and what specialty to choose.

These reports can be accessed online at: The reports can be searched by specialty or country.

This web site also contains the Electives Handbook issued to Fifth Year Students, links to online electives resources and other useful information.

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