You need cookies enabled

HEFCE closed at the end of March 2018. The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.

Many of HEFCE's functions will be continued by the Office for Students, the new regulator of higher education in England, and Research England, the new council within UK Research and Innovation.

The HEFCE domain - - will continue to function until September 2018. At this point we will close the site entirely and all its information will only be available from the National Web Archive.


You need cookies enabled
HEFCE-fundable higher education institutions are invited to submit bids in the prescribed form by 1700 on Thursday 23 November 2017.

Executive summary


1. This document invites bids for additional undergraduate medical education places through the joint HEFCE and Health Education England (HEE) initiative to expand medical school provision in England. It outlines both the process for submitting bids and the criteria against which bids will be assessed. The competition is open to HEFCE-fundable higher education institutions seeking to deliver UK-registrable primary medical qualifications approved by the General Medical Council (GMC). This might include HEFCE-fundable higher education institutions with medical schools, or those that are seeking to establish provision in this area for the first time.

2. This document should be read in conjunction with the following information on the HEFCE, Department of Health and HEE websites:

Key points

3. In October 2016, the Secretary of State for Health announced the Government’s commitment to expanding undergraduate medical training by 1,500 places, with effect from September 2018. A total of 500 of these additional places have already been allocated to existing medical schools. The Government has asked HEFCE and HEE to run a competition for the remaining 1,000 places.

4. The way in which the competition will be run, as set out in this document, has been agreed by the Boards of HEFCE and HEE, following the Government’s response to the consultation ‘Expanding undergraduate medical education’ (available at

5. Bids will undergo an initial technical assessment by officers of HEFCE and HEE with input from the GMC and will then be assessed by an expert assessment panel, jointly chaired by Professor Madeleine Atkins, Chief Executive of HEFCE, and Professor Ian Cumming, Chief Executive of HEE. As the medical expansion is intended to address several complementary priorities, the panel will make recommendations as to the portfolio of bids that, in its expert judgement and taken together, best meet the criteria for the competition and address the Government’s requirements. Draft terms of reference (subject to agreement by the Assessment Panel) and an indicative membership of the Assessment Panel are set out at Annex A. The Assessment Panel will make recommendations to the Boards of HEFCE and HEE. The recommendations will need to be endorsed by the HEE Board before a decision on the allocation of the 1,000 additional medical student places is made by the HEFCE Board.

Action required

6. HEFCE-fundable higher education institutions are invited to bid by completing the application form at Annex B, and providing the further supporting information requested in this bidding document. They should submit these bids by email to to be received by 1700 on Thursday 23 November 2017.


Note: This report was updated on 20 October 2017 to correct an error. The data sources for Figures 1 and 2 were misleadingly presented as separate lists, when in fact both figures were created from the same collection of data. This has been made clearer in the revised document.

Date: 3 October 2017

Ref: 2017/21

To: Heads of HEFCE-funded higher education institutions

Of interest to those
responsible for:

Senior management, Finance, Planning

Enquiries should be directed to:

Ed Hughes, tel 0117 931 7265, email and Andrew Taylor, tel 0117 931 7026, email