Trainee Support & Guidance



The school offers several different ports of call for guidance. This may vary from career advice to personal difficulties. Listed below are various points of contact that can offer advice and support if and when you might require it.


Regional Advisor


The regional advisor represents the College at regional level. They appoint the college tutors, and are involved with approving Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP) outcomes and advising the College on training programmes and Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT) dates. The head of school is a Deanery role and has overall responsibility for ensuring that training pathways meet the requirements laid down in the College curriculum. They oversee training and can provide advice within all areas.


Training Programme Director


The training programme director is a Deanery role and is responsible for making sure every training pathway meets the College curriculum requirements. They are responsible for placing you on the spreadsheet every three months. They also have a role in recruitment, assessment, career advise, out of programme approval and pastoral care. They are an excellent point of contact for when trying to plan future training and organising attachments.


College Tutor


The CT should act as an organiser and co-ordinator of training. Specific tasks can and should be delegated to other members of the department. The delivery of high quality training requires contributions from all consultants although the CT is the prime point of contact for trainees with the College. In addition to acting as an important role model and general adviser to all trainees in anaesthesia, the responsibilities of the CT include:


  • Organisation of teaching/training

  • Examination preparation for trainees

  • Professional development/career advice for trainees

  • Liaison with the School of Anaesthesia and Postgraduate Dean

  • Representative of the College


Educational Supervisor


In each hospital you rotate to, you must have a formally appointed educational supervisor who should provide, through constructive and regular dialogue, feedback on performance and assistance in career progression. Educational supervisors are responsible for the following:


  • Ensuring clinical and educational supervision

  • Identifying and helping the 'trainee in difficulty'

  • Conducting regular appraisals

  • Providing Portfolio advice

  • Working with trainees to identify learning objectives and aims for trainees over a period of time


Appraisal is an informal confidential process designed to assist both the trainee and the Tutor to achieve their aims for training and to identify and address any deficiencies early, and should be viewed as a continuous process. As a minimum, the educational element of appraisal should take place at the beginning, middle, and end of each section of training.


Trainee Representatives


There are 5 trainee representatives in total, one for core, intermediate and higher training respectively, and two for Less Than Full Time Trainees (LTFT). Their role is multifactorial. They provide a conduit between the trainees and the school and vice versa, provide pastoral care for trainees and also organise social events. They are often involved in projects to ensure that the school maintains it's high standards and are always looking for other trainees to help. If you ever feel you would like to talk about issues that you do not feel comfortable, or do not know how to escalate further, they are an excellent point of call who are always keen to help.


Less Than Full Time Trainee Representative


The LTFT representative is well experienced with the difficulties and problems facing trainees who are thinking or are currently undertaking less than full time training. They provide excellent insight into how to maximise training during this period and will be able to advise on current guidelines and opportunities pertinent to LTFT.


Local Trainee Representatives


From Aug 2013, BLSA implemented a trainee feedback network. This involved implementing a trainee representatitive at each local education provider / instituition every 3 to 6 months. This representative can provide the first port of call for local training and non-training problems that may occur within different hospitals.


Trainees are encouraged to adopt this position as much as possible at different hospitals. Valuable experience is gained by working closely with trainees and college tutors, attempting to implemement positive changes where necessary. Problems which are proving difficult can be escalated through the college tutor or the school trainee representatives.


Feedback is standardised throughout the school, and the local trainee representative is expected to collate trainee views at the end of the rotation using this standardised feedback tool. Any problems highlighted can again be fed back through the school representatives or the respective college tutors.


Speciality Advice


There are several consultants throughout the school who are able to provide excellent advise regarding specific specialities. College Tutors can direct you to them, or alternatively some of them are listed under their relevant speciality on the Training Opportunities page.


Further information can be found in the 'Gold Guide' which can be downloaded here