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Embedding leadership in undergraduate medical students: an active approach
  1. Joanne L Selway,
  2. Jonathan Ellis,
  3. Peter Thomas
  4. On behalf of MED15 Health Leadership students
  1. University of Buckingham Medical School, University of Buckingham, Buckingham, UK
  1. Correspondence to Joanne L Selway, University of Buckingham Medical School, University of Buckingham, Buckingham MK18 1EG, UK; joanne.selway{at}


Introduction The inclusion of leadership within the General Medical Council Outcomes has encouraged UK medical schools to incorporate leadership into curricula, although it is often delivered in classroom environments. In order to illustrate to our clinical students that leadership skills are useful irrespective of positional authority, the University of Buckingham Medical School has developed a week-long programme illustrating the impact that junior and trainee doctors can have on the National Health Service environment (in a week).

Methods Students received lectures on leadership principles and conducted focus groups and 1 min interviews to assess the values at Milton Keynes University Hospital (MKUH). Students collated the responses, and all MKUH staff, including the executive board, were invited to hear the feedback.

Findings and conclusions The students concluded that a review of the hospital’s values was required and the executive board committed to a review which has been completed, with the values redefined and reworded. At the end of the week, 92.3% of students felt their perspective had been broadened and some reported feeling empowered by the impact that a weeks’ work could achieve. This short course has illustrated that an active approach to leadership can demonstrate to students that leadership is not just for those in positions of responsibility and change can be achieved by anyone with ambition.

  • leadership assessment
  • medical leadership
  • medical student
  • values

Statistics from


  • Collaborators MED15 Student Group: Itohan Sarah Aimun, Sophie Nadege Bondje, Adelaide Abena Abrafi Dunku, Vivien Ekecho, Ifeoluwa Adunola Gbeleyi, Maria Maximous, Riyah Jiwan, Fathima Rawther, Kathryn Hollis, Gowshan Rajeshwaran, Anisah Rahman, Aran Nathan Nanthakumar, Ashling Ramdin, Dilroshini Karunarathne, Dominic Eze, Gina Sherpa, Ritu Bhandari, Hamza Shafiq, Hohsuk Jeong, Selani Dharshan, Gooneratne Mable Tebogo Kamodidi, Nihmotallah Olabisi Balogun, Mohsen Rafil, Sajanpaul Khara, Surajdeep Singh Ubhi, Tsun Yu Kwan, Antoin Okonmah.

  • Contributors JLS, PT and JE devised the course and supervised the research. JLS analysed the research outputs for publication.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval University ethical approval was provided for the research activity.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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