Joint Royal Colleges of Physicians Training Board recruitment to core medical training 2011


This page contains information on the specialty of dermatology, one of the higher specialties participating in JRCPTB-coordinated ST3 recruitment.

The specialty

It is currently an excellent time to consider a career in dermatology.

This is a far-ranging specialty, covering skin diseases, cancer and surgery in children and adults.

There are excellent career opportunities to sub-specialise, and currently a shortfall of nearly 100 consultant vacancies.

Dermatology - trainee characteristics

Dermatology will particularly suit trainees who are

  • able to deal with many possible diagnoses ( >2,000!)
  • excellent pattern recognition and integrated clinical skills
  • excellent hand-eye coordination
  • confident in making quick and accurate clinical decisions.

Summary of the specialty

Training in dermatology provides time for critical appraisal, analysis and academic development, which is not always available in other specialties. It also provides exposure to skin diseases and their interface with adult and paediatric medicine.

Broad scope and remit

Dermatology is an exciting and tremendously varied specialty.

The core role of a dermatologist is to improve the care of patients with skin disorders; and this will range form a neonate born with a genetic disorder or infection through to an elderly person with skin cancer.

The specialty has a wide remit, with over 2,000 possible diagnoses. However, with recent advances in medicine more people can be treated for chronic diseases, so that their illness is controlled; and this makes the specialty particularly rewarding.

Interface with other specialties

Dermatology interfaces with many other branches of medicine and surgery, such as paediatrics, plastic surgery, immunology, rheumatology, general medicine, allergy, etc.

This wide remit combines clinical practice with development and implementation of new therapies, training and teaching of current and future innovations, as well as the promotion of evidence-based practise.

We strongly encourage out-of-programme degrees in research or medical education.

A career in dermatology

It is currently an excellent time to consider dermatology as a career, as there is a shortfall of approximately 100 consultant posts.

There are also exciting developments in skin cancer care pathways, and the advances and use of systemic therapies, such as biological therapies in the management of psoriasis.

Paediatric trainees

Please be aware that dermatology accepts applicants from paediatric training routes, who may not have the MRCP(UK) examination nor all CMT competences.

Paediatric trainee applicants must have obtained (or obtain) the basic specialty professional examination (MRCPCH) by the start of ST3 training, in addition to specific clinical experience and particular competences.

The person specification confirms the criteria in this area and we have produced a guidance document which gives greater detail about the specific experience and competences required of paediatric trainee applicants; this document can be downloaded from the left hand side of this page and all trainees applying from this pathway should read the dopcument before applying.

Further information