Electives are short-term placements where medical students can learn by assisting in real healthcare situations. Students have the option to complete an elective in the UK or abroad. These can be organised by the students themselves and usually take place as part of an ‘elective period’, often during the penultimate or final year of the degree. The length of a medical elective can vary between four and twelve weeks. There are often bursaries and scholarships available for medical students undertaking them.
You can find a list of some of the organisations that offer bursaries for medical student electives here. Please do read the application criteria carefully and see individual websites for more detailed information. If you provide funding for medical electives and wish to be listed on this page, please contact us.
The Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland
Applications are invited from medical students studying in Great Britain and Ireland to apply to the AAGBI Foundation for funding towards a medical student elective.
Funding: Maximum of £750
The Beit Trust
The Beit Trust's Medical Elective Bursaries are available for students undertaking medical electives in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Zambia
Funding: Around 20 bursaries, of approximately £700–1000 per student, may be offered to selected applicants
The British Association of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons
Bursaries available to support medical students who wish to undertake research, travel or an elective in a subject related to plastic surgery.
Funding: Ten awards of £500 each, available annually
The British Geriatrics Society
A limited number of grants are available to enable medical students to make use of their elective period for a project concerned with health or health care in old age either in the UK or abroad.
Funding: Limited number of grants of up to £500
The British Medical and Dental Student’s Trust
The BMDST-RSM Advisory Board are awarding elective funding to successful applicants who want to undertake a specific project on their medical elective.
Funding: Bursaries between £500-1000 available
British Neuropathological Society
The Society is offering prizes to promote activities in Neuropathology.
Funding: Maximum £600
The British Society for Haematology
Student Elective Scholarships for students undertaking electives in the field of haematology.
Funding: Twenty grants of up to £1000 available
The British Society of Dermatologists
Grants are available to undergraduate medical students at UK or Irish universities, who will be undertaking a research project related to dermatology or skin biology or an elective in the UK or an overseas dermatology department.
Funding: Up to nine grants of £500
CoScan Travel Awards
The travel awards scheme was initiated in 1985, the ‘International year of Youth’, and its aim is to help young British people to visit a Scandinavian country. It is open to anyone between the ages of 15 and 25, planning to undertake a worthwhile project of a broadly educational nature.
Funding: Awards are generally in the region of £100 – £200
Edward Boyle Elective Bursary
The Edward Boyle Medical Elective Bursaries offer financial support to medical students from the UK wishing to spend an elective period benefiting from practical experience in a low or middle income country within the Commonwealth.
Funding: Six bursaries of £500
Institute of Medical Ethics
Bursaries available to support Medical Student Electives on issues in medical ethics.
Funding: Bursaries of up to £800 each
Jewish Medical Association
The Jewish Medical Association is promoting constructive links between British and Israeli medicine by supporting UK medical students undertaking electives at Israeli medical hospitals and their affiliated hospitals and clinics.
Funding: Bursaries of up £350
Kidderminster Medical Society Undergraduate Elective Bursary
Applications are invited for bursaries to help support an elective placement during your time studying for your MBChB degree at a UK medical school.
Funding: Bursary of £1000
Lady Allen of Hurtwood Memorial Trust
Applications are invited from candidates with a scheduled project in mind who can offer full details of how the award will help them to gain specific knowledge and experience which will enhance the quality and nature of their work with young children and their families.
Funding: The awards, granted annually, normally in the region of £1,000
Medical Women’s Federation
Grants are awarded to female medical students to assist them with elective costs.
Funding: Grants of £100-£500
Funding to support research projects in pathology or gain experience in diagnostic departments during elective.
Funding: £150 per week for a maximum of eight weeks
The Renal Association awards bursaries each year to medical students who are planning to undertake electives which include a significant renal component, either clinical or research.
Funding: Eight bursaries of £250
Royal College of Radiologists
Bursaries are available to support medical students wishing to undertake an elective period of study in clinical radiology in the UK or abroad.
Funding: Bursaries of up to £300
Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh
Several schemes available including Bursaries for Affiliate Medical Student Elective Placements in Africa, Bursaries for Undergraduate Elective or Vacation Studies, Wong Choon Hee Medical Student Elective Travel Bursaries, The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh Medical Student Elective Travel Awards.
Royal Society of Asian Affairs
Annual travel awards in support of medical electives funded by the JPT Family Trust for students completing electives in Asia.
Funding: The award will consist of up to £2,000 and two years’ free membership of the RSAA
Royal Society of Medicine
Various prizes and awards available.
Scar Free Foundation
Student Elective Awards worth £1,200 each, for research in the area of “disfigurement and visible loss of function."
Funding: Up to £1200
The Simmonds Bursary
BlackStone Tutors are pleased to be able to offer The Simmonds Bursary for medical school students undertaking an elective within the next twelve months. The bursary is available for medical students undertaking an elective in the UK or abroad, with a research component.
Worshipful Society of Apothecaries
The Faculty of Conflict & Catastrophe Medicine offers three annual student elective prizes for medical student electives in the fields of Conflict and Catastrophe Medicine.
Funding: Three annual student elective prizes worth £750 each