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Teaching and mentoring

Highlight the intellectual challenges of being a GP

  • Medical students can perceive General Practice to be “mundane”, with GPs managing simple issues and referring complex cases to secondary care specialists.

Suggested WiseGP actions:

  1. Share a complex case you’ve recently managed during a medical student tutorial. Consider focusing on your approach to a person with medically unexplained symptoms or someone presenting with a list of problems, reflecting on the potential harms of over-investigation and referral.

  2. Signpost students with a potential academic interest to academic GPs within your Primary Care Network (PCN) or local region, or suggest they explore our WiseGP Stories for inspiration about portfolio GP careers.

Read more about this research here:


Share teaching responsibilities with GP registrars or wider PCN team members

  • There are barriers in practice to medical student teaching, including workload, availability of a teaching space and remuneration issues. Teaching can sometimes become a ‘bolt-on’ activity in tension with usual work.

Suggested WiseGP actions:

  1. Consider establishing PCN teaching sessions where a practice takes turns to deliver teaching for students across the PCN to save time.

  2. Invite GP registrars and new PCN team members to get involved with teaching students.

Read more about the research which inspired these suggestions here:


Campaign for appropriate funding so medical students get enough exposure to general practice

  • GP teaching forms less than 10% of UK medical curriculum, which is well below the suggested level. Multiple practices have stopped undergraduate teaching in favour of postgraduate GP training because of service contribution of GP registrars and the longitudinal relationship that can be built with trainees. Remuneration issues and rising workloads are further barriers to medical student teaching.

Suggested WiseGP action:

  1. Highlight the need for appropriate funding to local medical schools and primary care leaders. Support campaigns by national GP representatives for adequate funding to support medical student placements in general practice.

Read more about the research which inspired these suggestions here:
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