Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Monday, 17th September 2007-First Irish Students Begin Graduate Entry Programme at RCSI

17 September 2007

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) today welcomed the first Irish and EU students into its Graduate Entry Programme (GEP). The class of 62 students, who will graduate in 2011, already have undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in areas as diverse as Law, Engineering, Communications and Broadcasting, Philosophy, English, Actuarial Science and Mathematics, as well as the more traditional Biomedical and Allied-Health Sciences. The students come from Ireland, UK, Canada, Australia and the US.


Ms. Celeste Golden from Student Admissions welcomes two students at the RCSI GEP orientation day.

Following an extensive tendering process, RCSI’s GEP programme was approved by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) in April 2007, based on the recommendations of an international group of experts in medical education. The first two years of the programme are bespoke with GEP students joining their undergraduate colleagues for the final two years.

The curriculum model for the four year Graduate Entry Programme is based on the five year undergraduate programme at RCSI but also incorporates teaching and learning activities suited to a more experienced cohort of students. The programme will integrate the biomedical and clinical sciences throughout the four years and students are also given early clinical experience with weekly hospital attachments during the second semester and a month-long intensive clinical attachment between years 1 and 2.


Pictured from l to r are Mr. Tom O’Hare from Ballybough, Dublin and Ms. Sara Harrington, Bishopstown, Co. Cork. Tom is a graduate of Analytical Science and Sara is a graduate of English and Philosophy.

Students will learn through a combination of traditional lectures and clinical case-based teaching. There will be a substantial amount of small group teaching and a strong emphasis on self-directed learning. Technology will play an important role in the delivery of the programme. For example from the very start of the programme, GEP students will use video links from their teaching facility in Sandyford to participate in weekly case conferences with hospitals across the country.


Pictured from l to r are Ms. Emily Kuhlman; Ms. Natalie Ghosh and Mr. Patrick McGlynn.

President of RCSI, Professor Gerald O’Sullivan, said “RCSI has for over two hundred years, provided the highest standards of medical education in Ireland and has established an international benchmark that sees our qualifications and standards recognized and coveted internationally. This new programme will help achieve increased equity and diversity among applicants to medical school in Ireland and represents a new age for medical education in this country.”

Professor Alan Johnson, Director of the Graduate Entry Programme ,said “RCSI aims to develop doctors who have been educated and trained to be caring, knowledgeable and skilful and who are committed to life long learning. This can only be made possible through our continuing commitment to quality improvement, innovation and reinvestment in our medical programmes. The graduate entry programme is yet another innovative way to meet the demands of producing increased numbers of doctors for the Irish Healthcare system”.