Widening participation

According to the British Medical Association, people from lower socioeconomic backgrounds use healthcare twice as frequently as the average – but only one in five UK doctors comes from these groups.

At Hull York Medical School we offer a range of Widening Participation activities for schools and colleges to help raise aspirations, support young people's choices and encourage progression into medicine and other medical careers.

Current activities and projects

GP Work Experience Initiative

HYMS is working with the universities of Leeds and Sheffield to offer 3 day work experience placements at a GP practice to local Year 12 students. 

For more information and how to apply please see tab below. 

Sessions for Schools/Colleges

Please see the tabs below for more detailed information about the activities we are currently running, including dates.

If you would like to book any of the sessions listed, please complete our expression of interest form

Becoming a Doctor

Becoming a doctor is a website developed in conjunction with students at HYMS to provide advice and guidance about medical school, including the application process, interviews and work experience.


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    Making Connections

    Making Connections is suitable for students in Year 12 and Year 13 who are taking Biology and Chemistry at A Level or Health and Social Care students.

    Making Connections aims to develop an understanding of the Problem Based Learning (PBL) method used at HYMS and to raise aspirations of students wishing to study medicine. The PBL method encourages students to apply their biology and chemistry knowledge to real life scenarios and develop learning outcomes based on these discoveries.

    Making Connections is delivered in conjunction with schools and HYMS and takes the following format:

    • Teachers attend a PBL information session and are given materials to work on with students
    • Students work through a PBL case and develop learning outcomes
    • Students research the learning outcomes in their own time
    • Students attend a session at the HYMS multi-functional laboratory to work on clinical skills linked to the PBL case
    • Teachers facilitate a follow up session with students to explore the learning outcomes of the PBL case

    Some of the comments of students who have greatly enjoyed the project so far include:

    • "I am even more determined to study medicine."
    • "It has given me an insight into what the learning would be like."
    • "It has developed my problem solving skills."


    Dates for Making Connections Sessions

    Student Sessions

    University of Hull:

    • 20th May 2015, 1:30 - 3:30pm 

      Please contact Alexandra Jeffrey to book or to discuss a Making Connections session.


      Uncovering Medical School

      Uncovering Medical School is suitable for students from Year 10 upwards who are considering applying to study Medicine. This information based session focuses on the application process and the course at HYMS.

      By the end of the session students will,

      • Understand the admissions process to medical school including grade requirements and personal statements
      • Have learnt about the interview process and practised communication techniques
      • Know more about the course at HYMS
      • Understand what PBL is

      To book a session please contact Alexandra Jeffrey Alexandra.jeffrey@hyms.ac.uk


    • Secondary School Activities

      We run a number of events for secondary school students which feature virtual HYMS patients. Each of these 'patients' has been created with a particular age group in mind.

      Key Stage 3 


      Welcome to the Hull York General Hospital. Our patient Lucy has been in a road traffic accident and has been rushed to the hospital. We need you to work with the junior doctors to help save Lucy’s life.

      In this session students work in teams to diagnose Lucy’s symptoms and save her life. The project is completely digitised and participants are guided through the activities by a virtual junior doctor and current HYMS students.

        To book a session or for more information, please contact Alexandra Jeffrey 


        Gary and Neeta

        Gary and Neeta are virtual patients of two Problem Based Learning (PBL) scenarios which seek to demonstrate to students the links between science and real life.

        Students will work on a short case to try and find out what is wrong with the patient and suggest outcomes to reach a diagnosis. They will also have the opportunity to practise clinical skills related to the case.

          To book a session or for more information please contact Alexandra Jeffrey. 

        • Primary Schools

          HYMS Medical Wow Days

          A Medical Wow day at Hull York Medical School offers Primary students a chance to take part in varied programme of medically related activities covering topics including the skeleton, organs, temperature, breathing and reflexes.

          Students will meet and interact with Medical Ambassadors who are currently studying undergraduate medicine at HYMS.They will also have the opportunity to visit the University of York campus and find out more about life at university and what it take to be a doctor

          Suitable for: Year 5 and 6

          Group: Up to 30 students at York and Up to 40 students at Hull 

          Time: Sessions are a minimum of 2 hours 30 mins but can be extended to include more activities about university life and give you the option of staying on campus for lunch.

          Dates: Sessions are available from 29th June - 17th July

          Please contact Alexandra Jeffrey for more information and to book a place

          T: 01904 32 1762



        • Talks in Schools

          HYMS Student Ambassadors are available to give talks and presentations in schools and colleges across the region. Topics include: studying medicine; life at university; and coming to HYMS. We are especially keen for our students to visit their previous schools.


          For more information please email Alexandra Jeffrey

        • University of York Science Trail

          Each year HYMS takes part in the University of York's Science Trail - an opportunity for local school pupils to sample a range of hands-on activities on a route around the University's Heslington Campus. Around 250 14-16 year olds take part in the event, part of York Festival of Science and Technology. Students who visit HYMS learn about and try out a range of diagnostic tests including testing blood pressure and reflexes, using a stethoscope and observing EEGs.

          The Science Trail took  place on Tuesday 17th March 2015. For more information please contact Sarah Mitchell 


        • Year 12 Summer School

          HYMS runs a residential summer school in July for local Year 12 students planning to apply for medical school. Student have the chance to take part in a variety of activities including Problem  Based Learning, Clinical Skills and Basic Life Support. 

          Applications for the HYMS Summer School are now closed. 

          If you require more information or would like to speak to someone regarding your application to the HYMS summer school please contact 

          Vicki Russell E:  V.Russell@hull.ac.uk T: +44(0)1482 465103

        • Excellence Hub

          The Excellence Hub for Yorkshire and Humber is a regional collaboration between the Universities of Hull, Leeds, Sheffield and York.  The purpose of the programme is to develop exciting and purposeful opportunities for high achieving young people to help enrich their experiences in school/college.

          Events delivered through the Excellence Hub for Yorkshire and Humber are open to students from across the UK who have been identified by their school or college as being high achieving. Please note there is additional eligibility criteria and a set application process for applying for events.

          To find out more, please visit the Excellence Hub website.

          The Following Excellence Hub events will be taking place at HYMS

          24th June: Year 7/8 - Lucy: Emergency Room, York 




        • GP Work Experience Initiative

          HYMS is collaborating with the University of Leeds and the University of Sheffield to offer a 3 day work experience placement at a GP practice to eligible Year 12 students. Placements will take place over the summer holidays and will be accompanied by a preparation workshop and follow up workshop.

          Applicant Criteria

          • Year 12 student
          • Applying to study medicine
          • Meet strict Widening Participation criteria (details below)
          • Live in one of the following areas
            • West Yorkshire
            • East Lincolnshire
            • North/East Yorkshire
            • Hull
            • Barnsley
            • Rotherham
            • Doncaster

          To find out if you meet the Widening Participation Criteria and to apply to the scheme please visit the Leeds WAMS website

          Deadline for applications: 10th June 2015 – late applications will not be considered.