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

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 or contact our Widening Participation and Outreach Officer T: 01904 32 1762

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.


  • Pathways to Medicine

    Pathways to Medicine is a Widening Participation programme run in conjunction with the Sutton Trust at HYMS. The programme supports talent Year 12 students who wish to pursue a career in medicine.

    The Pathways to Medicine programme offers students a range of opportunities to give them an insight into the medical profession, support them through the application and selection process for medical school and prepare them for attending university. 

    Students for Pathways to Medicine are recruited from schools and colleges across the HYMS region. 

    What activities do students take part in? 

    As part of Pathways to Medicine, students will attend a launch event at HYMS, participate in 3 days of work experience supported by preparation and reflection workshops, take part in a 4 day residential summer school, have access to ementoring from a current HYMS undergraduates and complete an academic assignment. 

    Students also have the opportunity to attend a range of other events and activities at HYMS. 

    Thinking about applying?

    Students who have attended a Pathways to Medicine information session at their school or college and meet our eligibility criteria, will be invited to submit an application in the autumn term of year 12. 

    Applications for 2017-2018 have now closed. 

    Who to contact

    For further information please contact E: pathways@hyms.ac.uk  T: 01904 32 1762

  • Sixth Form - Year 12 and 13

    Year 13 Mock Interviews and Preparation Workshop

    Mock interviews will be held again in October 2017. Further information will be available closer to this date. 

    Making Connections

    Making Connections is suitable for students in Years 12 and 13 who are taking Biology and Chemistry at A Level.

    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 a two part session for students to learn more about the teaching methods at HYMS and to have a go at some bio-practical work in our lab.

    Session 1

    • Students are introduced to Problem Based Learning (PBL) at HYMS
    • Student work through a PBL session with current undergraduates at HYMS
    • Students develop their learning outcomes to take away and research in their own time

    Session 2

    • Students attend a session at the HYMS multi-functional laboratory to work on clinical skills linked to the PBL case

      Upcoming Dates

      University of Hull

      Wednesday 29th March and 5th April 2017, 1:30-3:00pm 

      University of York

      Wednesday 1st and 8th March 2017, 1:30-3:00pm 

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


    • Secondary School Activities

      We run a number of events for secondary school students to support them in considering a career in medicine and making links between their understanding of science and the practise of medicine. 

      Year 7 and 8


      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 run online and participants are guided through the activities by a virtual junior doctor and current HYMS students.

      Upcoming Sessions

      University of Hull

      21st June 2017

      University of York 

      10th May 2017

      28th June 2017


      Year 9

      Medicine Discovery Day 

      A medicine discovery day is a great way to find out more about what it takes to be a doctor and to have a go at some interactive medicine activities. Students will also have the opportunity to look around the university campus and chat to our current medical students. 

      Upcoming Sessions

      University of Hull

      15th March 2017, 10:00 - 14:00 - lunch provided

      University of York 

      26th April 2017, 10:00 - 14:00 - lunch provided



      Medicine Discovery Sessions

      Medicine Discovery sessions are a great way to introduce students to the concept of Problem based learning, and to find out more about studying medicine at university.

      By looking at virtual patients in a Problem Based Learning (PBL) scenario, the session seeks 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.

      University of Hull 

      There are no upcoming sessions scheduled. Please contact Alexandra Murphy if you would like to arrange a session

      University of York

      1st February 2017, 12:30 - 14:30

      22nd March 2017 (Excellence Hub session) Please book via link 


        To book a session or for more information please contact  Alexandra Murphy

      • Primary Schools

        HYMS Medical Wow Days

        A Medical Wow day at HYMS offers primary school 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 takes to become a doctor

        Suitable for: Year 5 and 6

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

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

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

        T: 01904 321762



      • Excellence Hub

        HYMS runs activities for a variety of age groups through the Excellence Hub for Yorkshire and Humber which is a regional collaboration between the Universities of 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 or 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 high achieving.

        Please note there is additional eligibility criteria and a set application process for applying for events.

        To find out more and to book onto sessions please visit the Excellence Hub website.

        2016/17 Excellence Hub Session at HYMS 

        GCSE: 30th November 2016 - Hull

        6th Form: 25th January 2017 - York

        GCSE: 22nd March 2017 - York

        Year 7/8: 14th June 2017 - York

        Year 7/8: 5th July 2017 - York 



      • HYMS Year 12 Summer School

        Discover more about what it is like to study medicine

        The HYMS Summer School gives Year 12 students the opportunity to take part in a variety of  activities including Problem Based Learning, Clinical Skills, Presentations and Medical workshops. 

        You'll also take part in a range of social activities including a meal out, a BBQ and a day visit to York. 

        Further Information 

        To find out more information about the summer school and the eligibility criteria, take a look at our Summer School Flyer 

        Applications for the HYMS Summer School open on the 1st March 2017.

        Apply to HYMS Summer School 

        The deadline to apply is 24th March



      • 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 


      • 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
        • Planning to apply to study medicine 
        • Meet Widening Participation criteria as listed on the application form. 
        • Live in one of the Local Authority Areas covered by the participating medical schools. 

        For HYMS these are

        • East Riding of Yorkshire, Kingston upon Hull, North East Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire, North Yorkshire and York

        Applications for 2016 are now closed. Applications will open in late spring for 2017 placements. If you would like to express your interest please complete the following form 

        HYMS Expression of Interest Form