Your course may include the opportunity to do placements of your choice, often called electives.

Find out from your university if electives are an option on the course you’re on or are considering.

Female nurse with male student nurse

You could gain experience related to:

You will usually need to organise and fund your own elective.

If you’re a medical student, take a look at our page about electives at medical school.

Why should you do an elective?

An elective can provide an insight into a specialist area not offered by your course, such as intensive care, accident and emergency, plastic surgery and burns, or working in a prison or military unit. Alternatively there may be a hospital or specialist unit that you’d like to work in.

An elective can help you gain extra experience/skills for your CV, for example:

You may be able to choose to work in a location where you would like to start your career, such as your home town. And experiencing healthcare in another country could help you see UK healthcare systems from a new perspective.

Choosing your elective

To help you choose which sort of elective will suit you best, ask yourself:

Planning your elective

Real-life story

Read Katie Skinn's real-life story. Katie travelled to Cape Town to see first-hand the midwifery services available there.

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