I want a career in...

There are three main career paths to work in pathology.

1. DOCTOR

If you would like to work as a doctor in a pathology, you must obtain a medical degree and complete a foundation training programme. More information on becoming a doctor is available here.

Each pathology specialty has different entry requirements which are outlined in their curriculum.  Some specialties, such as medical microbiology and haematology require completion of Core Medical Training (CMT) prior to entry to a programme while for others such as histopathology and chemical pathology, it is possible to enter pathology training directly after completion of foundation training.

The recruitment process to get into a pathology training programme can be competitive, so you need to be prepared. You do not need to have any previous experience of pathology, but you do need to demonstrate your commitment to and enthusiasm for the specialty.

2. CLINICAL SCIENTIST

If you would like to work as a clinical scientist in a pathology specialty, you can apply for entry to a Higher Specialist Scientific Training (HSST) programme following completion of PTP or STP.  Clinical scientists are graduates, usually with a first or upper second honours degree in a subject like biochemistry, and often with a PhD.

Training Programmes

There are several training programmes available for the healthcare science workforce.

3. Biomedical scientist (BMS)

Biomedical scientists are graduates in science. Training takes up to two years. For further information regarding biomedical scientist training please see The Institute of Biomedical Science website.

Work experience

If you are just considering training in pathology while you are a medical student or Foundation trainee please contact your local pathology department who will be able to give you a very good idea of the daily work involved and of the training opportunities.