Workforce, training and education
East of England



Higher Specialist Training in Psychiatry


East of England Trainees


(For the current regional teaching programme for Higher training click here

Higher specialty Training in Psychiatry takes 3 years of yearly rotations within your chosen specialty. Higher trainees build on their core training and develop increasing levels of competence in clinical psychiatry. We endeavor to make the training personalized for each trainees' needs and interests.

In East of England School of Psychiatry, trainees are encouraged to seek special interest training and research . You will have one day, i.e. 2 sessions per week to develop a special interest and/or research project of your choice. With strong links to the universities in the region (University of Cambridge, University of East Anglia,  University of Hertfordshire,  Anglia Ruskin University, University of Essex),  trainees have excellent opportunities to get actively involved in research projects. There are also multiple other opportunities to get involved in research within local NHS Trusts and most of the Trusts which provide postgraduate training in our region are active research hubs in their own right.

Many trainees undertake further degrees or diplomas during their specialty training. Each year the School awards a small number of bursaries to trainees who wish to develop expertise in medical education and training, mainly through subsidizing Postgraduate Diplomas in Medical Education and Training, which are available at a number of Higher Education Institutes across the East of England. Opportunities to teach medical students, GP trainees, Core trainees and Foundation Year trainees feature as a matter of routine in all our Trusts. 

Development of leadership and management skills is an essential part of higher training. The School offers a leadership course (LeaP: Leadership Development Programme for Higher Trainees in Psychiatry), which is organized by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Trust. Trainees who are ST4 and above are encouraged to apply to the course. The trainees are offered specific lectures on management and leadership and undertake a service development project. There is also a Chief Resident Programme, run in collaboration with the University of Cambridge Business School  which higher trainees can apply to attend

The East of England deanery encompasses 5 different Mental Health Trusts. Due to the large size of this Deanery, we do try to place higher trainees in a Trust where they can accommodate family and personal needs. Many of the more rural Trusts also try to ensure that the boundaries of the jobs offered are within reasonable travelling distance so for example Norfolk and Suffolk FT offer higher trainees rotations based in either Suffolk or Norfolk, rather than expecting trainees to commute across counties. 

There is a monthly regional higher trainees’ meeting, usually held in Cambridge. It provides an opportunity to link up (peer support) with other trainees across the region and obviously the regional higher trainees’ committee presents with another opportunity to hone leadership skills. In general advanced trainees are directly represented on the School’s Operational Board, which meets every 3 months.

We strive to support the trainees to make the specialist training a pleasurable experience. 

Recruitment to higher training in psychiatry is via a national process, click here for details.