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Widening participation

Edge Hill University has a long-standing commitment to widening access to higher education, and the theme of opportunity for all is a key component of the institution’s vision.

Pre-application support programmes

Prospective students participate in a simulation during a Medical School taster session

We offer support to help local young people from across North West England to learn more about studying medicine, how to apply and how to manage the admissions process. We can also offer specific advice and support on practical issues like managing money, work, and study skills.

We also hold medicine taster days, which are opportunities for interested students to visit campus for a free event involving talks and interactive sessions using clinical skills equipment.

To learn more about pre-application support programmes across the University please see our student recruitment widening participation page.

Foundation year for Medicine

The MBChB Medicine with Foundation Year is an integrated six-year programme where students complete a foundation year before progressing onto our MBChB Medicine degree.

The foundation year for medicine is aimed at students from the North West of England who have the potential and aspiration to become doctors. It is for anyone who has studied the A levels needed to join our MBChB Medicine degree but who are facing additional barriers which may impact on their ability to meet the academic requirements for direct entry. Applicants must satisfy certain widening participation criteria to be eligible to apply.

Widening Access to Medicine (WAM) programme

Edge Hill University Medical School (EHUMS) is committed to enabling fair access to our courses. Our Widening Access to Medicine (WAM) programme is a series of free events designed to support local students, from diverse backgrounds, who have the ability and personal attributes to be successful in their application for a place in Medical School. The WAM programme supports application to both the foundation year for medicine and the undergraduate Medicine programme (MBChB) at Edge Hill University.

For 2023 and 2024, the WAM programme will be integrated as part of the Medical Schools Council Pathway Programme. This is a Medical Schools Council initiative in partnership with medical schools across England and is funded by Health Education England. The programme at EHUMS will be run in partnership with Liverpool, Lancaster, and Manchester Medical Schools.

Two students at the Widening Access to Medicine event, practicing on a mannequin.

Medical Schools Council (MSC) Pathway Programme

The Pathway Programme will be open to young people in Year 12 who are interested in studying medicine and will consist of a series of free on-campus and online events culminating in a residential summer school taking place in early July. This programme is aimed at young people who are from under-represented backgrounds, and targets areas of England that have limited outreach engagement with medical schools. The programme will combine an online activity day with an on-campus visit to Edge Hill and will culminate in a residential summer school where you will stay at Edge Hill University and visit our partnering medical schools on separate days.

Programme Overview:

The on-campus visit will introduce students to studying medicine at Edge Hill, providing an overview of both the MBChB direct entry and MBChB with Foundation Year courses. Students will also get hands-on experience with clinical skills and simulation activities, which form a core component of studying medicine. There will also be sessions on student finance, life as a doctor with a local, recently qualified GP, and a Q&A session with our current FY and MBChB Y1 students.

The online event will introduce students to our partner universities, giving them an opportunity to introduce the courses available at their respective institutions, whilst also giving the students a chance to ask any questions they have regarding admission processes and the courses on offer at each university.

The final programme for the residential is still to be confirmed, but activities will include an introduction to case/team/problem-based learning, mock MMIs and UCAT workshops, plus visits to each of our partner universities providing students with the opportunity to experience a number of different campuses in the Northwest of England.

Campus Visit Day

Thursday 2 May 2024

Online Activity Session

Wednesday 12 June 2024 (afternoon)

Residential Summer School

Tuesday 9 July – Friday 12 July 2024

To be eligible to apply for the Pathway Programme, applicants must be currently studying at a state school and either:

  • Be in, or have been, in local authority care. Defined as being looked after by a local authority, foster parents/other family members, at home with their parents under the supervision of social services, in a residential children’s home or in another residential setting such as school or secure unit, or someone who has experienced a period of three months in the care of the local authority within the last ten years.
  • Be an estranged student who is studying without the support or approval of a family network.
  • Be an asylum seeker or refugee.

Or, meet at least 2 of the following criteria:

  • Studying in a state school that achieved below the national average Attainment 8 score of 46.2 out of 90.
    • Check your school here. Find your school and click to view secondary information where results will be published.
  • Studying in a state school that achieved below or well below the national average Progress 8 score of 0.
    • Check your school here. Find your school and click to view secondary information where results will be published.
  • From a school with a high percentage of students receiving free school meals. This will be any school where at least 23.8% of students are eligible for free school meals.
    • Check your school here. Find your school and click to view absence and pupil population where results will be published.
  • Living in a geographical area with low levels of progression onto higher education. This will be anyone living in a POLAR4 Quintile 1 or 2.
    • Check your postcode here. Search your postcode to find the POLAR4 Quintile.
  • Be a young carer. Defined as someone who helps look after someone in their family, or a friend, who is ill, disabled or misuses drugs or alcohol. There is no time limit on the amount of care they provide for their dependents, this is just above and beyond what is normally expected.
  • From a family where the parents do not have a university degree from the UK or abroad.
  • In receipt of, or eligible for: free school meals; or the 16-19 Bursary Fund; or Discretionary Learner Support; or Means Tested Benefit; or Pupil Premium.

In addition, applications will have:

  • The potential to study medicine and be capable of achieving the minimum grades required for entry (whether that is for the standard entry programme or programme with a foundation year).
  • An interest in STEM subjects, studying science in their post-16 studies and be considering studying medicine post-18.

If we receive a large number of applications, more than places available, we will use weighting criteria for those students that are deemed eligible.

Applicants who meet the criteria can apply to the programme through our application form. Applicants will then be reviewed by a selection committee based on the content of their application.

We have now closed applications for the 2024 intake. All applicants have been informed of their application outcome, if you have not received an email from please get in touch.

If you have any questions or would like to join a mailing list for updates regarding the Pathway Programme, please email

Do I have to attend all the events that make up the programme?
Where will the events take place and how do I get there?
I don’t meet the criteria for the MSC programme, is there anything else you offer that I could attend?
I’m a parent/carer and have questions about university, where can I get more information?
I work at a school, local community organisations, or am a current EHU Medicine student. How can I get involved?
Do you offer any financial support towards travel?

We understand the importance of support from teachers and supporters while young people are making decisions about their future. We want to work with you to provide the best support to the young people you work with.

The Medical School’s Council has published some resources for teachers and supporters, which can be found on their Journey to Medicine page.

We are happy to visit schools, colleges, and community groups to provide talks or workshops about our widening access and participation initiatives at Edge Hill Medical School. If you would like further information about our widening access initiatives or would like us to visit your school or community group, please contact us on

Further information about supporting your students and working with Edge Hill University can be found on our Support for Teachers and Career Advisers page.

Get in touch

Widening access to medicine event. An Edge Hill medical representative talking to students at a desk.

We are currently developing our outreach provision and resources to support our work with local schools and colleges, as well as teachers, parents and carers.

Please get in touch if you have any enquiries about widening participation at Edge Hill University Medical School or the MSC Programme.