Choosing your referees

You need two referees: one academic and one relevant experience. Each reference should be written by only one person.

Please choose your referees carefully. You should check that they are willing to write a reference for you and that they can submit it by the reference deadline of 1 December 2020.

We suggest that you send your referees a copy of our Factsheet for Referees, which gives basic information about references, and you may also wish to send them our Guide for Referees, which takes them through the reference process screen by screen:

Basic information about references - download our Factsheet for Referees pdf or Factsheet for Referees in Word

Screen by screen guidance for referees - download our Guide for Referees pdf or Guide for Referees in Word

What do the references cover?

Please ensure that your referees can comment on the areas covered by the type of reference you are asking them to write. If they are only able to provide a standardised document which does not address the questions in the reference, or they cannot answer several of the questions asked in the reference, this could affect your application.

You can see the questions that referees are asked in the sample references below:

Download our Sample Academic Reference pdf or Sample Academic Reference in Word (both are for information only)

Download our Sample Experience Reference pdf or Sample Experience Reference in Word (both are for information only)

Who can be a referee?

The academic referee should be able to comment on your academic ability. Where possible they should be from an academic institution where you have studied and they should have direct experience of your academic performance.

The experience referee should have direct experience of, and be able to comment on, your performance in a relevant clinical context (and/or research context if appropriate). The experience reference should be from your current employer where possible. You may choose to use a previous employer as your experience referee if there is a good reason eg you are not currently working in a relevant role, or you have only worked in your current role for a few months, or your current employer can only provide a standard HR reference. However, you must explain why you are not using your current employer as your experience referee in the Personal Statements section of your application.

Also, some course centres have specific requirements about who can act as your referees. Please see the Courses section for further details.

You should not normally ask your close relations, members of your immediate household or your business partner to be your referee. In other words, you should not use a referee with whom you have a personal connection. If, however, you cannot avoid using such a referee, you must explain why and state the nature of your relationship in the Personal Statements section of your application.

Re-using previous references

The experience referee should be your current employer where possible (see the Who can act as a referee? section above for more details).

If you need to re-use a reference that was submitted through our website in previous years, your referee will be able to do this.

You need to use the same email address as before for your referee, and you need to use the same email address and password to login to your application that you used last time. This will allow the website to identify both your application and your previous reference, and this reference will be available to the referee when they login. They will have the opportunity to update it if appropriate, before re-submitting it for your current application.

If you or your referee have changed email address since you last used the website, you/they can login using the old email address and password, then update your/their email address on the website. This will carry forward all archived applications/references to the new email address/login.