Curriculum and syllabus

Surgical trainees wishing to pursue a career in coloproctology must be trained as general surgeons and should be able to work independently to the standard of a consultant in elective and emergency general surgery. They should have a developing interest in colorectal surgery.

Curriculum and syllabus

General surgery training

Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum Programme

General surgical training in the UK follows the Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum Programme (ISCP) which was launched in 2007 and is now in its 10th version (August 2016). It is web-based and accessible through the ISCP website.

The curriculum provides the approved UK framework for surgical training from completion of the foundation years, or core surgical training, through to consultant level. It achieves this through a syllabus that lays down the standards of specialty-based knowledge, clinical judgement, technical and operative skills and professional skills and behaviour, which must be acquired at each stage in order to progress.

The curriculum is centred on the provision of excellent care for the surgical patient, which is delivered safely. The aims of the curriculum are to ensure the highest standards of surgical practice in the UK and the Republic of Ireland by delivering high quality surgical training.

The syllabus includes information on ISCP key principles, foundations and assessment framework.

Training in emergency general surgery

Although ACPGBI’s interest lies mainly in colorectal specialist interest training, the training needs of the on-call consultant surgeon of the future were and continue to be defined in discussion between AUGIS, ACPGBI and ASGBI.


Colonoscopy training

Quality indicators for the general surgery curriculum which are listed at the Joint Committee on Surgical Training (JCST) website recommend that all trainees with a specialist interest in gastrointestinal surgery should have weekly access to a training endoscopy list with full supervision. Furthermore, ST7 and ST8 trainees with a specialist interest in colorectal surgery should have the opportunity to gain JAG certification in colonoscopy.

Current certification guidelines for trainees in general surgery with a specialist interest in colorectal surgery require at least three PBA’s at level 4 in diagnostic colonoscopy.

JAG certification in colonoscopy is not currently a requirement in the general surgery curriculum for surgical trainees. However, it is recommended that all trainees in coloproctology gain JAG certification in colonoscopy by CCT as most consultant posts will list the delivery of colonoscopy as an essential requirement in their portfolio.