If you're applying for Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery ST3 (T&O ST3) in 2024 this guide covers everything from the application and self-assessment to interview preparation and NEW interview stations for 2024. 

This ultimate guide looks at the essentials of the T&O ST3 application process, including key dates, the interview structure, and insights into the level of competition, helping you to rank highly and get your first choice job.

Key Dates for T&O ST3 2024 Interview

Mark these important dates in your calendar for the T&O ST3 2024 recruitment:

  • Application commencement: Thursday, 16 November 2023 at 10am
  • Final date for applications: Thursday, 7 December 2023 at 4pm
  • Period for uploading Self-Assessment evidence: 20 December 2023 – 5 January 2024
  • Validation of Self-Assessment: 11 – 12 January 2024
  • Interview window: 18 – 21 March 2024
  • Release of initial offers: By 5pm, Thursday, 18 April 2024
  • Holding offer deadline: 1pm, Tuesday, 23 April 2024
  • Deadline for offer upgrades: 1pm, Wednesday, 24 April 2024
  • Note: Dates are subject to change.

ST3 Orthopaedic Competiton Ratios

In 2023, the competition ratio for T&O ST3 was 3.02, with 483 applicants for 160 positions. This statistic underscores the competitive nature of this field and the necessity for a strong, well-prepared application.

Check out our online ST3 T&O interview questions bank with over 450 interview questions including communication scenarios.

ST3 T&O Application Process 2024

For the T&O ST3 2024 cohort, applications open from 16 November to 7 December 2023

Ensure you submit through the Oriel recruitment system, completing all required sections meticulously.

In the application, you'll encounter multiple-choice Self-Assessment questions, demanding thoughtful responses backed with appropriate evidence.

Be sure to check out our full breakdown of the self-assessment scoring for 2024.

Prerequisites for Entry

To qualify for T&O ST3, you need to have:

  • Successfully completed MRCS Part A and Part B by the date of the offer
  • At least 10 months of experience in Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery
  • CT/ST1 and CT/ST2 ISCP competencies from the T&O curriculum within the past 24 months
  • A minimum of 8 months in two related specialties (e.g., Plastic Surgery, Neurosurgery, etc.)

Further details about entry criteria and specifications can be found in our application guide.

Interview Structure for T&O ST3

Successful applicants will be invited to a comprehensive 60-minute interview, divided into four 10-minute stations:

  1. Portfolio / Commitment to Specialty
    • Discussion on career aspects.
    • Evaluation in Career Motivation, Leadership, Organisation, and Academic skills.
  2. Clinical
    • Trauma or elective scenario-based questions.
    • Assessment in Technical Knowledge, Problem Solving, and Communication.
  3. Prioritisation
    • Exercise in prioritising cases.
    • Judged on Organisation, Communication, and Decision-making under pressure.
  4. Communication (New in 2024)
    • Patient communication scenarios.
    • Analysis in Technical Knowledge, Situational Awareness, and Communication.

The ST3 Orthopaedic Interview Format

Interviewers have been keen to return the interview to the OSCE/MMI style format see at the in-person interviews to help better differentiate between the best candidates.

Previously Microsoft Teams was used for online interviews however this made an OSCE-style format challenging.

New for 2024 HEE and the ST3 Orthopaedic interviews will be using QPERCOM which allows for an OSCE/MMI-style circuit of interview stations.

This has also necessitated an increase in the interview time to 60-minutes to allow time for change-over and instructions to be shown to candidates.

Interview Scoring

Scores from each station and validated Self-Assessment contribute to your total interview score, with a maximum of 232 points.

A minimum of 145/232 is required to be considered appointable.

ST3 Orthopaedic Interview Courses

To maximise your chances of ranking highly and getting your first choice job realistic practice under pressure is essential. Out popular ST3 T&O interview courses have helped the top candidates rank highly since 2014.