Elective Term MFAC3514

Elective Term MFAC3514

Open to UNSW enrolled students

Note: Electives for non-UNSW students and overseas visiting students, please go to the Clerkships webpage

About MFAC3514 Elective

The Elective Term is a compulsory component of the UNSW undergraduate medicine program. These pages will provide the necessary information for organising the term.


News & Updates

  • For available scholarships, refer to Opportunities.

  • Changes to the Eligibility Criteria for International Medical Students Applying for Electives at McGill University - Click here for letter 19 Jun 2018

  • Registrations for South African placements will not be approved.  This country is now on the exclusion list for the Elective.  19 Dec 2016

Objectives of the Elective Term

The objectives of the Elective course will depend on your choice but should include one of the following:

  • To develop your knowledge and skills in a selected area of Medicine;

  • To acquire experience in a selected area of Medicine in consideration of a future career choice;
  • To experience a different type of health care delivery from that practised in Australia;
  • To correct deficiencies in your knowledge and skills in a selected area of Medicine;
  • To gain further experience in an area of research.

About your placement

  • It is an 8-week course which may be completed as a single 8-week attachment or two 4-week attachments. Therefore, the minimum duration of a placement is 4 weeks.

  • Students must be adequately supervised by a qualified doctor or a qualified researcher if a research placement.

  • Please also refer to the MFAC3514 Elective Course Outline 2022 found on the Phase 3 Moodle and Elective course section on the Phase 3 Guide 2022.

eMed - Registering your placement

Overseas Placements

See the tab Overseas below for more information.

All International passenger arrivals cannot enter a NSW hospital for at least 7 days* after arrival to Australia, as it is a high risk setting.

*number of days are subject to change, please refer to the following for the latest updates


Important Dates

Year 6 students in 2022  
Elective term dates Commence after the Biomedical Sciences Viva, 2021.
Complete Elective by the end of Feb 2022; TP1 commences 4 Mar 2022
Withdraw unattended eMed Elective registrations

Noon, 25 Feb 2022

"How to withdraw a placement on eMed" (see above section "eMed - Registering your placement")

Reports on eMed

Supervisor's uploaded by 4 Apr 2022.
Students' due by end of TP1, 2022.

Email questions about reports to Teaching Support Team - Medicine med_students@unsw.edu.au  

Year 6 students in 2023  
Register all intended placements in eMed

Overseas placements (see the information at the top of the page).
Australian placements - register on eMed as soon as possible.

Deadline: 11.59pm, Monday 3rd October 2022, to be guaranteed the placement is reviewed in time.

If you are finding it difficult on meeting the deadline, email medelectives@unsw.edu.au

Elective term dates

Commence after your Biomedical Sciences Viva in Nov 2022.
Complete Elective Placement in time to start TP1, Sunday 05 March 2023.

Please note: There is approximately 15 weeks in between the 2 dates and you are required to complete 8 weeks.

Enrol in MFAC3514 Elective

Friday 25 November 2022

see Enrolment above

Withdraw unattended eMed Elective registrations

11.59pm Sunday, 26 February 2023

"How to withdraw a placement on eMed" (see above section "eMed - Registering your placement")

Student and Supervisor Reports to eMed Supervisor's uploaded by noon, Monday 3 Apr 2023.

Students' due by end of TP1, 2023.

Email questions about reports to Teaching Support Team to Medicine med_students@unsw.edu.au



Frequently Asked Questions

Host forms - forward any forms that need to be signed by UNSW to medelectives@unsw.edu.au. The forms can have different names depending on the universtiy or clinic e.g. "Declaration by Dean of University" or "Letter of Recommendation"


Risks & Insurance

Evidence of Student Medical Indemnity

Most universities accept the Letter of Good Standing in the initial application stage, then they’ll ask you to get some forms signed which you send to medelectives@unsw.edu.au.

The Letter of Good Standing has a paragraph stating the Indemnity terms.

If you are concerned, if the host university will accept it as part of the application, please contact them directly.

Proof of Indemnity

Proof of Indemnity is provided in the form of Certificates of Currency which are sent directly to the host by the UNSW. They are not sent to the student. Please provide the contact name and email address of the person who is requesting them to medelectives@unsw.edu.au

  • NUS Signapore already has the Certificates of Currency, which were sent to them in May 2022.
  • Please note, the certificates expires on 30th October each year. The new certificate will be issued around 1st November each year and we will send the updated certificate at that time to all organisations who have requested them.

What UNSW Insurance covers:

Students engaged in the Elective are indemnified should they become legally liable for injury to any person or damage to the property of others arising from their participation in the Elective. The University has Liability in the amount of $20 Million for any one claim in the event of such an occurrence. 

UNSW also provides personal accident insurance if the student is accidently injured whilst participating in any approved and recognised course related activity including clinical placements.

UNSW Insurance DOES NOT cover

  • Travel Insurance see the Smartraveller website for general information about Travel Insurance
  • Personal health insurance. 

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance and personal health insurance is the responsibility of the student and is not covered under UNSW indemnity.

As travel insurance usually doesn't cover flights cancelled due to COVID-19 airline staffing issues, please consider purchasing flexible or fully-refundable flights. Read the fine print on your travel insurance.

See guidance on Travel Insurance.

Important Considerations about Electives Undertaken Overseas

see the Overseas tabs for more information.

The safety of UNSW students is of paramount concern to the Faculty. Therefore, the Faculty may not approve some electives.

In general, the University acts on advice issued by The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). Whilst electives are organised well in advance, it is essential for students to check the DFAT website on a regular basis for travel warnings before leaving Australia. Conditions in some countries are in a volatile state and sometimes even the most serene location can become unstable in a short time. In addition to generic concerns, there are some areas where it may not be safe for women to travel alone.

The faculty will not approve electives in countries which are declared by DFAT as “Do not travel” or “Reconsider your need to travel”.

Information about the following can be found following the links provided.




Tips on finding a placement: 

Tips on applying for a placement

Registering a placement on eMed

Host Forms to be signed by UNSW

Documents Hosts might ask for

NUS (National University of Singapore), YLL School of Medicine


GP Placements in Australia


Scholarships, Grants, Loans














It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that both reports are received by the end of Teaching Period 1 in Year 6 in time for consideration by the Assessment Committee.

Failure to submit the student and supervisor(s) reports will result in a fail result for the elective term and the term will have to be repeated at the end of year 6, thus delaying graduation.

Email questions about reports to Teaching Support Team - Medicine at med_students@unsw.edu.au  


You are required to pass the Elective course but it is not graded.

There are two requirements to pass the Elective course.

1. Supervisor’s Report(s).

Your supervisor will be expected to provide feedback on the following

  • Attendance
  • Attitude
  • General competence

A template can be found under the Assessment section, on the MFAC3514: Elective Course Guide 2022,in the Phase 3 Moodle.

As supervision arrangements can change within the pre-approved Elective facility, students will have to complete a form to provide the faculty with details of their actual supervisors and their official email addresses.   Supervisors will be contacted to complete a feedback report for students.

2. You are required to write a report on the Elective course.

The one report needs to be a between 1,000 and 2,200 words covering all placements. This is to be done via the eMed elective portal for one of the Finalised elective registrations. If there was more than one placement, please submit the report as one submission only. There is no Learning Plan associated with the Elective course.

The Elective report must be submitted to eMed by the end of TP1.  

The report should focus on how the elective has helped in your development in the graduate capabilities. You should describe what you did, how this experience has complemented your experiences at UNSW, what you learnt and how this relates to the graduate capabilities. Please note that the report is not intended to be a travelogue. 

The report will not be graded but will be reviewed by the portfolio examiners at the time of your Phase 3 Portfolio Examination and it may be addressed during your interview.  Failure to submit either the Supervisor Report(s) or your Elective Report will result in a Fail grade which would delay graduation.

Students wishing to pass on practical information for the benefit of future students can provide this to MedSoc which maintains a database of possible elective sites.


Elective Term Checklist

Use the step-by-step checklist below as a guide to organising and completing your Elective Term.

The Elective Term application process is managed through eMed.



Overseas Placements – Now Open!

We are excited to announce that the MFAC3514 Elective Term – Overseas Placements to recommence from 1 July 2022. UNSW has recently approved in-person Learning Abroad programs to recommence to DFAT Level 1 & 2 countries from 1 July 2022.

Students may apply more than 1 overseas placement. However, as a Plan B, students must apply for at least 1 domestic placement.

Important to consider

Key Contact

Electives Co-ordinator
Faculty of Medicine & Health
T +61 (2) 9385 8909
E medelectives@unsw.edu.au


Supervisor's Report Form
To be emailed to supervisors based on registered information.

A template can be found under the Assessment section, on the MFAC3514: Elective Course Guide 2022,in the Phase 3 Moodle.

GP Elective Term
Online Form

These forms are also available in your application form on eMed

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