Th e ACF, CL and alternative routes
Academic clinical fellowships (ACFs) and clinical lectureships (CLs) were novel posts created to address the shortage of senior medical academics in the UK and to try and establish an integrated academic training programme encouraging more people to take up academic careers. Prior to this there was no formally recognised training scheme for academic medicine to ensure that high-quality individuals were recruited, trained and then retained to work within NHS trusts and associated universities. Th ese changes were the result of the implementation of the Walport Report. In this chapter we will discuss some of the benefi ts of these training posts, how to apply, how to get the most out of the jobs and the roles of some research organisations. Later in the chapter we will consider alternative routes for entering research separate from the ACF system, which prior to the Walport Report were seen as ‘traditional routes’. Your supervisors will likely have used the traditional route, and there are still alternative routes into academic medicine.