The NCPTS is developing a series of education modules in cervical cytology for Anatomic Pathology registrars. The aim is to provide a study programme to assist registrars to effectively manage their own training in cervical cytology by providing advice about topics, educational material, and a guide to other training resources.

Registrars are encouraged to use the modules in any way that serves their educational needs. Topics are structured according to year of training but this is a guide only. Modules will be posted on the NCPTS website as they are developed, and are designed to take approximately 30 minutes to work through but also serve as a repository of information for future reference as more experience is gained.

The role of the NCPTS is to support the on-site training provided at each training site. It is imperative that registrars familiarise themselves with their training laboratory as no external programme can replace direct laboratory experience. It is critically important in cervical cytology particularly, to see as many cases as possible. This is the only way to build up the internal visual frame of reference needed to confidently report cervical cytology because of the fine visual judgments involved in doing so.      

Year 1
1.  Introduction to cervical cytology
2.  High-grade squamous lesions: HSIL and SCC
3.  Low-grade squamous lesions: LSIL and ASC-US
4.  Glandular lesions: AIS and endocervical adenocarcinoma
5.  Normal endometrial cells. Endometrial lesions
6.  HPV and cervical cancer

Year 2
1.  Reporting cervical cytology: The Bethesda System
2.  Unsatisfactory samples
3.  Benign/reactive entities and Organisms
4.  Atypical Squamous cells, possible high-grade (ASC-H)
5.  Liquid-based cytology (LBC) and automation
6.  Testing for oncogenic (high-risk) HPV

Year 3
1.  The National Cervical Screening Programme (NCSP)
2.  Atypical Glandular Cells (AGC)
3.  Atrophy
4.  Quality Assurance in cytology laboratories
5.  Management Guidelines for women with abnormal cervical cytology
6.  Immunizing against HPV

Year 4
1.  The NCSP: Policy and Quality Standards
2.  Invasive malignancies: unusual and metastatic lesions
3.  Cytology case reviews: Histo/cyto reviews, “look-back” reviews
4.  Management Guidelines for specific clinical situations
5.  Colposcopy
6.  Cervical screening internationally

Year 5
1.  The NCSP: Monitoring laboratory performance
2.  Anal Cytology
3.  Multidisciplinary meeting reviews: Case studies
4.  New technologies: immunohistochemistry in cervical cytology
5.  Professional issues: The cytology literature, cytology societies
6.  Literature reviews