Aims and method This paper intends to analyse the number of applications, trainee demographic and approval rate of those applying for out of programme training (OOPT) or out of programme research (OOPR) between January 2008 and April 2013 using the committee’s anonymised database. We also describe the process of application and approval by the Quality Assurance Committee. Results There were 90 applications, including 10 resubmissions during the 64-month period. Most applicants (77%) were higher trainees; 53% of applicants were from the London deanery; 60% of applications were for research posts and higher degrees (OOPR). Overall, 64% were approved by the committee: 70% for OOPRs and 53% for OOPTs. Clinical implications This paper shows with transparency the breakdown of applications to the Quality Assurance Committee. Around two-thirds of applications to the committee are supported (64%). Relatively few psychiatry trainees (2.5%) have applied for an OOPT or an OOPR over the past 5 years.