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AbstractE learning means use of electronic media and information technologies in education. Virtual learning environment (VLE) provides learning platforms consisting of online tools, databases and managed resources. This article is a review of use of E learning in medical and surgical education including available evidence favouring this approach. E learning has been shown to be more effective, less costly and more satisfying to the students than the traditional methods. E learning cannot however replace direct consultant supervision at their place of work in surgical trainees and a combination of both called blended learning has been shown to be most useful. As an example of university-based qualification, one such programme is presented to clarify the components and the process of E learning. Increasing use of E learning and occasional face to face focussed supervision by the teacher is likely to enhance surgical training in the future.