RACGP to replace OSCE with new clinical exam from 2021

Matt Woodley

6/05/2020 11:41:20 AM

The new exam will better reflect contemporary assessment principles for GPs working towards Fellowship.

RACGP sign
A new clinical exam, more closely aligned with contemporary assessment frameworks and theories, will go ahead from 2021.

A transitional assessment is already in development for November’s exam period, before an entirely new clinical exam more closely aligned with contemporary assessment frameworks and theories is revealed in 2021.
The RACGP has also indicated it is considering enhancements to the delivery of the Applied Knowledge Test (AKT) and Key Feature Problem (KFP) exam. However, while the mode of exam delivery may change, the content and format of the AKT and KFP will remain the same.
The RACGP has been coordinating the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) for almost 25 years, with the format and delivery of 14 highly structured clinical cases conducted with examiners and role-players not fundamentally changing in that time.
But restrictions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic have made it impossible to reliably hold the OSCE in its current format, with the requirement for several hundred examiners, candidates and support staff to gather in confined spaces no longer feasible.
As such, the RACGP has taken the opportunity to prioritise existing plans to replace the OSCE to ensure a new clinical exam focuses on competency and is more educationally aligned to what GPs working towards Fellowship are learning.
A working group was set up in 2019 to help with the project, and advisory committees and external stakeholders have long been providing their input into what future clinical exams should look like.
The process is being spearheaded by the RACGP’s General Manager of Education Services, Dr Genevieve Yates, who has considerable experience as an RACGP examiner and censor. Dr Yates is supported by the inaugural Chair of the National Faculty for GPs in Training, Dr Krystyna de Lange, Acting Censor-in-Chief, Dr Tess Van Duuren, and National Clinical Lead of Assessment, Dr Gary Butler.
The Practice Experience Program Entrance Assessment and the Candidate Assessment Applied Knowledge Test (CAAKT) – for PEP and AGPT entry, respectively – are planned to be delivered remotely in 2020.
The RACGP acknowledges the significant impact these changes will have on GPs in training and indicates it will work with Training Organisations (TOs) and those affected directly.
Plans for the November assessment will be confirmed in the coming weeks, and the RACGP has said its priority will be to communicate changes to all those enrolled or looking to enrol in the forthcoming clinical exam.
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Dr Ming Haw Yong   7/05/2020 3:02:11 PM

Too sudden, without any warning, in a rush all due to pandemic?
I am having my doubt that this will run smoothly.

Liz Romeo   7/05/2020 3:35:21 PM

If a doctor is up to their "last chance", let's hope the change doesn't disadvantage them. Perhaps they should be permitted an additional attempt?

Dr Rajan Antony Payyappilly   7/05/2020 3:47:36 PM

when a change is introduced to any existing scheme ,it may be a good idea to give a trial audition ,as it needs time rather than an abrupt a viral mutation like debutante

Dr Babak Taghizadeh   7/05/2020 3:54:49 PM

Changing methods of OSCE delivery suddenly with out any warnings at least 1 year in advance, is not fair.
You know it has been affected my practice ,my Medicare provider number has been hold as I got my Permanent residency and this delays and changes made me so sad and frustrated.less income in COVID pandemic and vague future.😞😞😞😞

Dr Kai Zhang   7/05/2020 4:47:58 PM

A new clinical exam that focus more on clinical competence is a good initiative,hope it does not create new obstacles for OMGs.

Dr Eugene Obanor   7/05/2020 5:57:41 PM

I will reserve my comment until the new OSCE format is disclosed. It may be more beneficial to the generality of those who haven’t attained fellowship yet like. I thought I was close to fellowship status and ‘bang’ this change

Dr Xiang Jie Lay   7/05/2020 6:23:38 PM

dealing with uncertainty, another day in general practice I guess

Dr Masuma Khalil   7/05/2020 7:10:26 PM

I was looking forward for May OSCE , then November.... And now it’s changing to a new pattern suddenly which will be stressful

.   7/05/2020 11:35:06 PM

I was preparing for OSCE in May and then November and now ...??
I and many other IMGs need support regarding AHPRA registration and visa issues as we have missed the exam and running late for one year to become a VR GP.

Dr Hester Catharina Joubert   8/05/2020 5:50:54 AM

As an examiner, we havent been told. Guess thanks for your work, but here is a slap in the face

Dr Harold Ross Jenner   8/05/2020 6:35:13 AM

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
I am a Senior FRACGP Examiner who was examining when the OSCE format was first trialled and introduced. I have always believed that the OSCE IS a good reflection of day to day general practice and a good discriminator to answer the perennial question, “Would I send my mother to see this candidate ?”
It should still be possible to run an OSCE exam whilst still respecting social distancing rules.
I hear the other feedback being given, that the suddenness and imminence of this proposed change could cause stress and disadvantage to some candidates.
To be fair, we have not yet seen the detail of what changes are proposed and whether or not they reflect current general practice better than OSCE already does.

Kind regards

Ross Jenner
(Dr H R Jenner FRACGP Senior Examiner)

Dr Steven Tomas   8/05/2020 8:19:09 AM

How about plan for the normal OSCE in November with a contingency plan if this is not possible. Then introduce the new format on a less rushed time table?
As a supervisor I now have no idea how to help my registrar prepare.

Clayton   8/05/2020 11:13:22 AM

Anyone remember this?
Practice Based Assessment Modules
Practice Based Assessment consists of three main modules:
Module 1. Examiner Clinical Visit (ECV)
Module 2. Recorded Consultations
Module 3. Viva
The three modules are designed to assess competence to undertake unsupervised
general practice in Australia.
Candidates are required to undertake all segments within the modules. These
segments are expected to be sat during the one stream. If unsuccessful, credits can
be carried, to the next stream. A candidate is required to complete all segments
within a 3-year cycle of passing any segment otherwise they need to start again. The
3-year cycle commences on the first successful completion date of a module and
concludes on the third anniversary of that date. Credits for each successfully
completed module accumulate during the cycle.

A.Prof Christopher David Hogan   8/05/2020 9:39:55 PM

In any Mediterranean language KACK or however you spell it means "manure"
Could we please have another acronym?

Dr Nalaka Kumara Attanayake Attanayake Mudiyanselage   9/05/2020 8:29:01 AM

Two weeks back I submitted my AHPRA application with a job offer from a local GP centre. Now, I am expecting PESCI. What will happen hereafter. Will they offer me a PESCI or New exam..???

Dr Christopher Pitt   9/05/2020 7:32:54 PM

I’m the APC for Qld, or at least, I was, because changing the OSCE also meant a restructure of assessment roles within the college. So I genuinely empathise with some of the feelings expressed here. Even though I'm now 'between jobs', I'm still in contact with various staff in the RACGP. They’ve told me that they've been receiving abuse from all fronts.

This has to stop. Please be kind. I understand the distress in an already highly stressful and uncertain time, but the staff at the College are people too, and they're all working really hard under very trying circumstances.

The OSCE has been around since the 90's. I still have lots of character ties in my wardrobe from the 90’s – they were good for the time but the world moved on. The OSCE’s no different.

Personally, I have every confidence the new clinical exam will be better. Until the finishing touches are applied, please be kind to the staff and the College.