Many of our previous trainees have been kind enough to write down their FRCS exam experience as a guide what to expect for future trainees. Of course everyone learns differently, but there are some common themes:
- Leave yourself plenty of time to revise.
- There is a lot of paperwork and references involved in applying to sit the exam so make sure you give your TPD and trainers plenty of advance warning of when you are planning to apply to sit the exam.
- You need to be signed off with an outcome 1 from your ST6 ARCP before you can submit your application to sit the exam. Most trainees sit their exam during their ST7 year, you apply via the JCIE website.
- Apply for the exam as soon as you have passed your ST6 ARCP. The allocation of a place at your preferred sitting of part 2 are done according to when you signed up to sit the exam. Many trainees in the northeast choose to sit part 1 in November and part 2 in February. Leaving your application to the last minute means your part 2 may well be delayed to the next sitting.
- Save up, the exam costs around £1850, revision courses can easily push this figure a lot higher.
- Do plenty of practice questions from online question banks for Part 1.
- Take of advantage of the UKITE annual exam and past papers.
- Start practising together as a group early on, this gets you used to presenting your knowledge and managing clinical scenarios. It also allows you to discuss any unanswered questions from your reading.
- You cannot do too much viva or clinical practice for Part 2.
- Take advantage of the annual ITCA exam and our local FRCS revision course as a guide to Part 2.
- Focus on the common and the basic rather than the esoteric and rare.
The following documents need to be submitted to Mr Aldridge in advance of your end of ST6 ARCP such that he has time to review them prior to signing off your TPD reference form.
- T&O ST6 waypoint checklist
- PBA summary from ISCP
- A standard logbook summary for your time with a training number
- CV or a word document with research presentations and papers, and audit
- JCIE Reference form from current trainer
- JCIE Reference form from a previous trainer
- Anything that supports the notion that you have the knowledge and skills to work as a day 1 consultant now (e.g UKITE & ITCA results).