All about MRCEM OSCE exam – 2021 updates

Once you have cleared your MRCEM primary and SBA, you will need to clear MRCEM OSCE exam to be awarded an MRCEM degree. These rules apply from Aug 2021 onwards.

Table of Contents

What is OSCE

OSCE stands for Objective Structure Clinical Examination. You will be tested on your clinical skills while you examine a patient in front of an examiner (Live or remotely via video conference). It is somewhat similar to the STEP 2 CS of USMLE exam. Apart from clinical knowledge, it’ll also assess your communication skills.

It consists of 18 station in total. Each station will have 7 minutes of time. You will get a gap of 1 minute between them to read the next case scenario.

OSCE assesses the common competences and clinical competences required for managing adult and pediatric emergencies. Pediatric expectation – Managing a seriously ill and injured child or common childhood emergencies.

Eligibility for MRCEM OSCE

You must fulfill all the following criteria to be eligible to appear for an OSCE exam.

  1. Registration – Must have valid / current Medical registration approved by GMC.
  2. Foundation year – Completed the UK foundation programme or equivalent. (FY1 is house surgeonship / internship. FY2 is next year of training post)
  3. Primary – Passed the FRCEM Primary or MRCEM Part A after 1st August 2012 or MRCEM Primary SBA (2021).
  4. Intermediate – Passed the FRCEM Intermediate SAQ or MRCEM Part B after 1st August 2012 or MRCEM Intermediate SBA (2021).
  5. Experience – Must have 24 months experience post FY1 (FY-1 is 12 months. + Out of next 24 moths, minimum 6 months of Emergency medicine is a must.)
    (There was an error which said 24M including FY1 which was corrected on 5th July 2021 based on this file from RCEM)

An English knowledge of Level 7.0 (IELTS) is expected to understand and communicate well.

Examination fee

As on June 2th 2021, the fee for UK and India examination locations is 450GBP to be paid to RCEM.

Apart from the online fee you pay during your application, if you are attending the exam overseas (Out of UK), you will pay some fee to the local organization that’s conducting the exam. This fee differs between countries, talk to the local body to get an idea (In India, it’s close to 20,000 INR when the entire OSCE was offline/live).

Next date of examination

RCEM publishes a list of upcoming exam dates, application window and result dates on the dates and fees section.

Check the next dates on RCEM website

As on 24th June 2021, Next dates for MRCEM OSCE are

DateCentresApplication windowResults released
Online 9 stations: 5-8 July 2021
Face to Face 5 stations: 12 – 14 July 2021
London, Chennai, HyderabadWindow closed13 Aug 2021
11-15 October 2021India TBC2 July to 30 July 202126 Nov 2021
22-30 November 2021London3 Aug to 27 Aug 20218 Jan 2022
Always confirm the dates with RCEM webpage linked above

Number of attempts

You have a maximum of 6 attempts to clear the MRCEM OSCE. Attempts prior to August 2016 will not be counted

In exceptional circumstances, candidates may apply to the Dean for approval for an additional examination attempt. The Dean’s decision is final.

A pass in the MRCEM OSCE (after 1 August 2012) will remain current till further notification. If they decide to void the validity, they will provide 24 months of notice.

Oversubscription?

If the number of candidates applying for OSCE exceeds the number of available slots, the following criteria will decide who gets to attempt the exam. Ranking order :

  1. Candidates in a GMC approved UK ST3 training post
  2. Candidates in year 3 of approved Irish training programme
  3. Candidates holding an employment contract with the NHS (which covers the examination date)
  4. Candidates who were not allocated a place at the most recent sitting (on a first come, first served basis, if required)
  5. All other candidates on a first come, first served basis

Scoring

Borderline regression method is used to measure your performance. Each examiner will have a score sheet that can be tick marked if you perform the required examination or ask relevant history etc. Based on that score, each candidate is awarded a “global score” per station, according to the examiner’s judgement. The global score is generally given on a scale of 5 options.

  • Clear Pass
  • Borderline pass
  • Borderline
  • Borderline fail
  • Clear Fail
exam_standard_setting_borderline_regression
Image courtesy : Maxinity

All your global scores are plotted on the graph and it’ll decide whether you pass or fail. The scores on individual stations do not matter. It’s the overall cumulative global score that matters.

Passing at least one out of two resuscitation stations is mandatory. No matter how good you score in other stations, if you don’t clear at least one “Resuscitation station”, you will be failed.

As per RCEM guidelines from Aug 2021

Stations

The 18 stations have been specified by RCEM. These are mapped to the RCEM curriculum of 2021

Station numberStation typeSpecialty Learning Outcome
1 – 4Complex stable patientSLO-1
5 – 6Answer questionsSLO-2
7 – 8ResusSLO-3
9 – 10Injured patientSLO-4
11 – 12PEMSLO-5
12 – 14Procedural skillsSLO-6
15 – 16Complex challenging situations SLO-7
17 – 18Supervise & teachSLO-9
Division of stations for MRCEM OSCE

Results

The college will publish results on Candidate’s dashboard of RCEM website on the scheduled day by 5pm UK time.

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