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Part B On the day

The examination will last about 1 hour and 55 minutes, although you will be in the centre for considerably longer than this. If you are taking the examination in the afternoon, be aware that it will not finish before 16.00.

Documents to bring with you

  1. Your examination allocation letter.
  2. You are required to show one of the documents listed below as proof of identity at the examination. It must be original, current and bear your photograph.
    • Your passport
    • Your UK Immigration and Nationality Department identification document
    • Your Home Office travel document
    • Your UK driving licence
    • Your EU identity card
  3. If the name on your identification document is different from that on the confirmation from the Faculty offering you a place in the examination, you must provide original evidence that you are the person named in that letter. We will accept:
    • Your marriage certificate or
    • A declaration from the awarding body which granted your primary medical qualification, stating that both names relate to you.

If you do not bring one of the documents listed above, or if the document does not bear your photograph, you will not be allowed to take the examination. Your examination fee will not be refundable under these circumstances.

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Arrival

We expect all examinations to start on time. Traffic and public transport can cause delays, so allow plenty of time for your journey. If you are late (i.e. too late to register and be briefed with other candidates) you will not be allowed to take the examination.

You may be asked to arrive at the centre in the morning although your examination will be in the afternoon; this is because you are not permitted to meet the candidates that took the examination in the morning.

When you enter the assessment centre, you will be asked to store all your belongings in a locker before moving to the candidate rooms.

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Materials

Nothing can be taken into the examination area. You will be provided with all the materials you need during the examination.

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Prohibited items

You must place mobile phones and pagers in your lockers before the examination.

Please note that smoking is not permitted on the RCGP premises.

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Misconduct

  • Candidates must not use or refer to any other materials or try to communicate with other candidates during the examination.
  • All books, pens, papers, mobile phones and other electronic equipment must be stored in lockers when entering the centre.
  • Candidates must not take any examination materials out of the assessment centre, must not write down the details of stations to take out and must not obtain information about stations from any source including other candidates.

If candidates do any of these things or engage in any other activity that may be deemed to constitute professional or academic misconduct, they will be reported directly to examination officers and the FPH Education Office. All incidences will be investigated in accordance with the FPH Examinations Misconduct Policy and Procedure, and if found to have engaged in misconduct candidates may have their examination result declared invalid and their name reported to their professional regulatory authority.

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Completing the examination

On the day, all candidates will be fully briefed about what you have to do.

When you enter the examination area, you will find six preparation booths and six examination booths, known as stations. Each station requires you to undertake a particular task. Some tasks will involve just reading instructions; some will involve tasks such as preparing a verbal briefing, giving a short formal talk, or being interviewed by a journalist.

Each station lasts eight minutes, and there will be approximately one minute between stations. The stations will be numbered clearly from 1 to 6 and staff will help you move between stations.

You will receive a candidate briefing pack with the full set of six questions. Each question will be clearly marked. You should take this pack with you to all stations, and to the preparation and examination rooms. You may make notes on it. You will be asked to return the full set as you leave the examination suite at the end of the examination. There will also be paper in the preparation room for you to make notes on. You can take these notes with you into the examination room but you should leave them there at the end of the station.

There may be a pilot station where a new scenario will be trialled. You will not be told which station this is. Your result in this station will not count.

You will be required to perform all tasks. You will be told the number of the station at which you should begin in the briefing session and you will be directed to that station when you enter the examination area. Your starting station will also be indicated by a number on your name badge given to you when you register.

Your first station will always be a preparation station where you will read the instructions for the examination station outlining what you will be required to perform at that station. You will have eight minutes before entering the examination station to read the instructions. You must always read the station instructions carefully and respond appropriately. You should not assume you know what the station is about.

A bell will ring. You may then enter the examination station. There will be an examiner in each station. You will not always be required to have a conversation with the examiner; you should only direct your remarks to him or her if the instructions specifically ask you to do so. You should undertake the task as instructed.

In some stations there may be an actor who has been provided with a detailed script beforehand. In these stations the examiner will observe you and will not intervene, except in very limited circumstances.

In addition to the candidate and examiner, there may be other people in the room and these others may include examiners in training, observers participating in an audit and evaluation of the OSPHE etc.

A bell will ring after approximately seven minutes to warn candidates that they are nearly out of time.  Another bell will ring when the time is finished. At this point, candidates must stop immediately and go to the next station. If they finish before the end, candidates must wait inside the station but should not speak to the examiner or the role player during this time.

You should continue in this way until you have completed all examination stations. You will then have finished the OSPHE.

Examiners will not give any feedback during OSPHE stations.

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Leaving the examination

At the end of the examination you should hand in your card/ID Badge to a member of staff, collect your belongings from the lockers and leave quietly.

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