MRCPCH Clinical Exam Face-to-Face some patients UK and overseas - FAQs

This page contains frequently asked questions about the face-to-face some patient MRCPCH Clinical exam. The guidance provided here is the most current information we have available. As policies and processes change, we will update this guidance.
Last modified
19 October 2022

Start with our MRCPCH Clinical face-to-face guidance hub. These FAQs aim to answer your questions.

Is there a limit on how many people can sit the exam?

Yes, as with all of our exams, there are a certain number of places available.  This has not changed. There will be 12 candidates per circuit with two circuits per day for a total of 24 seats per day.  The number of days we run exams is up to the availability of host centres.  Most UK exam centres will run 1 or 2 days of exams while most overseas hosts will run 2 and sometimes 3 days. 

How will places be allocated?

Exam places will be allocated as normal, using the allocation criteria on the MRCPCH Clinical Exam How to Apply page.

Can I be prioritised to sit the exam?

Unfortunately, we cannot give special priority to anyone wishing to sit the exam. In order to fairly allocate seats, we need to follow the allocation criteria on the MRCPCH Clinical Exam How to Apply page.

Can international candidates participate in UK face-to-face some patient clinical exams?

Yes, international candidates can participate in these. Candidates from any country may apply to any country’s exam during the appropriate application window. However, we will apply the allocation criteria which do give priority of placement to candidates living and working in that country. Please see the MRCPCH Clinical Exam How to Apply.

How will reasonable adjustments be accommodated with the changes to the Clinical Exam?

Reasonable adjustments will be handled in the same manner as they always have been. Candidates are required to notify us of a request for reasonable adjustments and then complete a form and provide documentation. Once this is reviewed, we will get back to the candidate with the adjustments we are making.

Will you be providing guidance about how best to prepare for the clinical exam?

Yes, we will provide guidance about how best to prepare for the clinical exam.  We are providing updates and new resources for candidates on the MRCPCH Clinical Exam Face-to-Face Guidance Hub as they become available.

Are stations changing for the face-to-face clinical exam?

We have detailed information about the structure and content of the exam on the MRCPCH Clinical Exam Face-to-Face Guidance Hub. The Communications, History and Video stations content and format will remain the same as always.  The four Short Clinical will be run with patients while the Development station will continue with scenarios.  Information about changes to the content and delivery of the Development and Clinical stations is available on the above page.

Would the College consider lengthening the Clinical or Development stations as we need to describe the examination in detail in any station with a scenario?

During the development phase for this exam, we ran through the Short Clinical and Development stations multiple times to check for timing and other issues.  Additionally, these stations were tested in 2 pilot tests and five live UK exams and have been run in multiple overseas centre exams as well and the timing was found to be sufficient. 

How much detail do we need to go into in describing how we would conduct an examination for any Short Clinical or Development station with a scenario?

Please see the Describing Examinations and Understanding Cues document on MRCPCH Clinical Exam Face-to-Face Guidance Hub.

Are domains changing for the face-to-face some patient clinical exam

The Communications, History, Development and Video stations domains will remain the same as in a normal face-to-face exam. The four Short Clinical stations have had the E1 domain removed and the D2 domain added. This change was put into effect from November 2020 exams.  Further information about domains assessed on this exam can be found on the MRCPCH Clinical Exam Face-to-Face Guidance Hub.

Is marking or the pass mark changing for the face-to-face some patient clinical exam?

Further information about marking and the pass mark is available on the Exam Results webpage.

Will the next diet of exams continue to be a mixture of scenario and patient based?

Since we do not know exactly when the COVID pandemic will resolve itself, we cannot predict yet the delivery method of the next diet of exams for UK or overseas. For now, we would hope that we can continue to deliver face-to-face some patient exams, and work our way back towards fully including patients, but those decisions must be based upon each country’s Covid circumstances at the time the next exam diet is being planned. As soon as a decision is made we will update the MRCPCH Clinical Exam How to Apply webpage.