MRCPCH Clinical exam - how to apply

Find out when and how to apply to MRCPCH Clinical in the UK and overseas centres, how places are allocated and what to expect after you submit your application.
Last modified
8 June 2022

Announcements

INDIA SEPTEMBER CLINICAL APPLICATION WINDOW - all candidates who wish to apply for the autumn Egypt exam - we were experiencing technical issues with the application.  These have now been resolved and you should be able to apply as normal.  You might need to log out and log back in.  Thank you for your patience.

All candidates should note: If you have applied for a MRCPCH Clinical exam event (UK or overseas) then until such time as a decision is made on whether you are placed on an event you would not be able to apply for another MRCPCH Clinical exam event (the booking system will not accept the application). Once we have determined the final placement for an event and completed all placements and all rejections then candidates who are rejected from an event will be able to book on to new open events.

We are highlighting this as some candidates have not been able to book onto new events while they wait to hear if they are placed on an event they applied for earlier.

Requirements before you apply

You will need to have passed all three theory exams before you can apply for MRCPCH Clinical.

To optimise your chances of success in the MRCPCH Clinical we strongly recommend that you have:

  • completed a period of training lasting two and a half years from the graduation date on your diploma of medical qualification
  • spent no less than 12 months in posts involving the care of emergency paediatric patients (it is desirable that at least six months in a post with a strong emphasis on responsibility for unselected emergency admissions) within the five years prior to your exam date - note this does include clinical attachments
  • spent six months of your first year after graduation as a house paediatrician; if not, an additional six months in a post involving the care of emergency paediatric patients.

Your sponsor

All MRCPCH Clinical candidates must provide details on their application form about their sponsor . The sponsor is expected is someone who, from personal knowledge and repute can agree the candidate is ready to take the exam. Ideally your sponsor would be:

  • your current educational supervisor or senior colleague (whom you have worked with for at least 3 months)
  • an RCPCH member or fellow (where possible)

Your sponsor might be notified if you receive a poor overall mark or an unprofessional conduct concern

You must obtain permission from your sponsor to provide the information required below. You will be asked to provide:

  • full name
  • relationship to you (for example, educational supervisor or senior colleague)
  • position (for example, senior consultant or professor)
  • place of work
  • email address.

Exam centres and availability

MRCPCH Clinical exams take place in hospitals across the UK and in other countries. Each exam centre has a fixed number of places per day. For those exams held in the UK, availability of host centres may vary from exam diet to exam diet.  If your application is successful, we will email you an admissions document with the centre's full address approximately four weeks before your exam.

Please note, candidates might have to travel to attend the exam host centre to which they have been assigned. Additionally, exams can be held on any day of the week.  Please ensure any travel or accommodation you book is fully refundable. The College will not reimburse costs for travel or accommodation in the event of a cancellation or if you cannot attend the exam.

If a candidate has any special requests for placements or dates to avoid, these must be submitted in the notes section of the application form and all candidates should also immediately email the exams@rcpch.ac.uk inbox with the same information.  No requests for date swaps or transfers will be approved once the application window has closed.

Once an application is confirmed and paid, transfers between centres are not normally possible. We will only be able to process cancellation requests after the application period closes.

Countries in which MRCPCH Clinical takes place

N.B. Not all countries will offer the exam during each exam diet (exam period).

  • UK
  • Egypt
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Nepal
  • Oman
  • Singapore
  • Sudan
  • United Arab Emirates

Start and end times

For clinical examinations held in the UK the morning sessions normally start at 10:00 and finish at 12:30. The afternoon sessions normally start at 14:00 and finish at 16:30.  However, candidates will have to arrive earlier than exam start times.  The exact times will be provided in your admissions document.

For clinical examination held overseas start and end times may vary depending on the centre. This information will be provided to candidates in their admission/placement letter.

Fees

For all countries except Hong Kong, you will need to pay online by credit card or debit card. We no longer accept bank drafts or cheques. 

Exam 2022 exam fee
UK £795
Egypt £1170
India £1480
KSA £1530
Malaysia £1300
Myanmar £1100
Nepal £1100

Oman (You'll be required to pay an additional fee (68 OMR) to the local OMSB (Oman Medical Specialty Board) exam administrator. This can be paid on the exam day by cash or credit/debit card. For more information, contact localexams@omsb.org)

£1530
Singapore (Conjoint MMED - MRCPCH Clinical fee) £1480
Sudan £1240
UAE £1530
Hong Kong Contact HKCP for 2022 fees

Dates of exams and application periods

All application windows open at 09:30 and close at 16:30 (UK time) unless otherwise noted.

All exam dates are subject to our ability to safely run the exam as a result of COVID-19.  Therefore exam dates might change or exams might be postponed or cancelled. We will do our best to make such updates as early as we possibly can. Please check this page regularly for updates.  Please note that we have not yet determined what format the UK exams in 2022.2 and 2022.3 will take (online or face to face).

2022 exams

Please note, we are working closely with all of our overseas partners to secure dates for exams in 2022.  As we confirm dates with our overseas partners, they will be added to the tables below.  These are all the confirmed dates we have so far; please do not email if you do not see a given country's dates below as we do not have any further information.

Please note that overseas exams listed below will be held face-to-face with no patients (aside from Singapore which might run the exam with patients).  All candidates should be aware there could be host country travel restrictions that might limit candidate placement to only those from within the host country.  These restrictions might change quickly and without much notice.  

2022.1 diet

Country Exam date Application open date Application close date
Jeddah 26-27 January 2022 9 Nov 2021 10 Nov 2021
UK Online 11-28 February 2022 26 Nov 2021 6 Dec 2021
Malaysia 21-23 February 2022 13 Dec 2021 14 Dec 2021
Hong Kong 28 February & 1 & 2 March 2022 See HK website See HK website
Egypt 4-5 March 2022 13 Dec 2021 14 Dec 2021
Oman 4-5 March 2022 15 Dec 2021 16 Dec 2021
UAE 19-20 March 2022 26 Jan 2022* 27 Jan 2022*
Jeddah 25-26 March 2022 10 Jan 2022 11 Jan 2022

*Anyone wishing to sit the UAE exam in 22-1 who sat the exam in 21-3, please note that your results should be published to your web account just prior to the application window.  If for some reason there is a delay in the publication of results, we urge you to apply again for the March 2022 exam in UAE even if you sat the 21-3 UAE exam.  If you have passed your 21-3 UAE exam, we will not place you on the March 2022 exam. 

2022.2 diet

Country Exam date Application open date Application close date Format
Malaysia 21-22 May 2022* 22 Feb 2022 23 Feb 2022 F2F - With patients
UAE 21-22 May 2022 22 Feb 2022 23 Feb 2022 F2F - No Patients
Jeddah 27-28 May 2022 7 Mar 2022 8 Mar 2022 F2F - No Patients
Singapore 28-29 May 2022 24 Feb 2022 2 Mar 2022 F2F - With patients
Egypt 3-4 June 2022 8 Mar 2022 9 Mar 2022 F2F - No Patients
UK 10-26 June 2022 28 Mar 2022** 4 Apr 2022 F2F - No Patients
         

* Malaysia 22-1 results will not have been published prior to the application window for the 22-2 exam.  Therefore any candidate who sat the February 2022 Malaysia exam will not be allowed to apply for the May 2022 Malaysia exam. 

** This was delayed from the original published application window.

F2F - With Patients exams will include patients in all four short clinical stations. The Development station will continue to be scenario-based. Please refer to the F2F guidance hub for further information.

2022.3 diet

Country Exam date Application open date Application close date Format
Egypt 1-2 September 2022 1 June 2022 7 June 2022 F2F - No Patients
India (Kolkata) 11-12 September 2022 8 June 2022 9 June 2022 F2F - With Patients
Nepal (Kathmandu) 16-17 September 2022 15 June 2022 16 June 2022 F2F - With Patients
UAE 24-25 September 2022 23 June 2022 24 June 2022 F2F - No Patients
UK 1 - 16 October 2022 1 Aug 2022 8 Aug 2022 TBD
UAE 19-20 November 2022 15 Aug 2022 16 Aug 2022 TBD
Jeddah 22-26 November 2022 23 Aug 2022 24 Aug 2022 TBD
Egypt 2-3 December 2022 20 Sept 2022 21 Sept 2022 TBD
Malaysia 24-25 September 2022 28 June 2022 29 June 2022 F2F - With Patients
Hong Kong 19-22 September 2022 23 June 2022 6 July 2022 TBD
         

Before you apply

  • Find out when the next MRCPCH Clinical is in your location - see upcoming exams above.
  • You can only apply during the application period.
  • You can save your application and go back later, but you must submit your application by the deadline. Any applications that are not submitted by the deadline will be deleted.
  • Once you submit your application, you will not be able to edit or delete it.
  • Places for MRCPCH Clinical are limited, and submitting your application does not guarantee a place. You may be given a place on any date within the exam period. UK candidates may be placed anywhere in the UK; this depends on the availability of host centres, previous posts and attendance at preparatory courses.
  • If you choose to withdraw your application after the application period, we cannot guarantee a refund of your exam fees.
  • If your application is successful and you are placed, we will send an automated request for you to provide your payment details. Should you be selected for placement you will have a limited amount of time to log back into the booking system and update your application with your payment information. Once submitted the Exams Team will review and process your payment but only after the application period closes. If your application is unsuccessful, we will not request payment and we will inform you of your status as soon as we are able to.
  • RCPCH reserves the right to bar a candidate from sitting any exam where there exist reasons to doubt the candidate's fitness to hold MRCPCH. Such reasons include falsifying country of work/residence or previous qualifications or experience. We check this information and will take action against candidates where there is evidence of falsification.
  • If we are provided with any evidence that a candidate has falsified information on their exam application form those candidates will be investigated in full. Investigations may lead to a lifetime ban from sitting any further attempts at the MRCPCH Clinical exam. Further action could include candidate exam accounts being blocked on the RCPCH exam booking system and reporting the outcome to the medical regulator within the candidate’s country of registration.

Allocation of places - UK clinical centres

The MRCPCH is important to the career progression of doctors working in paediatrics in the UK, in particular those who are registered on the UK paediatric training programme. It is therefore important this is recognised in the criteria for allocating candidate places for MRCPCH Clinical in the UK.

Places are allocated using the following criteria, in this order:

  1. Applications from trainees who are on an outcome 3, 10.1 or 10.2 of their last ARCP due to delayed exam progression.  Trainees who fit this category will have their names submitted to us via Heads of School.
  2. Applications from candidates working in the UK who are at a career critical stage. ie trainees within 6 months of stepping up to ST4 or non-trainees working in the UK and applying for ST4 training but who do not yet hold an offer of a post.  Trainees who fit this category will have their names submitted via Heads of School to the Exams team.  Any non-trainees who fit this category will need to have their supervisor, service lead or clinical director email the Exams team to confirm.  It is the responsibility of each candidate to ensure their Head of School, supervisor, lead or director knows their intentions and can therefore confirm to us for prioritisation.
  3. Applications from candidates working in the UK based on current stage of career/training with priority given to those nearing the end of their 7-year registration period (trainees and non-trainees).
  4. Applications from candidates living, but not working, in the UK with priority given to those nearing the end of their 7-year registration period.
  5. Applications from candidates working overseas in countries where the exam is not offered (with priority given to those nearing the end of their 7-year registration period)
  6. Applications from candidates working overseas in countries where the exam is offered (with priority given to those nearing the end of their 7-year registration period)

Candidates who are UK trainees or non-trainee doctors will be asked on the application form whether their application is career critical and asked to provide their current ST or career level.  For our purposes, career critical means any trainee who has already progressed to ST4 (without the exam), or who is expected to step up to ST4 in the next six months. It also refers to any non-trainee with an offer of an ST4 post to begin within the next 6 months which is dependent upon completion of the MRCPCH or a non-trainee who intends to apply for an ST4 post within the next six months.  Please only indicate you are career critical if these criteria apply to you.  We are working with the Heads of School to identify and confirm career critical applicants among trainees and non-trainees who are known to them. 

There may also be other exceptional circumstances, such as pending parental leave or planned medical leave where a candidate is more than 6 calendar months from stepping up or applying for an ST4 post.  These circumstances will need to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.  

Anyone who feels they are career critical or have exceptional circumstances should contact the Exams team as soon as they submit an application so that we can properly understand their situation prior to making allocations.  The Exams team can be reached at exams@rcpch.ac.uk.  Please ensure you email us each time you apply for an exam to update us on your situation.

If you are not initially allocated a place, you will be placed on a waitlist for the exam you have applied for, in order of the criteria above. If any placed candidates withdraw or more places are made available, candidates on the waitlist will be contacted and offered these places, in order, up to two weeks before the exam.

Allocation of places - overseas clinical centres

Places for the MRCPCH Clinical exams held overseas are allocated using the following criteria, in this order:

  1. Applications from candidates working in the host country and who are nearing the end of their 7 year registration period 
  2. Applications from candidates working in countries where there is no established MRCPCH clinical exam and who are nearing the end of their 7 year registration period
  3. Applications from candidates working in the host country
  4. Applications from candidates working in countries where there is no established MRCPCH Clinical host centre
  5. Applications from candidates working in countries where there is an established MRCPCH Clinical host centre and who are nearing the end of their 7 year registration period
  6. Applications from candidates working in countries where there is an established MRCPCH Clinical host centre.

Please note:

  • Priority is given to candidates whose main employment is in the host country. If your main role is in one country but you are a national of another, or if you occasionally locum or have a short-term position in another country, please only list your main role and country on your application form and RCPCH account. 
  • Although you may be on the waiting list this does not guarantee that you will be allocated a place for a particular examination sitting.
  • If your application is placed on the waiting list, it will remain on this until two weeks before the exam, unless you inform the College in writing that you want to withdraw. If you are on the waiting list, you may not apply to other exam centres.
  • You must include testimonials for proposers who do not hold the relevant qualifications with your application for the clinical exam. Please see information about additional requirements below.

Reasonable adjustments

If you require support for your exam, you will need to include details in your online application. If you request any support, we'll contact you during or shortly after the application period to discuss this.

We may be able to arrange:

  • additional time to complete the exam
  • option to sit the exam at a centre of your choice, a centre recommended by the Exams Team or a centre that suits your accessibility needs.
  • other more complex arrangements. Please note: complex arrangements require time. If required you must contact the Exams Team as early as possible and ideally before you apply for your exam.

Find the policy and form in our exam regulations and rules.

If this is your first attempt at the clinical exam you will need to complete a separate Request for reasonable adjustment section, with the required evidence such as a medical certificate or a report from an educational psychologist or consultant. This must be received by us at least seven weeks before the exam. Subsequent attempts will require you to complete the form but not re-supply your documentation.

Contact us on exams@rcpch.ac.uk or +44 20 7092 6000 (ask for Exams team).

Getting to the exam booking system

We recommend you use a modern browser such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge or Safari - and not Internet Explorer for the Online Booking System

To access:

  • Log in to your RCPCH account.
  • Go to Account (a link in the header).
  • From your dashboard, go to the Exams block, and click on Register or book exams.
  • The first time you access the new booking system, you'll see a launch screen. Click continue.

Once you get to the booking system, you'll see a dashboard with:

  • Exam progress - This shows for either or both MRCPCH and DCH route which exams you need to take and which you have passed. (When you first log in, this may not be up to date - if that happens, log out and log back in again, and it should update.)
  • Available bookings - This shows exams you are eligible to apply for and that are currently taking bookings. If your seven year exam registration period has expired, you will be directed to re-sit your Applied Knowledge in Paediatrics (AKP) theory exam.
  • My recent bookings - This shows your saved applications.

Applying for an exam

  • In the exams booking system, find the exam you wish to apply for in your list of available bookings, select View.
  • Then, select Apply.
  • So we can place you on the exam, you'll need to complete:
    • Country of residence
    • Current hospital / workplace
    • Start date of current employment and end date (if known)
    • Past hospital / workplace (please list your previous employment if you have been in your current post for less than 18 months)
    • Future hospital / workplace (if you have any confirmed future posts)
    • Details of any exam preparation courses you have or are planning to attend
    • Details of a sponsor who can confirm your readiness to sit the MRCPCH Clinical exam
    • Details of any reasonable adjustments required.
  • When complete, select Submit. (If you have not completed all fields, you'll see a notice at the top of the screen.)

After you submit your application, you'll be sent a confirmation email. Your booking system dashboard will show that your application is waiting for placement. You don't need to make a payment at this stage.

Paying for an exam

If you are allocated a place on the exam, you'll be sent another email to log in and make your payment by credit or debit card. This will take up to four weeks after the application period.

  • When you get the email, log in and go to the exams booking system.
  • Go to My bookings to find your application, and select View.
  • Select Card payment and then Continue to payment, and follow the on-screen instructions.

If you are allocated a place on the exam, you'll be sent another email to log in to and make your payment. Please allow three to four weeks for this second email.

For candidates applying to centres in Hong Kong

Candidates in the UK and most clinical exam centres in other countries (including Egypt, Singapore, India, Malaysia, Myanmar, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and UAE) can only apply through our online system. We do not accept paper, email or faxed applications for these countries - even if you have previously applied for a clinical exam in this way.

Candidates applying to the Hong Kong exam must complete a paper application form and submit it directly to the host centre (details below). You can download the form at the bottom of this page. Please do not send paper applications to the RCPCH.

Hong Kong - host contact information

What happens after you submit your application

If your application is successful

We will get in touch to request your payment and place you on the exam. You will see your exam date and location in your exam dashboard.  You will be emailed a final placement letter with details, including a schedule and map, sent either by us or for some overseas centres by the exam host, usually three to four weeks before the exam. Please do not arrange travel, accommodation or exam preparation course before you receive this email. Keep this letter, as you will need to bring it with you on the exam day.

If you are on the waiting list

Your application will not be accepted or rejected, and no payment will be taken.  If a place becomes available due to cancellation, we will contact you. This may be at very short notice, for example, one or two weeks before the exam. If you are given a place, you will be sent a final placement letter, and your payment will be taken.

If no place becomes available, your application will be rejected and deleted from your online account. You will need to wait until the next application period to apply for an exam. 

If your application is rejected

Your application will be rejected, and deleted from your online account. You will need to wait until the next application period to apply for an exam.

On exam day and after

For what to do on the day of the exam, results, withdrawals, transfers, complaints and feedback please visit our new webpage.