Selection and appointment of FRCA examiners regulations

Published: 31/07/2019

4. Appointment of new Examiners

4.1 Appointments are normally for an examinership of 10 years. Council reserve to right to change the term of examinership as required

4.2 New examiners shall be appointed to the Board of Primary Examiners. Appointments to the Board of Final Examiners shall normally be made from the Board of Primary Examiners.

4.3 Advertising Vacancies:

Details of the selection process and vacancies for the following academic year shall be published in the Bulletin and such other publications as the Committee may decide, in sufficient time for a list of nominations to be presented to Council by a date that it shall from time to time decide.

4.4 Examiner specification:

Applicants shall be assessed against the FRCA Examiner Person Spec. as set out at Appendix A. In addition throughout their term of examinership, examiners are expected to adhere to the duties and responsibilities set out in the FRCA Examiner Job description which is at Appendix B.

4.5 Selection Procedures:

4.5.1 At the closing date for examiner applications, all applicants are allocated a specific ‘examiner application number’, application forms, less the personal information page and Equal opportunities form, are then circulated to the selection group. Initial scoring of application forms are carried out using the following scoring system:
10 – Meets essential criteria and excellent in ALL aspects.
6 – Meets essential criteria and good/excellent in SOME aspects.
2 – Meets essential criteria.
0 – Fails to meet essential criteria.
Applicants’ scores are summed and ranked. The cut-off score depends on the expected number of vacancies.

4.5.2 Following short-listing, requests for references from the Clinical Director and Regional Advisor of each applicant are posted. These are considered at the Examination Committee meeting in mid-February where the final selections are decided upon.
4.5.3 At a subsequent meeting the Committee shall confirm how many new examiners must be appointed to bring the Boards up to strength for the following academic year. They are then to select on merit new examiners for recommendation to Council. The following factors will be considered:
a. The application form, judged against the PS and the ability to carry out the JD. Applicants must meet all essential criteria as set out in the PS at the time of submission of their application form, with exception of 5 years as a consultant/SAS doctor which must be met by 1 July on year of appointment.

b. Reports from Clinical Directors and Regional Advisors.
c. In the selection process consideration may be given to an appropriate balance based on the following factors:
(i) Geographic distribution
(ii) Types of hospital
(iii) Special interests directly relevant to the FRCA examinations
(iv) Clinical vs. academic
(v) Protected characteristics
4.5.4 The recommendations from the Examination Committee are considered by Council at their meeting in mid-March. Notification will follow by official letter. New examiners are appointed, subject to a probationary period, to the Board of Primary FRCA Examiners.

4.6 Complaints policy:

Examiner applicants have a right to express their dissatisfaction with the way in which any part of the selection process has been done and feel confident that such a complaint is handled in a fair and consistent way. Applicants who consider they have grounds for complaint should use the policy set out at paragraphs 20-31 of the FRCA Examinations (Reviews and Appeals) Regulations.

4.7 Examiner Training:

No examiner shall take up his/her appointment until he/she has successfully completed a period of training approved by Council. Mandatory training includes: Principles of assessment, taking part in mock exams and exam specific Equality and Diversity training. Before examining independently, the examiner elect must observe each relevant component of the examination and will therefore be invited to visit the Primary OSCE/SOE in advance of the training day or spend a day as an observer at their first exam week.

4.8 Examiner update and quality assurance:

Established examiners will be given regular training through update sessions and sharing best practice meetings. All examiners are expected to undertake annual E&D training (see 12.1). All examiners will be subject to quality assurance of their performance. All examiners receive a full appraisal at the end of their probationary year. At year five of their examiner term and after their first year in a new examiner board (moving from Primary to Final) (see paragraph 6).