- Created on 17 February 2012
- Written by Joanna Ford, Sarah Alder and Zoe Muir
As many of you will be aware the 2012 Speciality Certificate Examination (SCE) will be held on Wednesday 21 March. The subsequent exam date for 2013 has also been confirmed – Wednesday 6 March 2013.
We thought it would be helpful to include below the findings and comments from the SCE 2011 Trainees’ Survey compiled by Thomas Jackson, former Chair of the BGS Trainees’ Council. This was conducted after the SCE in 2011.
As last year we surveyed trainees who had taken the SCE (38 responses, 4 of whom failed).
It appears that the majority taking the exam were ST5 (55%), with 31% being ST4. 54% found it harder than expected, which is an improvement on last year, with 38% saying it was of an expected standard.
We asked people to rate what resources they used to help prepare for the exam. Unfortunately local trainers were rated as poor by 25%, average by 34% and not used by 29%. The RCP website and the Dundee university questions were well rated, as was the Oxford Handbook of Geriatric Medicine. Those that used the Mulley and Rai training guide (only 40%) found it helpful. Again, those who attended the Southampton weekend (approx 50%) found both the lectures and Mike’s session helpful.
A lot of people also recommended ‘Essential Geriatrics’ by Woodford, and ‘Rapid review’ by Vassallo and Allen, which were not in the original survey.
The topics people felt less prepared for were ethical questions (more complex than a BOF answer), biogerontology and walking aids/physiotherapy. There was again a general feel that some questions were a bit too much like MRCP2 medicine. I will ensure the full comments go to Dr Vassallo.
In conclusion I think the important points are (and clearly this is from a small survey, and ‘official’ details may inform us better)
• Local trainers may well need more training with regard the SCE
• A review of the textbooks people use would be welcome – are they at the right level?
• We need to continue ensuring that trainees realise that the exam is hard and what to expect.
• The trainees weekend should be encouraged and continue
• Should the majority of people taking the exam be ST4 and 5? Or should we be encouraging ST5 and ST6’’
We are delighted to welcome Zoe Muir, ST6 in the West of Scotland, currently based in Glasgow Royal Infirmary, who joins Sarah Alder and myself as Trainee Reps. In May Jo will be going on maternity leave so will be less involved over the summer months.
The presentations from our Scottish Trainees’ Meeting in September 2011 are now on the website.
We will be hosting our meeting again in Perth on Friday 14 September 2012. We are currently making up the programme and if you have any subjects you would like to be covered do send us an email. Please keep this date in your diary.