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8 Things to Remember in Your PACES Exam
  • 11 Sep 2015
  • MRCP

In his second blog post, Dr Atef El Dean outlines 8 key points to follow before and during your PACES exam that will help you to focus and achieve PACES success. 

1. PACES requires sustained energy. Have some good sleep in the last few days before your exam, and if you can relax for half a day before the test, that would be ideal. 

2. Always keep in mind that the examiners want to be satisfied that you are a safe, competent doctor that they can depend on to look after their patients even while they are away.

3. Be confident in front of the examiners, not arrogant.

4. Smile, and be calm. Imagine that you are presenting the cases to your consultant in a normal working day during ward round.

5. Be nice to the patients. Respect them, ask their permission for examination, be gentle and at the end of the examination ensure that your patient is as comfortable as you found them. And finally don't forget to thank them.

6. If you know the diagnosis, state it then give the real the relevant supporting findings. If you don’t, present systematically and then give differentials.

7. Remember that difficult cases may be really difficult to all candidates (and even examiners!) 

8. Each station and case is marked separately, and even the same case would be marked by two examiners and they don't share their evaluation. Try not to lose hope. Try not to think about a case you think you did badly on, but focus on the remaining stations. Examiners won't fail you because you didn't do well in one case. You can still easily pass by getting the minimum score in each skill examined.

Good luck to everyone.

Dr Atef El Dean MBBCh MSc MRCP(UK)
Specialty Doctor in Gastroenterology

  • 11 Sep 2015
  • MRCP