Putting a face to the PACES
After months of filming and development our first instalment of the new MRCP 2 PACES videos have been released. The new case videos show clear, clinical signs and have many great new features and innovations designed to enhance your revision experience and make it more representative of the real MRCP 2 PACES exam.
Jack Baldwin, now an ST3 Doctor, has been working with Pastest for a number of years and took the role of candidate in many of the videos. Now the PACES videos are live to customers Jack has reviewed his experience of using the resource and being part of the production process.
How did your collaboration with Pastest come about?
I first got involved with Pastest after using the Part 2 question bank a few years ago. I took part in a focus group feeding back how relevant the questions had been to my experience of the exam. Ever since then I have stayed in contact, trying to ensure that the resource offered reflects what I found helpful for the exams.
What is your experience of revising online for the PACES exam?
Whilst the best revision comes from iterative practice on patients, online revision is a great way to target holes in knowledge or recap rarer signs or syndromes. I do think it is swifter and more targeted than trawling through textbooks, which is a godsend, particularly in the final run-up. However, trying to pin down good quality and reliable information/resources can be challenging.
How useful is the new resource going to be?
The latest update to the PACES resource brings together lots of what I wanted from my online revision – and it has something to offer whatever stage of revision you are at. It covers what an ‘ideal examination’ might include which is helpful early on, but for those nearing the exam, it also has the facility to skip to key findings to make things a bit quicker. I particularly found watching and practicing the presentation of findings, and examiners’ questions helpful. There is a good variety of cases for each station, and I find podcasts informative for when I can’t be fully engaged with my computer. Additionally, the spot diagnosis cards gave me a bit more confidence for tackling the Station 5 possibilities.
How is it better than the current resource?
The dashboard is more intuitive and the quality of the videos has improved. I think the inclusion of heart/breath sounds is a great innovation. I also think that increasing the breadth of history/ethics stations is a good addition. Those stations are often underprepared for and it is helpful to be exposed to those challenging scenarios.
Jack discussing a patient’s medical history in the PACES videos.
How close is the content to what will be experienced in the actual exam?
The layout of the stations and the subject matter is entirely in keeping with what can be expected from the exam. Obviously the nervousness can’t really be simulated, but hopefully these videos will breed a familiarity so that the real thing isn’t quite so daunting!
What was it like being part of the production of the new content?
Nerve-racking! The stations I helped with were a bit trickier than what I actually received in my PACES, and it certainly felt very real at times. It was a pleasure to meet the Pastest family and get a real appreciation of how important it was for them to make a product which really was tailored to and optimized for doctors sitting PACES.
What’s your one tip for PACES exam success?
Take a breath before answering any questions, but reply with confidence and have good eye contact with the examiners. I am sure that coming across as assured helps to give an aura of knowing what you are talking about!
For more information on what changes have been made to the videos please read our blog New resources to put you through your PACES.
In Royal College Exams on Wednesday, 18th October, 2017