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Recruitment to the Foundation Programme 2012 Published June 2011
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  1. Recruitment to theFoundation Programme 2012 Published June 2011

  2. Last year’s successes 94% of Academic FP vacancies filled through nationally co-ordinated academic recruitment round 100% of standard FP vacancies filled during the main national recruitment round Over 90% of applicants in the main round allocated to their first choice foundation school

  3. Recruitment to Academic FP2012 • Recruitment to Academic Foundation Programmes will be coordinated through the Foundation Programme Application System (FPAS) and run to a national timetable • Academic applicants enrol on FPAS from 1-10 June 2011, complete a generic online application form and choose up to three Units of Application (UoA) • They then provide additional information as specified by each selected UoA, and follow the local application process associated with the relevant UoAs • Go to the Academic Programmes page on the UKFPO website for further information: • Anyone who accepts an Academic Foundation Programme place, will not be able to apply again in the main national recruitment round

  4. National recruitment round: FP2012 Changes for FP2012: • Applicants are required to upload documentation to support information given for educational achievement points • Educational achievements will be machine-marked. The uploaded evidence will be verified during a national verification day and the scores confirmed • If, as expected, there are more fully eligible applicants than vacancies, applications from individuals who cannot provide evidence of their right to work and remain in the UK will not be considered • Applicants will be allocated to foundation schools in score order. If their first choice is not available, the system will look at their second choice, and so on down their list of preferences until a space is available

  5. The application process NATIONAL • Eligibility checking • Online registration and enrolment • Submission of online application form • Applications scoring • Allocation to foundation school LOCAL • Selection of programme preferences • Matching to a programme within the school • Pre-employment checks

  6. Key dates

  7. Special Circumstances • Applicants can request pre-allocation to a particular foundation school on the basis of special circumstances: • Criterion 1: The applicant is a parent or legal guardian of a child or children under the age of 18 who reside primarily with them and for whom they have significant caring responsibilities • Criterion 2: The applicant is the primary carer for someone who is disabled (expected to be a partner, sibling or parent) • Criterion 3: The applicant has a medical condition for which local follow up is an absolute requirement, as confirmed by a report from an Occupational Health physician or an appropriate medical specialist • Requests and supporting evidence must be submitted to your medical school* by 29 September 2011 • More information and the special circumstances process and form is available on the UKFPO website • * Non-UK applicants must submit their request for pre-allocation to the Eligibility Office

  8. Applications - 100 points (max) Part 1 • Academic Ranking - 40 points (maximum) • Academic ranking is calculated by each medical school: • First quartile (the top 25% of the year) = 40 • Second quartile = 38 points • Third quartile = 36 • Fourth quartile = 34 points • Applicants will be able to see their academic ranking once they enrol on FPAS. Part 2 • Application form - 60 points (maximum) • Educational achievements awarded up to 10 points • Questions 1 to 5 worth a maximum of 10 points each

  9. Educational Achievements PART A – Additional postgraduate degrees (max. 5 points) • Additional degrees include Bachelors, Masters and Doctorates, regardless of the subject • Score given for one additional degree only. • If applicants have an MA and a PhD, they should enter details of the PhD as it attracts the highest number of points • More points awarded for better class degrees • A 1st class BSc degree will attract more points than a 3rd class degree, for example • A copy of the degree certificate needs to be uploaded • A letter from the dean/registrar confirming a pass result is acceptable if the certificate has not been issued

  10. Educational Achievements PART B: Publications, prizes and presentations (max. 5 points) • Up to two points in each category for: • Publications (must have a PubMed ID) • Oral or poster presentations at national (or international) events • Educational prizes at a national level (this must be a 1st prize) • 5 points are available in total, with a maximum of 2 points from each category PLEASE NOTE: Fewer than 50% of medical students score points on this question.

  11. Questions 1 – 5: Meeting the person specification • Questions 1 to 5 relate to the essential criteria described in the Person Specification for FP2012 • Applicants must demonstrate through their answers that they meet the person specification in order to be allocated to a foundation training place • All questions have a maximum score of 10 points • Each question has a limit of 200 words • The questions will be available once the application period opens. They will not be published in advance

  12. Getting started (from 3 October 2011) Register and enrol on FPAS • Applicants must register on FPAS before they can apply: • Details must be typed exactly as supplied to the deanery/medical school • Once registered, an activation code will be emailed • Once the account is activated, applicants can enrol in the FP2012 recruitment round and complete their application form

  13. The application form (10–21 Oct 11) • Application forms must be completed and submitted on FPAS between 10 and 21 October 2011 • The application form is divided into 8 sections: • Personal (name, contact details, etc) • Qualifications (educational qualifications) • Clinical Skills (self assessment of practical and clinical skills) • Equal Opportunities (equal opportunities monitoring information) • References (details of 2 referees) • Questions (Educational achievements and 5 questions which will be scored) • Preferences (ranking of all foundation schools in order of preference) • Submit (includes declarations)

  14. Foundation Programme Application: FP 2011

  15. Application form (10-21 Oct 11) The application form is divided into 8 sections: • Personal (name, contact details, etc) • Qualifications (educational qualifications) • Clinical skills (self assessment of your own practical and clinical skills) • Equal opps (equal opportunities monitoring information) • References (details of 2 referees) • Questions (Educational achievements and 5 questions which will be scored) • Preferences (ranking all foundation schools in order of preference) • Submit This is the only section (anonymised) that will be seen by the scorers. Each scoring panel only sees one answer.

  16. Linked applications • Applications may be linked to another applicant’s in order for both to be allocated to the same foundation school • Both applicants must link to each other • Both applicants will be allocated based on the lowest scoring applicant’s score • Applicants cannot “un-link” once their form is submitted • Some foundation schools will not guarantee that linked applicants are in the same area. Check foundation school websites for more information on their policies • The link will be severed if one, or both, applicants is not on the primary list

  17. Preferences: Ranking foundation schools Check the FP 2012 Applicant’s Handbook for competition ratios for FP2008-2011. Check foundation school websites for local policies and training descriptions. View the details of individual programmes in each foundation school on FPAS from 3 October 2011. Linked applicants must rank their foundation school preferences in the same order or the link is broken. For the past four years, 90% or more of applicants were allocated to their first choice foundation school.

  18. Scoring applications • Educational achievements are machine-marked, with a national verification day to check the supporting documentation uploaded by applicants • Questions 1-5 are scored by the applicant’s first choice foundation school • All scorers are trained in national scoring criteria and must have attended Equality & Diversity training within the last three years • Each question is scored by a panel of two people, at least one of whom is a clinician • Panels do not know the applicant’s identity, their academic ranking or scores they receive for other questions

  19. Scoring applications • Panels will score answers to a particular question (e.g. all question 3 or all question 4). They do not see a full application for any individual • Panel members score an answer independently and then agree a final score if they differ • If they cannot agree, the answer is re-scored by a different panel • Where an applicant scores zero for any question, their answers to all questions are collated and reviewed to ensure they meet all criteria of the person specification

  20. Verification • Some applicants will be asked to verify the answers they provide on their application form • If selected for verification, applicants will receive either an email or a letter asking them to supply proof to verify their answers. • Please note that if one of your questions is highlighted for verification this does not mean that you will receive a lower score. Scorers have been trained to assume the scenario you provide is true and will score you accordingly • Some schools will list exactly the information they require, others will request evidence in whatever way the applicant sees fit • It is expected that most applicants will be able to supply the required proof and, if able to do so, being asked to verify their answers will have no effect on their score or where they are allocated

  21. Verification (17 Nov – 5 Dec 08) Example verification request Please note that you would not have to provide all evidence listed, but just a selection. Please note that foundation schools will have their own local process for verification.

  22. Verification • If unable to verify their answers, the foundation school director may require the applicant to attend an interview to discuss their answers • Applicants unable to verify the veracity of their answers to the satisfaction of the foundation school will be removed from the recruitment round and referred to the GMC

  23. Applicant’s work must be their own • Medical school staff, clinical tutors and former scorers have been told that they cannot give applicants personal coaching or advice as it is unfair to students at those schools who do not provide it • Applicants must confirm that their answers to the application questions are their own before they submit the application • The examples and situations used in answers must have been experienced by the applicant personally – not something they heard about through colleagues or lecturers

  24. Unfair practice • Unfair practice, including collusion and plagiarism, is not tolerated • Plagiarism software will check answers to ensure that standard answers have not been downloaded from the web or that applicants have not provided duplicate answers • If evidence of unfair practice is found, applicants will be contacted and asked to verify their answers. If they cannot, they will be withdrawn from the recruitment process • Please note that if two people or more have similar answers, all those involved are considered culpable.

  25. Allocation to a foundation school • The top ‘n’ highest scoring applicants will be placed on the primary list (where ‘n’ is the number of FP2012 vacancies across the UK) • If there are a number of applicants with the same score at the primary list cut-off, random selection will decide which ones are included on the primary list • Applicants not on the primary list will be included automatically on a reserve list Primary List allocation (8 Dec 2011) • Applicants on the primary list will be allocated to a foundation school in score order. If their first choice is not available, the system will look at their second choice, and so on down their list of preferences until a space is available

  26. Allocation to a foundation school Reserve list batch allocation (Mar – Jul 2012) • Subsequent to the primary list allocation, it is expected that a number of allocated applicants will be withdrawn from the process, e.g. they fail final exams, fail PLAB, etc • Applicants on the reserve list will be allocated to these vacancies in batches on pre-determined dates between March and July 2012 • The top scoring applicants remaining on the reserve list will be included in each batch • Applicants in each batch will be allocated to a foundation school in score order

  27. Local matching to programmes Primary list applicants • Those on the primary list will be invited to state their programme preferences by their allocated foundation school • Foundation schools each have their own process for matching applicants to programmes. • Check the foundation school websites for more information. (Most match to programme based on score first, then preferences - highest scoring applicants get first pick) Reserve list applicants • Those on the reserve list will be matched to whichever programmes are available when they are allocated to a particular school

  28. Pre-employment checks • Pre-employment checks include Criminal Records Bureau checks, and occupational health checks. They may also include a structured interview or assessment of clinical skills • These checks are undertaken on behalf of the employing healthcare organisation. Contracts of employment will not be issued until the checks are successfully completed. These checks begin as soon as the applicant is matched to a programme

  29. References • Applicants must provide details of two referees: one clinical and one from medical school • References and their content are not used in the scoring process, nor are they used in matching you to a programme • References are passed to employers as part of the pre-employment checks • See FP2012 Applicant’s Handbook for more information

  30. Transfer of Information • The GMC’s Tomorrow’s Doctors, places an obligation on medical schools to ensure graduates meet the outcomes required and to transfer information to those who may need it during their foundation training • Medical schools will provide more details about the Transfer Of Information (TOI) process. • The national process and forms can be found on the UKFPO website under “Medical Students/Key Documents”

  31. Employment contracts The employing healthcare organisation is responsible for all contractual issues including: • Pay • Banding • Rotas • Accommodation (if applicable) In England, check the NHS Employers website for more information:

  32. Planning and preparation Applicants should: • Print and read the person specification and FP2012 Applicant’s Handbook available online now at • Start collecting the required documentation for their educational achievements (i.e. additional degrees and relevant qualifications, publications, presentations and prizes • Ask one GP, consultant or associate specialist who can provide a reference about their clinical skills; and one lecturer, senior lecturer, professor or reader at their medical school to act as referees. Request that they supply an email address they access regularly

  33. Planning and preparation Applicants should (continued): • Book at least three sessions in their diary to write their answers • Make sure they give themselves plenty of time and don’t leave it until the last minute • Use a word-processing programme to draft their answers, check all spelling, and confirm the word count. Then copy and paste them into FPAS • Register and enrol on FPAS as soon as the system is available, i.e. from 3 Oct 2011 • Make sure they remember their username, password and security question/answer

  34. Planning and preparation Applicants should (continued): • Ensure they submit their application before the last morning as they may encounter last minute problems with their local PC or internet connection. • Remember that technical support is available via e-mail Monday to Friday, 8.30 am – 5.00 pm (BST). This is particularly important if they are submitting their application from overseas • Be aware that late submissions will not be accepted under any circumstances

  35. Data security • The application website is secure and has undergone rigorous checks • Personal data is protected under data protection legislation • Scoring panels will be provided with an applicant’s answers to the questions and their applicant number only. • All applicant information is held on a secure database and passed to employers for pre-employment checks once an applicant has been allocated to a foundation school

  36. Important dates 8 June 2011 FP2012 Applicant’s Handbook available 3 Oct 2011 Applicants can register and enrol online Programme information is available to view 10 - 21 Oct 2011 FPAS is open for applications** 8 Dec 2011 Foundation school allocations notified to primary list applicants By 25 Jan 2012 Primary list applicant preferences for training programmesare submitted(deadlines and methods will vary by foundation school) 15 Feb 2012Results of match to specific programmes are notified to primary list applicants Mar – Jul 2012 Reserve list batch allocations completed **Late applications will not be accepted

  37. What happens if . . . . . . more people apply than there are vacancies available? • This situation is anticipated • In this instance, applications from individuals who cannot provide evidence of their right to work in the UK by 7 October 2011 will not be considered • The top ‘n’ scoring applicants will be placed on the primary list and allocated to a foundation school in December 2011(where ‘n’ = the total number of FP places across the UK) • Other fully eligible applicants will be placed on a reserve list and allocated to vacancies that subsequently arise in batches between March and July 2012(vacancies typically arise due to failed finals or not passing PLAB, etc)

  38. What happens if . . . . . . there are not enough applicants for all the vacancies? • This situation is known as under-subscription • If under-subscription is significant, a percentage of posts will be suspended in each foundation school in England • Posts will not be suspended in Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland

  39. Where to go for more info Go to • for further details on the application process • for answers to frequently asked questions • for a list of foundation schools with web links • to sign up for regular e-updates

  40. Why is it being done? FP2012 – What’s New? • New selection methods are being developed for FP2013 because. . . • There are concerns about whether the ‘white space’ questions can be sustained in the long term as model answers are being developed and sold on the internet • It is not always clear how academic quartiles are calculated. A clear, consistent way of calculating academic scores will be used • During FP2012 recruitment the new selection methods will be trialled in parallel with the current system • UK medical schools will each have a lead and an administrator responsible for this Parallel Recruitment Exercise (PRE)

  41. FP 2012 – What’s new? (cont.) PRE – Situational Judgement Test (SJT) • Applicants are expected to complete the FPAS application form PLUS a one hour invigilated SJT • SJTs will: • take place at UK medical schools on either 11 Nov, 28 Nov, 9 Dec or 9 Jan. Schools will provide details of date, time and venue • give you the opportunity to practice SJT questions, which are being used for selection in an increasing number of specialties • NOT have any bearing on your FPAS score, nor on your allocation to foundation school or programme

  42. FP 2012 – What’s new? (cont.) PRE – Situational Judgement Test (SJT) • You will be provided with your score in relation to all other students who have taken the test • The UKFPO will provide information to non-UK applicants regarding where they can attend an SJT

  43. FP 2012 – What’s new? (cont.) PRE – Educational Performance Measure (EPM) • Medical schools will be producing an EPM score for each student as part of the PRE • The UKFPO will provide the EPM score for non-UK applicants • The EPM score will: • be calculated by your medical school using the methods they are planning to use for FP2013 • be used confidentially for the purposes of analysis • NOT have any bearing on your FPAS application score, nor will the information be used to determine your allocation to foundation school or match to programme

  44. FP 2013 – Evolution not revolution • Academic quartiles and educational • achievements (Question 1) Educational Performance Measure (EPM) Situational Judgement Test (SJT) Application questions IMPORTANT! The outcomes of the Parallel Recruitment Exercise will help determine whether the new selection methods will be used for FP 2013 and beyond, so it is important to participate

  45. Want more information? Go to for more information on SJTs, EPMs and the Parallel Recruitment Exercise