Scoping exercise for national licensing examinations for doctors in the UK

A study review and scoping exercise commissioned by the General Medical Council and carried out by the Collaboration for the Advancement of Medical Education, Research and Assessment (CAMERA) at Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, will investigate potential methods for proposed national licensing examinations for doctors in the UK.

The CAMERA team will review research and other literature relating to the licensing of doctors in other countries comparable to the UK. Their findings will be used by the GMC to address how national licensing examinations in the UK will be adopted and put into practice.

The final report will be published in January 2015.

The study will be carried out by a team led by Dr. Julian Archer, Director of CAMERA. He said: 

“We are delighted to have been chosen by the GMC to carry out this scoping work. National licensing examinations for doctors are not new, and we will be reviewing the literature relating to licensing examination structures in countries similar to the UK to help the GMC assess effective ways of introducing such examinations here.”

He added: 

“The GMC has to strike the balance between protecting patients while complying with European and international laws protecting the rights of workers – making its role of assuring each doctor in the UK is appropriately trained and fit to practise a complex one. A national licensing examination process, taken when a doctor graduates or early on in their careers, is a way forward – regardless of where they trained or subsequently worked. Our research will help the GMC come to a decision on this.”

Collaboration for the Advancement of Medical Education Research and Assessment (CAMERA)

We seek to inform assessment across medical education through funded collaborative research that impacts on the international literature, educational theory, practice and policy at Plymouth Peninsula, nationally and internationally.

CAMERA brings together a research group dedicated to the improvement of healthcare through evidence based education.

Learn more about CAMERA's research