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nMRCGP - the new standard for VTS trained GPs

There are many changes in GP training coming into effect over the next few years - from VTS entry to completing your training. One of the key changes is the phasing out of summative assessment and the introduction of a new style MRCGP examination - nMRCGP. nMRCGP will become the single exit standard exam and will be compulsory for all newly qualified GPs.

Timescales and transitions

The new exam will come into effect from 1 August 2007. All those that have started summative assessment or the old style MRCGP will be allowed 2 years to complete their exams, but no new registrations for either will be accepted after 2 February 2007.

Exam format

The nMRCGP will be a modular exam with three components:

Applied knowledge test: machine marked MCQ paper consisting of single best answer and Extended matching Questions similar to the current MRCGP paper 2. Currently planned to be 200 question items, based on the RCGP curriculum.

Clinical Skills assessment: this will be in the form of an OSCE with 14 stations, likely to last about 10 minutes each, and testing clinical, technical, and communication skills. This is likely to be based around simulated consultations with trained actors in the role of patients.

Workplace based assessment: this will be a continuous assessment based around a new enhanced trainers report (currently being developed). This may include a combination of case based discussions, significant event analysis, videos of consultations and audit.

The clinical skills and applied knowledge tests will be held three times a year starting November 2007.


The final costs for these assessments has not been set, but the total cost is likely to be higher than the current £1200 for sitting four modules of MRCGP.

Successful completion of all components of nMRCGP will allow doctors to apply for a CCT in general practice, and also entitle them to membership of the RCGP.

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