PACES Fast Track FAQs

What is PACES Fast Track?

During the June/July 2020 PACES assessment period, we are running the PACES Fast Track scheme  which offers trainees who have applied for an ST3 posts an additional attempt at the PACES examination. This is one of the initiatives we have taken to aid trainees’ career progression and support run-through training. . This will allow some candidates who are unsuccessful in their initial PACES attempt in June to sit PACES a second time within the same assessment period.

Candidates who would like this opportunity should apply for PACES in the usual way and also submit a separate application for PACES Fast Track. There will be limited places and it is possible that not all Fast Track applicants can be accommodated.

The PACES Fast Track 2020 scheme is only available to candidates who have applied, and can provide evidence, that they are being considered for an ST3 post due to start in August 2020.

Eligibility 

Who can apply for Fast Track?

Fast Track applications will only be accepted from candidates who meet the following criteria:

Candidates who have applied for an ST3 post in the UK.  Candidates must provide confirmation that they have applied for an ST3 training post due to start in August 2020. All ST3 confirmations will be checked. 

All candidates must have passed or applied for the MRCP(UK) Part 2 Written Examination at the time you sit your first attempt of PACES in the January to March assessment period.

Candidates must also submit a separate application for PACES in the June/July assessment period as outlined on the PACES application page.

Candidates who are on their sixth attempt at PACES in the June/July assessment period will not be eligible to take up a fast track place. (see Limit on Attempts. Can I apply?)

Candidates who hold FY1/FY2/CT1 posts are not eligible to apply for Fast Track. (see I am in FY1/FY2/CT1 can I apply?)

I am not currently in a CT2 post. Can I apply for Fast Track?

Yes, if you have applied for an ST3 training post in the UK to start in August 2020. You will be asked to give details of this in your Fast Track application, and will also be required to provide confirmation that you have applied for an ST3 position (e.g., copy of ST3 confirmation e-mail).

This confirmation must be sent by post or email to the PACES Fast Track office within the Fast Track application period.  Please note that Fast Track applications will be considered incomplete until the supporting information has been received. The postal and email addresses for Fast Track will be given on the website and application form.

I have not passed the Part 2 Written Examination. Can I apply for Fast Track?

Yes – it is not necessary to have passed or applied for Part 2 Written at the time of applying for Fast Track. However, you must have passed or applied for the Part 2 Written exam at the time you sit your first attempt of PACES in the June assessment period. If you have not passed or applied for Part 2 Written by this point you will no longer be eligible for a Fast Track place. Applications open on 13th April 2020 for the Part 2 Written exam taking place on 14 July 2020.

I don’t have my results for my last PACES attempt. Can I apply for Fast Track?

Yes, if you meet the eligibility requirements outlined above. Please indicate on your Fast Track application that you are making a provisional application for the June/July assessment period and have submitted a provisional PACES application for the June/July assessment period.

I am in FY1/FY2/CT1. Can I apply?

No. Trainees in FY1, FY2 or CT1 are not eligible for entry into ST3 and as a result will not be eligible for a Fast Track place.

Limit on Attempts.  Can I apply?

If you are on your sixth attempt or more at PACES in the June/July assessment period you will not be eligible to take up a Fast Track place as there will be insufficient time for you to complete your additional training between the two PACES attempts.

If you are on your fifth attempt at PACES in the June/July assessment period and your Fast Track place will be your sixth attempt, then you will be eligible to apply for a Fast Track place.

Applications

How do I apply for Fast Track?

Fast Track applications must be made online via the application page on the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh’s website.  The Edinburgh College will be processing the Fast Track applications on behalf of all three Colleges.  The link to the address will be posted here closer to the time.  The link will go live at 10.00am on Monday 23 March until 10am on Monday 30 MarchApply here.

If you are still waiting for your results from the January–March Assessment period  and wish to be considered for Fast Track it is recommend you make a provisional application for both the PACES 2020/2 exam AND PACES Fast Track.

Do I need to submit an application for the PACES June/July assessment period?

Yes, you must submit a separate online application for PACES in the normal way.  A request for a Fast Track place will only be accepted from those candidates who have also submitted a PACES application for the June/July assessment period as outlined on PACES application page. Fast Track applications will be considered incomplete until a separate PACES application has been made. 

If you are still awaiting your results from the 2020/1 examination, please still apply but mark your application “provisional”.

Confirmation of ST3 application

All applications are also required to provide confirmation that you have applied for an ST3 position (e.g., copy of ST3 confirmation e-mail).

This confirmation must be sent by post or email to the PACES Fast Track office within the Fast Track application period.  Please note that Fast Track applications will be considered incomplete until the supporting information has been received. The postal and email addresses for Fast Track will be given on the website and application form.

All communication regarding your PACES application should be done through your College of Entry, as the Fast Track office deals only with Fast Track applications.

What information will I be required to submit when I apply for Fast Track?

The information required for the PACES Fast Track application will be similar to a PACES application but you are required to provide additional confirmation of eligibility in relation to ST3. No payment details will be requested at this time; the full exam fee of £657 will be payable when the Fast Track place is activated (see How do I activate my Fast Track place?)

When can I apply for PACES Fast Track?

Fast Track applications should be made online 10.00am on Monday 23 March and close at 10am on Monday 30 March via the online link as advertised.

Please note that the Fast Track application period is shorter than the main PACES application period. We regret that late applications cannot be accepted.

Applications will be considered incomplete until a separate PACES application has been made and supporting information has been received.

How do I know my application has been received?

Applicants will see an automatic confirmation after they have submitted their electronic application. They will also receive an acknowledgement email from the PACES Fast Track office within 5 working days.

Will all Fast Track applicants receive a Fast Track place?

There will be limited Fast Track places and it is possible that not all applicants can be accommodated. In the event that the number of applications for Fast Track exceeds the number of places available, complete applications with the necessary supporting evidence will be given priority and then in date order of those received, (early applications being given priority over later applications).

Eligible applicants will be placed in one of two groups – those who will receive a provisional offer of a Fast Track place should they need one; and those placed on a waiting list. Some places may be available to those on the waiting list depending on uptake from the first group.

When will I hear if I have a Fast Track place?

All Fast Track applicants will be notified by email by the end of April 2020 as to whether they have been awarded a provisional place, have been placed on the waiting list or have been unsuccessful. Final allocation of Fast Track places (i.e. centre and date) will be made once places are confirmed in 2020.

When and where

When will the Fast Track exams take place?

The Fast Track places will be available during the second half of the June/July assessment period. Please note that Candidates must be available to sit their initial PACES exam early in the diet.  If you are unable to sit your initial attempt early in the diet you may not be able to take up a Fast Track place.  Please refer to PACES FAQ – In each period of the PACES Examination - what if there are dates that I can't do?

Where will the Fast Track exams take place?

As with PACES, centres across the UK will be used for Fast Track places. You must be prepared to travel anywhere in the UK.

How soon after my first attempt will the Fast Track places be allocated?

Fast Track places will be allocated in the second half of the June/July assessment period. Once a candidate has activated their Fast Track place they will be sent an admission email containing information on their Fast Track examination venue, date and time. We will endeavour to provide this information as soon as possible before the Fast Track exam date.

When do I pay for a Fast Track place?

Exam fees for PACES Fast Track are £657. No payment details will be requested at time of application. Candidates will be asked to supply credit/debit card details by telephone when activating their Fast Track place. Payment will be processed when a Fast Track place has been allocated.

Taking up a Fast Track place

How do I activate my Fast Track place?

It is the responsibility of each candidate to confirm that they would like to activate a provisional Fast Track place. Candidates can activate their Fast Track place following receipt of their results of their initial PACES exam. Full instructions will be provided in the Fast Track information email that will be sent out to all relevant candidates in April.

I was recommended for counselling in my first PACES attempt in the January to April assessment period. Can I still take up my Fast Track place?

No. If your performance in your first attempt is such that MRCP(UK) feels that you require counselling before resitting then you will not be able to take up a Fast Track place.

I passed PACES but was told it was likely I could have a Fast Track place. Can I pass the place on to my friend?

No – places are non-transferrable.

I was absent from my first PACES attempt in the June to August assessment period. Can I still take up my Fast Track place?

No. Any candidate who withdraws or is absent from their first PACES exam in the June to August assessment period will no longer be eligible for Fast Track.

If I am on the waiting list, how likely am I to get a Fast Track place?

Fast Track numbers are limited and it may be that demand will outstrip places. Some places may become available to candidates on the waiting list. More information will be provided to the relevant applicants in April. Please note that if your initial PACES attempt is towards the end of the June/July assessment period it is very unlikely you would be offered a Fast Track place as your results will not be released in time.

I did not apply for Fast Track but I am an eligible candidate. Can I make a late application?

In the event of extra places becoming available the application window may re-open for eligible candidates for a very short time in June.  This will be communicated via the MRCP(UK) website.  Please note that if your initial PACES attempt is towards the end of the June/July assessment period it is very unlikely you would be offered a Fast Track place as your results will not be released in time.

Withdrawal from Fast Track

If you are allocated a Fast Track place and activate this place and make payment and then subsequently withdraw from Fast Track, please note that the usual withdrawal and refund regulations will apply and the date of activation will be considered the closing date.

Any other questions

All enquiries regarding Fast Track should only be made to the PACES Fast Track office on 0131 247 3633 or by email to PACESFastTrack@rcpe.ac.uk. Please do not contact the PACES departments at the Colleges as the PACES Fast Track office will be dealing with all enquiries regarding Fast Track.