Specialty Certificate Examination in Infectious Diseases
The final examination was held in 2017. Details of the transitional arrangements for UK trainees, trainers, educational supervisors and Heads of School are available on the JRCPTB website.
There are no entry requirements for the SCE in Infectious Diseases, although candidates in UK training posts would normally take the SCE in their penultimate year of higher specialty training.
Qualification: Certificate in Infectious Diseases
Trainees who hold MRCP(UK), have gained the Certificate in Infectious Diseases and who are recommended for a CCT will be entitled to apply for the postnominal MRCP(UK) (Infectious Diseases).
For further details please see the FAQs.
Curriculum and blueprint
The Specialty Training Curriculum for Infectious Diseases is published by the Joint Royal Colleges of Physicians Training Board (JRCPTB).
The examination is made up of questions covering the whole curriculum, selected by a predetermined blueprint:
Resources for trainees
Preparation for the SCE requires a wide breadth of knowledge around the curriculum and should involve reading of textbooks, journals and guidelines. Experience of the MRCP(UK) examination provides an excellent background to the format of the examination.
Suggested sources and reading are listed below:
Guidelines from national bodies
- Health Protection Scotland
- National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in all areas of infection, including hospital-acquired infection, viral hepatitis, tuberculosis
- Public Health England (PHE, formerly Health Protection Agency – HPA), including deliberate release (bioterrorism), the “Green Book” on immunisation, and related items
- Public Health Wales
- Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) guidelines on infection-related issues
- UK Department of Health, including infection control, blood-borne viruses, tuberculosis, dangerous pathogens
- British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH)
- British HIV Association (BHIVA)
- British Infection Association (BIA)
- British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC)
- Healthcare Infection Society (HIS)
- International Society of Travel Medicine (ISTM)
- National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC)
Knowledge of how those above may differ from guidelines published elsewhere, such as:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- European Association for Study of the Liver (EASL)
- European Society for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID)
- Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA)
- World Health Organisation (WHO)
Journals and conferences
Familiarity with key scientific papers, teaching articles and editorials in in leading peer reviewed journals, including British Medical Journal, Lancet, Lancet Infectious Diseases, New England Journal of Medicine, Clinical Microbiological Reviews and the journals produced by the above societies. Familiarity with the content of scientific conferences and learning programmes organised through the auspices of the above and similar societies or authorities.
- Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 6th Edition 2012. Finch R, Davey P, Wilcox MH, Irving W. Oxford University Press
- Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine, 18th edition. Eds. Fauci AS, Braunwald E, Kasper DL, Hauser SL, Longo DL, Jameson JL, Loscalzo J. McGraw-Hill, 2011
- Infectious Diseases 3rd edition. Eds. Cohen J, Powderly WG, Opal SM. Elsevier Science, London, 2010
- Koneman's Color Atlas and Textbook of Diagnostic Microbiology 6th Edition 2005. Winn CW, Allen SD et al. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins
- Kucer’s the Use of Antibiotics, 6th edition. Eds. Grayson LM, Kucers A, Crowe S, McCarthy J et al. ASM Press, 2011
- Lecture Notes: Tropical Medicine 6th edition. Gill GV, Beeching NJ. Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford 2009
- Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, 7th edition. Eds. Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R. Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier, 2010
- Manson’s Tropical Diseases 23rd edition. Farrar J, Hotez P, Junghanss T, Lalloo D, White N. Saunders/ Elsevier Science, London, 2013
- Mims' Medical Microbiology 5th Edition 2013. Goering R, Dockrell HF, Zuckerman M, Roitt I, Chiodini PL. Elsevier Saunders Publishers
- Travel Medicine, 3rd Edition. Keystone JS, Kozarsky PE, Freedman DO, Nothdurft HD, Connor BA. Mosby/Elsevier, 2013
The questions are in ‘best of five’ multiple choice format. This format, in addition to testing core knowledge and comprehension, also assesses the ability to interpret information and to solve clinical problems. There will be five options – one correct answer and four alternatives to the correct answer. The four distractors will be closely related to the preferred option but less correct, therefore acting as plausible alternatives.
These questions give an indication of the type of question you can expect in the exam.
Please take part in our interactive sample question test.
The selected metrics report provides details about the previous year's examination. All the statistics are intended to help candidates to be more informed and better prepared for the examination. The reports are also available to other stakeholders (e.g. deaneries’ representatives, board members, trainees’ supervisors) who would like to find out more about candidates’ performance in order to be able to make informed decisions about training programmes or examination standards.
Click here to get alerts on the opening of application periods as well as info/tips on revision/preparation resources and more!