During our quality assurance procedures for the 2022/03 PACES diet results we identified a small number of discrepancies between the marks recorded on the marksheets from the examination and those recorded on our electronic systems and subsequently issued to candidates.
These discrepancies affected the pass - fail classification of a very small number (less than 0.5%) of the 2,500 candidates who sat the examination around the world. We incorrectly informed some candidates that they had passed, when they had actually failed, and informed some others that they had failed, when they had in fact passed.
The candidates affected have already been contacted directly by us and we are providing ongoing support to them. They will also, as a result of this error by us, have the attempt expunged from their academic record, receive a full refund and have a guaranteed place of their choice at the next PACES diet.
In addition, some candidates had an error in their detailed marks issued to them, but which had no effect on their pass - fail classification. We appreciate that the detailed marks we routinely provide can help as feedback to inform preparation for future attempts and as such any errors should be corrected. We will be contacting those candidates separately and updating their result in their MyMRCP(UK) account in due course. We wish to emphasise that if you have not been contacted directly by MRCP(UK) by the time that you are reading this then your pass - fail classification is not affected.
This situation arose due to a sudden hardware failure during the electronic marksheet scanning process combined with subsequent human error in our manual workaround. The hardware issue has now been fully rectified and other measures have been implemented to ensure this cannot happen in future diets.
All Colleges and Faculties are committed to working together to share lessons learned and best practice to improve these processes for trainees and we will be sharing learning from this event accordingly. We have already informed the regulator of our examinations, the GMC, of the issue.
We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience, concern and distress this issue has caused candidates affected. Although it affects a relatively small number of candidates, we are very mindful of the impact that any errors associated with examinations can have on trainees, their families and friends, and the potentially significant implications for individual wellbeing, training progression and career plans.
Please be assured that all results have now been double checked and if you have not been contacted, your result is unaffected. Again, if any candidate is concerned that they may be impacted, please contact us at Queries@mrcpuk.org.
Professor Andrew Elder
Chair, Federation of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the UK