These tips were compiled by the RACP Training Support Unit, taking into consideration available resources and speaking with trainees who passed the Fellowship Written Examination and MEQ Paper, and their supervisors.
This is not intended as formal advice and is provided as general information only.
Meet with your supervisor or colleagues who have passed the examination in recent years
Most successful candidates start preparing 10 to 12 months before the examination. So start preparing early.
Meeting with your supervisor if you’re actively training, or a colleague that has previously passed the exam in recent years, to talk through your previous attempts at the MEQ paper can be very helpful. Your supervisor or colleagues will have valuable insights that can be noted in the Improving Performance Action Plan template.
We recommend requesting regular meetings with your Supervisor to review your plan. For example, once a week you could go through a topic for an hour to make sure you have a good understanding of this topic. You could also ask your supervisor or a colleague to share trial case studies and cross-reference them with the AFRM Curriculum.
Health and wellbeing
This is important because it is a factor that has been consistently identified by trainees who have passed the exam after previous unsuccessful attempts. RACP is committed to the health and wellbeing on all our trainees and fellows.
Make time to eat well, exercise and sleep, as well as study. Some people find that taking up meditation or learning relaxation techniques can help.
If you know you are struggling with exam preparation or anxiety give serious consideration to getting some additional support from an educational psychologist or the RACP Support Program
Referring to the Rehabilitation Medicine Training Program Curriculum and Knowledge Resources
There are many resources available to help trainees including sample questions, social media groups, apps, webinars, podcasts, journals and textbooks.
Please refer to the Learning Objects tables listed in the Rehabilitation Medicine Advanced Training Program Curriculum (PDF 0.5 MB) and highlight priority areas for review. This curriculum outlines the broad concepts, related learning objectives and the associated theoretical knowledge, clinical skills, attitudes and behaviours required and commonly used by rehabilitation medicine physicians.
We also recommend reviewing the list of Rehabilitation Medicine Useful Resources with your Supervisor.
Organising your study
Make sure you have a formal study plan and revision timetable?
Using some different learning approaches such as flashcards, mind maps, diagrams or opportunities to teach others as part of your revision can help.
Having a quiet, comfortable place where you can go to study is important.
Studying with others
Join a supportive study group that meets regularly, shares notes and resource ideas and provides an environment conducive to constructive feedback.
Consider talking to Allied Health Professionals to share knowledge and check whether they can share some of their resources
For Clinical Examinations preparation a study group member could be assigned to study a proposed topic and then develop short questions (e.g. list 5 risk factors for ischemic heart disease, list 5 evidence based benefits of cardiac rehabilitation, outline the 3 phases of cardiac rehabilitation). When your study group meet you could ask each other these questions and give a specific time to write down a response. This will enrich the studying experience of the whole group by training each other to come up with answers under time constraints and exam conditions. Successful candidates also recommend practicing in front of a mirror and having a standard opening line to boost confidence. They also recommend being organised for examination day, for example, choose your outfit and try it on way before the exam to avoid last minute alterations and stress.
Rehabilitation Medicine Resources
- Look at key areas of the Rehabilitation Medicine Advanced Training Program Curriculum (PDF 0.5 MB) Highlighting areas for further follow up can be helpful in directing your study efficiently.
- Go to the RACP Resources page for a multitude of useful resources, including journals, podcasts, webinars and more.
- The AFRM Bi-National training Program sessions are conducted to provide trainees with knowledge and information regarding Rehabilitation Medicine.
- Check the RACP Events page for lectures, videoconferences and other events that might support your study including the Physician Education Program series.
- The RACP Support Program is an initiative introduced by the RACP to provide members with access to confidential counselling, coaching and support for workplace and personal issues. Anxiety about the examination is understandable and having an opportunity to debrief can be helpful. It’s free for all RACP members for up to four sessions a year.
- Did you know that the RACP has recently created an RACP Trainees’ Facebook Group The group is designed to provide a space for trainees to meet and share their experiences, tips, events and ideas as well as receive trainee-relevant material from the RACP. This closed page is only accessible to RACP trainees and you will need to provide your MIN to join.
Other Rehabilitation Medicine Resources
These are suggested resources only and their inclusion on this list should not be interpreted as an RACP endorsement.
There are some interesting apps that can help to create, collate and organise study notes, flashcards and mind maps for revision.
Some free examples are:
- Examtime (now GoConqr) - an online learning platform that gives you the tools you need to prepare, study and succeed.
- StudyBlue - make and share study materials, search for recommended study content from classmates, track progress, set reminders, and create custom quizzes.
- Anki - Powerful, intelligent flash cards.
Try some new approaches to study – there is a free on-line learning module through the education platform, Coursera, titled Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental techniques to help you master tough subjects which takes you through the latest research on learning techniques and strategies to maximise your study time
There are some great textbooks that have been recommended by previous successful candidates that assisted them with preparing for the examination which are;
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Principles and Practice, Two Volume Set - Joel Delissa.
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 5th edition, Braddom’s
- The Red Book’ Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Secrets, 3rd Edition, Edited by Bryan J. O'Young
- Practical Manual of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 2nd edition - Jackson C. Tan