Divisional Clinical Examination

Provisional progression to Advanced Training

The 2020 Divisional Clinical Examination (DCE) has been postponed until later in 2020. If you were planning to sit the exam this year, you can apply for provisional Advanced Training (pAT) for either later in 2020 or in 2021 if you meet the requirements.

Find out more about pAT.

The exam assesses your clinical and interpersonal skills and clinical acumen to determine if you’ve reached the standards required to complete Basic Training.

Find out more about previous exam pass rates.

Overview

2020 changes

With the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic still uncertain, we’ve reviewed the current delivery format to reduce public health risks associated with the exam. This includes reducing face-to-face contact with patients and reducing interstate travel for examiners and candidates.

New exam format

A new modular format will be used for the Adult Medicine DCE in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand and the Paediatrics & Child Health DCE in Australia.

The Paediatrics & Child Health DCE in Aotearoa New Zealand will continue with the existing format.

The modular format will:

  • retain 2 x Long Cases and 4 x Short Cases
  • separate the Long Cases and Short Cases so they’re not held on the same day
  • hold Long Cases locally with virtual patient interaction, where the patient is in a different room/location to the candidate and examiners
  • hold Short Cases at least 3 weeks after the Long Cases in face-to-face exam settings within your state, territory or region, where possible

Note: You must score above a Band 0 in the Long Cases to be eligible to sit the Short Cases.

The 2021 exam will use the same modular approach, subject to evaluation of the model and COVID-19.


Key dates

All dates are subject to how COVID-19 unfolds across Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand.

Australia
Applications are closed
Exam format Location Date
Modular – Long Cases All states and territories except Victoria 14 Nov 2020 to 31 Jan 2021
Victoria 14 Nov 2020 to 31 Mar 2021
Modular – Short Cases All states and territories except Victoria 16 Feb to 31 Mar 2021
Victoria 16 Feb to 30 Apr 2021
Aotearoa New Zealand
Applications are closed
Division Exam format Date
Paediatrics & Child Health Traditional 30 Oct to 8 Nov 2020
Adult Medicine Modular – Long Cases 21 to 29 Nov 2020
Modular – Short Cases 26 to 28 Feb 2021

All dates remain dependent on:

  • permission from hospitals to enter premises, release staff and use facilities for the exam purposes
  • permission from the Chief Public Health Officer or Chief Medical Officer to allow the exam to proceed
  • Australian lockdown restrictions and Aotearoa New Zealand alert levels allowing the exam to proceed, including the clinical impact on health services within a state, territory or district

Contingency plans

If the rescheduled 2020 exam can’t go ahead, the following contingency plans will be put in place. The safety of all participants is at the core of these plans.

Modular format

Plan B | We push back the exam to mid-2021. We also move 2021 exam to between September and November 2021.

Plan C (if Short Cases can’t go ahead) | We run local summative assessments instead of Short Cases within your own hospital. They will be a modified Short Case equivalent. Details to be confirmed.

Plan D (if Long and Short Cases can’t go ahead) | We run local summative assessments instead of Long and Short Cases. Details to be confirmed.

Traditional format

Plan B | We run as one cohort in May 2021 or

Plan C | We move to a modular approach. We run virtual Long Cases early/mid 2021 and Short Cases later in 2021.

Plan D | We run as per option C and D for modular.


Our aim

All candidates eligible to sit the 2020 exam will be able to meet their required Basic Training assessments by the end of 2021. If this requires an alternative assessment to the current Long and/or Short Cases, we’ll make this decision by mid-2021.

If one or more hospitals, States or Territories can’t go ahead with an exam on its planned date due to COVID-19, those in unaffected areas can still take their exam.


Fees

Australia: AUD$2972.00
Aotearoa New Zealand: NZD$3417.80

If you have outstanding training fees, you’re ineligible to sit the exam. See College Fees Terms and Conditions (PDF).

Refunds

If you sit the DCE in modular format and score a Band 0 in the Long Cases component, you’re ineligible to sit the Short Cases component. In this case, you’ll receive a 50% refund of your exam fee.

If you withdraw in the lead up to the exam, you may also be eligible for a partial refund of your exam fee.

If we cannot deliver the exam, all affected candidates will receive a full refund.

Find out more about training and examination fees.


Eligibility

To find out if you’re eligible to sit the exam:

We’ll email you if you’re eligible to apply for the exam.

If you’re not currently in an accredited training position, register your interruption of training with the College to sit the exam.


Location

Australia

Long Cases | Video conference

  • Held locally within your state or territory.
  • Exam may take place in your current hospital, a nearby hospital or other facility, such as a RACP office – arrangements are being finalised.

Short Cases | Face-to-face

  • Held within your state or territory, where possible.
  • You’re likely to travel to a different city or hospital to avoid settings you’ve trained in.
  • You may have to travel interstate if your location doesn’t allow you to avoid a previous training setting and border restrictions allow.
Aotearoa New Zealand
Adult Medicine

Long Cases | Video conference

  • Held locally within your region.
  • Exam may take place in your current hospital, a nearby hospital or other facility, such as a RACP office – arrangements are being finalised.

Short Cases | Face-to-face

  • You're required to travel to a different location from where you work to complete your exam.
  • You won’t be examined in hospitals where you’ve trained.
Paediatrics & Child Health | Face-to-face
  • You're required to travel to a different location from your local area to complete your exam.
  • The exam will not take place in a hospital where you’ve trained.
Close overlay