The MRCOG exam is a key part of the UK training programme in O&G, and all O&G trainees in the UK have to pass the exam.
The MRCOG is also internationally respected as the Gold Standard Qualification for career progression in O&G. If you’re based outside the UK and are wondering whether to sit the MRCOG exam, find out more about the benefits to your career
Scope of MRCOG UK | Benefits to your career:
The MRCOG : a global exam
Are you wondering whether you should sit the MRCOG, the RCOG’s membership exam? This page explains the benefits to your career and will help you make your decision.
The gold standard qualification in O&G
The RCOG is a truly international organization of over 12,500 Fellows and Members worldwide. Around half of our(RCOG) members practice outside the UK, with over 6000 obstetricians and gynaecologists working in more than 100 countries including UK, India, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Australia, Malaysia, Pakistan, UAE… the list goes on.
Our leadership in medical education, combined with the knowledge and expertise of our international faculty, enables us to design curricula to support O&G training and women’s health care globally. The MRCOG exam is internationally respected as the gold standard qualification for career progression in O&G: it’s your passport to the very pinnacle of the profession.
Changes to the MRCOG exam
The exam format of both Part 1 and Part 2 MRCOG will be changing for the March 2015 exams. If you plan to sit the exam, we understand that you may have some concerns or questions. This page addresses some of the issues to help you with your exam planning.
What’s the structure of the new exam?
Part 1 MRCOG
In the past, the Part 1 MRCOG exam included both single best answer (SBA) and true/false multiple choice questions (MCQ). The new exam will have SBAs only – the MCQs will be removed.
The exam will be the same length and still consist of two papers. However, there will be 100 SBAs in each paper rather than the previous 60 SBAs and 30 five-part MCQs. Each paper will cover the same components as previous exams.
Part 2 MRCOG (written)
The written component of the Part 2 MRCOG exam will change from three papers to two papers. Short answer questions (SAQs), currently paper 1, are being removed. Extended matching questions (EMQs) will be expanded. The MCQ component will change into an SBA component.
The table below summarises the changes.
|Current Part 2 exam (written)||New Part 2 exam (written)|
There will be 3 hours available for each paper in the new arrangement.
Will the limit to the number of attempts remain?
We will apply a limit of six attempts to each of the exams: the Part 1 MRCOG and Part 2 MRCOG. Further attempts to each part will be permitted only under exceptional circumstances.
This rule is unlikely to apply to the vast majority of candidates, as most people pass within four attempts.
Who can sit the Part 1 MRCOG exam?
Candidates for the Part 1 MRCOG must have a medical degree. For more information about who’s eligible to sit the Part 1 MRCOG exam, please read the Part 1 MRCOG regulations.
Part 1 MRCOG: regulations
All fees relating to examinations are reviewed annually. The current Part 1 MRCOG exam fee is £378 for candidates sitting in the UK (irrespective of nationality) and £315 for candidates sitting overseas (irrespective of nationality).
Regulations for Membership
Candidates for Membership are required:
- To comply with the regulations relating to medical registration
- To undertake the periods of training set out in the regulations
- To pass the Part 1 and Part 2 exams
- To fulfil the requirements of the regulations in relation to declaration of conduct, admission by the President in Council and payment of the prescribed fees
Postulant must confirm that they are not currently suspended or removed from medical practice by any authorising body or involved in disciplinary proceedings related to medical practice in any country.
Postulant infringing the regulations will be deemed unsuitable for Membership of the College.
Council may refuse to allow a candidate to attempt either part of the MRCOG exam or to become a Member of the College. Under such circumstances the candidate will be advised of the appeals procedure.
Part 1 MRCOG examination
Candidates are eligible to enter for the Part 1 exam when they have obtained their medical degree. However, candidates are advised to attempt the exam only after they have had some grounding in postgraduate obstetrics and gynaecology.
The acceptance of a candidate’s application to attempt the Part 1 exam does not imply acceptance of a subsequent or coincidental application by that candidate to attempt the Part 2 exam.
The Part 1 exam is held in the British Isles and at selected overseas centres in March and September. The exam is in applied sciences and consists of two papers, each lasting 2 1/2 hours and each comprising of single best answer questions (SBAs). The exam covers those subjects which form part of the general education of any specialist and particularly those subjects which are applicable to obstetrics and gynaecology.
Postulant may take the Part 1 exam at any time and must pass it before attempting the Part 2 exam.
Method of application
First-time applications must be accompanied by an attested copy of your primary medical degree certificate. Original certificates will not be accepted.
Application for entry to the exam must be made on the prescribed form, which is available on the Part 1 MRCOG webpage.
Regulations on MRCOG exam currency and number of attempts
Exam currency refers to the length of time a pass remains valid.
Number of attempts refers to the maximum number of times a candidate is permitted to take the exam.
Candidates wishing to enter onto the UK Specialist Register (now or in the future)
- Postulant who have passed the Part 1 MRCOG after March 2013 need to attempt the Part 2 MRCOG within 7 years of their exam date.
- There is no restriction on the length of time between attempts of the Part 2 MRCOG.
Number of attempts
- Candidates will be permitted no more than 6 attempts at each of the Part 1 MRCOG and Part 2 MRCOG exams, regardless of the date of their first attempt.
Candidates NOT wishing to enter onto the UK Specialist Register
- Candidature who have passed the Part 1 MRCOG need to attempt the Part 2 MRCOG within 10 years of their exam date.
- There is no restriction on the length of time between attempts of the Part 2 MRCOG.
Number of attempts
- There is no attempt limit for candidates not wishing to enter onto the UK Specialist Register
When and where can I sit the Part 1 MRCOG exam?
March (Closing date for applications: 1 December)
September (Closing date for applications: 1 June)
- Provisional: Bangladesh (Dhaka), India (Kolkata & Mumbai), Malaysia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia (Riyadh), Sudan, UAE (Dubai) & Others
- Exam Centres (UK): London, Manchester, Glasgow, Belfast
Part 1 MRCOG: format
Number of papers
From March 2015, the exam will consist of two written papers, each lasting 2 hours and 30 minutes (5 hours examining time in total).
Each paper will contain 100 SBAs. Marks will be distributed evenly between the papers (i.e. paper 1 will count for 50% of your mark, and paper 2 will also count for 50% of your mark).
Incorrect answers aren’t penalised.
If you mark 2 or more lozenges for the same question, no mark will be awarded, even if one of the answers is correct. Please ensure any mistakes are clearly and fully erased.
Division of marks
Each SBA will count for the same number of marks, and each paper will contribute the same proportion of marks to the overall total.
The distribution of marks across the two papers by subject domain varies from sitting to sitting. A typical distribution is shown below.
What is the pass mark for the Part 1 and Part 2 MRCOG?
Part 1 and Part 2 MRCOG papers use a pass mark that has been standard set. Standard setting is a recognition that some of the question papers and OSCE stations are more difficult than others and a different pass mark is used for each exam, depending on the difficulty of each exam. Therefore, pass marks and pass rates fluctuate and there is no fixed level or quota.
Sample of SBAs
For each question, select the single most appropriate answer from the 5 options listed.
A 24-year-old presents at 27 weeks into her second pregnancy feeling unwell, with backache, fever and rigors. She has a temperature of 39.5°C. Urinalysis shows leucocytes and protein +++. Her blood pressure is 80/50. Which action is most appropriate?
- Admit to ICU/HDU for intravenous antibiotics and supportive care
- Arrange ultrasound of renal tract
- Commence 7-day course of oral antibiotics
- Give intramuscular steroids to promote fetal lung maturity
- Make referral for physicians to review
How does standard setting work?
Standard setting is a complex process that varies for each type of paper. Essentially, it involves assessing the questions individually for their difficulty.
- For the Part 1 MRCOG, a modified Ebel’s method is used for the SBA papers.
- For the Part 2 MRCOG, a modified Angoff method is used for the SBA and EMQ papers; and a modified Rothman method is used for the oral exam.
How should I prepare for the Part 1 MRCOG exam?
- Regular course(SsAcademy): Duration-8/4 Months
- Advanced Revision(SsAcademy): All candidates are highly encouraged to join in the Advanced Revision Course / Complete Mock Tests Package immediately after Regular Course to access a range of benefits that will help you prepare for the exam completely.
Part 1 MRCOG: FAQs
This page provides answers to frequently asked questions about the Part 1 MRCOG.
- How do I apply to sit the Part 1 MRCOG?
- How much does it cost to sit the Part 1 MRCOG?
- Who should I make my cheque payable to?
- What documents do I need to send in with my application?
- Can I submit original certificates with my application?
- Where can I get my documents certified/attested?
- What if my degree/medical certificate isn’t in English?
- I have sat the Part 1 MRCOG before – do I need to send my medical degree certificate to you again to resit the exam?
- How do I get my entry slip?
- What if I need a visa to get to the exam venue?
- Can I postpone my exam?
- How many times can I attempt the Part 1 MRCOG?
- Is there a time limit between passing the Part 1 MRCOG and passing the Part 2 MRCOG?
- What courses do you recommend to help prepare for the exam?
How do I apply to sit the Part 1 MRCOG?
Applications are only open for a short period of time: please visit https://www.rcog.org.uk/ for details of when you’ll be able to apply or Contact with SsExam Unit for More Information.
- If you don’t already have an account with the RCOG website, first please register with the RCOG website
- Once you’ve registered, log in to the RCOG website
- If you’re sitting the exam for the first time, you’ll be able to access an application form and guidance on how to fill it in
- If you’re resitting the exam, you’ll be able to apply and pay online (or request a paper application form)
How much does it cost to sit the Part 1 MRCOG?
- For candidates sitting the exam in the UK (irrespective of the candidate’s nationality), the fee is £378
- For candidates sitting the exam outside the UK (irrespective of the candidate’s nationality), the fee is £315
Who should I make my cheque payable to?
Please make cheques payable to Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. If you’re resitting the Part 1 MRCOG, you’ll be able to pay online.
What documents do I need to send in with my application?
You’ll need to send the following documents:
- A signed application form
- A cheque for the exam fee, made out in pounds sterling, payable to Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists
- An attested copy of your medical degree – this only applies to candidates sitting the exam for the first time
These documents must be in English.
Can I submit original certificates with my application?
No. Certificates must be certified/attested copies rather than originals.
Where can I get my documents certified/attested?
The following people/institutions can certify/attest your documents:
- A Fellow or Member of the RCOG
- The university/hospital issuing the certificate
- The British Council or your embassy
- A solicitor
What if my degree/medical certificate isn’t in English?
You’ll need to provide an authorised translation of your degree certificate or medical registration certificate.
How do I get my entry ticket/admit card?
Your entry ticket will be emailed to you approximately 3 weeks before your exam. You will need to print out your entry ticket and bring it with you to the exam, together with photographic identification.
What if I need a visa to get to the exam venue?
The College cannot advise you on this matter. Please contact the relevant consulate for information about any visa requirements before applying for the exam. If you need a letter from the Examination Department confirming your attendance at the exam, please inform us when applying for the exam, and ensure that you apply in good time.
How many times can I attempt the Part 1 MRCOG?
6 attempts at the Part 1 MRCOG. There is no limit on attempts for candidates not in wishing to enter the UK Specialist Register.
Is there a time limit between passing the Part 1 MRCOG and passing the Part 2 MRCOG?
No, but the College does require you to have attempted the Part 2 at least once within 7 years of passing the Part 1 or gaining exemption from the Part 1. You do not have to pass the Part 2 within 7 years, but if you do not even attempt it you will have to pass the Part 1 again.
What courses do you recommend to help prepare for the exam?
We strongly recommend SsAcademy Regular Course & Advanced Revision Course
What does the Part 1 MRCOG exam involve?
- Syllabus for the Part 1 MRCOG
- Format of the Part 1 MRCOG (number of papers and question types)
- Sample exam questions
- How the pass mark is set
Find out more
For more information, please visit The Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists official website @ https://www.rcog.org.uk/
[Disclaimer: Most of the information given here is taken from the official website of The Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists (https://www.rcog.org.uk/). For most recent updates Candidates are recommended to visit the official website of RCOG]