Contact us
Keep me logged in
(Don't check this box if you're on a shared computer - learn more)
Forgotten Username / Password?

Training and Assessment Newsletter - December 2016

In this issue:

Fellowship program
Trainee Representative Committee

Fellowship program

Direct Observation of Procedural Skills (DOPS): New WBA tool

The Education Committee, in conjunction with the Committee for Training and DOTs, agreed to develop and implement a new Workplace-based Assessment (WBA) tool. The Direct Observation of Procedural Skills (DOPS) is designed to allow a clinical activity to be used as a formal WBA to assess whether a trainee can attain a particular Entrustable Professional Activity (EPA). 

The DOPS has been developed as a concise method of formative assessment consisting of a supervisor observing a trainee conducting a procedural skill and providing feedback to the trainee about their performance. 

This new WBA particularly recognises that high quality supervision may include direct observation of individual and/or group treatment of patients. It also recognises that existing WBA tools, such as the mini-CEX, may not be the most suitable method for providing feedback for certain activities. 

The DOPS WBA may be used during a range of activities and in a variety of settings to assess different procedural skills. For example, activities may include psychotherapy, participating in an interdisciplinary team discussion, ECT, and physical examinations.

Like all WBAs, a DOPS may contribute to the evidence base that informs a supervisor’s judgement as to whether a trainee can be entrusted with a particular EPA and end-of-rotation ITA form.

The DOPS protocol and DOPS WBA form can be found on the Workplace-based Assessments (WBAs) page and can be used by trainees and supervisors immediately.

The Fellowship Program policies, procedures and College website will be progressively updated over the next 3 months to reflect the newly introduced DOPS tool.

Dual Certificate Advanced Training: Awarding of certificate

Trainees and Fellows-in-training are able to undertake two Certificates of Advanced Training concurrently across a minimum of 36 months FTE under the Dual Certificate Advanced Training (DCAT) Program. The DCAT program provides a possible 12 month FTE reduction for undertaking Certificate training concurrently instead of in succession, i.e. 18 months FTE required for each Certificate within Dual Certificate program versus 24 months with each certificate undertaken independent of each other. Due to the possible reduction of training months, the Certificates can only be awarded upon satisfactory completion of both Certificate program requirements.

The College recognises that there are workplace and personal circumstances that may impact on the time it takes to meet all Dual Certificate training requirements. In addition, not all combinations of Certificates may be manageable within 36 months. Trainees and Fellows-in-training who commence the DCAT program are not required to complete both Certificates of Advanced Training under the DCAT program, whereby the award of certificates is pending completion of both Certificate requirements. 

Trainees and Fellows-in-training who have successfully completed 24 months in one Certificate of Advanced Training, along with all the Certificate program requirements, will be deemed eligible for award of that Certificate irrespective of commencing under the Dual Certificate program. The second certificate will be awarded upon its training requirements finalisation, inclusive of a minimum of 18 months FTE.

In addition, if a trainee or Fellow-in-training withdrew from one of the Certificates of Advanced Training at any point, a single certificate can only be awarded on the full completion of all requirements for the relevant Certificate program.

Should you have any questions about the DCAT program, please contact the training team at

6 year calendar maximum for the 2012 Certificates of Advanced Training

The Education Committee (EC), in conjunction with the Committee for Training (CFT) and Subcommittees for Advanced Training (SATs), approved that Certificates of Advanced Training undertaken by trainees and Fellows-in-training must be completed within 6 calendar years of commencing the Certificate. This is inclusive of any breaks-in-training and part-time training. For pre-Fellowship trainees, this means that the Certificate time maximum tracks alongside the Trainee Progress Trajectory and the Failure to Progress Policy.

The 6 year calendar maximum will come into effect from 1 January 2017 for the following six Certificates of Advanced Training:

  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Addiction Psychiatry
  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Adult Psychiatry
  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry
  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Forensic Psychiatry
  • Certificate of Advanced Training in Psychiatry of Old Age

This aligns the six Certificates with the Certificate of Advanced Training in the Psychotherapies 6 year calendar maximum which was implemented from rotation 1, 2016.

Where Certificate training has not been completed within 6 calendar years, the trainee or Fellow-in-Training will be required to make application, in writing, to the relevant SAT as to why they should be able to continue working towards the Certificate. SATs have the capacity to grant an extension of 1 calendar year in the first instance. Further requests for extension will need to be considered by the CFT with recommendation from the relevant SAT.

Please note

Transitioned trainees and Fellows-in-training will be required to adhere to the agreed time maximum. The time maximum will be applied to transitioning trainees from the date of the calendar maximum implementation. However, for those who have been transitioned with only the research project outstanding, submission timeframes  still apply (e.g. a Fellow-in-training who has completed all POA requirements, except for the project, has two calendar years from the date of transition to complete the project. They will not be subject to the 2012 Certificate calendar maximum).

The revised Certificate training rules can be found on the Certificate of Advanced Training (2012 Fellowship Program) page.

2003 Psychological Methods Case History resubmission are now closed

The 18th November 2016 was the final resubmission date for the 2003 Psychological Methods Case History. No further resubmissions of the 2003 Psychological Methods Case History will be accepted.

PASS of the 2003 Psychological Methods Case will result in gaining exemption from the 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case. Trainees who have not passed the 2003 case will be required to undertake the 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case.

We remind transitioned trainees who are required to submit a 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case of the following:

  • trainees who commenced the 40 sessions of psychotherapy as a 2003 trainee and will submit the 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case are required to submit the 2003 Patient consent form with the case.
  • During the 2012 therapy process, trainees must participate in three formative psychotherapy case discussions with their psychotherapy supervisor. Trainees who have completed the 40 sessions of psychotherapy (which are marked as complete on their training record) are not required to complete any formative case discussions when submitting the 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case.​

For any queries regarding transition, please contact For any queries regarding the 2012 Psychotherapy Written Case please contact

Reminder: EPAs and WBAs on the In-training Assessment (ITA) form

In order to update your training record, it is mandatory to complete the Supervisor ID/Name, date entrusted and WBA columns under the EPAs and WBAs section of the ITA form.

As per the Progression through Training Policy, trainees are required to complete two EPAs in each 6 month FTE rotation. Therefore the date entrusted should be within the rotation period.  

Reminder: EPA deadlines for Stages 1 and 2

The two Stage 1 EPAs (ST1-GEN-EPA5 and ST1-GEN-EPA6) must be completed by the time a trainee has completed 12 months of FTE accredited training in Stage 1.

The mandatory EPAs for Stage 2 must be achieved by the time the trainee has completed 36 months of FTE accredited training in Stage 2.

Trainees who fail to meet achieve the mandatory EPAs by the time requirements will be requested to show cause to the Committee for Training as set out in the Failure to Progress Policy.

Trainees are encouraged to plan with their supervisor and/or Director or Training early in the rotation the EPAs they aim to achieve in the rotation.

A handy tips for EPA document is available on the College website.

Please contact the training team for any queries on

Information on Show Cause

In preparation for the reactivation of the Failure to Progress Policy and show cause on 1 January 2017, an application to show cause form is available on the Training Program Administration page.

In addition, an overview of the show cause process is depicted visually. Further information regarding show cause can be found in the Progression chapter of the Regulations.

Please contact if you have any queries related to progression.

Reminder: Stage 3 EPA Attainment Rules

FELL (Fellowship) EPAs can be attained in any rotation whereas AOP (area of practice) EPAs can only be attained in the relevant area of practice.

For example, trainees can attain the adult psychiatry EPA, ST3-AP-AOP-EPA3: Assess and manage treatment-refractory psychiatric disorders, in adult psychiatry rotations only, but can attain the medical education EPA, ST3-EDU-FELL-EPA1: Small and large group teaching, in any rotation.

Prospective approval from the Committee for Training is required to attain AOP EPAs in a different area of practice. This will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

Reminder: Trainees and Fellows-in-Training undertaking an Advanced Certificate

There are specific end-of-rotation, In-Training-Assessment (ITA) forms on the College website, tailored to whether you are a trainee, or a Fellow undertaking the Certificate program.

Please ensure you use the correct forms when submitting to the College. These can be found under the specific Certificates of Advanced Training section on the College website.

Return to top .


2017 Examination Timetable

The Committee for Examinations would like to advise that the 2017 Examination Timetable is now available.

2017 Examination Fee Schedule

The 2017 Examination Fee Schedule and Cancellation and Refund Schedule is now available. 

Exam Preparation Workshops

The RANZCP and its Committees for Training and Examinations do not have a role in assessing or accrediting external or non-RANZCP facilitated exam training workshops.

The RANZCP expects Trainees and SIMGs to undertake a broad approach to exam preparation based on the 2012 Competency-Based Fellowship Program and Syllabus.

Essay-style Examination: Computer-based Delivery

The Education Committee has approved the recommendation put forward by the Committee for Examinations to transition the Written Essay-style examination from paper-based to computer-based delivery mode.

The transition to a computer-based essay examination is a natural progression from the MCQ online examination and will mitigate some of the risks associated with the current paper-based system.

The computer-based delivery mode for the Essay-style examination is scheduled to be introduced in February 2018.

The migration to computer-based delivery for the Essay-style examination can be done seamlessly as it will use the same platform and interface of the MCQ computer-based delivery. Many of the processes will remain the same such as registration, scheduling and invigilation.

Pearson Vue which is responsible for the delivery of the Multiple-choice examination will also be responsible for the Essay-style examination delivery at their test centres. Currently both MCQ and the paper-based Essay-style examinations are held at the venues/test centres organised by Pearson Vue. The College is currently in talks with Pearson Vue to ensure a smooth transition to the computer-based essay examination.

Some of the advantages of having the computer-based Essay-style examination will include an easy to use interface, the more secure transfer of examination papers, ease of reading the examination papers by examiners and potential for an earlier release of results.

A practice examination will be developed to support candidates in familiarising themselves with the interface and functionality of the computer-based Essay-style examination.

Trainees and SIMGs will be advised about the introduction of the computer-based essay examination delivery through Newsletters. Further, both candidates and DoTs will be regularly updated in relation to the progress of the implementation of the computer-based Essay-style examination.

Scholarly Project Policy and Procedure update

The College Board approved a revision version of the Scholarly Project Policy and the Scholarly Project Procedure out of session on 20 August 2016.

The amendments to the SP Policy and Procedure include:

  • the BTCs can conditionally approve proposals pending ethics committee approval
  • trainees who co-author a shared project will be awarded same result
  • trainees may not apply for exemption for projects that have BTC-approved proposals
  • applications for exemptions require trainees to submit the full thesis and provide detailed accounts of their contribution to the project if not sole authors; first authors must confirm the trainee contribution
  • a Master’s thesis may be submitted for exemption consideration
  • literature reviews must include critical appraisal of literature
  • third submissions will be marked by the Chair of the Subcommittee.

Please refer to the Scholarly Project Regulations Policy & Procedures for revised details.

The Chair, Scholarly Project Subcommittee, Dr Joanne Ferguson, has prepared a video aimed at trainees, to help them in the preparation and submission of their Scholarly Project.  The video, lasting 10 minutes can be found under Resources on the Scholarly Project page. There is also an accompanying power point PDF

Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) Examination

Candidates are advised to familiarise themselves with the computer based multiple choice examination format prior to sitting the paper by completing the practice examination available on the Pearson Vue website. This provides an experience of the functionality of the online exam and future candidates are recommended to avail themselves of this opportunity.

Some candidates who chose to commence the MCQ examination with CAPs (rather than EMQs) can find themselves exiting the examination prematurely at the end of the CAP section, if they do not carefully follow the warning messages.

Candidates who choose to commence the MCQ exam with the CAP component should read carefully the instruction pages at the conclusion of the CAP component and carefully note the warning messages that appear on the screen.

Candidates are also advised to familiarise themselves with a set of instructions that has been prepared if they decide to commence the examination with CAPs.

These resources can be found on the MCQ Exam page under Exam support resources.

Essay Style Examination: Revised Scale for the CEQ Scoring Key

For the Essay style examination under the 2012 Fellowship Program, the scoring key for the CEQ varies and is tailored to the CEQ question being asked. The CEQ Fellowship competencies to be assessed for each paper are selected from the generic CEQ scoring key available on the College website, taking into consideration the relevance of each competency to the question asked. Each competency is also weighted based on its relevance to the question.

The CEQ generic scoring key can be accessed from the College website.

The scale for the CEQ scoring key in the Essay style examination has been revised to extend between 0 and 5 proficiency levels instead of the previous scale of 0 to 3. This will provide a wider range of scores to examiners for marking, therefore allowing more flexibility in marking. A wider range of scores is likely to improve inter-rater reliability and hence the validity and reliability of the examination.

Please note: the content of the scoring key will not change from the previous CEQ scoring key – the only change is in the extended scale for scoring.

The revised CEQ scoring key will be applied from the February 2017 Essay style examination.

Return to top .



Visit Learnit now.

New series of modules available on the Training Program:

  • Training Program - In-Training Assessments module
  • Training Program - Observed Clinical Activity module
  • Training Program - Psychotherapy Written Case module

The aim of these modules is to assist you in improving your understanding of the RANZCP Training Program requirements:

Regarding In-Training Assessments including:

  • In-Training Assessments (ITAs)
  • Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs)
  • Workplace-Based Assessments (WBAs)
  • Observed Clinical Activities (OCAs)
  • Case-based Discussions (CbDs)
  • Mini-Clinical Evaluation Exercises (mini-CEXs)
  • Professional Presentations

Regarding Observed Clinical Activity (OCA) including:

  • what is an OCA?
  • getting the most out of your OCAs: Patients and settings
  • the trainee role and the supervisor role in an OCA
  • how to undertake an OCA
  • how to rate an OCA
  • giving and receiving feedback

Regarding Psychotherapy Written Case including:

  • supervision requirements
  • patient selection and consent
  • therapy including documentation and termination
  • psychotherapy case discussions
  • assessment domains
  • report requirements
  • submission
  • marking

These modules are intended for both trainees and supervisors. You may use these modules as a reference for information on various aspects of the RANZCP Training Program.

Release of the 2015 Education Activities Report (EAR)

The Education Activities Report (EAR) for 2015 has been approved by the RANZCP Board and is now available online at

The 2015 EAR includes summary data of the 2003 Fellowship program and new data from the 2012 Fellowship program. The report includes data on:

  • The number of new trainees at the College
  • The total training numbers at the end of 2015
  • Summaries of assessment for 2015 and trends data from previous years
  • The total number of Fellows involved in Continuing Professional Development
  • The total number of trainees and Fellows in the workforce
  • Analysis of data from those attaining Fellowship in 2015
  • Final analysis of data from the 2003 Fellowship program
  • Data from the specialist pathways
  • Summaries of key activities and highlights

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the College through the Research and Reporting Officer, Scott Fletcher on

Feedback from New Fellows

The RANZCP Board has recently approved the report on the 2015 admission to Fellowship survey. The survey was sent to all Fellowship applicants throughout 2015. The report includes feedback on perceptions of supervision, training, examinations, key highlights, biggest challenges and intentions in the workforce. Key findings and recommendations from the survey focused on:

  • the variability in supervision
  • concerns over the written and clinical examinations
  • how new Fellows can get involved in the College

Summary data, analysis and recommendations are available in the report, which is available online at (login required). If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the College through the Research and Reporting Officer, Scott Fletcher on

Return to top .


International Medicine in Addiction Conference (IMiA) 2017 – Early Bird Registrations Closing Soon

The Organising Committee would like to remind you that early bird registrations are closing soon for the International Medicine in Addiction Conference (IMiA) 2017.   A discounted rate is available for RANZCP trainees with early bird rates available until 12 December 2016.

Taking place at the new International Convention Centre in Sydney, New South Wales from 24–26 March 2017, the IMiA Conference is a joint initiative of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP), The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP).

IMiA 2017 brings together a wide range of local and international medical professionals who specialise in treating addictions. We are delighted to have as our keynote speakers Jane Ballantyne (USA), Wim van den Brink (The Netherlands) and David Forbes (Australia).  

The program is structured to provide in-depth perspectives on common clinical presentations by leading clinical academics in the addiction field, with related workshops available each afternoon. This year’s conference has a particular focus on the areas of pain, trauma and current controversies, and promises to leave you with an enriched understanding of these and other current issues.

A conference dinner will also be held on Saturday night at Dockside on Cockle Bay Wharf, Darling Harbour.

A range of accommodation options have been secured for delegates and can be booked via the IMiA website.

Don’t miss the opportunity to register for the premier addiction conference for medical practitioners and allied clinicians in Australia, New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region.

RANZCP 2017 Congress in Adelaide – Registration to open soon

Registrations for Congress 2017 will open shortly. Don’t miss out on attending the College’s premier event. Stay tuned to the Congress website for further information.

The RANZCP Congress of Psychiatry will be held in Adelaide from 30 April to 4 May 2017, at the Adelaide Convention Centre. The Congress will be hosted by the College’s South Australian Branch.

Congress 2017 will centre on an extensive scientific program based around the theme, ‘Speaking our minds. Telling our stories’ and will cover all subspecialty areas within psychiatry.

The following keynote speakers have been confirmed for Congress 2017:

  • Professor Anthony Bateman (UK)
  • Professor Sir Mason Durie KNZM (NZ)
  • Professor Nav Kapur (UK)
  • Dr Charles Kellner (USA)
  • Professor Helen Milroy (AUS)
  • Professor Dame Til Wykes DBE (UK)

View keynote speakers’ biographies online.  

An integral element of the scientific program, a number of full and half-day pre-Congress workshops will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre on Sunday 30 April 2017, with the exception of one workshop that will be held at the SA Branch Office in Adelaide on Saturday 29 April 2017.

All workshops will provide valuable insights and discussions across a broad range of topics. Registrations for workshops will open in November.

Registrations for Congress will open shortly. For more information as it becomes available, please register your interest.

Key dates

Acceptance to authors (Congress sessions) 16 December 2016


Registration Open November 2016


Authors acceptance of offer 20 January 2017


RANZCP 2017 Congress 30 April 2017 –  4 May 2017


Return to top .

Trainee Representative Committee

Trainee Involvement at the RANZCP 2017 Congress

Continuing from Hong Kong, the Trainee Representative Committee (TRC) are working on a variety of ideas to be implemented in Adelaide, to enhance the experience for trainees.  A trainee-only social event will be held, which will be a chance to get to know trainees bi-nationally.  There will also be a dedicated Registrar Booth where guests from College leadership will be invited to attend and will also provide a space for trainees to rest.  In addition to this we will have a “meet the TRC” session and an academic symposium.

Juggling work, college and “life” requirements is a challenging feat and it is easy to lose sight of the bigger picture and forget why we decided to venture into this speciality in the first place.  The RANZCP Congresses are opportunities not only to learn, develop professionally, network, socialise but also to be re-invigorated and inspired.  

I look forward to seeing you in Adelaide for the 2017 Congress. 

For more information please visit the website:

Dr Hannah Kim

TRC Vic Representative 

Congress Organising Committee

Return to top .


Applications open for the 2017 Block Family Memorial Grant in Perinatal and Infant Psychiatry

Grant applications are now invited from trainees interested in further training focusing on perinatal and infant psychiatry research in Australia and New Zealand.

Grants of up to A$3000 are available to undertake research-based courses with a focus on perinatal and infant health that are relevant to psychiatry, with the general expectation that the course will be run through a university or other appropriate research setting. Online perinatal and infant health courses may also be suitable.

Applications close Friday 27 January 2017.

For more information and details on how to apply click here. For further inquiries please email:

Return to top .