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National Evaluation of Specialty Selection: final report

Thomas, Hywel and Taylor, Celia A and Davison, Ian and Field, Stephen and Gee, Harry and Grant, Janet and Malins, Andrew and Pendleton, Laura and Spencer, Elizabeth (2012) National Evaluation of Specialty Selection: final report. Project Report. University of Birmingham, Birmingham.

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Identification Number/DOI: ISBN: 9780704428287

The National Evaluation of Specialty Selection (NESS) covers the selection processes for 71% of 4,060 training posts in England and 2,751 General Practice (GP) posts in the UK available at ST1/CT1 level in 2009, making it the largest evaluation of specialty selection in the world. Designed as a cross-sectional study using quantitative and qualitative methods, the report describes and analyses the effectiveness and suitability of selection processes across 13 specialties. Taking account of the GMC’s requirement that ‘processes for recruitment, selection and appointment must be open, fair and effective’, our principal analytical model examined the acceptability, reliability, validity and cost-effectiveness of the selection processes.

Our analysis of personal characteristics as determinants of selection scores raises concerns about fairness, particularly with respect to candidates trained overseas. Shortlisting scores were generally good predictors of final selection scores. However, internal consistency and pass mark reliability in the majority of selection systems were undesirably low given the high-stakes nature of specialty selection. Consequently, we recommend: having more stations but with a single assessor; more routine data analysis and sharing results between specialties; greater attention to assessor training and the piloting and evaluating of alternative training models; and using rigorous standard setting processes. Recent moves towards integrating selection within each specialty at a national, rather than a Deanery level, and eliminating shortlisting have improved the cost-effectiveness of selection.

Type of Work:Monograph
Date:October 2012 (Publication)
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Department:Centre for Research in Medical and Dental Education
Additional Information:

All rights reserved. Reproduction of this report by photocopying or electronic means for non-commercial purposes is permitted. Otherwise, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any forms or by any means without written permission.

Keywords:NESS Project
Subjects:LB2300 Higher Education
LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
R Medicine (General)
Institution:University of Birmingham
Copyright Holders:Centre for Research in Medical and Dental Education, University of Birmingham
ID Code:651
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