This site is intended for Healthcare Professionals only

Autumn assessment pass rate falls, GPhC reveals


Autumn assessment pass rate falls, GPhC reveals

The number of candidates who passed the autumn registration assessment was down on last year, according to the General Pharmaceutical Council.

The regulator revealed this morning (December 6) that 525 out of 937 candidates who sat November’s exam across the four home nations passed which equated to a 56 per cent pass rate compared with 61 per cent in 2021 when 584 out of 959 passed.

As in previous examinations, candidates who completed their foundation training in community pharmacy made up the highest proportion of those sitting the exam (77 per cent) but had a lower average pass rate than those in other sectors (52 per cent, compared to 72 per cent of those in a hospital setting and 81 per cent of those in a combined GP/hospital training programme). 

GPhC chief executive Duncan Rudkin said the regulator “worked closely” with the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland and exam sittings provider BTL “to ensure that everything went as smoothly as possible on the day” after a series of problems hindered previous assessments.

“We hope the candidates taking it were able to focus all of their efforts on completing the assessment successfully,” he said.

Thirty-one PSNI candidates sat the exam while there were 551, 277 and 78 first-time, second-time and third-time sitters in total respectively, with 309, 157 and 44 passing.

Of the 551 first-time sitters, 106 were provisonally registered. Thirty-three of these provreg candidates failed, meaning they can no longer practise as pharmacists until their next attempt at the exam. 

The number of candidates passing the autumn assessment had risen steadily between 2016 and 2019 when 69 per cent passed. There was no autumn sitting in 2020.

The GPhC stressed all marking of assessment papers was anonymous and “the board of assessors did not know where any candidate sat or what attempt they were undertaking during the mark awarding process.”

“The pass mark is based on the difficulty of papers to ensure the standard across different years is the same,” the GPhC said.

Copy Link copy link button