UCL Medical School


General Medical Council



What is the GMC?

The purpose of the General Medical Council (GMC) is to protect patients and improve medical education and practice across the UK.

How is the Research Department of Medical Education involved?

The Research Department of Medical Education (RDME) is contracted to set up and write the reports for the Tests of Competence for the Fitness to Practice (FtP) procedures, using specific tests that have been designed to reflect the practice of the doctor being investigated.

Since 2004, we have been reviewing and developing test items to ensure they are up-to-date, fair, valid and reliable.

An experienced team within RDME run the GMC project. A cross specialty team of clinicians, educational consultants and College representatives helps write and standard set new items, blueprinted against “Good Medical Practice”. These new items are validated by volunteer doctors and data has been collected on the performance of doctors of a wide range of grades and specialties practising in the UK.

What is a pilot?

The aim of a pilot is to collect performance data and individual feedback about questions and OSCE stations, on a wide range of doctors of all grades working in a particular specialty. We use this data as the basis for reports on poorly performing doctors who are referred for a Test of Competence (TOC) by the GMC. The data is used to form a reference group of volunteer doctors working in the UK to which the TOC doctor is compared. You will form part of that group.

GMC Team