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Important update on FP 2013 allocations

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Important update on FP 2013 allocations

Published: 27/02/2013

Following yesterday’s announcement that the Medical School’s Council (MSC) had brought to the attention of the UK Foundation Programme Office (UKFPO) a potential scanning error with the Situational Judgement Test answer sheets, it is now apparent that in light of further information from the scanning company there may be other answer sheets affected by further scanning issues. 

The results of MSC’s initial investigation showed that the scanning issue appeared to be limited to only a subset of those answer sheets where applicants had erased an answer and then entered an alternative on their answer sheet, which the scanner read as two responses.  As part of the scoring process, all answer sheets were scanned and the answers recorded in a database to enable them to be marked. 

Due to these developments, we have made the decision that the only way to ensure all recorded answers are correct is to have each and every answer sheet checked. 

Each UK medical school has been asked to arrange for their own students’ answer sheets to be checked to ensure total accuracy of the recorded answers. MSC will check the answer sheets for non-UK applicants.  The rationale behind involving the medical schools in a larger-scale check of the scores is for the simple but important reason of confidence in the process of the SJT and the organisations involved. The UKFPO appreciates that involving all medical schools and making sure that all answer sheets are checked is crucial to applicants’ confidence in the application process, and that applicants have been fairly allocated the job they deserve. We believe that the future of SJT test depends on all concerned having confidence in its fairness and effectiveness, and will do what is necessary to make sure that confidence is restored. This will involve extraordinary lengths but we cannot allow doubt to remain and that means that all answer sheets must be checked.

Once all recorded answers have been checked, the scores will be verified where any amendments have been made.  The final scores will be provided to the UKFPO and loaded into the Foundation Programme Application System (FPAS). These final scores will be used to re-run the allocation algorithm. As a consequence of checking every answer sheet some applicants’ SJT scores may change, and it is possible that scores may go up or down and subsequently this will affect allocations. The UKFPO has advised applicants not to act on the information provided to them on Monday, 25 February.

The UKFPO believes it is important to emphasise that the scanning of answer sheets is entirely separate from FPAS.

Applicants will be able to login to FPAS and see their final SJT score and allocation results at 9.00 am on Friday 8 March 2013.  Any deadlines for ranking programmes are determined locally by each UoA and will be noted on FPAS for those applicants on the primary list.

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