Recruitment and Assessment

Consultant interviews

NHS Appointments of Consultants Regulations 1996

  • Minimum of two adverts
  • Interview panel should contain a lay member, External professional assessor (college representative), Chief executive (or deputy), Medical director (or deputy), Consultant from the trust (same speciality), Medical school representative (if teaching position), Human resources representative


Work placed based assessments

These are a form of formative assessment consisting of mini-CEX, DOPS and CBD examinations.


  • Can explore all of the areas on Millers pyramid
  • Can be learner-led but can also be trainer-driven
  • They provide a structure to inform debriefing through a series of carefully worked out descriptors that can be used consistently be different observers
  • They reinforce an educational culture
  • Identify trainees who are struggling and are in need of extra support early in training
  • It identifies areas for improvement that are based on supportable evidence
  • Can be used to sample widely across different workplace tasks relevant to the overall curriculum
  • Offer the possibility to engage with a range of different assessors
  • A series if WPBAs inform assessments of learning, which are essential waypoints for the judgement on progress throughout training
  • Should be used together with more traditional summative assessments of learning



  • Not sufficiently reliable to stand alone and as such need to be used together with end-point high stakes ‘know how’ and ‘show how’ assessments of learning
  • May be used opportunistically rather than in a planned manner
  • Low scores tend to be seen as a failure by trainees rather than assessment for learning opportunities
  • WPBAs may be performed late during a training period as so avoid the potential for learning (used summatively rather than formatively)
  • Early success with WPBAs may de-motivate trainees
  • There is clear evidence that weaker trainees are the least likely to seek feedback and therefore they need to be closely monitored through a structured learning plan
  • They are time consuming
  • Some assessor judge in relation to where assessors should be in their opinion at that point in their training rather than the endpoint of a particular stage of training
  • Making negative judgements is culturally difficult for trainers unless support is in place for them as well as the trainees