Preparing for the 2016 registration assessment

2 December 2015

Pre-registration training and the registration assessment are designed to give trainee pharmacists the opportunity to develop and demonstrate the skills, knowledge and behaviours they need to practise to the standards expected of a pharmacist

Back in December 2014, we announced that we would be changing some elements of the registration assessment  and the ways we test skills and knowledge to better reflect current pharmacy practice.

Now that we’ve done some more work, including a pilot of the calculations paper with recently qualified pharmacists, we have updated the pre-registration manual with information to help pharmacist pre-registration trainees, and their tutors and training managers, prepare for the registration assessment.  We took the opportunity to revise and update the rest of the manual too. Although none of the standards or requirements have changed, we hope it’s easier for users to find the information they need.

How to prepare

Damian Day, GPhC Head of Education, explains what you can do to if you’re involved in helping trainee pharmacists prepare to sit the registration assessment in 2016:

Although the format of the assessment has changed, the most important thing to remember is that it tests the knowledge required to practise as a safe and effective pharmacist – in other words, what trainees should be doing in their pre-registration training.

Make sure you encourage trainees to:

  • take opportunities to practise tackling real life clinical problems
  • familiarise themselves with common drugs, their uses, doses and side effects and contra- indications
  • make sure they are able to use the BNF and BNF for Children effectively – although they will not be taking these into the assessment they are still key reference sources, and extracts from them may be provided for use in the assessment
  • practise doing pharmaceutical calculations, with and without a calculator
  • read the pharmacy press, practice guidelines (from NICE and SIGN, for example) and other information sources to keep up with developments in practice

In terms of the registration assessment:

  • make sure you’re familiar with the pre-registration manual and the information about the assessment in section five
  • check out the example questions on the GPhC website and advise your trainee not to look at past papers – the question styles will be wrong and some of the questions will be out of date
  • if you are responsible for developing or delivering training or resources, check that your materials reflect the changes – as well as the manual, there is up to date information about the papers, and the questions on the GPhC website
  • take a look at the learning points issued by the board of assessors after each assessment sitting. These give feedback about the topics that candidates found difficult in previous sittings.
  • check that trainees know that they need to bring their own calculator to the assessment
  • advise your trainee not to buy questions and exam papers online – you can’t be sure who wrote them or how good they are

Follow us on Twitter where we will be posting updates when we release information.


Related articles

18 June 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the education and training of all future pharmacy professionals. Pharmacist pre-registration trainees have experienced particular challenges and...
11 December 2019
Earlier this year we consulted on major changes to the initial education and training of pharmacists. These changes aim to make sure that future pharmacists have the skills and experience they need...
11 February 2016
Applications to join the 2016/17 pharmacist pre-registration scheme are now open for trainees – if you are planning to offer pharmacist pre-registration training for the coming training year, you...
2 December 2015
Almost two hundred delegates from across the UK, representing pharmacy professionals, patients, governments, education and training providers, employers and students, came together at a conference we...
2 December 2015
Anyone can be susceptible to influenza infection, even if they are in good health, and this is why we are supporting the Department of Health (DH) campaign to encourage healthcare professionals to...