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Situational judgement tests (SJTs) aim to test an individual's aptitude for a role by asking them to rank or select responses to hypothetical scenarios.
SJTs are not only used in medicine, but they now form part of the scoring method used by the UK Foundation Programme Office (UKFPO) to assign final year medical students to their new foundation training post. The SJT is designed to assess your approach to work as a foundation doctor as defined by the FP 2017 Person Specification, which you can find on the UKFPO website.
Your score from the SJT is combined with your Educational Performance Measure (EPM) to give you an overall score. This score then allows you to be ranked along with all the other foundation school applicants, with the highest scoring applicants being awarded their first choice foundation school.
Educational Performance Measure (EPM)
Your EPM is an assessment of your academic performance, made up of three elements:
Missing out on your first choice FY1 post doesn't signal the end of your career. But getting it might mean more exposure to the area of medicine you want to pursue long-term, let you work with a consultant who'll provide you with the best support, or mean you can be near your family or friends.
Although the EPM and SJT contribute equally to your overall mark - 50 marks each - the lowest possible score for the EPM is 34, leaving only 16 marks between the lowest and the highest achievers in this component.
Additionally, as the SJT score is reported to two decimal places and the EPM score is reported as a whole number, it's often the SJT that determines your position compared to others with similar scores.
Your EPM is the hardest score to influence, so maximising your score on the SJT provides you with the best opportunity in getting ahead of the crowd and kick your career off with the job you really want.
© 2017 The MDU
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