FRCA Examinations Results, Statistics and Research

Exam statistics

The College is committed to ensuring that the FRCA exam statistics in the form of exam pass and fail rates are placed in the public domain as soon after the ‘release of result date’ as possible.  The table below provides the exam statistics for all FRCA components for the last two years and is updated regularly.  Annual statistics in respect of all FRCA examinations are published by the RCoA as part of the Annual Specialty Report (ASR) which is sent to the GMC. . A copy of the annual statistics report for 2013-2014 is available below (see related downloads).  Future reports will be released along with the ASR once receipt of the College's ASR has been received from the GMC.


Primary MCQ November 2017

355 58.3 41.7 Primary OSCE/SOE November 2017 360 58.6 41.4
Primary MCQ February 2018 395 52 48 Primary OSCE/SOE January 2018 342 54.7 45.3
Primary MCQ September 2018 447 75.8 24.2 Primary OSCE/SOE May 2018 366 63.4 36.6
Primary MCQ November 2018 328 55.8 44.2 Primary OSCE/SOE November 2018 406 55.7 44.3
Primary MCQ March 2019 409 60.6 39.4 Primary OSCE/SOE January 2019 367 53.7 46.3
Primary MCQ September 2019 472 72.2 27.8 Primary OSCE/SOE May 2019 409 54.3 45.7


Final Written March 2018 415 68.2 31.8 Final SOE Dec 2017 455 64.6 35.4
Final Written September 2018 399


56 Final SOE June 2018 411 70.8 29.2
Final Written March 2019 546 66.3 33.7 Final SOE Dec 2018 315 76.2 23.8
Final Written September 2019 375 71.5 28.5 Final SOE June 2019 413 67.3 32.7

Examinations Chair’s annual exam summary reports

At the end of each academic year the Chair of the Primary and Final examinations now submit an annual summary report for their respective examination to the Examinations Committee. These documents review the performance of all RCOA Primary and Final FRCA exams conducted throughout the academic year. It is intended that these annual reports will be of value to examiners, Royal College departments, the GMC, trainers, trainees and the public in general. Therefore to ensure they are available to all interested parties a copy of the Primary and Final reports will be displayed on related downloads (see below) for a maximum of three years.  Reports for academic years: 2014-2015, 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 are available below. Future reports will be made available in the autumn following each academic year.

Exam Research

The College, whilst not outliers in respect of differential attainment, takes the issue very seriously.  A number of research projects are in place and we aim to publish findings and answer important questions in regard to differential performance in examinations.  The RCoA reported on the issue of differential attainment in the FRCA via an article in the Bulletin 92 | July 2015, the article written by Dr Bennan and Dr Lumb presented data showing that in common with other speciality exams, some candidate groups perform better than others. The effects of gender, ethnicity, training post and primary medical qualification (PMQ) all affect outcomes. More recently, the College has undertaken two projects which aims to better inform both candidates and trainers on how to optimally prepare for the FRCA:

1. Differential attainment in curricular components.  This project looked at how candidate groups performed in the curricular units tested in Primary and Final FRCA. All questions from four sittings of the oral exams were mapped to the training curriculum then each candidate's score analysed (>20000 results per exam), see full report on related downloads.

2. Candidate survey of exam preparation.  In three Primary and two Final exams candidates were asked to complete a questionnaire about how they had prepared for the oral examinations to identify if there was any correlation to exam performance and how candidates prepared for exams. The questions were developed with the college trainee committee, given to candidates after their exam but before the results were known, and then the responses matched to their overall result for that exam sitting, see full report on related downloads.

Further information and a summary of the above projects will be published in the July 2018 edition of the Bulletin.


Pass-fail lists
Candidates results in the form of pass-fail lists for all FRCA examination components are published at the foot of this page (see related downloads) from 2.00 pm on ‘the release of result date’.  Candidates are identified on pass-fail lists by their candidate number only (This number is exam specific and is printed on the admission notice sent to all canididates prior to the exam they are sitting)..

The release of result date for forthcoming examinations, are set out in the table below:

Primary FRCA OSCE/SOE November 2019 From 2pm, Thursday 14 November 2019
Primary FRCA MCQ November 2019 From 2pm, Friday 29 November 2019 
Final FRCA SOE December 2019 From 2pm, Thursday12 December 2019 

Result letters
Feedback is provided to candidates in the form of a ‘results letter’, this will be sent by first class post within seven working days of the ‘release of results date’.  The Examinations Regulations Appendix 10 provides full details regarding the type of feedback provided.

 Additional feedback in the form of examiners' comments made on candidate performance at the Prmary and FInal SOEs are provided on request.  Please email

Candidate Exam Day allocations for Primary OSCE/SOE and Final SOE
The College will send out day and exam timing allocations for the Primary OSCE/SOE and the Final SOE exam weeks by email within 10 working days of the application closing date.