The Final FRCA Structured Oral Examination (SOE) consists of two parts. SOE1 is attest of clinical anaesthesia exploring management of a long case and three short cases.  SOE 2 explores the application of the basic sciences to clinical practice. (applied anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, physics and clinical measurement). Examples of typical SOE questions may be found in the book The Guide to the Final FRCA available from the College. There are also further example sample questions for Short Questions and Applied Clinical Science questions available below, see related downloads. In addition a series of short films have also been produced which you may find helpful in examination preparation.  

SOE Films
Welcome to the Final SOE series of short films designed to assist trainees in preparation for the Final oral examinations and to assist trainers in providing advice and instruction.  The aim of the films is to demonstrate:

  • How examiners perform an SOE
  • The way questions are structured
  • The level of knowledge required
  • Examples of pass and borderline performance

There are eight films in total in this series. There is a short introduction to the series, six five to six minute films of part  of an SOE 1 or 2 examinations and brief closing remarks from the Chairman.  The films are not complete SOEs. They are excerpts designed to highlight how an examiner might assess a candidate’s response.  They should not be taken as model answers. They illustrate different aspects of performance rather than provide exact answers, so it is more the nature of the performance that you should concentrate on rather than the actual answers themselves. When watching the films you may feel that some of the borderline performances are close to a pass standard but there are errors in the candidate's performance.  You will note clear differences in the pass examples.  Candidates should remember that being in the borderline area is not a guarantee of success and you should aim for the highest standard you can achieve. More videos are available via the College's YouTube Channel.

It can't be stressed enough that preparation and practice is key to success in the oral exam. A sound knowledge and understanding of the intermediate level curriculum is required.

Over the coming months we plan to add to these films with examples of a general run through of the Final exam to improve a candidate’s familiarity with the College and the exam process generally.  You may also be interested in the Primary film series which follows a similar format.  

I hope you find them useful.

Mike Tremlett
Chairman, RCoA Final Exam

Please see the College's YouTube Channel.