The CSA is an OSCE exam that determines a candidates fitness for to practice as an FY1 in the UK.
You will be required to take the Clinical Assessment Examination (CSA) if you:
- Have graduated from medical school more than 2 years ago.
- Have not completed an full year of internship (6 months in surgery and 6 months in medicine specialities).
During my preparation, I came across local graduates who were sitting for the CSA because they were out of the clinic for more than 2 years. This exam is not only for IMG’s.
You will be required to complete their eligibility application on Oriel by early August. You will then be informed to sit this exam and you will be provided with some details about this exam.
The details become available around September, while the exam itself is held around the end of October.
It is important you keep checking your Oriel account and e-mail account for updates. The UKFPO will send you an e-mail with all the details on how to pay for the CSA examination. Pay well before the deadline! I can’t stress this enough.
It CSA itself is roughly a 3 hour exam consisting of 18 stations, including 2 rest stations.
This year (and I believe every year), it was held in Manchester.
The exam cost me £850/- . It is definitely not a cheap exam, nor very easy. So make sure you clear your calendar.
Within 5 days after the payment, you should receive a confirmatory email with the date, cycle details and address of the examination.
This year, 2017, the exam itself was conducted by the University Hospital of South Manchester, in Wythenshaw Hospital in Manchester.
The exam was spread out over 3 days , from the 24th until the 26th of October.
What you need to bring to the exam
Make sure you bring
- your passport
- your stethoscope
Wear a formal shirt (half sleeve / full sleeves rolled up to the elbow).
Wear formal pants and shoes.
In short, look professional. Like a doctor.
I did see candidates with small watches attached to their stethoscope which was allowed. I personally would advise you to go in light. They do have clocks on the walls.