OSCEs for Dentistry
OSCEs have been designed to allow assessment of a wide range of clinical skills, patient management and knowledge. The aim is to provide a more valid assessment of candidates in situations closer to their clinical practice. The OSCE exam is composed of a number of stations through which all the candidates rotate. The time at each station is usually 5 minutes although there may also be 10 minute stations. There are often 1-2 rest stations incorporated within the exam. The practical stations examine discrete clinical skills. Knowledge of history taking, examination, selection of appropriate investigations, diagnosis and treatment are all assessed and it is important to show the examiner the steps you are going through to reach your diagnosis. Some stations are patient based and you will have to perform the tasks on a patient (or an actor). Others will use manikins and models. We have not included a marking scheme with the stations as different examining bodies will use different schemes and sections of stations may have different weighting. However, in most cases each station has the same number of marks. So remember that even after a perceived ‘bad performance’ in one station it is important to move on and concentrate on the next and not dwell on the last.