Assessment in Undergraduate Medical Education

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February 2011
Assessment in undergraduate medical education
professionalism. Overlap of the formats used for particular outcomes is both inevitable and desirable, providing confirmation of performance through triangulation.
Medical schools should be able to show that every assessment has been designed to test a particular aspect, or aspects, of the curriculum or an appropriate outcome, or outcomes, in
Tomorrow’s Doctors (2009).
30 The Medical Schools Council surveyed assessment practice in May 2010 and found that 11 schools (one in three) blueprinted their final examinations against
Tomorrow’s Doctors (2009) either on its own or in combination with internal documents.
31 Tomorrow’s Doctors (2009) states Assessments will befit for purpose – that is valid, reliable, generalisable, feasible and fair (paragraph 86). Other criteria include educational impact (the effect of assessments, positive and otherwise, on students learning and development, cost-effectiveness, acceptability (the attitudes of students and others to the assessments) and defensibility. In practice, each method has its own strengths and weaknesses, calling fora complementary and balanced approach to choosing assessment methods bearing in mind the various criteria.
32 Medical schools should be able to demonstrate how their assessment arrangements meet relevant criteria including the requirements of Tomorrow’s Doctors
(2009) and how they can be improved in this light. For example

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