Postgraduate training: how to make the most of workplace-based assessments

This article reflects the conversations in the breakout group on this topic at the Recently Appointed Consultants symposium on Monday 22 February 2016.


Workplace based assessments (WPBA) assess what doctors in training do in the working environment and are regulated by the rules of the GMC.

The London Deanery provides excellent resources regarding WPBAs which highlight what a WPBA is and how the trainees should be assessed. There are also resources available on the GMC and JRCPTB websites.

Before starting the assessment you should be fully aware of the processes that you must undertake, as well as the limitations of the processes themselves. Try to think how you can use the resources you have in a different way to make the assessment as effective and beneficial as possible for both yourself and the trainee.

Training is not just for the trainee but for the trainer. This is an educational experience and you should try to take as much from it as possible and see this as a very valuable opportunity for your own development.

There are many issues regarding the quality of the feedback that is given to the trainee. One way to develop your skills as a trainer and in giving constructive feedback is to collaborate with other team members who do a similar role and how they assess their own trainees. By doing this you will obtain a wider picture of the situation, how best to approach training and new ideas for training methods. Another idea would be to add teaching and training into everyday situations so that you become more familiar with the role and also your own methods of training. Becoming familiar with the teaching and training will help you become better in your own teaching and training methods.


Breakout Group Leader: Dr Graham Nimmo, Consultant Physician, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh