This blog post is written by a successful candidate from the recent MRCOG part 2 exam, September 2017. Very few students offer a detailed and really practical advise after passing their exam. I would like to thank Rubab on behalf of all readers for sparing time to write a detailed and very practical advice for all of you, despite of grading herself as poor in writing and written expression. Read her advice and thoughts in her own words. – Dr. Asma Naqi
Few Tips for MRCOG Part 2 Exam + My Personal Experience
• Familiarise yourself with the latest technology and internet (very important). Almost all of us have Smartphones & Tablets these days. Just explore their positive potentials. It’s always worth investing in latest gadgets and data plans. This is the ONLY way to remain updated in knowledge, because things change very rapidly and its our own responsibility to keep up with the pace. No one else can do it all for us.
• Understand the exam well. Go through the Part 2 section on RCOG website thoroughly, especially the modules and know what you are expected to be asked in the exam. Understand it’s a UK-based exam and you need to prepare according to their standards.
• Gather UPDATED essential reading material and ORGANIZE it in a way that it’s accessible to you whenever required. It may require some online subscriptions. It’s better to spend some money rather than looking for free material.
• Allocate adequate study time. It depends on your own personal & professional circumstances and keeping some extra time for unforeseen situations.
Next comes the courses… a BIG question
There are many available and honestly I have attended a variety of courses. Each and every course has its own agendas and focuses. No course can guarantee success. You are free to make your choice but choose according to your personal needs. By the end of the day, you will have to do the hard-work.
What you need for success in this exam is deep understanding of Ob/Gyn, continuous hard work and serious commitment. It all comes from inside and self-motivation. Success is the product of all what you have been in your professional & personal life for many years.
As far as my own personal experience, WE are already on one of the BEST online courses with the best mentor Dr. Asma Naqi here at BeMRCOG.
WHY DO I GRADE IT AS THE BEST COURSE?
1. It provides you EVERYTHING you need all in one place (study material, road map, guidance, continuous professional and personal support).
2. The course is according to the RCOG curriculum and modules.
3. CPD accredited (I used these credits for my Saudi license).
4. Audiovisual tutorials and ease of access anytime anywhere (I used to listen to these tutorials while doing house chores ;), ***a big plus point to add for time management).
5. You always have direct access to your mentor, all you need is to text Asma and discuss whatever you wish, study related or even personal stuff.
6. This course helps to develop your thought process & deep understanding of the subject which is the essence of this exam
7. It is conducted by a mentor who is working in the UK and has worked outside UK, therefore understands the needs of international students. Who else can guide you better about the systems in the UK? (Main point for overseas candidates like myself).
8. Even if you are unsuccessful, there is another unique feature of BeMRCOG – The Debriefing Session, which no other courses offer. No one gets back to you and check how are you coping with the failure and what needs to be done to improve future outcome.
(Here I would like to share my personal experience. When I failed my second attempt, I was very disappointed. Every other course was celebrating the success and no one even bothered to think about the unsuccessful candidates. But it was Asma who called in a debriefing meeting, free of cost and provided valuable support which was the most needed thing at that difficult time. But it’s important that you don’t blame anyone & accept the responsibility of your failure. Be receptive to identify your deficiency, take criticism and be willing to modify your approach accordingly to avoid repeated failure.)
9. “Doctors in Difficulty” section is also unique and very professional. You can seek help for your non-academic difficulties right from the comfort of your home and with complete confidentiality.
I want to highlight a very important point here; The course and the mentor is available, but it all depends on YOU and only YOU that how to use this facility and make the best out of it. I always got a prompt response from Asma & Helpdesk whenever I needed them. BeMRCOG is worth each and every penny.
**I didn’t find ALL these features on any other course all in one place and this is the reason that I grade this as the best online course.
I will now write some more important points which can be helpful to gain the most out of this unique platform based on my own experience. While going through BeMRCOG course, I followed this myself and sharing with you here:
BeMRCOG Induction Modules:
Follow the induction modules advise (honestly and religiously). It can change your whole approach to the exam, study pattern and even your clinical practice. It will make a real difference.
Brainstorming & Modules:
Don’t miss the brainstorming questions. Do the modules in a sequence to make a complete understanding of the topic. If you find anything missing just add your points. No course can cover the whole RCOG curriculum as it is very vast, and no one can instantly update material as it is very fast pace of new updates and guidelines.
Webinars and Workshops:
Don’t miss any of the online webinars AND do take them seriously with intention of learning. You get the most up-to-date and practical information from these online events at BeMRCOG. It’s a great opportunity to interact with others from all over the world and you will not feel lonely in this journey. I have attended ALL the webinars conducted by Asma, sitting at my home (what more can you ask for?). BeMRCOG uses one of the best softwares to conduct these online workshops with minimal technical issues.
Make NOTES for last minute revision and try to keep them as short as possible but must contain all important points. Keep adding if you come across new points. Make them in a format you are most comfortable with & ensure they are available to you anytime for example if you prefer paper notes you can keep a photo in your mobile and revise on the go.(Your notes can help only YOU and no one else)
SBAs need basic theoretical knowledge. It’s the single best answer but sometimes the best answer is not in the question then go for the 2nd best :). Practice as much as you can, but use the latest and authentic books & resources. Keep in mind some books do have errors. If you have doubts just look into the original source.
EMQs are a very tricky and scary part of the exam for all of us (including me). They usually test the clinical and practical management. I think it’s only possible with MENTAL flowcharts. Focus on each and every word of question and read very very carefully. Understand what is being asked. Sometimes there is the same answer for two questions. Don’t hesitate to mark the same answer (you have 50% chance of getting it right). Practice, Practice & practice. Many books & online resources are available but follow the latest ones & with authentic references.
BeMRCOG Website has a great question bank of SBAs & EMQs according to each topic.
Exam recalls are important BUT not the only thing. Almost always they are incomplete and poor. Use them to have the idea what to expect in exam. Try solving them yourself and it will help you in your thought process. Real exam gives a complete scenario and much easier to solve (if you know the topic well).
There is no hard and fast rule that you should read 3 or 5 years. It depends on the importance of the topic and level of evidence. Best way is to find out whether there is any TOG about a particular topic and then analyse its relevance to our level of exam.
Time management is extremely important during preparation, revision & exam. Make the best use of your time as I mentioned above (listening to tutorials while doing house chores of course through bluetooth wireless earphones :). Don’t miss out on the activities you enjoy because it helps you to focus better.
During exam just relax and learn to overcome anxiety if you find some difficult questions. No one can know the whole paper and no need to waste time overthinking on things which you will not know (even after passing the exam).
• Don’t miss any topic in the curriculum. Keep an eye on RCOG website. Do have some idea about each topic so your wild guess won’t be too wild in exam 🙂
• Keep things simple. Sometimes during preparation we focus too much on complicated things and straight forward questions are missed.
This is my experience of MRCOG part 2 exam and I hope it will be helpful to some extent.
I have no words to thank Asma Naqi and whole BeMRCOG team for my success. It would not have been possible without this platform. It’s like a family and I am proud to be a member of this family.
Before I end, I would like to share the most valuable lesson that I have learnt through my journey.
“SUCCESS IS BECAUSE OF MANY PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE, FAILURE IS ONLY YOUR OWN.”
I wish everyone all the best.