OSCE Stations


Medics have to pass many assessments before they graduate, and one of these is to run the gauntlet of OSCE Stations.  The Objective Structure Clinical Examinations must be passed by all candidates wishing to become doctors or other kinds of medic. 

OSCEs are practical examinations that take place in the last two weeks of the student's course.  They are short (5-10) minute examinations, where the student is given a practical scenario in the presence of a real or simulated patient, and assessed by an external examiner.  Each station has a different examiner, and all students must pass through all the stations (rather like a stations on a train journey).  

OSCEs are therefore highly structured and scripted and preferred to the traditional clinical examination where a complex procedure is given to one examiner and one candidate.  This makes the standard setting more objective and fairer.


The examiner marks the student according to a checklist, awarding them 0, 1 or 2 points depending on how well they fulfilled the objective.  The response are not the student's answers but the examiner's opinion of how the student performed, so an OSCE tends to be like  a driving test.