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Pantomimes are not the only activity which require intensive preparation and rehearsal in Tingewick Hall. For every Primary Care-related OSCE, the admin team (Emma, Maria, Jacqui and Charlotte) work hard for days and weeks in advance, always producing a well-oiled and successful performance on the day. Here they give a glimpse of the inner-workings of “Operation OSCE”

As lots of you are involved in the OSCE exams as role-players and examiners, we thought we’d share some insight into how we organise things from the admin perspective, as it really is a logistical feat, which takes weeks of planning before the event itself!

Our tasks include: sourcing examiners and role-players, sending scenario and exam information in advance, allocating students to their OSCE slot, organising emergency mark sheets in case the technology fails on the day, printing labels, ordering catering and stationery, preparing all equipment required, sending out various reminders and chasers and paying examiners and role-players after the event. Quite a list!

The day before the exam, we go to Tingewick Hall to set up the exam room and put out all the paperwork. Usually we have help from the hospital porters, but sometimes we have to flex our muscles as “furniture movers” and set up all the screens, tables, orthopaedic couches and chairs ourselves. No need to go to the gym on OSCE weeks…

We arrive early on the day of the exam to double check everything is in place and meet and greet examiners and role-players. We are on hand if anyone is running late, gets lost or if students need any help or reassurance. We have even been known to step in as role-players if someone hasn’t been able to show up. Our talents know no bounds!

We feel the pressure of setting up OSCEs exams: it’s so important we get it right and make the process as seamless and stress-free as possible for all involved. However, it is equally one of the most rewarding parts of our role when it goes well and we get feedback from students saying how much they appreciate our efforts.

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