How to prepare for MRCP Part 2 (Written Exam)

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

The Membership of the Royal Colleges of Physicians in the United Kingdom (MRCP UK) develops and delivers examinations and qualifications around the world. Membership of the Royal Colleges of Physicians (UK) Diploma consists of the MRCP(UK) Part 1, MRCP(UK) Part 2 and PACES examinations. It is designed to test the skills, knowledge and behaviour of doctors in training. 

You need to pass MRCP Part 1 and 2 to become a Member of the Royal College of Physicians.

Who is eligible for MRCP Part 2?

The MRCP(UK) Part 2 written exam can be taken by physicians in training who have passed the MRCP(UK) Part 1 exam. It builds on the knowledge assessed in Part 1 and tests the acquisition of a representative sample of medical knowledge, skills and behaviour as specified in the UK Specialty Training Curriculum for Core Medical Training.

What is the format of the exam?

Since 2018, the exam now consists of two, three-hour papers each with 100 questions. These are both taken on the same day. In 2020, an online version of the part 2 exam was introduced and is available for candidates within the UK and the Republic of Ireland, international candidates in a Federation Training Programme, and trainees based in Malaysia. All other candidates will be tested in test centres.

How much does it cost?

At the time of writing this article, the exam is priced at £448 for UK-based candidates and £608 for International candidates.

How do I apply to sit MRCP Part 2 written exam?

You will need to apply through your MRCP (UK) account. Please make sure you read all of the information and criteria on the website before applying and paying for the exam.

How to revise for MRCP Part 2

How can I prepare?

The exam will test your ability to apply clinical understanding, make clinical judgements and take responsibility for:

  • prioritising diagnostic or problem lists
  • planning investigation
  • selecting a plan for immediate management
  • selecting a plan for long-term management
  • assessing prognosis.

There are numerous resources available online and printed for free and some paid services. We have researched the official MRCP recommended resources and read anecdotes from doctors who have completed MRCP Part 1 and which resources they found most useful and similar to the exam. Here are some of the best resources we came across:

Clinical Preparation

MRCP recommend that all candidates prepare for the examinations by gaining clinical experience in hospital posts involving the care of emergency medical patients, whether adults or children and by studying up-to-date postgraduate clinical textbooks and current medical journals.

The examinations are mapped to the UK core medical training curriculum / internal medicine training and knowledge of this and UK national guidelines should form part of your preparation for the examinations.

Courses

There are several courses available that are designed to help you prepare for the MRCP(UK) examinations. These preparation courses are run by the three Colleges that make up the Federation of Royal Colleges of Physicians of the United Kingdom and are delivered in a range of formats. You can learn more about the courses available here.

Question Banks

PassTest has been anecdotally compared and recommended as the closest question bank to MRCP Part 2.

Practice MRCP Part 2 Exam

You can review sample questions here

You can take a practice test here, but the answers will not be supplied at the end.

Top tips for revision

  • MRCP Part 2 is testing your ability to apply the knowledge from Part 1 to clinical settings. This includes images questions which could be anything from X-Rays, ECG, CT scans, bone scans, endoscopic photographs, pictures of skin conditions and rashes, photos of body parts and more. Make sure you take time to practice these types of questions as it’s a crucial element to applying your practical knowledge.
  • Making sure you understand how to interpret antibody titres and multiple imaging modalities.
  • Several doctors have recommended sitting Part 2 (Written) soon after Part 1 as the knowledge overlaps however MRCP general trends based on the data differ. You can read more about their broad guidance here.
  • If you are sitting the exam remotely at home, bring snacks as it’s quite a long exam.

We hope you’ve found this advice useful, if you have any top tips to share with fellow doctors on how you prepared or are preparing for MRCP Part 2, please feel free to share them at

Good luck to everyone taking your MRCP exams.

Resources

Mrcpuk.org. 2022. Part 2 | MRCPUK. [online] Available at: <https://www.mrcpuk.org/mrcpuk-examinations/part-2> [Accessed 1 February 2022].

The Student Room. 2022. The postgraduate exams thread. [online] Available at: <https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=5202178&p=84459570&page=2> [Accessed 1 February 2022].

Mrcpuk.org. 2022. Choosing the right time to take your MRCP(UK) examinations | MRCPUK. [online] Available at: <https://www.mrcpuk.org/mrcpuk-examinations/advice-guidance-and-preparation/choosing-right-time-take-your-mrcpuk> [Accessed 1 February 2022].

Mrcpuk.org. 2022. Choosing the right time to take your MRCP(UK) examinations | MRCPUK. [online] Available at: <https://www.mrcpuk.org/mrcpuk-examinations/advice-guidance-and-preparation/choosing-right-time-take-your-mrcpuk> [Accessed 1 February 2022].

The Student Room. 2022. The postgraduate exams thread. [online] Available at: <https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=5202178&p=84459570&page=2> [Accessed 1 February 2022].