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Assessments Special Arrangements Policy


Last updated 29 January 2024

1. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to define the principles and requirements for the granting of Special Arrangements for RACGP Assessments.

2. Scope

2.1 This policy applies to:

    1. all medical practitioners who are undertaking an RACGP Assessment and applying for Special Arrangements (Applicant), and

    2. RACGP Staff.

2.2 This policy is to be read in conjunction with the Assessments and Examinations Candidate handbook and the relevant Registrar handbooks and staff training manuals.

2.3 This policy replaces the previous RACGP Assessments and Examinations Special Arrangements Policy and will come into effect on the start date of the first term of the Training Program in 2023. For the avoidance of doubt, to the extent that there is any inconsistency between the previous policy and this policy, the terms of this policy apply.

3. General principles

3.1 The RACGP aims to ensure equity throughout the educational assessment processes.

3.2 The purpose of granting Special Arrangements is to accommodate the medical practitioner who is likely to be disadvantaged in an RACGP Assessment by a circumstance which is:

    1. beyond their control, and

    2. objectively likely to have an adverse impact on their performance in the RACGP Assessment.

4. Applying for Special Arrangements

4.1 The circumstances which may require Special Arrangements are:

    1. permanent and longstanding impairment,

    2. temporary impairment, or

    3. essential religious observance.

4.2 The Applicant must complete and submit the relevant Special arrangements application form.

4.3 The RACGP strongly recommends Applicants apply for Special Arrangements as soon as practicable after enrolment in an RACGP Assessment. This allows the RACGP to assess applications and make reasonable adjustments where appropriate.

4.4 Applicants must submit applications for Special Arrangements by the stipulated deadline:

    1. National Entry Assessment – 10 Business Days prior to the scheduled assessment time

    2. AKT, KFP and the Clinical Examination – 30 Business Days prior to the scheduled exam time

4.5 Late applications will not be accepted, except at the RACGP’s discretion. The RACGP may be unable to grant Special Arrangements if the application is received without sufficient notice, irrespective of the Applicant’s grounds for applying.

5. Granting of Special Arrangements

5.1 Special Arrangements are only granted in Extenuating Circumstances as assessed by the RACGP.

5.2 The granting of Special Arrangements will never result in the alteration of an assessment result, because:

    1. the RACGP cannot assume or agree that the Applicant would have had a better result in their assessment if their circumstances had been different, and

    2. while the RACGP recognises that illness can affect performance in an assessment, it is the Applicant’s decision to present for that assessment.

5.3 All application outcomes are at the RACGP's discretion.

    1. An application for Special Arrangements may be granted, partially granted, or denied.

    2. If an application is partially granted, alternative arrangements may be offered by the RACGP, as appropriate.

    3. Where appropriate, the RACGP will consult with the Applicant to determine reasonable adjustments to the RACGP Assessment appropriate to the Applicant’s circumstances.

    4. The RACGP may deny the application if:

      1. the application is incomplete,

      2. the application is not supported by appropriate evidence,

      3. the application has not been submitted in a reasonable timeframe to allow the RACGP to make the appropriate arrangements,

      4. the Applicant does not respond in an appropriate timeframe to requests from the RACGP for additional information,

      5. the application cannot reasonably be accommodated by the RACGP, and/or

      6. the application does not comply with this policy.

5.4 The RACGP will provide written notice to the Applicant of the outcome of their Special Arrangements application in the following timeframes, unless the RACGP advises otherwise:

    1. two Business Days prior to the scheduled assessment for the National Entry Assessment, or

    2. 20 Business Days from the receipt of a complete application for the AKT, KFP and the Clinical Exam.

6. Amendment of this policy

The Censor-in-Chief (CiC) may, without the consent of the RACGP Board, make Minor, Moderate and Consequential Amendments to this policy at any time. 

If the CiC makes amendments, they must advise the RACGP Board of those amendments as soon as practicable. 

The RACGP Board may make amendments to this policy at any time.

7. Responsibilities

7.1 Applicant

  1. Applying for Special Arrangements within the stipulated timelines
  2. Submitting appropriate forms and evidence with any application

7.2 Censor-in-Chief

  1. Approving Minor Amendments
  2. Approving Moderate Amendments
  3. Approving Consequential Amendments


  1. Administering Special Arrangement applications
  2. Coordinating Special Arrangements for assessments
  3. Providing the outcome of the application to the Applicant within 20 Business Days

7.4 RACGP Board

  1. Approving Major Amendments

8. Glossary

8.1 Applicant

The medical practitioner enrolled in an RACGP Assessment and applying for Special Arrangements.

8.2 Business Days

A day when both the RACGP national and relevant regional offices are operating.

8.3 Consequential Amendment

An amendment that requires urgent implementation as a necessary result of an amendment to another policy or process.

8.4 Extenuating Circumstances

Circumstances the RACGP considers on a case-by-case basis, which are outside the Candidate’s control and which can be shown to have a direct and significant impact on the Candidate’s ability to sit an assessment and/or their performance in an assessment.

8.5 Major Amendment

An amendment that materially changes the operation of the policy but is not otherwise a Minor or Moderate Amendment (ie a change to one major clause or policy review).

8.6 Minor Amendment

An amendment to style, to correct grammatical mistakes, change overall formatting, make updates that do not materially change meaning, or any other amendment, which in the opinion of the Censor-in-Chief, does not materially alter the operation of the policy. 

8.7 Moderate Amendment

An amendment that materially changes the operation of a policy by a limited amount (ie a change to one minor clause, or changes that have a limited impact on the outcome of the policy).

8.8 RACGP Assessment

Assessments run by the RACGP, including:

  1. National Entry Assessment
  2. Applied Knowledge Test (AKT)
  3. Key Feature Problem (KFP), and
  4. Clinical Examination, which depending on the time of sitting, is the Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE), Remote Clinical Exam (RCE) or Clinical Competency Exam (CCE).

8.9 RACGP Staff

Anyone who is an employee or contractor of the RACGP.

8.10 Special Arrangements

Any reasonable adjustments made to an assessment where the RACGP considers the standard arrangements will put the Applicant at a disadvantage.

9. Related documents, legislation and policies

10. Policy review and currency

This policy will be reviewed every three calendar years from the last approval date, or when there is a significant change in the intent of the policy. This policy remains valid and applicable notwithstanding if it is overdue for review.




Date of effect

Amended by


02 May 2023

Education Policy and Guidance Coordinator

Amendment details

  • Minor amendments to reflect correct titles of documents referenced in policy:
    • Assessments and examinations candidate handbook
    • Dispute, Reconsideration and Appeals Policy


The start date of the first term of the Training Program in 2023

Education Policy and Guidance Lead

Amendment details

  • Included definition of Assessments as both the National Entry Assessment and the Fellowship Exams
  • Timelines for submissions for Special Arrangements for the AKT and KFP extended to 30 business days prior to the assessment.

Policy owner:


Approved by:


Approved on:


Next review due: