If you’re required to undertake the Multi-Specialty Recruitment Assessment (MSRA) as part of your Specialty Training (ST) application, no doubt you’ll be considering MSRA question banks and how they can support your exam preparations. This guide will provide advice on what to look for to ensure you’re accessing the best MSRA question bank, and how many questions you should answer to prepare fully for the exam, as well as guidance on how to pass the MSRA.
The MSRA is used by a wide range of specialties as part of the ST recruitment process and plays an important role in the ranking of applicants; therefore, it’s essential that you prepare well to ensure you give yourself the best possible chance of achieving highly. Our MSRA complete guide provides details on the specialties which currently require completion of the MSRA; you’ll also find information relating to the exam dates and how the MSRA is scored, and further tips on how to do well.
What is the best question bank for the MSRA?
Choosing an MSRA question bank can be a bit of a minefield, with a huge variety available it can be difficult to know which one to select. You may want to take into account the following considerations to help you choose the best MSRA question bank for you:
- The cost of the question bank but also what you actually get for your money. You may want to explore what’s on offer and if it’s good value.
- Linked to this, it’s particularly important to consider the volume of practice questions you’ll be able to access. You should aim for one which offers a wide range of practice questions to expand your understanding of the MSRA and support your preparations.
- What else is included? A MSRA question bank which provides quality explanations following the questions will be more beneficial and further your learning. Rather than simply providing the correct answer, an explanation will help you to understand why it’s correct and provide an opportunity to develop your knowledge further.
- Does the question bank include feedback on how you’re doing? A question bank which provides an insight into how well you’re doing – particularly if this is broken down into performance against each topic area and each of the test papers – allows you to track your progress and identify areas where you need to dedicate more revision time.
- Is the question bank personalised to your learning needs? More likely than not, an MSRA question bank will not offer a personalised learning experience, instead you’ll be given a standard set of questions which are the same for all users. A personalised question bank will identify areas that you need to improve and direct your learning to meet those needs, making your revision more purposeful and effective.
Naturally, we must advocate for our adaptive MSRA question bank, which offers all of the above! It provides you with access to thousands of professionally written MSRA practice questions, with high quality explanations for each question, providing opportunities not just to practice questions but to learn from your mistakes. Our sophisticated algorithms will continually calculate your mastery level for each topic, so you’re aware of how well you’re doing at all stages as you progress through the question bank.
But that’s not all it offers! Using state of the art algorithms, it automatically monitors your progress and identifies your strengths and areas for development. From this it adapts to your personal learning needs, ensuring that you focus on the topics which will have the biggest impact on your learning, and therefore ultimately your MSRA score. Unlike traditional question banks, which offer everyone the same questions at the same time, our adaptive MSRA question bank will ensure that you’re given the right questions at the right time, so you can make the most effective use of your valuable revision time.
To take your MSRA exam revision to the next level, visit our MSRA question bank and start preparing more efficiently and effectively.
How do I pass the MSRA?
For specialties which require the MSRA, passing the exam is essential to be shortlisted for an interview. However, simply passing the exam may not be your goal when you consider the advantage that achieving a high score can give you. For the majority of specialties, with the exception of Community Sexual and Reproductive Medicine, your MSRA score is combined with your interview score for ‘ranking and offering’, and therefore, has an impact on this. Furthermore, some specialties, such as Radiology and Obstetrics and Gynecology, allow you to bypass the interview stage altogether if you achieve a top score in the MSRA. Additionally, for the 2021 recruitment window, General Practice and Psychiatry will rank you based solely on your MSRA performance. Therefore, it can be hugely beneficial to score highly in the MSRA, regardless of your chosen specialty.
Preparing well for the MSRA will give you the best possible chance of not only passing the exam but also of performing well. Effective MSRA preparation should ensure that you build your knowledge of the types of questions you’ll be asked and your experience of answering these questions. Put simply, you need to:
- Ensure that you’re aware of what the exam entails (i.e. the content and what’s being assessed)
Without this, you won’t know what to expect from the exam or what to include in your revision. Our MSRA complete guide and practice questions blogs, and the MSRA test blueprint, are useful starting points for understanding the different test papers within the MSRA, the exam structure and assessment areas.
- Revise / revisit your weaker subject areas
From examining the test structure and assessment areas, you may immediately identify areas which you need to revise or revisit, before the MSRA. Additionally, through monitoring your progress against individual topics – or using a MSRA question bank which does this for you, such as the Medibuddy MSRA question bank – you can identify weaker subject areas and ensure that you dedicate time to developing your knowledge and skills within these, to improve your MSRA score.
- Dedicate time to MSRA practice questions
Not only will practice questions help you to become familiar with the types of questions and scenarios that you’ll encounter, they’ll also allow you to practise applying your knowledge and problem solving skills, which will be tested during the exam.
As you revise MSRA subject areas, you may find it useful to revisit the following documents, which have influenced the exam questions:
- The GMC’s generic professional capabilities framework
The Professional Dilemmas paper relates directly to the GMC’s generic professional capabilities framework, as it aims to assess your professional behaviours and judgements in relation to clinical scenarios.
- The Foundation Programme curriculum
The Clinical Problem Solving paper is based on the Foundation Programme and assesses your ability to apply clinical knowledge and problem solving skills to make appropriate clinical decisions.
For further advice and tips on how to revise for the MSRA exam, visit our MSRA exam revision guide, which also provides information relating to how difficult the exam is and what’s a good MSRA score. Our MSRA practice questions blog also provides details of the exam structure and how to prepare, plus free MSRA example practice questions for you to explore.
How many questions should I answer to prepare for the MSRA?
Although it’s tempting to want a set number of questions to aim for, comparing how many questions you complete is not helpful, nor an indication of how well you have prepared. Instead of focusing on how many questions you’ve done, especially in comparison to others, aim to focus on how you’re using practice questions to further your MSRA preparation. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t plan to complete a wide range of practice questions, as of course more exposure will provide more experience of the types of questions you’ll have to answer, and give you opportunities to develop your answers. However, unless you’re using practice questions to advance your learning you’ll see limited progress.
When completing practice questions you may find it more productive to incorporate the following, to ensure you’re getting the most out of your practice questions :
- Identify areas / topics that you need to improve
- Undertake further learning to develop your understanding of these topics
- Repeat questions that you’ve got incorrect and assess if you have now mastered these, or if there are any further learning needs
Our MSRA question bank does all this work for you, by identifying topics which you need to focus on, providing explanations and feedback to support your learning, and ensuring that you revisit questions which you answered incorrectly to check that they’ve now been mastered.
Furthermore, you should ensure that you’re aware of what’s expected in both papers – Professional Dilemmas and Clinical Problem Solving – and the different topics in the Clinical Problem Solving paper. For a comprehensive overview of what’s expected in each section of the MSRA, visit our MSRA complete guide. Aim to dedicate time to adequately preparing for all areas, to support you to perform well and score highly in the MSRA. Our MSRA question bank shows you how many questions you’ve answered, how many of these have been correct, your average response time and your overall completion and mastery for each individual topic, so it’s easy to see your topic coverage and how you’re progressing.
Finally, do not underestimate the importance of preparing well for the MSRA and using a high quality MSRA question bank which furthers your learning, rather than simply providing stock questions.