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Basic Pathological Sciences

Why the BPS Examination is important

The Basic Pathological Sciences (BPS) examination is a 2.5 hour paper of 100 multiple choice questions. It is designed to ensure that all doctors undertaking the RCPA training program can demonstrate at an early stage of training that they have adequate foundation knowledge to equip them for specific training in their chosen discipline. It is recognised that there is some variation between medical schools in the teaching of basic sciences including pathology.

The examination is not an entry requirement for the RCPA training program, nor is it a prerequisite for sitting the Part I examination, but a pass in this examination (or exemption) must be achieved before proceeding to sit the Part II examination. The examination may be taken before commencement of training and is open to registered trainees. Prevocational doctors or medical students who have had pathology included within their studies may also attempt the examination prior to registering with the College.

This helps with preparation for training and enables trainees to proceed more rapidly with specific discipline training in pathology. It also provides an opportunity to demonstrate commitment to a career in pathology. The examination has become necessary because many Australian medical schools have shifted away from pathology as a ‘core discipline’, hence an understanding of basic patho-biological processes is no longer guaranteed in many medical graduates. However, such ‘core knowledge’ is essential for a successful start into the training program and satisfactory progress.

For syllabus information visit BPS Syllabus,
To register for the BPS Examination visit BPS Registration and Information
For additional online resources visit BPS Lectures and BPS Websites.


BPS Syllabus

BPS Registration
and Information

Information on the BPS Exam including application forms and list of candidates' venues and times.


BPS Lectures

A collection of BPS Lectures to support studying for the BPS exam.

BPS Online Mock Exam

Information on BPS Online Mock Exam including costs, times and registration details.

BPS Seminar

Information on the BPS Seminar including venue, times and registration form.

BPS Websites

A list of recommended websites to support studying for the BPS Exam.