Minimising cost

The College is committed to minimising the cost of training, assessment and examinations commensurate with maintaining the high quality of training programmes and an appropriate standard for trainees completing training and entering the professions.

The Royal College of Pathologists is almost uniquely placed among medical Royal Colleges in that it has a long history of running examinations and providing membership for both medical and non-medical trainees, including Clinical Scientists, veterinary pathologists and oral pathologists.  It is one of the very few multi-professional medical Royal Colleges.  Therefore the issue of the cost of training affects both medical trainees and all other trainees for whom the College provides a service.  The general principles operated by the College in respect of trainees are as follows:

  • The cost of the Fellowship examination (equivalent to one attempt each at the FRCPath Part 1 and FRCPath Part 2) is the same for each specialty and profession.
  • Only medical trainees are required to pay a registration fee which includes provision of an e-portfolio.  Trainees are only expected to pay one fee at a time to the College.  Therefore if a registered trainee chooses to become an Associate after passing FRCPath Part 1, they are not also required to pay the Registered Trainee fee although they will continue to maintain this status with the College.
  • The annual fees for registered trainees are capped at a maximum of five to ensure that less than full time trainees do not pay more than their full-time colleagues.
  • Trainees on maternity leave can have some or all of their Registered Trainee fee removed for the respective period while continuing to maintain this status with the College.
  • Pathology specialty registrars who are UK tax payers are eligible for full tax relief for both trainee registration fees and examination fees.  More information is available on the tax deductibility page.

The Royal College of Pathologists’ Trainees Advisory Committee (TAC) surveyed all postgraduate pathology trainees (junior doctors) between December 2016 and February 2017.  1242 trainees were surveyed and 317 responded (25.5% response). Trainees were asked whether they agreed with the following principle:

The College runs over 20 different specialty examinations across a range of professions.  Inevitably, some of the specialty or professional groupings are larger than others.  The College has always taken the view the cost of the Fellowship examination should be proportioned equally amongst candidates of all specialties and professions.