Quality Assurance (QA) in training

Our quality assurance processes

The College's quality assurance in training processes are overseen by our Quality Assurance Committee (QAC), chaired by our Specialist Advisor for Quality Assurance.

The committee has oversight of the following key areas in training:

  • Externality
  • Applications for Time out of Training (OOP)
  • Results of the National Training Survey
  • Quality Matrix
  • Quality assurance and curricula implementation
  • ARCP outcome variance

The committee currently meet three times a year. For more information about the work currently being undertaken, please contact psychiatrytraining@rcpsych.ac.uk.


A requirement outlined in the current Gold Guide (version 8, 2020) states that a minimum of 10% externality is required at Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP) panels across the UK.

In order to meet this requirement, we hold a list of trained External Advisors who attend panels at the request of Deaneries/LETBs.

In addition to the minimum requirements outlined above, we also receive requests for externality for quality visits and interviews.

Requesting External Advisors

We have updated our process for requesting externality when required. We currently accept requests for:

  • ARCP Panels
  • Quality Visits
  • Interviews (where required)

To request an External Advisor, please submit your request via our online form at least two months prior to the date of the request.

For additional queries, please contact Psychiatrytraining@rcpsych.ac.uk

Interested in becoming an External Advisor?

If you would like to know more about becoming an External Advisor for the College, please email Psychiatrytraining@rcpsych.ac.uk. Our next training day will take place in Autumn 2024.

Quality in Training Reports

We have now published our Quality in Training Report (2023).

The report outlines:

  • An overview of CCTs
  • CESR and Equivalence
  • An overview of Out of Programme applications
  • Curricula Implementation Evaluation
  • Portfolio Online
  • Formative Assessment Working Group
  • Credentialing
  • Quality Assurance Processes
  • National Training Survey
  • MRCPsych Examination
  • Workforce

National Training Survey (2024)

The GMC's National Training Survey (NTS) has now closed for 2024. The results will be published in due course.

For more information, visit the GMC's NTS webpages.

Flexibility in Training 

'Guidance under review.

This guidance is currently being reviewed and updated by the Flexibility in Training Working Group and will be published here when available. In the meantime, if you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact us at psychiatrytraining@rcpsych.ac.uk.

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