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Brighton & Sussex Medical School


BSMS > Undergraduate > Our course > Assessments


BSMS has an integrated curriculum designed to develop your knowledge, academic and clinical skills, and instil a professional approach throughout the degree; the variety of assessment methods used reflects this.

Individual module assessments vary from single best answer questions that assess knowledge and understanding, to the practical assessment of communication and clinical skills, and case presentations.

Formal assessments occur throughout the course. Each includes elements that test the integration of your clinical experience with your understanding of the underlying biomedical, clinical and social sciences. These include the reports from your family studies, your patient portfolio and your research project.

A range of other assessments are also conducted during the course, primarily to guide you in your learning. Your personal development portfolio, recording the skills and experience you have gained, will also form part of your assessment, in line with General Medical Council recommendations. 


Types of assessments

Case-based Discussion

A time-limited oral presentation of a case you have seen on placement to a panel of examiners. The presentation must cover history and examination findings, discussion of differential diagnoses and the management plan. The presentation will include time for questioning / discussion from the examiners.


A verbal presentation about a topic that students have researched. The content and length will vary depending on the specific module assessment. This can include using written and online tools.

Case in Depth

A formal structured written report on a case you have seen on placement. The Case in Depth covers the history, examination, investigations undergone and treatment of the patient and focuses on the clinical decision making and evidence base for treatment alongside the ethical and communication issues of the case. 

Specialty Sign Off Report / Logbook / Attendance

At the end of each placement you will be assessed by your supervisor on the following areas: attendance, involvement with team and team activities and professionalism whilst on placement.

OSCEs (Observed Structured Clinical Examinations)

Practical examinations that test clinical skills. During an OSCE students are observed in a series of ‘stations’; scenarios based on activities that would take place in a clinical setting such as taking a patient’s medical history, examining patients or interpreting scans / test results or even a combination of these activities. Some OSCE stations will use real patients or actors playing patients.

Knowledge Test

A time limited multiple choice examination.

A female student uses an ophthalmic torch to examine another's eyes, looked on by teacher

Year 1 assessments

Module number and method of assessment

101 – Assignment, essay, attendance

102 – Knowledge Test, academic skills (IT and numeracy tests, presentation, essay), attendance

103 – Student Selected Component, attendance,

104 – Student Selected Component, attendance

Year 1 Integrated Knowledge Test 

Assessments weighting in Year 1

Written assessments 19%

Coursework assessments 45%

Practical assessments 36%

Prof Claire Smith shows students a model of a skeleton in the anatomy lab

Year 2 assessments

Module number and method of assessment

201 – OSCE, essay, attendance

202 – Student Selected Component, attendance

203 – Student Selected Component, attendance

204 – Poster, attendance

Year 2 Integrated Knowledge Test

Assessments weighting in Year 2

Written assessments 10%

Coursework assessments 40%

Practical assessments 50%

Students watch a surgeon in theatre

Year 3 assessments

Module number and method of assessment

301 – Logbook

302 – Essay, attendance

303, 304, 306 – Case based discussions and logbook

308 – Smart Drug, Practical Prescribing, IPE, attendance

Year 3 Integrated Knowledge Test

Year 3 OSCE

Assessments weighting in Year 3

Written assessments 6%

Coursework assessments 47%

Practical assessments 47%

clinical skills tutorial

Year 4 assessments

Module number and method of assessment

402 – Logbooks

404 – Report and presentation

Year 4 Integrated Knowledge Test

Year 4 OSCE

Assessments weighting in Year 4

Written exam assessment: 10%

Practical exam assessment: 81%

Coursework assessment: 9%

A male student tests a female students reflexes, watched by teacher

Year 5 assessments

Module number and method of assessment

504 – Cases in Depth, Specialty Sign Off Report, Immediate Life Support

Portfolio – Professional Diary and Clinical Skills Log

Practical Skills and Procedures – Logbook

507 – Work Based Assessment, Skills and Simulation Sessions, Attendance

506 – Student and supervisor reports

Year 5 Integrated Knowledge Test

Year 5 OSCE

Assessments weighting in Year 5

Written exam assessment: 6%

Practical exam assessment: 65%

Coursework assessment: 29%

Assessment regulation

The exam board and assessment regulations for the undergraduate MBBS course are contained within a document called ‘PEAR’.

This document includes all the regulations which govern the course and is used by staff and students to understand how their exams are regulated and progression determined. This document is updated regularly to ensure BSMS keeps up with best practice.

These same regulations are described in more user-friendly terms in student and staff facing documents held on MyStudies. My Studies is the virtual learning environment used by BSMS.


BSMS Moderation Policy

Download our Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery Policy on moderation, verification and double-marking below.

View the moderation policy here > 

Medical Licensing Assessment

The General Medical Council (GMC) is introducing a Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA) from 2024 to demonstrate that those who obtain registration with a licence to practise medicine in the UK meet a common threshold for safe practice. Applicants should be aware that to obtain registration with a licence to practise, medical students will need to pass both parts of the MLA, pass university finals and demonstrate their fitness to practise.

The MLA will be in two parts: the Applied Knowledge Test, which will be set and run by the GMC and held at BSMS, and an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), which fulfils the GMC's requirement for a Clinical and Professional Skills Assessment.