ACCS Trainees' Guide



The ‘Annual Review of Competence Progression’ (ARCP) will assess your progress through ACCS and occurs once a year (Acute Medical trainees may also undertake interim reviews in certain Deaneries/LETBs in accordance with Core Medical Training requirements). It is the process whereby all assessments of a trainee’s knowledge, skills and attitudes throughout the year come together for review at Deanery/LETB level to be deemed satisfactory or otherwise as an entirety. The panel will be made up of representatives from your parent specialty as well as representatives from the complementary training modules you have completed. The Specialty Training Committee works with the Postgraduate Deans in conducting the ARCP to provide a composite picture of the trainee’s achievements, areas needing development and consequent future training needs. A satisfactory outcome is needed in order for you to progress to the subsequent year of training. You will be expected to produce your portfolio of evidence along with any specific Deanery/LETB requirements. The ARCP may be either face-to-face or conducted by the panel alone. In exceptional circumstances it may be appropriate to initiate an ARCP before a year has elapsed. Such a process will only be initiated at the request of a senior trainer and with the agreement of the STC Chair or his deputy.


Knowledge assessments in the form of the FRCA Primary MCQ's for Anaesthesia trainees, full MRCP for Medical trainees and MCEM Part A for Emergency Medicine trainees must be completed before progression from ACCS to the next stage of training. Workplace based assessments (CbD's, mini-CEXs etc) need to be completed in accordance with the specific module you are undertaking (see the Assessments and Appraisals section). There are also specific competency assessments for the modules in anaesthesia and intensive care medicine which can be found in the Assessment Forms section.

College Tutor

Your College Tutor will be from your parent specialty and acts as an organiser and co-ordinator of training.

Educational Supervisor

Your Educational Supervisor is a consultant from within your current specialty. The supervisor’s role is to help the trainee to plan their training and reach personal and institutional objectives and to oversee their appraisals and assessments. You must complete an educational agreement with your supervisor within two weeks of the start of each placement in which the training goals of the module are clearly established. This agreement forms the basis of subsequent reviews. You should be meeting your supervisor regularly and recording formal appraisals in your portfolio.

Parent specialty

The specialty in which you were appointed and will continue in during the third year of the programme. Currently this is Emergency Medicine, Anaesthesia or Acute Internal Medicine. Your parent specialty will determine the portfolio you use as well as your required formal examinations and exit requirements, however, the initial two years of ACCS training will otherwise be independent of parent specialty.

Portfolio and logbooks

During ACCS training a portfolio must be kept to document progress and completion of competencies as well as extra-curricular activities. There are also specific log books to be kept during various modules, see the ACCS Portfolios section.

Specialty Training Committee (STC)

Within each Deanery/LETB is a Specialty Training Committee responsible for ensuring training standards and delivering the curriculum for their specialty. The STC is led by the STC Chair (or Programme Director) and has overall responsibility for conducting the ARCPs and presenting the final evidence of completion of competencies to the relevant colleges.


You are expected to attend the formal specialty-specific teaching sessions for the module you are currently undertaking, though local requirements may vary nationwide.

Outstanding issues

The first point of contact for information concerning an individual’s training is this website in conjunction with the CMT and JRCPTB specialties, Anaesthesia, Emergency Medicine or Intensive Care Medicine CCT curricula. The next point of contact is your Educational Supervisor or the College Tutor of the department in which you are training. If the College Tutor is unable to give the necessary guidance then the appropriate Regional Adviser or Programme Director should be asked for advice. Only if the College Tutor or Regional Adviser cannot help should a trainee contact the ICACCST for advice because inevitably it will have no knowledge of the trainee’s particular circumstances.