Fellowship to the Royal College of Surgeons

Submitted by Annie on Mon, 2014-11-03 19:02
So there we have it, it has finally happened. 
Last Thursday I was awarded Fellowship to the Faculty of General Dental Practitioners of the Royal College of Surgeons.
The standards of competence for Fellowship are laid out in black and white in the RCS regulations;
Mastery indicates a level of expertise beyond competence, where the dentist would serve as a role model of high quality practice and might, for example, teach and supervise junior colleagues, contribute to the literature in the field, give presentations or demonstrations, or demonstrate excellence in other ways.
10 years in the making, 12 months of sustained effort, 3 prior qualifications and 2 enormous portfolios of evidence (proving I'm worthy) comprising of;
  • Full CPD record for the last 5 years
  • An up to date curriculum vitae
  • A copy of the personal development plan, covering a minimum of 5 years and showing any agreed alterations
  • A completed practice questionnaire, including record cards, signed off by the mentor
  • Four clinical cases, each consisting of a reflective commentary plus supporting evidence (See Appendix II, Assessment of Clinical Cases, Regulations Relating to the Assessment)
  • Details of two recent audits (completed within the last five years) with a summary of findings and actions taken 
  • A reflective commentary of no more than 1000 words on a learning experience(s) that changed the way the candidate practices
I'd been like a cast on a hot tin roof all week knowing my viva (spoken examination) would be in front of two examiners and an hour long.
It didn't help that I arrived early to meet other 3 candidates...only one of them passed.
In the afternoon there were six of us, only 2 passed. Clearly they don't just give the Fellowship away just because we've paid our money!
It turned out to be much more pleasant than I'd imagined. My examiners seemed genuinely interested in my philosophy of how I run my practice, and it's development over the last 10 years of ownership. All backed up with regulations, evidence and reflection.
There is no higher qualification for a General Dental Practitioner in the UK. It's seems I have arrived at a place that started as a dream over a decade ago. 
What next I wonder...
Neil Cooper BDS MFGDP(UK) Dip Imp Dent RCS (Eng) FFGDP(UK)