Standard pathway

The Standard pathway is for international medical graduates (IMGs) seeking general registration as a medical practitioner in Australia. It involves completion of a written examination (CAT MCQ) and structured clinical examination of the Australian Medical Council (AMC) or approved workplace based assessment program.

Eligibility

The Standard pathway is for IMGs who are not eligible for the Competent Authority pathway or the Specialist pathway.

IMGs who have a primary qualification in medicine and surgery awarded by a training institution recognised by both the Australian Medical Council and the World Directory of Medical Schools (WDOMS) can apply for assessment under this pathway.

The Standard pathway has two alternative processes leading to the award of the AMC Certificate:

  • Standard pathway (AMC examinations) - Assessment is by examination only - the AMC CAT MCQ Examination and the AMC Clinical Examination. Most non-specialist applicants will be assessed through this method. 
  • Standard pathway (workplace-based assessment) - Assessment is by examination and workplace-based assessment - the AMC CAT MCQ Examination and workplace-based assessment of clinical skills and knowledge by an AMC-accredited authority. There are limited numbers of assessment programs, and as a result, relatively few applicants are assessed through this pathway. The AMC has accredited the following authorities:
    • Central Coast Local Health District
    • Hunter New England Local Health District
    • Launceston General Hospital
    • Monash Health
    • Rural and Outer Metropolitan United Alliance
    • Western Australia Health
    • Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service

IMGs on the Standard pathway must successfully complete 12 months of supervised practice (minimum of 47 weeks full-time service) in an approved position.

Primary source verification

Part of the Standard pathway process is the primary source verification of an IMG’s primary qualifications by the Australian Medical Council (AMC).

The AMC verify qualifications through the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPIC). 

Further information is available on the AMC website.

How to apply for the Standard pathway

IMGs on the Standard pathway apply directly to the AMC.

Information on how to apply is available on the AMC website.

Apply to the AMC for Standard pathway and primary source verification

Pass the AMC Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) exam

Pass the AMC Clinical exam and receive AMC certificate

Secure an employment offer

Apply to the MBA for provisional registration

Complete 12 months supervised practice

Secure an employment offer

Apply to the MBA for limited registration

Complete 12 months supervised practice

During the period of supervised practice:

  • pass the AMC clinical exam and receive AMC Certificate

OR

  • complete workplace based assessment and receive AMC Certificate

Apply to the MBA for general registration

Download a PDF of the Overview of pathways to registration for IMGs wishing to practise medicine in Australia - Standard pathway (194 KB,PDF)

Medical registration

All IMGs on the Standard pathway must pass the AMC CAT MCQ Examination before they can apply to the Board for registration. IMGs who have passed the AMC CAT MCQ can apply for limited registration.

IMGs who have passed both the AMC CAT MCQ and the AMC Clinical Examinations before commencing their period of supervised practice in Australia, must apply for provisional registration (they are not eligible to apply for limited registration).

IMGs who receive their AMC Certificate during their period of supervised practice cannot renew limited registration, they must apply for provisional registration if they need more time to complete their period of supervised practice.

Applicants for registration pay the relevant application fee and registration fee.

IMGs work under supervision in general practice positions or hospital based positions. Further information about supervision is available on the Supervision page.

IMGs may be required to undertake a pre-employment structured clinical interview (PESCI) prior to applying for limited or provisional registration. Further information is available on the PESCI page.

Limited registration

IMGs must pass the AMC CAT MCQ Examination before they can apply to the Board for limited registration. In addition, the IMG must have secured an offer of employment.

The type of limited registration depends on the position:

  • Limited registration for postgraduate training or supervised practice 
  • Limited registration for area of need - if working in an area of need

Further information on limited registration is available on the Board’s website.

Provisional registration

IMGs who have successfully completed both the AMC CAT MCQ and the AMC Clinical Examinations (AMC Certificate holders) must apply for provisional registration. The IMG also needs to have secured an offer of employment.

Further information on provisional registration is available on the Board’s website.

General registration

IMGs on the Standard pathway must successfully complete 12 months of supervised practice (minimum of 47 weeks full-time service) in an approved position before being eligible to apply for general registration. The requirements for general registration are outlined in the Board’s Registration standard Granting general registration to medical practitioners who hold an Australian Medical Council certificate.

In addition, all IMGs are required to comply with the Board’s registration standards.

A revised registration standard for AMC certificate holders came into effect on 15 February 2018

The Medical Board of Australia’s revised registration standard came into effect on 15 February 2018.

The revised standard applies to international medical graduates who hold an Australian Medical Council (the AMC) certificate and who are applying for general registration from 15 February 2018.

The revised standard does not change the requirements for general registration for AMC certificate holders. The revised standard makes clearer how AMC certificate holders can demonstrate that they are performing at least at the standard of an Australian intern at the end of intern training to become eligible for general registration. AMC certificate holders are required to demonstrate that they have achieved the learning outcomes as defined in the AMC’s guidance Intern training – Intern outcome statements.

Detailed information about the evidence required to demonstrate satisfactory completion of supervised practice for applications for general registration received from 15 February 2018 is available in the Guidance: Evidence of supervised practice to support applications for general registration from Australian Medical Council certificate holders.

Transitional arrangements for AMC certificate holders who have completed supervised practice in general practice only

The revised standard requires that AMC certificate holders, who have completed their supervised practice in general practice only, provide evidence of the learning experiences they obtained that enabled them to achieve the learning outcomes defined in the AMC’s document ‘Intern training – Intern outcome statements’.

Although the standard came into effect from 15 February 2018, there are transitional arrangements for AMC certificate holders who have completed supervised practice in general practice only.

For applications for general registration received by AHPRA up to and including 30 June 2018, AMC certificate holders who have undertaken supervised practice in general practice can continue to provide the evidence as required under the previous standard as follows:

  • Work performance reports, on the template approved by the Board, completed by the applicant’s Board approved principal supervisor confirming satisfactory completion of the period, and

  • A letter of recommendation for general registration which must:
    • be on the employer’s letterhead.
    • contain the practitioner's name.
    • contain details of service including:
      • the date that the practitioner commenced and finished working in the supervised practice position

        [Note: If the practitioner is still working in the position, it is acceptable for the letter to confirm this instead of providing an end date.]

      • whether the work has been full time, part-time or a combination. If any of the work has been part-time, provide details of FTE worked
      • the number of weeks FTE completed, excluding periods of leave.
    • confirm that the practitioner has demonstrated a standard of practice that is at least equivalent to that of an intern at the end of the intern year in all core disciplines – i.e. medicine, surgery and emergency medical care and
    • confirm that the principal supervisor recommends that the practitioner be granted general registration.

Note: Where the signatory of the letter of recommendation is unable to confirm 47 weeks of FTE supervised practice, the practitioner will be required to provide supporting evidence with their application for general registration to demonstrate completion of the entire period of supervised practice required by the Board.

From 1 July 2018, AMC certificate holders who complete all their supervised practice in general practice must provide documentary evidence as outlined in the Guidance: Evidence of supervised practice to support applications for general registration from Australian Medical Council certificate holders when they apply for general registration.  

Further information

More information about the Standard pathway is available on the AMC website.

 
 
Page reviewed 17/04/2018