Remote Invigilation

Remote invigilation of examinations at RCPI 

From June 2020 onwards all of our written examinations will be delivered by remote invigilation instead of at a physical examination centre.

Remote invigilation means that you sit the same examination (structure, format and length) online, but in a quiet, secure place of your choosing. Instead of travelling to an examination centre and sitting the computer-based examination with other candidates, you do the same test as originally planned, but at your own computer – e.g. at home or at work.

Candidates are supervised remotely by invigilators throughout the examination.

You will be required to adhere to the following requirements to sit an exam by remote invigilation:

  • A quiet, secure environment – a room where the candidate can take the exam without interruption
  • A PC or laptop computer with a reliable internet connection, webcam and microphone. Must have permissions to install software
  • Multiple screens, headphones and earbuds are not permitted
  • Prove your identity. This must be via a driving licence, passport or public services card
  • Scrap/rough paper is not permitted. A virtual notepad is available for use during the exam
  • The candidate's mobile phone must be within reach in the room where sitting the exam. The phone is for registration/technical support purposes only

You can find more information about remote invigilation here


With remote invigilation, you take your exam on a computer using a special app and are supervised over the internet by an invigilator. Your invigilator guides you through some authentication and validation procedures – such as checking your ID and checking your environment. The invigilator then monitors you for the duration of the test using your webcam, microphone and screen-share. Everything will be recorded and may be reviewed by RCPI.


You can sit the exam at a place of your choosing (for example, a home or work environment). It is your responsibility to ensure that the location is quiet, undisturbed and appropriate for taking a professional examination. You must be alone in the room for the duration of the exam.


To sit the exam you must have a laptop or PC that is equiped with a webcam. Most laptops have a built-in webcam. If you are using a PC the webcam must not be built-in to the monitor. You must also have a reliable internet connection. Mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are not suitable for this exam.


The online exam system is designed to work with low bandwidth internet connections. If your connection drops momentarily you will be reconnected and will be able to resume your exam. Your remote supervisor will advise you on steps to improve your connection. However, it is your responsibility to ensure that your internet connection is reliable enough for you to complete the exam. If in doubt, you should take steps ahead of the exam to improve your connection, or arrange to sit the exam in a location with a better internet connection.


Although you may be sitting and examination in your own home the same requirements of professional conduct applies as if you were taking the exam in a test centre. The invigilator may stop any candidate suspected of misconduct and issue a warning during the examination and, if necessary expel the candidate from the examination.

Failure to follow the instructions of examiners and invigilators may be grounds for a misconduct issue.

Examples of offences include:

  • Moving out of sight of the invigilator without approval
  • Unexpected external events such as a second person entering the room
  • Use or possession of prohibited items such as books, notes, or electronic equipment
  • Providing help to or receiving help from another candidate
  • Writing down or attempting to capture any details of the exam questions

Candidates committing these offences or any other activity that may be deemed to constitute professional or academic misconduct will be reported to RCPI. If found to have engaged in misconduct candidates may have their examination result declared invalid and their name reported to the relevant Medical Council.


As for any exam applications for remotely invigilated exams are completed on the RCPI website. A link to the application form can be found at the bottom of the relevant exam page.

As capacity is limited your place in the exam is not guaranteed. Applications will be verified after the close of applications. If there are more applicants than available places priority will be given to RCPI trainees. It is recommended that you apply early to secure a place in the exam you wish to sit.

One to two weeks before the exam you will receive two emails from TestReach, RCPI's exam delivery provider. The first of these emails will invite you to log in to the exam system, download the software you need to sit the exam, and complete some system checks. The second email will provide further exam details and ask you to book your exam time. It is vital that you complete this step no less than 72 hours prior to the exam or you will not be permitted to sit the exam.


To allow registration and security checks before you start the exam start times will be staggered. Your exam time will be communicated to you approximately one week before the exam. Please note that all exam times are given as local times, based on the time zone settings of your computer.


Notepaper is not permitted for remotely invigilated exams, but an electronic notepad is available in the exam system. For some exams an online calculator may also be provided. You may have a drink with you, provided it is in a clear container. 


You are allowed one brief bathroom break during each paper of an exam. The exam timer will not stop during this break. Please note that any suspicious behaviour after such a break will be flagged to RCPI for review.


If you have any technical problems before or during the exam please contact TestReach support immediately:

Phone: +44 (0)20 34758685
Phone: +353 (0)1 6991385

Please note that RCPI staff will not be able to help with technical issues. 


If you have a disability or other exceptional circumstances that require special arrangements, please notify RCPI exams staff at the time of application for the exam. Reasonable adjustments, including extra time, may be approved where appropriate.