FRCR Part 1 (Oncology) - CO1

Important COVID-19 guidelines

Please ensure you have read our latest statements on COVID-19 and RCR examinations before applying for or attending an examination. If you feel unwell or display symptoms you should not attend the examination. Social distancing rules and cleaning guidelines will be applied by each venue on an individual basis in line with government guidance and candidates should adhere to these.

Examination format update

This examination will be proctored online. The examination is delivered by a software (Speedwell) which can now be integrated with Examity’s examination proctoring system, allowing candidates to take secure high stake examinations at home or at a place of the candidate’s choosing where they should have a stable internet connection, a quiet working atmosphere and must be on their own. See examination specification for further details.

April 2021 examination sitting update

Following the above examination format update, we are re-opening applications for this sitting in order to accommodate additional candidates. Online proctoring offers a range of timed sessions of the First FRCR examination. The online session timings document provides more details, including application dates for this sitting.

Applicants must create a website login in order to apply for all FRCR examinations. Please refer to the examination booking process for more information.

February 2021 examination sitting update

In light of the current situation, we have taken the decision to postpone the First FRCR and Final Part A examinations in Clinical Oncology planned to be held in February. We believe that planning to go ahead in February would be impractical and would pose far too much risk when the NHS is close to breaking point, and the situation is unlikely to improve for some weeks. The NHS is in a more difficult position than when we cancelled our FRCR examinations last spring. Whilst we have adapted the examination delivery, we could not justify going ahead in the face of the national emergency we currently encounter. We know that many trainees are being redeployed or having their training and preparation disrupted in other ways.

The new examination dates for the First FRCR examination in Clinical Oncology will be:

27th April 2021 -  Cancer biology and radiobiology; Clinical pharmacology.

28th April 2021 -  Physics, Medical statistics.

We hope that this new timing will have minimal impact on trainee progression decisions as results will be available before most ARCPs take place. The curriculum derogations, adjusted decision aids and outcomes 10.1 and 10.2 as agreed last year will still apply at ARCPs.

All bookings will be immediately transferred to the later examination sitting and no further action is required by candidates. Please contact examinations@rcr.ac.uk if you are not able to sit the April 2021 sitting and would like to be moved to the September 2021 sitting instead.


Purpose of assessment

The First FRCR Examination expects candidates to have acquired a broad knowledge of those subjects that relate to the investigation and management of patients with cancer. Candidates are examined against the Specialty Training Curriculum for Clinical Oncology and the clinical oncology syllabus. The First FRCR Examination purpose of assessment statement details the examination's purpose, the required level of candidate training and the application of results. It is hoped that the statement will assist candidates, and those involved in their training, in understanding the scope of the FRCR examination and with relating the examination to other in-training assessments.

The First FRCR Examination comprises four papers of single best answer (SBA) questions. The written papers for the four subjects are held twice a year over two consecutive days. Further general information on the examination shows in the guidance notes for candidates. 


Dates and fees

Find out about dates and fees for this exam


How to apply

Applicants should ensure they have read the examination regulations before applying.

Find out more about applying online.


Candidate Resources