In order to become an ENT registrar, it is mandatory to complete royal college examinations demonstrating your knowledge and clinical skills in the field of surgery and specifically, otolaryngology / head and neck surgery.


There are two possible paths to take:

There are positive and negative aspects to each route:

The MRCS (ENT) requires taking half the number of examinations (two as opposed to four).

The MRCS and DOHNS allows a candidate to also apply for other surgical specialties such as general surgery or plastics.

MRCS (ENT) comprises of MRCS Part A and Intercollegiate DO-HNS Part 2:




Part A is a four hour MCQ examination consisting of two papers, each of two hours’ duration, taken on the same day. The papers cover generic surgical sciences and applied knowledge, including the core knowledge required in all nine surgical specialties

Paper 1 - Applied Basic Sciences MCQ paper

Paper 2 - Principles of Surgery-in-General MCQ paper


To achieve a pass in Part A the candidate will be required to demonstrate a minimum level of competence in each of the two papers in addition to achieving or exceeding the pass mark set for the combined total mark for Part A. The marks for both papers are combined to give a total mark for Part A.

The papers sat at each of the Colleges at any particular sitting are identical and are held simultaneously.

Candidates are entitled to a maximum of 6 attempts at Part A.


Intercollegiate DO-HNS Part 2 - OSCE


Candidates must normally pass MRCS Part A before applying for the Intercollegiate DO-HNS Part 2 examination.


The Part 2 :   25-30 stations (5 patient stations, clinical photographs, anatomy prosections, surgical instruments, audiograms, radiology, scenario/short answer questions)


The OSCE is held at one host centre up to three times a year in the UK and Ireland. The host centre will rotate between The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, The Royal College of Surgeons of England, The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow and The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

The host centre will send out the OSCE programme to all candidates sitting in that diet.

The results will be issued by the College to which the candidate applied.

Candidates will be eligible for election as Members of the College with which they successfully complete DOHNS Part 2 for the award of MRCS (ENT).


Candidates are allowed up to four attempts at the DO-HNS Part 2 for the award of MRCS (ENT).


Should the MRCS and DOHNS be completed separately, then the MRCS part B and Intercollegiate DOHNS part 1 also have to be completed.


The MRCS part B is an OSCE examination consisting of 18 stations. You are examined in anatomy and surgical pathology (5 stations), applied surgical science and critical care (3 stations), clinical and procedural skills (6 stations), and communication skills (4 stations). Each station lasts 9 minutes. You are permitted four attempts to complete this examination and must do so within seven years of completion of part A. The examinations are held at each royal college.


The DOHNS part 1 is a multiple choice examination lasting two hours and containing 40 multiple true-false questions and 100 extended matching questions. It is held three times a year. Experience in ENT and the support of your supervisor is recommended, but not absolutely necessary.


More details, examination dates, fees and regulations can be found at the following website: