New Appraiser Training courses

Pre-course documents


Aims of Course

The aim of the New Appraiser Course is to familiarise you with the process of carrying out a medical appraisal, to have some hands-on experience of working with appraisal evidence, to hone the communication skills which are valuable in giving feedback to a colleague or peer in the appraisal setting and to look at how to best complete the Form 4 which is the key tangible output of the appraisal.

Methods of Course

The course will use a mixture of short presentations, plenary discussions, small group exercises which will include role play and the key element of Day 2 – a series of mini appraisals in which each participant will work in groups of three. Each participant will take on the role of appraiser, appraisee and observer in rotation. All the small groups will be led by one or more tutors. The mini appraisals will be videoed to allow each participant to review themselves in the role of appraiser to enhance the learning from the exercise. In all exercises you will be asked to contribute to the discussion and may be asked to lead the feedback – key in the communications skills set for appraisers.

Pre-course work

For ease of preparation we have broken this down into essential, recommended, helpful and other optional useful information/background material.

We estimate the pre- course work should take between 2 to 5 hours to complete.  It may appear that there is a lot of preparatory work. However, we are keen to ensure the contact time on the course is as useful as possible, and the better prepared you are, the more you will be able to contribute and learn whilst on the course.

All course documentation can be found at:



The key element of the course is each participant carrying out a mini appraisal on Day 2 of the course. You will take the role of both appraiser and appraisee during the day. Each participant must therefore prepare and bring a paper copy of appraisal paperwork/evidence to day 1 of the course to give to their allocated appraiser.

It is a requirement of the course that participants are prepared to be videoed in the role of appraiser on Day 2 of the course, and to review the recorded material afterwards as part of their learning.

Your required appraisal paperwork should comprise the following 3 elements:

1)  A description of the scope of your clinical activity using FORM 2 – Scope of Practice

2)  Supporting Information for a Quality Improvement Activity

Please note there is no form for the evidence of quality improvement activity.  We just ask you to bring material relating to any quality improvement activity you are already engaged in as part of your job (eg participation in national or local audits, Significant Event Analysis, development of protocol or guideline) and your reflections upon it. This can be material that you have already submitted for appraisal.

You may choose to use a reflective template to record your reflections.

Please remember to remove any patient identifiable details from your evidence.

3)  A draft Personal Development Plan using the Personal Development template

Between Day 1 and 2 you will have the opportunity to read and analyse your allocated appraisee’s paperwork in preparation for the mini appraisal on Day 2.



Please watch two (or more) video clips from the below list:

Clips for Day 1 preparation:

Clips for Day 2 preparation:

You may wish to complete Item 13 (Structured Oberservation Template) for the video clips you watch.

Full list of videos can be found on the Simulated Medical Appraisal Interview page.

Download and read the following:


Helpful but Optional

The following will link up the documents to the tasks of the day and you may find it useful to look at these either before the course or to have access to them for reference.

Day 1 Running Order

Introductions and Programme for the day:

This will set out the aims and methods, answer immediate queries and touch on the assessment criteria for being appointed as an appraiser and discuss use of the video.

Tutors demonstrate a partial appraisal discussion:

This will start the day by letting you see and discuss a bit of an appraisal carried out by someone else. It will use a “Hot topic” – a subject chosen by the appraisee which has a bit of emotional content but suitable to air in the group. The appraiser will demonstrate the introduction and confidentiality discussion

Characteristics of a high quality Appraisal:

Discussion in pairs or threes on the partial appraisal just seen plus your own experience of appraisal and informed perhaps also by the video clips you have watched. Then discussion in whole group

Short presentation on Communication Skills for Appraisal:

See slides from Day 1 presentation.

Preparing for Appraisal – Looking at Supporting Information:

Presentation (Slides from Day 1 Presentation) and discussion regarding the skills required to analyse Supporting Information and how to structure the discussion with the appraisee.

Briefing for Feedback Exercise and Practicing Appraisee, Appraiser and Observer Roles:

As in the initial demonstration of a partial appraisal given by the tutors, you will be asked to think about a real issue from your work which you are prepared to talk about in a small group of three participants and a tutor. You are not required to produce any written work for this exercise, simply to talk about the issue. You will use this topic when in the role of appraisee in this exercise.

This exercise provides practice in essential communication skills and experience of some of the types of more emotionally charged issues that can be presented during an appraisal discussion. It is practice for the longer appraisal you will be carrying out on day 2. You will have an opportunity to practise the introduction and confidentiality statement. The observer in this exercise also has an important role in leading the feedback and so has another opportunity for practising analysis and feedback.

We will use Pendleton’s rules of feedback during this exercise.


There will be a brief presentation on completing a Form 4. (Slides from Day 1 presentation). This is the tangible shared outcome from the appraisal and will be used to support the doctor’s recommendation for revalidation. You will be asked to complete a partial form 4 based on the mini appraisal you conduct on Day 2. This will be reviewed after the course by your local Lead Appraiser. There is an exercise in groups to review two examples of Form 4s to help identify good and bad practice in this key area. This will help you consider layout, headings, language and the amount of evidence and detail required.

  • Items 29, 30, 31 referenced in Recommended section
  • Item 21 referenced in Essential section [NO ITEM 21 REFERENCED IN ESSENTIAL]

Plenary discussion and end of Day 1:

Recap of topics covered, outstanding questions or issues, Self-reflection exercise. Exchange of Appraisal Paperwork for Day 2.


Day 2 Running Order

Welcome back:

Brief recap.

Introduction to PDPs:

Presentation (Day 2 presentation slides) on supporting appraisees to produce a useful meaningful Personal Development Plan. Small group exercise looking at some examples of PDPs and role playing the discussion with the appraisee to ensure that these are SMART and appropriate.

  • ? documents to view in advance? [TO BE PROVIDED]

Mini Appraisal Exercise:

In groups of three, with a tutor, you will practise the roles of appraiser, appraisee and observer using the real material that your appraisee gave to you at the end of Day 1.

Each round will last an hour with 40 minutes of appraisal and 20 minutes of feedback. We suggest that the appraisal discussion is conducted so that approximately 10 minutes is spent on the introduction, confidentiality statement and the job you do, 15 minutes on the quality improvement activity and 15 minutes on the PDP. This is to ensure that each participant gets practice in each of these areas. The tutor will encourage you to move on to the next area if required.

Video Recording on the Course

Participation of the video element on the course is mandatory, as opting out will impact negatively on all participants' opportunities to review their performance, particularly their performance in the appraiser role.

It is possible for participants to ask for the videos to be erased immediately after the sessions if they are concerned about what has been recorded. Decisions about this will be made following discussions with all the participants and agreements sought which respect the rights of the participants to ask for sensitive material to be deleted, but taking into account the needs of learners to have access to records of their performance for learning purposes.

Brief Feedback on previous exercise and plenary discussion on Top Tips for Appraisers:

Round the room discussions.

What Happens Next

Verbal feedback on two days. Instructions on completing partial form 4 following mini appraisals. Next steps towards becoming an appraiser. Questback survey will be sent to participants and then course certificates will be issued.

This page was last updated on: 11/09/2018