Core Skills for the CASC
This book gives advice and practical tips on how to prepare thoroughly for the Clinical Assessment of Skills and Competencies (CASC) exam (one of the RCPsych exams). An ability to adapt the qualities of one's voice, body language, questioning technique and structure under pressure is one of the keys to passing the CASC exam and this book enables trainees to recognise whether or not they currently use this ability as a part of their everyday clinical communication and presents guidance on how to master the ability.Core Skills for the CASC introduces and explains a range of communication skills, both verbal and non-verbal and outlines how they can be developed and practiced. These include developing rapport, body language, vocal matching, and types of questioning. Advanced methods for managing time and taking control of the situation, given the limited time allowed for each station are presented, plus advice on how and when to use a more structured approach. One chapter focuses on topics that are known to cause the most stress to exam candidates: physical examination, cognitive assessment and interpreting investigation results.Detailed advice is given on planning CASC preparation from six months beforehand, both as an individual and through groupwork. The book describes how to develop one's knowledge base, organise group practice, psychological preparation and gives practical advice for the actual day. Methods covered include reviewing videos of performance and utilising verbal and written feedback.In addition, the book presents 12 mock stations to enable trainees to put their new techniques into practice - each gives instructions for candidate and actor on how to play out the scenario. These have been written so that the skills presented earlier in the book must be used.
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