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Overview of FRCPath Haematology

  • January 09, 2019


The Fellowship of Royal College of Pathologist exams are broken into sub-specialty exams. In this post, we provide you with an overview of the FRCPath Haematology exam. Including exam fees, eligibility, exam formats, topics covered and tips on successfully passing.


The FRCPath Haematology exam is designed to test the doctor’s knowledge, skills and behaviour within Haematology.

Please note, if you train through the UK system then you will also be required to obtain MRCP prior to attempting the FRCPath Haematology exams. Further information on MRCP can be found here.

Exam Fees

Part 1 Examination


Part 1 Overseas Examination (outside of the UK and Ireland)


Part 2 Examination


Haematology Part 1 Exam


It is expected for doctors to have obtained at least two years’ experience of specialty training within Haematology in order to achieve the standard required pass mark in the Part 1 exam.

Exam Format

The Haematology Part 1 exam comprises of two written papers.

Paper 1 – Essay Paper

This exam will last for 3 hours and you are required to complete four compulsory essay questions.

The test will be broken down into four parts:

  1. Blood transfusions
  2. General Haematology (including laboratory management)
  3. Haematological oncology
  4. Haemostasis and thrombosis

The examiner will test your ability to present a clear answer, organise and communicate relevant information and knowledge, display an appropriate knowledge of disease pathogenesis, diagnostic investigation, established therapies and new developments and relate this to clinical and laboratory practice, select an appropriate course of action and critically evaluate investigational strategies, treatment options or recent advances.

Paper 2 – Multiple Choice Questions and Extended Matching Item Questions

This exam will last for 3 hours and contains 125 multiple choice questions.

You will be tested within: pathogenesis, investigation and management of haematological disease, the use of therapeutic modalities and aspects of laboratory and clinical practice.

50 of those questions are in the ‘best from five’ format and 75 questions are ‘extended matching’ format.

Please note, no marks will be deducted for an incorrect answer.

This paper is also broken down into four parts:

  1. Blood transfusion
  2. General Haematology (including laboratory management)
  3. Haematological oncology
  4. Haemostasis and thrombosis

A small number of marks will go to your research methodology, ethics and statistics.

Haematology Part 2 Exam


You will be eligible to sit Part 2 of the exam after successfully passing Part 1.

The Royal College of Pathologists advises that doctors take the Haematology Part 2 exam after 3 years of specialty training within Haematology, i.e. equivalent to ST6 level.

Exam Format

The exam comprises of three written papers and an oral examination. The exam will be held simultaneously over three days at a number of accredited examination centres in the UK. This exam is not available to sit overseas.

Please click here for a list of overseas examination centres.

Topics Covered

Morphology, transfusion and coagulation.

Oral Examination

You will be tested on 8 different topics that have to be answered in 60 minutes.

The examination covers 2 topics in Coagulation, 2 topics in Transfusion Medicine, 2 topics in General & Laboratory Haematology and 2 topics in Haematological Oncology.

The purpose of the exam is to test your ability to evaluate problems and demonstrate good clinical judgement. You will also be tested on your ability to communicate clearly and effectively.

Tips for helping you pass FRCPath Haematology  

  1. Register early – There is a high demand for sitting the FRCPath exams. If you register early you can plan your revision to fit the exam schedule and reduce the risk of missing out on your perfect time slot.
  2. Start revising early – We advise you to start revising at least six months in advance of each exam to prepare adequately. Although some doctors pass with less preparation time, do not risk it. If you start your exam revision as early as possible you will increase your chance of passing.
  3. Use a varied range of revision resources – do not just stick to one big textbook for your revision. The additional use of online courses, discussion forums and online tests will increase your knowledge and confidence when it comes to the exam itself. Please see the resources we have listed below.
  4. Try to cover all topics evenly – Excellent knowledge of smaller topics such as statistics, ophthalmology and psychiatry will allow you to collect extra marks for only a short period of study.
  5. Check the Royal College’s exam regulations.

Useful Resources

Revision Notes from iHaematology

Practice Questions from iHaematology

Online Revision Resources from HaemBase

FRCPath Haematology Paper 1 Past Questions

FRCPath Haematology Paper 2 Past Questions

FRCPath Preparation Tools - Blood Academy (specialising in high quality, educational material for hematologists, biomedical scientists and pathologists)

Join our Facebook Group - IMG Advisor 

By joining, you will have access to specialist blog posts, relocation advice and support and the chance to meet other IMGs. 

References (2019). Haematology. [online] Available at: [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].


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