A questionnaire survey was conducted of trainees across the South-West London and St George's Basic Specialist Training Scheme in Psychiatry to explore their attitudes towards service user involvement in training.
Fifty-two completed questionnaires were received; 20 trainees (38%) had not attended teaching sessions where a user was present; 35 trainees (67%) were agreeable to service user involvement in examinations. Reservations concerned the objectivity of service users in examination rating and their role as an expert on assessing the trainee's skill. Awareness of user involvement strategies and policies in their trusts were not matched with actual participation.
Service users should be involved in teaching in an expert capacity and also in examinations, with safeguards regarding transparency and objectivity of the marking schemes in place.
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