Waikato Hospital as seen over lake Rotoroa

I’ve just been running my computer randomisation program to allocate the course numbers.

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There were a few surprises this year.

First is that we had a whopping 57 applicants, which is a huge jump up for us. Last year we had only 35 applicants. This is an all-time record.

Second is that we had a lot of candidates from the Midland NZ region: 11 in all. This is many more than I expected.

This means that the numerical odds of getting a place on this year’s course, for non Midland applicants, is very low. I make it 9/46, or 19.6%, a little under 1 in 5.

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I realise this will come as a disappointment for many of you, and I am very sorry to turn so many of you away from the course. I realise that the exam really matters to you, and this course offers you a good chance at improving your chances of passing.

The high application numbers obviously imply that our course has a strong reputation, which in turn implies that we are doing something right.

In the interests of transparency, I include the screen dumps of my randomisation program. There are similar screen dumps further back in this thread. The important thing from your point of view is that I have no idea who those candidate numbers belong to. I don’t know your names. I don’t know your locations. Karen the secretary has a spreadsheet of applicants and has given me only the numbers of the local applicants so that I can exclude them from the randomisation.

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Tomorrow (or thereabouts) Karen will be contacting you. Those of you up to number 20 will be offered a place. Candidates 21, 22 and 23 have still got a chance of a cancellation before the course begins. Realistically, those of you with a lower place than number 23 have very little chance of getting in (though last year we did have one very late withdrawal and one lucky person was still available to fill the place).

If you do get offered a place, we will expect you to show us proof that you have registered to sit the exam in August. We will also be asking for money. If you are offered a place, then find you cannot use it, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can offer it to another candidate.

One last thing in closing. This course doesn’t pass the exam for you. What passes the exam is your own effort and graft. Even if you didn’t get a place, there is still time to get your nose to the grindstone and get some serious work in.

Aidan.