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Here to help: could you be a specialist advisory panel member?

Chris Ward, IBMS Head of Examinations, looks at the Institute’s advisory panels and how members can play a crucial role.

The eight specialist advisory panels are vital in ensuring the success of the Institute’s work. There are advisory panels for cellular pathology, clinical chemistry, cytopathology, haematology, immunology, medical microbiology, transfusion science 
and virology. Each panel is made up of around 12 “expert” members that include a Chair, Deputy Chair, Chief Examiner, two Deputy Chief Examiners, a Company Member and approximately six “ordinary” members.

Their work includes:

  • Organising the scientific programme for their discipline for the IBMS Congress and contributing to other aspects of this major event.
  • Working with the Institute on revisions to the existing, and the development of new, professional qualifications, such as the Specialist Portfolios, Diploma of Expert Practice and Higher Specialist Diploma (HSD).
  • Representing the Institute on local and national groups and committees.
  • Commenting on revisions to Institute professional guidance documents.
  • Acting as a source of advice on a range of topics, including patient/service users, emerging technologies and laboratory training.
  • Working with the Institute’s Education and Professional Standards Committee and other working groups. Being an advisory panel member gives you the chance to undertake different roles, acquire new skills, develop your network, share and contribute to the development of best practice and to get recognition for your professionalism and expertise in your particular discipline. All of this can help your place of work, as well as your own career progression.

Current vacancies

There is at least one vacancy on each advisory panel for an ordinary member and the cytopathology and virology disciplines are looking for a Deputy Chief Examiner. To be able to join as an ordinary member, you need to have:

  • Institute Member or Fellow status
  • Scientific or managerial experience in chosen specialty/discipline
  • Evidence of liaison with professional and/or academic contacts.
  • Chartered Scientist (CSci) status is also desirable, although non-chartered individuals can be appointed initially as a co-opted member, moving to full membership once chartered.

Deputy Chief Examiner applicants can have Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy status, rather than CSci status, and should be able demonstrate:

  • Academic experience through employment or part-time lecturing
  • Experience of setting, marking and monitoring professional exams
  • Experience of facilitating or delivering training.

Examiners help to ensure the successful delivery of the HSD by working together to set the exam papers and to mark the portfolios and exams within their chosen discipline and attending the candidate preparation day events. The standard term of appointment for each position on the panel is four years, with the option for further re-appointment. Panel meetings are held twice a year at the IBMS, which will reimburse reasonable expenses.

If you are interested please send a copy of your CV and a supporting letter from your manager to Chris Ward, Head of Examinations at the IBMS. Email: by 7 January.

Picture credit | Shutterstock

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