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Home > Apply > European Mutual Recognition (EMR) > Adaptation periods and aptitude tests

Adaptation periods and aptitude tests

This section provides information about compensation measures, adaption periods and aptitude tests.


Compensation measures – adaptation periods and aptitude tests

Applicants who do not meet the standard for entry to the HCPC Register are only entitled to a period of adaptation or aptitude test if:

they are a national of a relevant European state or have acquired rights (for example, through marriage to such a national); and

they are entitled to practise one of the professions that we regulate in another relevant European state.

A ‘relevant European state’ means Switzerland or any of the member states of the European Economic Area (EEA).

Why is an adaptation period (period of adaptation or a ‘POA’) required?

If, having looked at your education, training and experience, we feel that there are significant areas of your skills, knowledge and experience in which you do not meet our standards, we may ask you to undertake a period of adaptation.

What is a POA?

A period of adaptation is a period of supervised practice and / or academic training intended to make up for significant shortfalls which have been identified in an application. These are in the areas where, in the opinion of the assessors, our standards of proficiency have not been met.

Who should supervise a POA?

A period of adaptation is supervised by a registrant from the relevant profession. On completion, we ask the supervisor to tell us whether the adaptation was completed successfully and whether they would recommend the applicant for registration.

Are there alternatives to completing a POA?

If you disagree with the requirement of completing an adaptation, you may request an aptitude test in place of it. Aptitude test is a test of your current knowledge relating to the shortfalls identified in your Record of assessment. It may take different forms, depending on your individual circumstance-the test is always described in the Record of assessment. If you choose to take a test, please inform us and we will make the necessary arrangements. If you wish to take the test, you need to tell us within up to three months from the decision imposing adaptation period.

Tests are free of charge and normally take place in our office in London.

You may also appeal the POA decision, but you must do so within 28 days from the date of the decision letter. You can find put more about the appeals here.

What can I expect when I attend the aptitude test or test of competence?

On the day of the test you will need to report to our main reception at 184 Kennington Park Road where you will be given a name badge. Reception will inform the registration advisor who is facilitating the test that you have arrived and they will come to meet you. Your photo identification will be checked and you will then be taken to join the assessors in the test room.

The test is usually conducted by two registration assessors who will be familiar with your application. They will explain the format of the test to you and will take notes throughout. Once it is finished, the registration advisor or one of the assessors will show you back to reception.

The estimated length of the test is provided in your record of assessment. It will typically take between one to three hours but could take longer, depending on your individual circumstance.

We will notify you in writing about the outcome within few weeks. If you have any questions about the international or European Mutual Recognition application process, you can contact the registration advisor who facilitated your test.

How are POAs organised and monitored?

You will need to arrange the POA by yourself. Once you chose a place and a supervisor, you need to complete the 'Adaptation Period: Request to approve provider' form. This form is sent along with the POA decision, but you may also download it here.

Once we receive your request, we will check whether the proposed adaptation meets the requirements set out by us for adaptation periods and also addresses the shortfalls listed in your Record of Assessment. Once we notified you that the proposed plan is approved, you may begin your adaptation.

At the end of your placement/training, you need to provide 'Adaptation Period: Certificate of Completion'. We will send this form to you once your plan is approved, and you may also download it here. You may send additional documentation if you wish to.

Please note that we will only accept Certificate of Completion from the originally approved provider. If you wish to change your provider after starting your POA, you need to get in touch with us and prepare another 'Adaptation Period: Request to approve provider'. Providers not accepted by us prior to commencement of your POA will not be accepted.

The Certificate of Completion will need to be approved by us before you are invited to join the Register. We will notify you in writing once your certificate is approved.

Can HCPC assist with arranging an adaptation period?

HCPC can not assist applicants in arranging for adaptation. You may however find it helpful to contact the relevant professional body in the UK. Some of them provide support and networking opportunities for overseas-qualified professionals. You can find their contact details by going to the professions section of our website and choosing your profession.

You can download the Periods of adaptation booklet here.



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Periods of adaptation booklet



You can download Periods of adaptation booklet here
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