WHAT IS MINI-CEX?
Skills assessed using the mini-CEX
The mini-CEX is a generic tool that is used to test many different and varied competences. The curriculum lists the competences that can be tested using the mini-CEX.
Trainers will use the mini-CEX to directly assess trainees in:
- Clinical examination
- Formulating management plans
- Communicating with patients
- Professional and interpersonal skills
Each mini-CEX should take around 20 minutes. The trainer should provide feedback to the trainee immediately after the assessment.
One of the most frequently used assessment tools that measure the trainees’ performance in workplace is the mini-Clinical Evaluation Exercise (mini-CEX), in which an expert observes and rates the actual performance of trainees. Several primary studies have evaluated the effectiveness of mini-CEX by assessing its educational and psychometric properties. The objective of this BEME review is to explore, analyze, and synthesize the evidence considering the utility of the mini-CEX for assessing undergraduate and postgraduate medical trainees.
The ABIM Mini-Clinical Evaluation Exercise for Trainees (Mini-CEX) is intended to facilitate formative assessment of core clinical skills. It can be used by faculty as a routine, seamless evaluation of trainees in any setting.
The Mini-CEX is a 10- to 20-minute direct observation assessment or “snapshot” of a trainee-patient interaction. Faculty are encouraged to perform at least one per clinical rotation. To be most useful, faculty should provide timely and specific feedback to the trainee after each assessment of a trainee-patient encounter.
Document your observations using the Mini-CEX Direct Observation Tool (pdf), which can also be distributed for demonstration during faculty workshops, staff meetings, orientation and training sessions. Note that paper copies of the Mini-CEX are no longer available from ABIM.