The Situational Judgement Test (SJT) can be a deciding factor in whether you're allocated your first choice on the foundation programme – so it's important to be well prepared and know what to expect.

This test will assess you on the professional qualities expected in a safe beginner, not your clinical knowledge and skills. Try our SJT scenarios to help prepare you for the big day.


Practice makes perfect

Grid lined notepad with small not saying 1. practice 2. practice 3. practice and a black pen to the right

Practice makes perfect

You can't cram for the test, or learn the answers by rote, but there are a few things you can do to help you feel more prepared.

  • Make sure you understand how the exam is structured and marked.
  • Practise, practise, practise by testing your skills with sample questions.   


Frequently asked questions

What is the SJT?

The situational judgement test is an invigilated exam that assesses you on the professional attributes expected on the foundation programme.

You'll be presented with hypothetical, real-life scenarios that you'll need to assess and then rank with the most appropriate response.

How can I prepare for the SJTs?

The GDC standards guidance is a useful starting point. Familiarise yourself with the nine principles and how to apply them in practice. Try out a few SJT scenarios and respond as you would as a foundation dentist.


How will I be allocated a position on the foundation programme?

Allocation to foundation schools depends on the score achieved by each student. The system begins with the highest-scoring applicant, assigns them their first choice, and continues in the same vein. Once the system reaches an applicant whose first choice is full, they're assigned their second choice, and so on.

So whether you get placed at your first choice location is down to your score and the popularity of your chosen foundation school.

Can I appeal against my SJT score?

No. By arriving at your SJT, you declare yourself fit to sit the assessment and the result from the test will remain final. 

Will I get specific feedback on how I did on the SJT?

Unfortunately it's not possible to get any feedback beyond the score.

Do I need to bring anything with me to take the test?

You'll need to show valid government issued ID that includes your name, a recent photo, and your signature. You won't be allowed to take any personal items with you into the testing room.

Check the Pearson VUE page for testing availability. It's your responsibility to know the time, location and venue of your exam. You must arrive 15 minutes before your booked appointment time i.e. if you book a 9.00am slot you should be at the Pearson VUE test centre at 8.45am.

Top Tips

  • Put yourself in the position of a foundation dentist. The questions have been created following analysis of the foundation role and mapped against GDC guidelines.

  • If you're stuck on a question, answer it to the best of your ability or move on to the next. You can always come back to it later.

  • Don't overthink the answer or make assumptions.

  • Make sure you have a basic understanding of dental ethics and law.

  • Practise as many questions as you can under exam conditions.

  • Consider what each question requires according to each attribute.

  • Be aware of the limits of your competence. Don't work outside your boundaries, but do whatever you can within them.

  • Remember, seeking advice and gathering information is difficult to criticise.

  • Be strict with timing, and keep an eye on the clock.

  • The patient's wellbeing is your first concern. Other considerations are secondary.