CASPer stands for Computer-Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics. It is a test that assesses a medical resident’s people’s skills. It’s an online exam where you’re presented a situation and given three questions to respond to it. It’s made up of 12 sections and each section either will have a video of a situation or a written paragraph of something that has happened. Within the five minutes you will have to respond to each question. The exam has a limit of an hour and it’s important to make use of all the time allocated to the test.
What does it assess?
CASPer assesses whether you are comfortable with handling difficult situations in a short amount of time. For example, there could be a scenario regarding “paternity leave” but a husband who just has been assigned an important project for his company doesn’t know whether he should take “paternity leave” in order to help his wife recoup from just giving birth. It touches on other key characteristics such as empathy, collaboration, communication, equity, ethics, motivation, problem solving, professionalism, resilience, and self-awareness.
Why is CASPer important for medical residents?
Residents Medical feels CASPer is an important tool for gauging applicants for residency programs that would be able to handle interaction with patients and can be examples of the ACGME core competencies. Residents Medical is in fact starting a CASPer course available to fellow candidates who need it. CASPer has become more influential in residents’ applications and gives programs an additional mark to make a judgment on a candidate besides their grades. Most residency programs want a holistic, well-rounded doctor to be part of their hospital. Residents Medical believes that embodying these qualities proves to be necessary in a heavy stress environment and makes for a more compassionate physician, because at the end of the day a doctor is in this world to heal people, and being able to connect with people and show that you can be there for them when they are the most vulnerable is the most magnanimous thing a doctor can do.
Tips to do well on CASPer
Residents Medical finds it beneficial to be informed before you endeavor in taking an exam like the CASPer, so we’ve included some important tips for you to note down.
Use up the entire five minutes for each section! You might finish a section early but Residents Medical advises to make the most of the five minutes you’re given to check your work or rewrite a response that needs improvement. It’s imperative to answer the questions adequately and thoroughly. Take time to reflect on the video you just saw or the scenario you just read so you don’t catch yourself having repetitive responses as well.
When carrying out this exam make sure you are in a quiet place with no disturbances. This will secure your focus on the exam and allow you to perform better on it.
The CASPer exam requires you to do a Systems Requirements Check to ensure your camera, internet, and computer are all functional to conduct the online exam. This ensures you don’t have any technical difficulties when taking the exam. CASPer sample tests are available online at the Altus Suite website: https://takealtus.com/suite/.