RANZCR viva examinations

The RANZCR viva examinations are part of the RANZCR part 2 examinations. These are typically held around two months after the written examinations. Candidates are not aware of their marks in the written examinations prior to sitting the vivas. From 2016, the exams are held in either Sydney or Melbourne, Australia.


There are seven viva examinations each 25 minutes long, held over two days. During each viva candidates are examined by two examiners, who take turns in showing cases. These are 'hard copy' films shown on a light-box. In the pathology viva, candidates are shown color photographs of pathology specimens.

The seven vivas are as follows:

  • abdominal
  • thoracic and cardiovascular
  • neuroradiology / head and neck
  • breast / obstetrics and gynecology
  • pediatrics
  • musculoskeletal
  • pathology

Candidates are required to pass each viva separately, along with each of the written exams, to pass the RANZCR part 2 examination overall. If any individual viva is failed, then only that viva need be re-sat at the next exam sitting. Candidates must pass all components within two years of their first attempt, which in general gives four attempts in all .

Each individual case shown during the viva is given a mark of pass +, pass, borderline or fail. In order to pass the viva, the candidate needs to pass >50% of the cases presented, AND be shown at least 7 cases (thus 4 correct out of 7 required to pass, 5 correct if shown 8 cases etc). Candidates may be asked a number of clinical questions surrounding each case, and with such discussions, the number of shown cases required is reduced to 5 (and thus 3 out of 5 correct required to pass). Of note, in the breast, obstetrics and gynecology viva, candidates must pass both the mammography component and the obstetrics and gynecology component in order to pass the viva overall .

The pathology viva is conducted by a pathologist and a radiologist. As there is typically more discussion surrounding each case than in the radiodiagnosis vivas, most candidates will see 3-4 cases .

See also

Useful articles to aid in preparation for the viva examinations include:

Note: details correct at time of writing. Please check with RANZCR for updated details.