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Multisource feedback

How does multisource feedback (MSF) work?

The PER multisource feedback (MSF) survey is a tailored questionnaire that you are required to send to selected medical colleagues, non-physician co-workers and patients (if appropriate). Via this survey, feedback on your professional competencies relating to the CanMEDS roles is gathered and is benchmarked against scores from similar practices. Results are reported to you and to the Credentials Unit at the Royal College.

This feedback allows the Royal College to verify that you meet the standard of practice in each of the CanMEDS roles. It also allows you to contemplate and initiate changes in your practice.

Distribution of MSF surveys

The Royal College has partnered with Pivotal Research Inc. to distribute and collate the MSF surveys.

Pivotal Research will send you an instruction package. They will also ask you to nominate eight medical colleagues and eight non-physician co-workers to complete the survey online.

If appropriate for your specialty, you will also receive printed questionnaires to distribute to 25 patients.

Questions regarding the distribution of the MSF survey should be directed to:

Pivotal Research Inc.

101, 10155 – 114 Street
Edmonton AB T5K 1R8

Telephone: 780-421-1199

Understanding your MSF report

Once your surveys have been collated and benchmarked, you will receive an MSF report. Bear in mind that your PER MSF report is neither a measure of your value as a physician, nor an assessment of your knowledge and skills. It represents the perceptions of a small group of colleagues, co-workers and patients, and is structured to address specific aspects of the CanMEDS competencies.

We suggest you reflect on your performance across the range of CanMEDS roles, on your areas of strength and also on the areas identified for growth. We suggest reviewing your MSF report with a supervisor, mentor or trusted colleague to help you to reflect on the feedback.

Low Scores

Scores at or below the 10th percentile will be flagged, indicating that further growth is required in these areas of your practice.

Reports with flags across multiple CanMEDS roles will require additional followup before eligibility for the exam and/or practice-based assessment can be granted. In these cases a phone call between you and a trained program advisor is scheduled. This phone call is an opportunity to discuss your MSF results and how to go about making changes in the identified areas.

This conversation usually takes about 20 minutes and allows you to:

  • Describe your practice and work environment.
  • Discuss your reaction to the data.
  • Better understand your MSF scores and the reasons they might be low.
  • Identify opportunities, suggested by the data, for changes in your practice and how you might make these.

Sample MSF scores:


CanMEDS role:

Medical Expert

Percentile Your T-Score
5th 10th
Medical Colleagues 33.86 38.63 63.36
Your results are presented as normalized T-scores. Data is converted from a five-point scale into a normal distribution, or bell curve, with a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10. A score of 40 is one standard deviation below the mean while a score of 60 is one standard deviation above the mean. Most physicians will score within this range.
Contact us

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
Credentials Unit
774 Echo Drive
Ottawa ON K1S 5N8
Telephone (toll-free): 1-800-267-2320