Emergency care assistant ECA exercise and tests.Watch
So the application takes on 4 aspects. The application itself, the group excersize, the driving asserted and of course the interveiw.
Personally I did look a lot into this to find some advice and guidence on what to expect, this was not widely available to be honest. The information on Ambulance trust sites does give a lot of information of what they are expecting in the right person, but not what they are expecting to achieve during the application.
So the initial application, there are a few things your really do need to hit it off for a successful ap, some however are a bit more lenient on their criteria, 3 GCSEs are important, however do not despair, this was immediately a non runner for me, I had no GCSE in English (embarrassing yes) but this is where the flexibility comes in, I have fire brigade experience and this is where you can swing it. Any care experience, first aiding, responding as a community responder or perhaps looking after an ill family member, military experience, all of these sorts of things are fantastic if you have evidence in performing them. Not every trust will take this as a replacement to 1 or 2 GCSEs but they will look at it more favourably if you can prove you have the sort of knowledge and commitment they want. I will add the application form on the NHS website application is brilliantly easy to use.
So, your through the application brilliant. Then you get an interveiw to a group exercise. Immediately you ask yourself what on earth could this involve, high ropes, bridge building, technical rescue. Ok so you go online to have a bit of research (group excersize is a strange search, be careful at work) and to be honest with you the answers are no help at all.
The group excersize is basically to see how you communicate together, it's a simple excersize that's designed to get you talking, and thinking of how you would solve a problem. The problem has no right answer, it is how you talk and listen is going to win you this one. Take time to listen to all opinions, if someone says something you don't like don't fire in your objection immediately, give them space to finish then put your argument across, make sure you have a good foundation for your point and don't waffle. I hope it goes without saying your want to be the nicest "you" that you can be. But don't try and be somebody your not, you will get found out.
So finally to round this thread off, I will post again in a couple of months with my next snippet when I know more, but in the mean time wish me luck, I will post about the driving assessment and interveiw. Hopefully if all goes well I will blog a about the initial 9 weeks training and 6 month clinical probation. Until then anything I have missed I will try to answer on here, good luck to all other applicants, this career is worth its weight in gold. We all at one point in our life will rely on paramedics and an ECA is the paramedics of tomorrow an pd that's where I want to be.
Good luck with your new career journey
Again I will add information as it happens, training is arduous. Prepare as much as you can. Read all the materials offered, listen inventively. The instructors are very knowledgable.
I will blog more soon
Also I am 57 yrs old, and have some Arthritis in my knees from working in Coal Mines for 37 yrs, However, I am active and still go to the gym 3 or 4 times a week, will I be able to pass the physical tests ? thank you.