I've encountered an interesting trend --but I think it happens more than one would expect.
RPD Board Members relying on their personal "specialized knowledge" -asking questions (laying traps?) and then confronting a claimant with their own experience and personal history.
Counsel should object --this happened on three occasions with me, I made applications/objections and the Member (after consulting with IRB Legal Services) recused themselves on both. On the third, the questions were more probing, clearly not cross and a positive outcome seemed likely and so I expressed my concerns and the line of questioning was dropped.
As Mullan indicates in his text:
"Save to the extent provided by the doctrine of judicial notice, judges are not entitled to take into account evidence within their personal knowledge nor can they act as roving commissioners seeking to supplement from other sources apparent gaps in the evidence presented or in an endeavour to resolve inconsistencies in that evidence..."
The RPD, in general, needs to confine itself to the documents before it (the National Documentation Package, any material from the Minister if they intervene, and the BoC/disclosure by the claimant).
There is of course judicial notice, and the RPD can rely on its "specialized knowledge" but this is not the personal knowledge, CV or experience of the individual board member --this is the institution and its experience with certain claim types/profiles (the Guidelines being one example perhaps).