Next Part II Exam

May 19 - May 20, 2018

Part II Certification Examination

The Final Step to Board Certification

As the final step to earning your board certification in physical medicine and rehabilitation, the ABPMR Part II Certification Examination goes beyond a test of knowledge.

Rather than selecting from a set of options as in the Part I Examination, Part II candidates apply the medical knowledge they’ve accumulated over their training to come up with their own answers and strategies for managing specific patient scenarios.

In fact, psychometric data analyses continue to show that the Part II Examination evaluates different skills than the Part I Examination. The oral exam tests how a candidate applies their medical knowledge in the competencies taught in residency training including patient management, problem solving, systems-based practice and interpersonnel and communication skills.

The ABPMR Part II Examination is offered annually around mid-May in Rochester, Minnesota. (Why Rochester? We invite you to view the video below to find out.)

Read on for more information on the application process and logistics of the exam, and please don’t hesitate to contact the board office with any questions.

The Exam

  • Three 40 minute examination sessions
  • 1 examiner per session
  • Two 5-minute breaks between sessions
  • 130 minutes exam duration

Step By Step

Part II Examination - Timeline

  • 1

    Pass the ABPMR Part I Examination

  • 2

    Ensure you have an unrestricted license to practice medicine in all states where licensed

  • 3

    Apply for the ABPMR Part II Examination by logging in to your physician homepage

  • 4

    Receive admissibility notice from ABPMR

  • 5

    By February, receive notice from ABPMR of assigned date and time of your Part II Examination

  • 6

    Make travel (airline and hotel) arrangements for Rochester, Minnesota

  • 7

    Travel to Rochester and take the Part II Examination, consisting of three 40-minute oral examinations conducted back-to-back

  • 8

    Get your results in 6-8 weeks

  • 9

    If you passed, get your certificate in 12-18 weeks

For complete information on examination eligibility and application requirements, read the ABPMR Booklet of Information regarding primary and subspecialty certification.

Download Booklet of Information

Exam Dates & Fees

Application Windows & Fees

September 15 - November 15, 2017

  • $1310 Examination Fee
  • $600 Processing Fee

November 16 - December 15, 2017

  • $1310 Examination Fee
  • $600 Processing Fee
  • $500 Late Fee



Exam Dates

May 19 - May 20, 2018

Part II Overview

How Part II Exam Day Works

Please Note: The information in this section is excerpted from the Part II Examination Information for Candidates document. Please refer to the full document for complete information on the exam.

Before Exam Day

After you receive your examination date and time from the ABPMR, make your travel arrangements. We recommend arriving in Rochester, Minnesota the day before your examination date in order to get acclimated and allow for any unforeseen travel delays.

Each candidate makes his or her own air/ground transportation and hotel arrangements. The ABPMR offers discounted airfare through Delta as well as a discounted hotel rate; find out how to get these rates here.

Before traveling, make sure to print your admission card and bring it with you.

On Exam Day

Plan to arrive at the examination site 30 minutes prior to the scheduled start time of your exam session; late arrival may result in the loss of your examination seat. If possible, bring nothing except your admission card.

The Part II Examination is administered on the 5th floor of the Mayo Building at Mayo Clinic in downtown Rochester, Minnesota. Because the examinations take place over a weekend, not all doors to the building will be open. Please enter through the staffed door on the East side of the Mayo Building, facing Annenberg Plaza. All other doors to the building will be locked.

Pre-Check Desk

Upon arriving on the 5th floor, you’ll first check in at the pre-check desk. There, ABPMR staff will verify the date and time of your examination on the admission card as well as collecting any prohibited items you may have brought with you. Prohibited items include but are not limited to:

  • Computers
  • Cell phones
  • Pagers
  • Watches
  • Audio recording devices
  • Any other electronic device or information storage system
  • Notepaper
  • Cameras
  • Pens
  • Books
  • Study materials
  • Luggage
  • Tie tacks
  • Briefcases
  • Purses
  • Food or drink

Note regarding restrooms: There are limited restrooms available in the waiting area/lobby after you check in. (More restrooms are available in the examination area.) We strongly recommend using the restrooms located near the pre-check desk upon arrival to the 5th floor.

Check-In Desk

Following pre-check, you’ll proceed through the doors to the check-in desk. During check-in, ABPMR staff will remind you of policies and procedures for your examination session, and you’ll sign the confidentiality and non-disclosure agreement and the appeal form sent to you previously. You will also receive your name tag with detailed exam times and room locations on the back.


Approximately 10 minutes before your examination start time, you’ll listen to a brief orientation by the ABPMR Part II Examination Committee Chair. The orientation serves as a reminder of information you’ve already received.


A few minutes before your first examination session begins, ABPMR staff will lead you back to the exam area and help you find your room. You will enter the room when you hear the chime and your first 40-minute exam session will begin.

Each exam session consists of a minimum of three patient vignettes. The examiner will describe the patient and presenting information and then you’ll be able to ask questions and decide how you would manage the patient. (See Test-Taking Advice in the Part II Information for Candidates PDF for more information and tips.)

You will rotate to two more examiners during your examination, for a total of three 40-minute sessions with a five-minute break in between.

When You're Finished

When you’ve finished your third exam session, you will be led to a separate set of elevators that will deliver you back to the lobby level of the building where the check-out desk is located. You only need to stop here to collect anything that was checked at the pre-check desk.

One final note on exam security: Although it might be tempting to discuss the details of your exam with fellow candidates, remember that you signed a confidentiality agreement stating you would not do that very thing. The ABPMR takes exam security seriously and will pursue any reported incidents of discussing or sharing exam content.

You will receive your results six to eight weeks following the exam and, if successful, your certificate will arrive in another 12 weeks.