Primary Certification

2020 Part II Examination Format & Administration Changes

Changing the format of the Part II Examination from in-person to virtual brought with it some opportunities for further innovation to the way the exam is administered. Some of these changes were necessities of the new format, and others had been planned for the future and the new format provided an opportunity to innovate quickly.

Today, the ABPMR is pleased to announce additional changes to the format and administration of the Part II Examination—changes that will help bolster the consistency of the examination.

The 2020 Part II Examination will consist of two 50-minute examination sessions with two examiners in each session and four patient vignettes per session. (Previously, the exam had three 40-minute sessions, one examiner in each session, and at least three vignettes per session.)

During each session, the two examiners will take turns leading the candidate through the patient vignettes, but both examiners will be evaluating the candidate’s performance on all four vignettes—more examiner observations increases reliability of exam results. In addition, the candidate experience will be more consistent with this format, because each session will consist of exactly four patient vignettes.

These changes are in addition to the update to the administration of Domain A for each vignette, which has been communicated previously to candidates and is still planned for the 2020 examination.

Look for new Part II Examination content on our website soon, which will include these changes and more information on exam logistics and procedures. All of us at the ABPMR appreciate candidates’ flexibility and understanding as we work to provide the high-quality exam experience you expect during challenging times.

Questions? Please reach out to the ABPMR office. We’re here to help.

Originally Published: July 16, 2020