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Combined Discipline Written Exam Pathway FAQs

 Eligibility & Application Process

When can I apply for the combined Written exam?

Immediately after graduation; however, you must complete your residency by the residency deadline for your desired exam cycle. We will allow an additional 30 days after the residency deadline for NCOPE to mark your residency complete.

When can I apply for the Simulation and CPM exams?

Once you have completed your residency for that discipline. You must apply for eligibility and once approved, you have three years to take the exams. Check the application deadlines for your desired exam cycle.

When will ABC notify me of my application status?

We will send a notice of your eligibility status via email and mail within four weeks of receiving your application. Check your application status by logging in to your MY ABC account. 

What if I don't yet have the required documents by the application deadline?

Your application will be denied; however, we will defer your exam fees to the subsequent cycle. If we do not receive the required documents by the deadline for the next cycle, your application will be denied, and a refund of your exam fee(s) will be issued.  It is your responsibility to reapply for eligibility with the required fees.

​I'm an 18-month resident. Do I have to submit an application and fee for each credential?

Yes, separate applications and fees are required for each discipline.

 Residency & Application Deadlines

What if I missed the application deadline?  Can I still apply?

Yes. You have thirty days to apply after the deadline, but will incur the $75 late fee.

What if I am unable to complete my residency requirements by the residency deadline for my desired exam cycle?

Your residency end date must be on or before the residency deadline. Therefore, your application will be denied for that exam cycle, but your exam fees will be deferred to one subsequent cycle of your choosing. 

​How will ABC know when my residency is complete?

NCOPE will provide confirmation of your residency completion to ABC. We will allow an additional 30 days after the residency deadline for NCOPE's confirmation.  

 The Exam Process

Is the combined Written exam simply a combination of the current single discipline written exams?

No. It is a new exam with its own test specifications. The single discipline exams are designed for candidates who have completed an NCOPE residency in that discipline. The combined exam is designed for candidates who have just graduated from a CAAHEP accredited master's program.

Once my application is accepted, how do I register for the exam?

We will email you registration information on how to register for a specific time, date and location with our testing provider, Prometric.

What if I can't find a testing center near me?

Availability at the testing centers is on a first come, first served basis. If you are having difficulty finding a location near you, please contact us at 703-836-7114 ext. 229 or at certification@abcop.org.

What if I register and then realize I can't take the exam that day?

You have thirty days prior to the exam date to cancel without penalty. If less than thirty days, you will incur a $55 fee.

If I applied for both disciplines during the same exam cycle, can I take all of my exams during the same day and/or cycle?

Yes, you are able to take more than one exam on the same day, space and time permitting.

​How many times can I take the exam?

Once your initial application is approved, you are eligible to take the exam a maximum of four times within a three-year period. If you fail the exam four times or if your eligibility period has expired, you must reapply for eligibility. Please reference the ABC Practitioner Candidate Guide for more information.

 Exam Content & Preparation

​​Is the combined exam simply a combination of the current single discipline written exams?

No. It is a new exam with its own test specifications. The single discipline exams are designed for candidates who have completed an NCOPE residency in that discipline. The combined exam is designed for candidates who have just graduated from a CAAHEP accredited master’s program.

Do you provide exam prep materials?

Yes. Practitioner exam prep materials are available to all candidates including a test content outline, practice analysis of the O&P profession, sample exam questions, exam references and a recommended reading list. Information on exam review courses, provided independently of ABC, is also available.​

 After the Exam

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When will I receive my exam results?

For the written and simulation exams, you will receive an immediate on-screen score report when you finish your exam. Prometric will also email you an official score report within 24 hours. CPM exam results will also be available approximately four weeks after the exam.

If I passed all of my exams, when will I receive my certificate?

Certificates are mailed four weeks after the conclusion of the exam cycle.

If I fail my the combined Written exam, when can I re-take it?

You may immediately register for the next available exam cycle.

If I take the combined Written exam and fail it, can I take the single discipline Written exams in the future?

Yes. Once you have completed your residency, you can apply for the single discipline Written exams. You will be required to pay an additional application and exam fees.

​How do I maintain my certification?

Once you are certified, you have a five-year certification cycle in which you must earn continuing education credits and submit an annual fee. See the Guide for Maintaining Certification for information on practitioner continuing education credit requirements.