THE AMERICAN BOARD OF PATHOLOGY

A Member Board of the American Board of Medical Specialties

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  • ABMS Core Competencies:  Patient Care and Medical Knowledge
  • Part III requirements must be met once every 10-year cycle.

 

The MOC examination is mandatory for all participants in MOC. It is given twice each year, in spring (March) and fall (August) sessions, and may be taken as soon as the 7th year of the MOC 10-year cycle, but must be passed no later than the 10th year of the MOC cycle. (Open the 'MOC Examination Registration Dates & Fees' tab below for exam session dates.)


Satisfactory completion of the examination prior to the 10th year of the MOC cycle does not change the end-point of the cycle, which is December 31st, ten years after the date of enrollment in MOC.  (To view your MOC enrollment year, log into your PATHway account and select the MOC tab.)


The MOC exam registration form automatically populates in a diplomate’s MOC tab during open registration for each session if the diplomate is eligible. A diplomate is eligible to register for MOC examinations beginning in the 7th year of each 10-year cycle if his/her first three (3) MOC reporting forms have been submitted and approved and he/she is currently meeting all MOC requirements.

 

CLICK ON THE BLUE TABS BELOW TO VIEW MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE MOC EXAMINATIONS.

General MOC Examination Information

  • The examination will be a proctored, closed-book assessment based on practical, need-to-know, day-to-day skills and knowledge that a competent practitioner would be expected to possess without access to reference materials.
  • Each MOC examination (primary and subspecialty) is composed of 150 multiple‑choice questions in the single best answer format.  A diplomate will be able to complete more than one exam in an examination session.
  • The ABP recognizes the breadth and variation of pathology practice, therefore:
    • The primary MOC examinations (AP/CP, AP only, and CP only) are modular and diplomates must select their modules when submitting the exam registration form that are as relevant as possible to their individual scope of practice.
    • The subspecialty MOC examinations in Hematopathology, Molecular Genetic Pathology, Neuropathology, and Pediatric Pathology are modular and diplomates must select their modules when submitting the exam registration form.  All other subspecialty exams are a single 150-question exam.
    • For both primary and subspecialty modular exams, all modules are graded together as a single 150-question examination for purposes of pass/fail.
    • See the MOC Examination Module Illustrations for a complete list of modules available for each  examination. The modules and their content are subject to change by the ABP.
    • Diplomates who hold both a primary and a subspecialty certification may opt to sit for a single examination that includes a 50-question primary certification module (AP and/or CP) and the 150-question subspecialty examination, which may be modular (see above list).  The combined primary and subspecialty exam is graded together as a single 200-question exam for purposes of pass/fail.  A passing score will fulfill the Part III requirement for both certifications for the MOC 10-year cycle.
  • Each exam module contains questions related to:
    • Fundamental practical knowledge.
    • Current and clinically valid practice-related knowledge. Questions will include information new to the field since the diplomate’s last certification or MOC examination that relates to the diplomate’s Part II Lifelong Learning and Self­-Assessment experience.
    • Practice environment including such areas relevant to the module, such as:
        • federal regulations relevant to anatomic and/or clinical pathology
        • CLIA regulations
        • AABB standards for transfusion medicine
        • principles of laboratory management
        • coding and billing
        • quality assurance
        • laboratory accreditation
        • patient safety
        • professionalism and ethics
  • Diplomates may choose to take their MOC exams at the ABP Examination Center in Tampa, Florida or via secure, remote computer access from their home or office.  Each examination session (spring and fall) will have a predetermined 2-week period for exam access.  
    • Remote MOC exams can be taken on any day and at any time that the registrant chooses during the assigned 2-week period.  Remote exam registrants are responsible for ensuring that operating system (OS) requirements, webcam, and microphone are installed on their computers prior to the start of the examination session.  Remote exam registrants will be required to perform a system check on the computer that will be used to take the exam prior to the examination session to ensure acceptable OS functions are in place for exam access. (System Requirements)
    • Registrants for the Tampa location will have their date assignments posted to PATHway in January for spring session and in June for fall session. 
  • The MOC examination is based on the same proven psychometric principles used in the primary certification examinations.  The examinations will be criterion referenced.
  • Aggregate results of the MOC examinations in each primary and subspecialty area are published annually in ABP newsletters on the ABP website.
  • The registration fee for the MOC Part III Examination is $700.  The $700 fee covers all exams taken during the same exam session (spring or fall) regardless of the number of exams taken (primary and subspecialty).  The registration fee is the same for remote access and Tampa Examination Center administration options. 
    • For those diplomates with non-time limited primary certification, but time-limited subspecialty certification, the ABP encourages these individuals to consider voluntary MOC recertification for their primary certificate. There is no extra cost to take the exam and failure does not jeopardize the primary certificate's status.
    • Diplomates with only non-time limited (or lifetime) certificates may register for the exam at any time during the 10-year cycle by sending a request to ABP-MOC@abpath.org in order to have the registration form populate prior to the 7th year of the cycle.
  • If a diplomate does not appear for the examination, the entire registration fee is forfeited with the following exceptions:
    • Personal illness at the time of the examination, validated by the candidate’s personal physician.  Documentation must be submitted and received by ABP within 60 days of the date of the examination.
    • Notice to cancel is received by the ABP via e-mail to ABP-MOC@abpath.org within 2 weeks of the posting of date assignments and/or login information.

MOC Examination Registration Dates & Fees

 

 2017 SPRING SESSION

Registration Opens

Registration Final Filing Date

Tampa Date Assignments/Remote Practice Codes Posted

Remote Access Exams

Tampa Examination Center Exams

Result Letters & Feedback Reports posted to PATHway 

November 1st

December 31st, 11:59 pm EST

during January

March 6th - 20th

March 6th - 10th

end of April - early May

 2017 FALL SESSION

Registration Opens

Registration Final Filing Date

Tampa Date Assignments/Remote Practice Codes Posted

Remote Access Exams

Tampa Examination Center Exams

Result Letters & Feedback Reports posted to PATHway

April 1st

May 31st, 11:59 pm EST

during June/July

August 14th - 28th

August 21st - 25th

early to mid October

2018 SPRING SESSION

Registration Opens

Registration Final Filing Date

Tampa Date Assignments/Remote Practice Codes Posted

Remote Access Exams

Tampa Examination Center Exams

Result Letters & Feedback Reports posted to PATHway

November 1st

December 31st, 11:59 pm EST

during January

March 12 th - 26 th

March 12th - 16th

end of April - early May

 2018 FALL SESSION

Registration Opens

Registration Final Filing Date

Tampa Date Assignments/Remote Practice Codes Posted

Remote Access Exams

Tampa Examination Center Exams

Result Letters & Feedback Reports posted to PATHway

April 1st

May 31st, 11:59 pm EST

during June

August 20th - September 3th

August 20st - 24th

early to mid October

  • Registration fee is $700 per session.
  • The ABP accepts credit card payments only (MasterCard, Visa, and American Express).  Checks are not accepted.  Online payment must be completed before the registration form can be submitted.
  • If a diplomate fails the examination, admission to a repeat examination is permitted.  Diplomates may take the MOC Part III Examination as many times as necessary to receive a passing score.
  • Date assignments for Tampa Examination Center administration and login information for remote access are posted to diplomate PATHway records in their Board Correspondence tabs.
  • Results are posted to your Board Correspondence tab in PATHway approximately 6 weeks after the final exam is given.

 

MOC Examination Daily Schedules

  • Registrants for remote access administration have the same 3.5 hours for a 150-question exam and 4.5 hours for a 200-question combined primary/subspecialty exam.
  • The following schedule is for Tampa Examination Center administration only.  (Open the 'MOC Remote Access Examination Administration' tab below for remote schedule information.)
  • Please be ready to enter the exam center at the times listed below.
  • Diplomates are assigned either the morning or afternoon session.  (Date and time assignments are posted on each diplomate’s Board Correspondence tab in PATHway.)
  • Only diplomates taking more than one exam are assigned both the morning and afternoon sessions.

MORNING SESSION SCHEDULE

7:30 a.m.        Registration. A photo ID is required for admittance.

7:45 a.m.        Welcome and Instructions 

8:00 a.m.        Maintenance of Certification Examination

 3.5 hours for a 150-question exam
 4.5 hours for a 200-question combined primary/subspecialty exam

 

AFTERNOON SESSION SCHEDULE

1:00 p.m.       Registration. A photo ID is required for admittance.

1:15 p.m.       Welcome and Instructions 

1:30 p.m.       Maintenance of Certification Examination

3.5 hours for a 150-question exam

 

THIS SCHEDULE IS TENTATIVE AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE.  HOWEVER, ANY CHANGES WILL BE ANNOUNCED.

 

MOC Examination Module Blueprints

The blueprints provided here by the Board represent the number of written versus practical or practical with image questions for each MOC exam module.  Actual module content may vary slightly from the blueprints.   Select a link below to view that MOC exam blueprint.

MOC Examination Study Guides

The study guides provided here by the Board reflect most of the content of the exam modules, but may not exactly reflect all of the content in the modules.  These study guides list topics, key concepts, and diagnosis categories associated with questions in each MOC exam module.  Some of the listed topics, key concepts, and diagnosis categories may be associated with more than one question in a particular module.  Select a link below to view specific MOC module study guide(s).

2017 Study Guides:

MOC Examination Cancellation Policy

CANCELLATION POLICY FOR MAINTENANCE OF CERTIFICATION (MOC) EXAMINATIONS ONLY

If a registrant cancels for the examination after the deadline for registration or does not appear for the examination, the entire registration fee is forfeited with the following exceptions:

  • Personal illness at the time of the examination, validated by the diplomate’s personal physician. Documentation must be submitted and received by ABP within 60 days of the date of the examination. The registration fee minus a nonrefundable $100 administrative fee is refunded to the candidate’s credit card.
  • Inability to accept the date assignment :
    • Once an examination date assignment is posted to a diplomate’s Board Correspondence tab in PATHway, the registrant has two weeks from the date that the assignment is posted to cancel. If you do not cancel within the two-week period, the date assignment will stand.
    • If the date is not acceptable, a registrant must notify ABP of the request to cancel via e-mail to ABP-MOC@abpath.org. The registration fee minus a $100 administrative fee will be refunded to the diplomate’s credit card within two weeks of cancellation.
    • There is no opportunity to change the date assignment within a given examination session (spring or fall).
    • It is the registrant’s responsibility to notify the ABP in writing of any change that may affect a scheduled examination.
  • Remote access cancellation:
    • Once the remote system check information is posted to a candidate's Board Correspondence tab in PATHway, the registrant has two weeks from the date the information is posted to cancel.
    • A registrant must notify ABP of the request to cancel via e-mail to ABP-MOC@abpath.org. The registration fee minus a $100 administrative fee will be refunded to the diplomate’s credit card within two weeks of cancellation. 

MOC Remote Access Examination Administration

Diplomates may choose to take their MOC exams at the ABP Examination Center in Tampa, Florida or via secure, remote computer access from their home or office.  Each examination session (spring and fall) will have a predetermined 2-week period for exam access.  

  • Remote MOC exams can be taken on any day (7 days a week) and at any time (24 hours) that the registrant chooses during the assigned 2-week period. 
  • Remote exam registrants are responsible for ensuring that operating system (OS) requirements, webcam, and microphone are installed on their computers prior to the start of the examination session.
  • System Requirements
  • Remote exam registrants will be required to perform a system check and practice test on the computer that will be used to take the exam prior to the examination session to ensure acceptable OS functions are in place for exam access. Spring MOC Remote Access system check/practice codes will be available in a diplomate's Pathway Board Correspondence screen by mid-January or the beginning of February. Fall MOC Remote Access system check/practice codes will be available in mid-July.  An email will be sent to all diplomates registered for a remote examination session when access codes are available.  You must successfully complete the MOC Remote system check/practice examination within the time provided or you will not receive your MOC Remote Access examination code.

 

© 2015 The American Board of Pathology. All rights reserved.