Diplomates must pass a Maintenance of Certification (MOC) examination once every ten years for each certification they hold to satisfy the Assessment of Knowledge, Judgment and Skills component of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) maintenance of certification requirement.
Primary specialty MOC examinations (psychiatry, neurology and child neurology) are offered twice a year. Subspecialty MOC examinations are offered once a year except for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, which is offered twice a year. American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) diplomates certified in any subspecialty, apart from Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, are required to maintain their primary specialty certification.
See our Exam Schedule for examination dates, application deadlines and dates when applications become available. Applications for MOC exams are only available on-line through ABPN Physician Folios. Diplomates are responsible for applying for MOC exams at the appropriate time.
Combined Maintenance of Certification examinations are available for diplomates who wish to recertify in more than one specialty and/or subspecialty at the same time. Combined MOC examinations are offered once a year.
On the ABPN website, view the General Information and Board Policies Manual or the ‘Information for Applicants’ (IFA) publication for each examination for additional information. To prepare for the MOC examinations, diplomates should keep current with research and developments in their field, review specialty-specific journals and practice guidelines, and attend relevant CME programs.
MOC examinations are administered at over 200 Pearson VUE Professional Centers throughout the United States and Canada, as well as at many international locations. Diplomates who select the international testing option when applying for an examination will be contacted by the ABPN concerning locations and cost.
Learn what to expect when you arrive at the Pearson VUE test center with this short video.
Scheduling instructions will be emailed to diplomates approved to sit for an examination approximately two months prior to the examination using the diplomates’ email address in the Physician Folios system. Scheduling for testing appointments with Pearson VUE will begin shortly after that email has been sent. The ABPN does not guarantee availability of testing appointments at any given test center, date or time. Test takers should contact Pearson VUE as soon as scheduling opens to make the best appointment possible at that time.
Review the ABPN Maintenance of Certification Exam Process Flyer for an overview of the MOC examination process. Detailed information about MOC requirements, policies and procedures can be found in the MOC Booklet. Information tailored to you can be found in your ABPN Physician Folios account on the Maintenance of Certification Requirement Status page.
The Board recognizes that diplomates with disabilities may wish to take examinations and will attempt to make reasonable accommodations for diplomates with verified disabilities. Diplomates with disabilities should review the Policy for Applicants with Disabilities.
Diplomates who will be nursing at the time of their examination may request a private space for lactating purposes. The request must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org no less than 60 days prior to the examination. The diplomate must submit a physician’s letter documenting their need to express breast milk. Not all test centers have a private space for this purpose. If space does exist, it is subject to availability. Test takers must be prepared to use the building’s restroom or may choose to travel some distance to a location with available space. Refrigeration is not provided. Diplomates may bring a cooler if they choose to store breast milk. Children and visitors are not allowed in testing centers for any reason.
Please contact the ABPN at email@example.com for more information.
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