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April 2002

American Board of Dermatology Certification Examination: Preparation and Perceptions

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Copyright 2002 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2002

Arch Dermatol. 2002;138(4):544-546. doi:10.1001/archderm.138.4.533

Following successful completion of training at a dermatology residency program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, physicians must pass the American Board of Dermatology certification examination to be "board certified" in dermatology. We surveyed a cohort of dermatologists to determine their perceptions of the relative usefulness of resources used in preparation for this examination and their perceptions of the examination per se.

In February 2000, questionnaires were mailed to all members of the American Academy of Dermatology (as of February 8, 2000) living in the United States and Puerto Rico who had graduated from a residency program in 1998 and 1999. Two hundred forty-three questionnaires were sent to the 1998 group and 163 to the 1999 group. The response rate was 60%, including initial nonresponders who were contacted by telephone. Respondents rated textbooks, review books and notes, review courses, and residency training on a scale of 1 to 4 (1 indicates not helpful; 2, somewhat helpful; 3, helpful; and 4, very helpful). Respondents used a zero to indicate that a resource had not been used. In addition, they were asked to indicate whether each section (clinical, pathology, and written) tested appropriate information. Finally, respondents indicated how many hours they had spent studying, whether their residency programs alone were sufficient preparation for the examination, whether they had attended specialized review courses, and whether studying for this examination was useful in their clinical practices.

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