Why do I need to apply for Board Candidacy?

Only individuals who have completed an accredited advanced education program in pediatric dentistry are educationally-qualified to pursue board certification. ABPD must verify each Board Candidate’s credentials in order to allow him/her to fully participate in the certification process.

As a courtesy, ABPD allows those nearing the end of their residencies to participate in the Qualifying Examination before they are really “qualified by credentials”. But, the ADA Council on Dental Education and Licensure (CDEL) requires that the results of the examination only be released after the resident has completed the advanced education program and achieved candidacy status. In essence, the process is reversed for residents: the examination precedes becoming a candidate

Why do my dental license and program certificate need to be notarized?

Your dental license and program certificate need to be notarized to verify that they are exact copies of the original documents.

Where can I get these documents notarized?

Please look in your local yellow pages for a notary in your area. You can also check with staff in your training program or your local bank.

As an individual taking the QE while I am still a resident or a first time applicant, when can I apply for Board Candidacy?

After taking the Qualifying Examination, you have until November 30 following the examination to apply for Board Candidacy. If you do not complete your application by then, you forfeit your score and will need to retake the examination.

Why do the results take so long to get back?

Results are forwarded by the testing centers to our psychometrician who analyzes the performance of each test question and each candidate to assure a valid and reliable examination. Once a final report is submitted to ABPD staff can process the results.

What is the purpose of the QE?

The QE is intended to validate the candidate’s advanced training in pediatric dentistry by assessing understanding of the scientific and biological principles that support the practice of pediatric dentistry, as well as current literature pertaining to pediatric dentistry. This examination does not cover the clinical application of pediatric oral health care.

How can I apply for the QE?

You can apply for the QE July 1 through December 15 by logging onto the ABPD website and filling out the application.

How much does it cost to take the QE?

The examination fee for the QE is $700. ABPD accepts Visa or MasterCard for payment. Please contact Headquarters with questions.

Where is the QE given?

The QE is administered at PearsonVue testing centers throughout the United States and internationally. When registering with PearsonVue, you choose the location that is most convenient for you.

Why is the QE given only one day?

The QE is given only one day to minimize the opportunity for confidential materials to be compromised, thereby providing some examinees an unfair advantage. To discuss or in any other way disseminate information regarding the content of this examination is an ethical breach of responsibility and can be the basis for disciplinary and legal action by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry.

How can I prepare for the examination?

The ABPD QE section shares several suggestions on ways to prepare for the examination. Examinees should focus their attention on the scientific and biologic basis for pediatric dentistry, not clinical practices.
The following are provided on the website:

Is the QE graded on a curve?

No, there is not a predetermined percentage of candidates who will pass or fail. However, the degree of difficulty of the examination relative to a criterion standard does influence the minimum passing score.

When will I receive my results?

Candidates will receive results in approximately 6-8 weeks via their ABPD profile page. Applicants who sat for the QE while still in their advanced education program are required to apply for Board Candidacy prior to results being released.

If I cancel my QE, can I transfer the examination fee to the next year?

No, you are unable to transfer the fee to the next year. You will be refunded by check in accordance with the cancellation policy. The check will be sent via US Postal Service after the examination has been administered.