Every year the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry (ABPD) receives concerned calls from Diplomates who are scheduled to take their 10-year Renewal of Certification (ROC) Examination. No need to stress, we are here to ease your concerns. 

Many Diplomates have questions about the Renewal of Certification Examination, perhaps thinking that the exam is analogous to the 200 question Qualifying Examination. It is important to know that the ROC Examination is an “open book”, 50 multiple-choice questions online exam that you have 48 hours to complete. Diplomates only need to pass 40 out of 50 questions to pass the examination, and if you are unsuccessful, you can retake the examination without penalty as long as you successfully complete the exam before your 10-year deadline. 

Michael J. Roseff, DMD, stated of his experience “I am at year 9 of being a Board Certified Pediatric Dentist and am eligible to take the written (on-line) recertification exam, which has been looming over my head for a while. Being out of school for many years, I no longer have that crutch to lean against. I do not see as many syndromes or medically compromised cases, as they were an everyday occurrence in residency. Waiting to take a comprehensive review course, I built up the courage to complete the (ROC) test. Once you start it, you have 48 hours to complete it. Truthfully, it was a stress free and enjoyable experience. The questions were from a very wide array of topics and again, I learned a great deal of information. It was amazing to see how many questions pertained to treatment I do on a daily basis. It is a good review of the guidelines. It should be seen as a stress-free online CE, rather than thought of as a potential career-ending exam.”

As part of ABPD’s continued competency process, the every 10-year exam is not designed to be punitive, but to allow the Diplomate to demonstrate that they have remained current in the practice of pediatric dentistry and, on occasion, to serve as a learning opportunity for the test taker. Results are immediate after completing the examination and successful completion is automatically recorded on your ROC-P dashboard. The exam will appear two years before your deadline. Simply login to your ROC-P dashboard at www.abpd.org and scroll down past your annual requirements to start. If you successfully complete the examination before the deadline, your 10-year examination date does not reset to the earlier dates of completion and will remain the same.

Upon being asked about the ROC Exam by a colleague, former ABPD President Joseph C Creech, Jr., DDS said “Like all of us, you worked hard to gain the certification and you work hard at being a great pediatric dentist. I would think you would be excited to take an examination that focuses on exactly what you do so well. Keep in mind, this is an open book exam and you can use any reference you need, except ‘Phone a Friend’! Get out a text book, the AAPD Guidelines and access to the Internet. You will rock it! Also, keep in mind, the format gives you plenty of time to stop and start. You’re bound to learn something while you take the examination and you even get CE credit. As long as you complete the exam successfully, even with multiple attempts, you keep your certification and you won’t have to take it again for another 10 years.”

The goal of the exam is to promote life-long learning. Therefore, you receive 10 hours of continuing education (CE) credits, automatically recorded in your Renewal of Certification Process (ROC-P) transcript. References are listed on the Renewal of Certification Exam webpage and most Diplomates report the exam takes them 1-4 hours to complete. For questions or concerns regarding the ROC Examination, please do not hesitate to contact ABPD Headquarters by phone at (615) 432-0082 or by email at info@abpd.org.   

Michael Roseff, DMD
Renewal of Certification Committee Member
Boynton Beach, FL 
Board Certified 2007