Exam Content and Blueprint
What Does the Examination Cover?
Click here to see the detailed Pulmonary Disease Certification exam blueprint (pdf), which includes the content areas covered, their relative percentages, and the approximate number of questions in each area to expect on a typical exam.
The exam lasts one day. Multiple editions, or "forms," of the exam are used, and they may differ in question order and content. Some questions require the interpretation of illustrative materials such as electrocardiograms, radiographs and photomicrographs (e.g., blood films, Gram stains, urine sediments). A list of normal laboratory values is provided. Refer to this list to interpret values given in the questions because they may differ from those to which you are accustomed.
A complete description of the process used to develop ABIM exams is available in How Exams Are Developed. Topics include:
The exam consists of single best answer questions only. This type of question consists of a brief statement, case history, graph, or picture followed by a question and list of possible options. You must choose the one answer that is better than the others; note that other options may be partially correct. Familiarizing yourself with the question format in advance may help you work more effectively.
ABIM's examinations are confidential and copyrighted under the Federal Copyright Act. Candidates agree not to copy, reproduce, reconstruct by dictation or other means, or disclose examination content in any manner. ABIM's Self Evaluation Process Medical Knowledge Modules are also copyrighted works. Candidates agree not to copy, reproduce or make any adaptations of the modules in any manner and not to assist someone else in the infringement of these or any other Board-copyrighted works.Top
Scoring and Reporting of Exam Results
The examination pass-fail decision is based on your performance on the entire examination. Unanswered questions are scored as incorrect; therefore, you should answer every question. The minimum passing score reflects an absolute standard that is independent of the performance of any group of candidates. This standard has been established by the examination committee and approved by the ABIM Board of Directors.
Those who pass the examination are designated as certified as diplomates of ABIM. The certificate is valid for ten years. Maintenance of Certification is required for renewal of certificates. The certificates are mailed directly from the engraver within three to four months after candidates are notified of their results. Note: your current board certification status is reported on your Physician Login Home Page.