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Am Surg. 2009 Sep;75(9):817-21.

Benefits of mock oral examinations in a multi-institutional consortium for board certification in general surgery training.

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Department of Surgery, Providence Hospital and Medical Centers, Southfield, Michigan 48075, USA.


The Southeast Michigan Center for Medical Education (SEMCME) is a consortium of teaching hospitals in the Greater Detroit metropolitan area. SEMCME pools its resources for several educational means, including mock oral board examinations. The educational and cost benefits to mock oral examinations on a multi-institutional basis in preparation for the American Board of Surgery (ABS) certifying examination were analyzed. Ten-year multi-institution data from the mock oral examinations were correlated with ABS certifying examination pass rates. Mock oral examination scores were available for 107 of 147 graduates, which included 12 candidates who failed their certifying examination on the first attempt (pass rate = 89%). Four of 31 examinees who had a low score (4.9 or less) in their mock oral exams failed their certifying examination in their first attempt. The cost of running the mock examination was low (approximately $35/resident for 50 residents). When graduates from the last 10 years were surveyed, the majority of respondents believed that the mock oral examination helped in their success and with their preparation for the certifying examination. Thus, the many benefits of administering the examination with the resources of a consortium of hospitals result in the accurate reproduction of real-life testing conditions with reasonable overall costs per resident.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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