If you're gearing up for an upcoming ABIM MOC exam, you might be delighted to hear that the Maintenance of Certification exams are taken in an "open-book" format. Sorry initial certifiers, it won't be available on your initial cert exam.
For the 10-year traditional exam though, that doesn't mean you have access to any resource you want throughout the exam time. It is specifically UpToDate® that you can use.
You most likely use UpToDate® during your clinical practice, so you're probably already familiar with how it works! The idea is, if you're able to use UpToDate® everyday in your practice, why wouldn't you be able to use it on your exam? It just makes sense. So, what does this mean for your study plan and exam day? We've got everything you need to know!
Limited time to answer each question on exam day
You might be thinking, "Great, now that I can use UpToDate® on my exam, I won't need to put in nearly as much time studying." We're not too sure about that. On exam day, be prepared for four two-hour testing sessions with a maximum of 240 multiple-choice questions (there are 100 minutes of break time divided into three break sessions). You can expect a maximum of 60 questions for the two-hour sessions, which gives you two minutes for each question, if you answer them all. That's not much time!
See where are we going with this? You'll want to make sure that you're only using UpToDate® to answer the questions that you absolutely need to look up. If you have easily recalled knowledge of most of the questions, you're going to have a much easier time on your exam day.
Bobblehead, a senior/verified member on Student Doctor Network, suggests on a thread about UpToDate® for ABIM MOC exams:
"You need to be extremely disciplined if you plan to look things up. After 2 minutes you need to move on to another question regardless of whether another few minutes of reviewing articles will help you narrow down the answer. Do not use UpToDate® on questions that you are certain about to save time for other questions where that added minute or two may be useful. Do not read the articles, you need to skim for the correct answer and move onto the next question." - Bobblehead on SDN
You won't have access to everything UpToDate® has to offer
There are some features that you're used to on UpToDate® that will not be available during the exam. For example, any external links that UpToDate® might link to are not available. So, websites like Society Guidelines, will not be able to be accessed during the exam.
How to use UpToDate® on the exam
On exam day, there will be an UpToDate® button in the top left hand corner of your exam screen. You won't have to worry about putting in your login info as you'll be automatically logged in. You'll be able to move the window around and resize it by dragging the sides of the window, that way you can see parts of the question and UpToDate® at the same time.
You can close the UpToDate® window at any time and then re-access it with the UpToDate® button.
It's a good idea to take the ABIM exam tutorial before your exam
Make sure that you take advantage of ABIM's Exam Tutorial before your exam. It's a full tutorial that gives you a good idea about what to expect from the test app. You'll see the features and functionality so you don't have to worry about having to see it for the first time on exam day. (You'll be able to focus on the questions and not the testing app!)
PRO TIP: Want even more practice for using UpToDate® on practice questions? You can create a Q&A session in our Internal Medicine Board-Style Q&As and have an UpToDate® window up at the same time. Practice only using UpToDate® when you absolutely don't know the answer.
Ensure that you won't need to use UpToDate® on too many questions
To ensure that you won't need to use UpToDate® on too many questions, check out our list of comprehensive study tools.
Internal Medicine Video Board Review
One of the comprehensive options is our Video Board Review. It was recorded at our most recent live course and ready for you to start watching when you need it. Customers tell us they love that they're in control of how and when they study with these lectures.
The videos are specifically designed for physicians who are preparing for their ABIM exam and are great for maintaining excellence in your practice as well. Watch this clip and see what you think! If that's not enough of a taste, you can start a free trial and view the full video.
Internal Medicine Review Course - In-person or Online
Number two on our list of comprehensive options is our review courses. We're hosting two IM review courses in 2023. Here are the details:
Colorado Springs | March 11-15, 2023
Limited spots are available for this spring course, and here's why: This exclusive five-day course is hosted at MedStudy's HQ office in Colorado Springs. Not only will you get the best IM review course, but you'll also get a true backstage experience at our live course!
Denver | June 10-14, 2023
Hosted at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Denver, attendees can take advantage of our exclusive room block for the course.
Internal Medicine Core
The last comprehensive option that we offer is our Internal Medicine Core. The Core covers every item on the ABIM blueprint, so you can be assured that you'll review everything you need to know for exam day. Here's what you can expect from the Core in either print or digital formats:
• Cuts through the clutter to make learning internal medicine as easy as possible
• Our physician educators are intensely focused on including must-know information in a way that’s easily understood, concise, and yet casual
• Uses the MedStudy Method—as outlined in your StudyWise guide—to learn, retain, and easily recall all the medical information as you need it, whether you’re seeing patients or taking Internal Medicine boards
Who knows, maybe you won't need to open UpToDate® at all during your exam.