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    5 Tips For Your Traditional ABIM Recertification Exam

    Key takeaways:

    1. Traditional ABIM recertification exams will be held in April and October of 2024.
    2. The 2023 pass rate for the ABIM MOC exam was 95%.
    3. The ABIM offers two exam options for Internal Medicine recertifiers. You can either take the traditional, 10-year MOC exam or the Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment (LKA).
    4. Make sure to review the ABIM board recertification exam blueprint and scale the amount of time you focus your studies based on the percentage weights of each topic.
    5. The ABIM MOC exam has four sessions, each containing a maximum of 60 multiple-choice questions. 


    Gearing up to take your American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) recertification exam? For seasoned internal medicine doctors, reviewing for the ABIM MOC exam is a memory jog like no other. You're probably dusting off concepts that you don't often see in your daily practice. It's a journey of reconnecting with the foundational aspects of the profession and ensuring that every nook and cranny of your medical expertise is sharp and ready for the exam ahead. 

    Before we dive into the tips, let's go over some must know info for those taking exams in 2024:

    ABIM recertification exam dates 2024

    The ABIM recertification exam dates for 2024 will be held once in the Spring and the Fall

    Spring 2024 Exam Dates: Apr. 2, 4, 8, 2024

    Fall 2024 Exam Dates: Oct. 8, 14, 15, 2024

    ABIM Traditional recertification exam pass rates

    • 2020 pass rate - 95%
    • 2021 pass rate - 95%
    • 2022 pass rate - 94%
    • 2023 pass rate - 95%

    Know your ABIM MOC exam options

    The ABIM offers two exam options for Internal Medicine recertifiers. You can either take the traditional, 10-year MOC exam or the Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment (LKA). In this blog we specifically go into tips for the ABIM traditional, 10-year MOC exam.

    If you're one of the 19,000+ internists taking the Longitudinal Knowledge Assessment for your ABIM recertification, you should head over to our LKA blog here.


    1. Take a look at the ABIM recertification exam blueprint

    medical content category exam blueprint from the abim

    The ABIM board recertification exam blueprint for MOC exam

    This one might feel like a no-brainer, but it’s also something easily-missed by busy physicians: you can (and should!) scale which topics you review based on the ABIM’s exam blueprint. For example, you should put in more time into reviewing for cardiology (15% of the exam content), and can scale back the time you spend reviewing ophthalmology (1% of the exam). 

    This strategy is especially helpful when you’re getting closer to your exam date because knowing the blueprint will help you tailor your review efforts towards the bigger sections of the exam. You should still review the smaller-represented areas to make sure you have a general understanding of the content.

    How many questions are on the ABIM recertification exam?

    The traditional ABIM recertification exam day is divided into four sessions, each containing a maximum of 60 multiple-choice questions. 

    ABIM recertification exam schedule 

    ABIM recertification exam schedule 

    How MedStudy tools reflect the exam blueprint 

    The MedStudy Internal Medicine learning tools provide a tailored solution to this by aligning content with the exam blueprint. We recognizing the importance of reviewing the topics with a higher percentage weight. This targeted approach ensures that your preparation aligns with the exam’s emphasis, while still covering all areas to guarantee a well-rounded review of the content.

    2. Use Preview | Review Questions to self-test before exam day 

    preview review sections in the core  The Internal Medicine Core Preview | Review feature

    Check out our Preview | Review Questions in the Internal Medicine Core, sprinkled under headings in both print and digital Core books. These quick questions let you quiz yourself before and after diving into a topic. The highlighted answers contain must-know concepts for a speedy review. Treat them like Q&As—quiz yourself first, then dig into the highlighted text for answers and extra info.

    3. Use Qbank+ to refine your knowledge of Internal Medicine concepts you’re sure to see on the exam

    Qbank+ will help you compare and contrast details of Core concepts and move this refined, more-detailed knowledge into long-term memory. Qbank+ was built according to the exam blueprint, and is interlinked to the Core concepts if you need further review. This will be especially necessary to fill any knowledge gaps.  

    Pro Tip: In Qbank+ you can quickly eliminate incorrect answer options by using the strikethrough feature. It allows you to "cross out" answer options you know for sure are incorrect.

    gif showing the strikethrough feature in the questions and answers

    Use the Strikethrough feature in our Qbank+

    4. Review with ‘spaced retrieval’ in mind 

    Spaced retrieval is the really big secret to locking in medical knowledge: It’s how you move all this info you're reviewing into long-term memory. It's when you practice recalling a topic multiple times—with a progressively longer time between each session. Each session results in memories of that topic that are even more durable and even more easily accessible.

    ProTip from the StudyWise guide: MedStudy's founder, Dr. Tony Hannaman, recommends that after your initial review session of a topic, practice recall on the topic in two days, 10 days, six weeks, and four months

    5. Focus on mental and physical health leading up to your ABIM recertification exam

    The months before a big exam (and stress) can take a toll on your body. On the physical side, just like you tell your patients, watch what you eat, get plenty of sleep, and exercise regularly. On the mental health side, take extra steps to stay focused and committed. In learning, motivation powers your commitment and provides you with the enthusiasm, focus, determination, and persistence to reach your goal. You got this! 

    Looking for even more review hacks to help you gear up for ABIM exam day? Download StudyWise


    Related content:

    1. How to use UpToDate on your ABIM Boards 
    2. The Difference Between the ABIM Knowledge Check-In and the 10-Year Exam
    3. How to Make Your Own ABIM Self-Assessment with Qbank+

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