7 Things You Need to Know Before Taking the Child Neurology Certification Exam 

child neurology certification

The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) Certification Exam in Child Neurology is a board examination that tests a candidate’s knowledge of the fundamentals of child neurology. The exam is held once a year, and is required to become board certified in Child Neurology. We’ve compiled some of the most frequently asked questions about the test. 

What is the Child Neurology Certification Exam? 

The Child Neurology Exam is a computer-based test consisting of three segments. There is a total of 430 minutes (7 hours and 10 minutes) allotted for the exam, in addition to a maximum of 50 minutes for breaks. 

How many questions are on the ABPN Child Neurology Exam? 

The exam consists of 400 questions. Of these, 50 are pretest items that are not counted in the candidate’s final score. 

What topics are on the Child Neurology Board Exam? 

The ABPN Child Neurology Exam tests competences, mechanisms, and various disorders. According to the ABPN Child Neurology Content Specifications, the following topics are covered: 

Dimension 1: Neurologic Disorders and Topics 

  • Headache and pain disorders 7-9% 
  • Epilepsy and episodic disorders 8-12% 
  • Sleep disorders 3-5% 
  • Genetic and developmental disorders 8-12% 
  • Vascular neurology 2-4% 
  • Neuromuscular diseases 8-12% 
  • Movement disorders 4-6% 
  • Demyelinating diseases 5-7% 
  • Neuroinfectious diseases 7-9% 
  • Brain and spinal trauma and spinal diseases 4-6% 
  • Neuro-ophthalmologic and neuro-otologic disorders 2-4% 
  • Metabolic diseases, nutritional deficiency states, and disorders due to toxins, drugs, and physical agents 5-7% 
  • Neuro-oncologic disorders 1-3% 
  • Behavioral neurology and neurocognitive disorders 7-9% 
  • Psychiatric disorders 4-6% 
  • Autonomic nervous system disorders 1-2% 
  • Questions not associated with a specific neurologic disorder 4-6% 
  • Neuroimmunologic and paraneoplastic CNS disorders 1-3% 

Dimension 2: Physician Competencies and Mechanisms 

  • Neuroscience and mechanism of disease 22-28% 
  • Clinical aspects of neurologic disease 17-23% 
  • Diagnostic procedures 17-23% 
  • Treatment/Management 22-28% 
  • Interpersonal and communication skills 2-3% 
  • Professionalism 2-3% 
  • Practice-based learning and improvement 2-3% 
  • Systems-based practice 2-3% 

What types of questions are on the Child Neurology Boards? 

There are two types of questions found on the exam: stand-alone and linked-item set. 

Stand-alone questions are multiple choice questions that have one answer. These questions stand on their own. 

Linked-item set questions contain between two and ten multiple choice questions that are linked to a common case. The case could be presented in a video clip, audio clip, or in text. For video and audio clips, test takers must use headphones, provided by Pearson VUE.  

How can I study for the exam? 

Preparing for the ABPN exam requires a significant amount of time and effort. You should begin studying well in advance and utilize a variety of study materials, such as textbooks, review courses, and practice questions/exams. It is also important to stay up to date with the latest research and developments in the field of child neurology.

As with studying for any board exam, practice makes perfect! We recommend becoming familiar with the questions you will see on test day by taking practice questions. 

The BoardVitals Child Neurology question bank features more than 2,100 questions with detailed explanations for both correct and incorrect responses. All questions follow the exam content outline for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) Certification Exam in Neurology with Special Qualification in Child Neurology. 

Do I need to take the Child Neurology Certification Exam? 

The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology requires physicians to become board certified in Child Neurology within seven years of completing ACGME-accredited or ABPN-approved residency training. 

What happens if I fail the exam? 

If you fail the ABPN exam, you may retake the exam as many times as allowed during the seven years of completing your residency. There is currently no limit on the number of times an applicant may apply for examination. 

Start preparing for the Child Neurology boards today! BoardVitals offers more than 2,100 questions targeted to the ABPN blueprint. Sign up for a free trial today, and good luck on test day! 

The writing staff at BoardVitals is passionate about medicine, healthcare, and education. We’ve trained over 1.5 million physicians and work with more than 300 top teaching institutions. Learn more about our board review and continuing education products at boardvitals.com.

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