Dermatology Recertification for Attendings

Dermatology Board Review Prep & Question Bank

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doctor testimonial

“BoardVitals offers an excellent set of Dermatology Board Review Questions… this question bank has the images, questions, and explanations that together make for an Excellent Dermatology Practice Exam.”

Tamara Lazic, MD, Attending
Department of Dermatology, Mount Sinai

Dermatology Board Review Topics Covered:

  • Pharmacology
  • Infectious Disease
  • Pediatric
  • Genodermatoses
  • Basic Science and Immunology
  • Hair and Nails
  • Adnexal
  • Bullous
  • Dermatopathology
  • General Dermatology
  • Neoplasms
  • Rheumatic and Systemic Disease
  • Surgical and Cosmetic Dermatology

About the American Board of Dermatology (ABD) BASIC Exam

The ABD BASIC Exam is given to first-year residents. This exam is informational only, and is not required for certification.

The BASIC Exam assesses fundamental skills expected of first-year dermatology residents. Residents do not have to sit for nor pass the BASIC Exam. It is informational only and is not required for certification. First-year candidates receive an exam total percent correct score, percent correct score per each content area, and a percentile rank among their peers. The 4-hour BASIC Exam consists of approximately 200 multiple-choice questions and is administered at the residency training programs.

What is covered on the ABD BASIC Exam?

According to the ABD BASIC Exam Content Outline, the exam contains four modules that follow dermatology’s major clinical areas:

  • General Dermatology/Visual Recognition: 20% (40 Items)
  • General Dermatology: 30% (60 Items)
  • Pediatric Dermatology: 12.5% (25 Items)
  • Surgical Dermatology: 12.5% (25 Items)
  • Dermatopathology: 12.5% (25 Items)
  • Science & Research: 12.5% (25 Items)

How many questions are on the ABD BASIC Exam?

The four-hour BASIC exam contains approximately 200 multiple-choice questions.

About the American Board of Dermatology (ABD) CORE Exam

The ABD CORE Exam is given to residents during their second year of residency, after completing at least 1.5 years of dermatology training. The CORE Exam assesses the knowledge and application of knowledge at a level appropriate for a practicing dermatologist.

What is covered on the ABD CORE Exam?

The CORE Exam consists of four modules. Residents can take the modules in any order of their choosing, with a maximum of 2 modules in their first sitting.

According to the ABD CORE Exam Study Guide, the exam contains four modules that follow dermatology’s major clinical areas:

  • Medical Dermatology
  • Pediatric Dermatology
  • Surgical Dermatology
  • Dermatopathology

How many questions are on the ABD CORE Exam?

Each two-hour module on the ABD CORE Exam contains 75-100 multiple choice questions.

The Pass Rate for the ABD CORE Exam by module as of February 2022 is as follows:

  • Medical: 96.20%
  • Pediatric: 98.0%
  • Surgical: 100%
  • Dermatopathology: 98.6%

About the American Board of Dermatology (ABD) APPLIED Exam

In contrast to the CORE exam which assessed advanced knowledge base and visual diagnosis, the ABD APPLIED exam focuses on application of knowledge in clinical scenarios.

The 2021 ABD APPLIED Exam first-time pass rate is 97.60%.

What is covered on the ABD APPLIED Exam?

According to the ABD APPLIED Exam Content Overview, the exam is divided as follows:

  • Medical Dermatology: 55%
  • Pediatric Dermatology: 15%
  • Surgical Dermatology: 15%
  • Dermatopathology: 15%

How many questions are on the ABD APPLIED Exam?

The ABD APPLIED exam is a single-day, 8-hour exam consisting of 200 multiple-choice questions.

Since the APPLIED exam has a focus in the application of knowledge, this question bank consists of case questions to aid in your preparation. Unlike didactic questions, case questions briefly describe a clinical encounter and ask the candidate to use their dermatology knowledge to assess the situation.

Dermatology Board Exam Tips

The vast majority of students that score at least 60% correct on our Dermatology practice questions pass the board exam. It is very rare for someone to exceed the average - 62% threshold on our exam - and not pass the boards. When using our question bank, a primary goal should be focusing on not performing in the lowest 20% of test takers. (Each question comes with an individual average score)

For further preparation use the Illustrated Study Guide by Sima Jain in tandem with our question bank. We’ve found that using the Dermatology question bank to drive topics of study is a highly effective use of your time.

BoardVitals™ is solely responsible for this content. These questions are not a publication of the American Board of Dermatology (ABD), nor has ABD provided information to BoardVitals about ABD board exam content.

BoardVitals is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. BoardVitals designates this Internet Enduring Material for a maximum of 70 AMA PRA Category 1™ Credit(s). Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Further Dermatology CME info found here.