“BoardVitals is the ideal complementary review source for any resident seeking to maximize their board exam review. The otolaryngology questions challenge you to apply your knowledge of frequently-tested ENT principles in a variety of fields, ranging from otology and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery to pediatric otolaryngology and head and neck oncology. Each question is written in a board-style format, and each answer offers a detailed review of key concepts. Otolaryngology residents, myself included, have been waiting for this type of review material to be available for us, and it's finally here. I highly recommend it! ”Danny Soares
As stated by the ABOto, "the Qualifying Examination is designed to measure a candidate's ability to recall factual information, interpret clinical data, and solve problems in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery."
The OTE is intended for any resident, practicing otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeon, or other interested physician. As stated by the ABOto, it provides an assessment of current knowledge in all areas of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery
According to the Exam Blueprint, the following topics are covered:
The written exam is called the ‘Qualifying Examination’ by the ABOto. Note that your exam will have some questions that are not scored. These are previously unused questions that are being field tested (for psychometric scoring). If you see an oddball question, don’t stress. It’s not uncommon for certain questions to just be testing the performance of students as a whole. But since you don’t know which ones are which, do your best on all of them.
The exam will vary in difficulty year to year, but the scores are adjusted based on that difficulty. It’s a dynamic scale, so if the exam is particularly difficult in your year, expect a significant adjustment. The historic pass rate is near 90%, but there are fluctuations year to year. Our question bank tells you how you compare to other ENT specialists, so you can make sure you’re not performing in the bottom 10%.
The Oral exam is more commonly called the certifying exam. It’s a cognitive exam and it’s important to understand the rationale for the choices. For the oral exam, don’t bring any writing materials. The oral exam is administered over a 2 day period with two sessions for each day. You will participate in either a morning or afternoon session. Oral exams are usually administered in Chicago, but there have been exceptions.
TIP: DON’T say your name to any of the examiners. DO tell someone if there is a conflict with your in-person examiner. It’s a 50 minute interview with 4 different examiners that cover the following areas (protocols):
You will receive 3 scores on each protocol. Here are the categories:
TIP: Avoid the ‘shotgun’ approach – this will penalize you.
TIP: Be prepared to ask specific questions. ‘Has this patient experienced ‘X’ before. Not that there MAY BE MORE THAN ONE CORRECT ANSWER. Statements like this may be ‘X’ or may be ‘Y’ are allowed and sometimes are the best approach to the problem.