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Examination FAQ

If you have a question that is not answered below, contact Jeff Melia at jmelia@acvs.org or 301-916-0200 ext. 102.

View the Residency Training FAQ

Where can I find my feedback form?

Candidates who have taken the Phase I or Phase II examinations can find the forms in the application system. Log in at www.acvs.org/apply, go to My Account in the upper right, then click on My Library.

Why is the Phase I reading list material included in the Phase II reading list?

Information on clinical diseases and their specific treatment is excluded from the Phase I examination. However, Phase I reading list information is included on the Phase II examination. The Phase I examination is taken in preparation for the Phase II examination, but this does not exclude basic sciences information from being included on the Phase II examination. For instance, a mechanism of action of a drug in the Phase II exam may be asked in the context of treating a particular clinical condition.

I’m transitioning from the traditional examination. Do I have to pass Phase I before Phase II?

No, transitioning candidates can take Phase I and Phase II in any order. Each examination must be passed with 3 attempts.

How many times can I take the Phase II exam?

Candidates are allowed a maximum of six total attempts within nine years from acceptance of their credentials application to pass the Phase II examination. Any candidate who has not passed the examination after six attempts will be required to restart the process to achieve ACVS board certification and meet all requirements (new residency, Phase I examination, and acceptance of credentials) before being allowed any future attempts.

Candidates who began in the traditional Certification Examination process are given two options, whichever allows the greater number of examination attempts: 1) a maximum of six examination attempts over nine years, or 2) candidates who have taken the examination six times or more by 2020 may take the examination two more times before 2023 (i.e., the last examination is in 2022), subject to successful recredentialing. Any candidate who has not passed the examination after six attempts, or, if applicable, by 2023, will be required to restart the process to achieve ACVS board certification and meet all requirements (new residency, Phase I examination, and acceptance of credentials) before being allowed any future attempts.