COLLEGE OF ALBERTA DENTURIST

Commonly Asked Questions for the Exam Process

What happens if I pass the written and not the OSCE or vice versa?

The Licensing Examination in Alberta for Denturists has two components:  the Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) and the Objectively Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).  If a candidate is not successful on a component, he or she is required to retake the entire component again, not portions of it.  So, again, if a candidate did not pass the OSCE but did pass the MCQ, he or she is required to retake the OSCE in its entirety at the next sitting.

How is the exam scored?

For the written MCQ exam component, it functions and works like any other multiple choice examination you have encountered Four answers are given to a question.  Each correct answer is weighted to its importance for an Entry-to-Level candidate to know.  It is important to answer every question, as “missed” or “blank” questions are considered incorrect.

There are two types of OSCE stations. The Interactive Stations and Quiet Stations.

The Interactive Stations will each have a scenario that Denturists in general encounter in daily practice.  In each room, an assessor and a patient will be present. The candidate will be required to discover and describe the best possible outcome through treatments or procedure(s) presented by the scenario and the patient. You will not be required to be physically invasive with the patient, but models and tools may be present in the scenario to help you find a solution to the situation.  In Interactive Stations, the assessor will have two standardized rating forms in front of them. One form will be a checklist of items that a candidate (or an Entry Level Practitioner) would be expected to say or do in response to the scenario provided. The second form is a Global Rating Scale which assesses the candidate’s professional conduct and communication skills.

The second type of OSCE station is referred to as a “Quiet Station.”   In these stations, there is a task (or tasks) to complete but there will be no patient or assessor in the room. Instead you will be working with materials provided to you. You will address questions related to the materials and provide responses on the forms found in the room. Your responses will be subsequently scored using a pre-determined scoring guide.

Performance for the OSCE stations (both Interactive and Quiet) are scored across ALL stations. Specifically, there are no critical stations which the candidate must pass to be successful. The issue of passing the OSCE component is based on the candidate’s overall performance across all the OSCE stations. This practice is in keeping with other high stakes examinations in the health professions.

How are pass scores (cut-scores) determined?

Cut scores (what determines a pass) for both the MCQ and OSCE are established by a panel of Denturists, separate from the Assessors. Typically, 8 practitioners are selected and trained prior to the using the most common cut-score setting method (a Modified Angoff method) in the assessment of high stakes examinations. Panelists are trained in this procedure and the process invites careful consideration (by all panel members) for each assessment item to determine the final cut or pass score, and keeps the process as objective as possible.

What happens if I finish early in an OSCE station?

You are to remain in the station until you hear the signal to move on to the next station. This is different from the MCQ component where candidates are then able to leave after they have finished.

When will the results be available?

There are number of processes involved between entering the data, analyzing that data, and releasing the results. The typical time frame for most organizations is 6-8 weeks after the running of the examinations.