American Board of Pathology

The mission of the ABP, as a member of the American Board of Medical Specialties, is to promote the field of pathology and the continuing competency of practicing pathologists.



In response to feedback from our Diplomates participating in MOC, the ABP continues to modify the MOC Program to be more relevant and valuable. There is growing emphasis in adult education and learning on the use of frequent, longitudinal assessments with retesting of key content as a means of increasing and improving retention. Longitudinal assessment models represent an evolution from traditional, point-in-time exams. Participation in the pilot will allow our Diplomates to have a voice and active role in shaping the next generation of MOC Assessment.



Certlink™ is the ABMS platform which supports longitudinal assessment models. Certlink™ will present multiple choice questions to participating Diplomates, then provide immediate feedback, an essential element in learning and retention. Diplomates will have a personalized dashboard summarizing performance and identifying areas of strength and weakness. The ABP's goal is to improve our Diplomates' MOC Part Ill experience, while retaining a reliable and valid assessment that allows for credible summative decisions about medical knowledge, judgment, and skills for continuing certification. 

Participants will answer 25 multiple-choice questions every three months. Once a question is answered, Diplomates will be asked how relevant that question is to the general practice of pathology, how relevant the question is to their practice, and how confident they were of their answer. Diplomates then receive immediate feedback with the correct answer, a short narrative about the topic, and references. If they answered the question incorrectly, they then have an opportunity to answer the question a second time.



The initial pilot group will consist of 100 demographically selected volunteer Diplomates, certified in either APCP or AP only. After we are assured that systems are functioning properly, the pilot will be open to all Diplomates; however, until we have enough item bank questions, Diplomates cannot expect items will always be from the subspecialty. After an anticipated pilot period of 3-5 years, during which the practicality, validity, and reliability will be assessed, it's anticipated that ABPath Certlink™ can be offered as an alternative to the current MOC Part Ill Exam.



You can get involved now! The ABP is currently requesting items be submitted to our crowdsourcing site, You must create an account to submit or review items. A tutorial about using the site and writing quality items may be viewed here and here. The soft launch of the pilot began successfully in October 2017, and will commence in January 2018.



The ABPath CertLink program will be deployed through Internet-connected devices such as computers and tablets. Due to the image-rich nature of our questions, we are not allowing the use of smartphones at this time.