To participate in the Assessment of Clinical Judgement (ACJ), you must pass the Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge (AFK).

Login to your online profile to register for an assessment.

Format and Content


The ACJ is a multiple choice style assessment. It consists of three books administered in a single day.

The ACJ Protocol provides specific details regarding the format and scheduling of the assessment.


Books 1A and 1B - Diagnosis, Treatment Planning and Clinical Decision Making
These components contain single answer and extended match type questions that evaluate your ability to formulate a diagnosis and to make clinical decisions.  Case histories, dental charts and photographs may be provided for patients of all ages, including those with special needs.

Book 2 - Radiographic Interpretation
Using prints of radiographs, this extended match multiple choice component evaluates your knowledge in oral radiology and ability to make a radiographic interpretation and diagnosis.

Sample Questions

The following examples illustrate the format of assessment questions.

Single correct Answer

Some questions have one correct answer, indicated by the direction “Select ONE correct answer”. Select the most likely answer or the most appropriate answer.

Question: 1 (Select ONE correct answer.)
Orthodontic treatment (dental and/or skeletal) for this patient


  1. is not required at this time.
  2. should be initiated during the primary dentition.
  3. should be initiated during the early mixed dentition (after eruption of the first permanent molars and incisors).
  4. should be initiated during the late mixed dentition prior to the pubertal growth spurt.
  5. should be initiated immediately following the eruption of the permanent second molars.
  6. should be initiated after the completion of growth.

One or More Correct Answers

Some questions have one or more correct answers, indicated by the direction “Select ONE OR MORE correct answers”. Select all answers that are correct.  The maximum score for any question is one (“1”). The minimum score for any question is zero (“0”). Part marks will be awarded if some, but not all correct answers are selected, provided no incorrect answer is selected.  Marks will be deducted for incorrect responses, but no question will receive a score less than zero (“0”).  Some answers are neither definitely correct nor incorrect and have been given a value of zero (“0”). Selecting one of these answers will not affect the score given to a participant. But, if a definitely incorrect answer is selected the participant will receive a zero (“0”) score for the entire question.

Question: 2 (Select ONE OR MORE correct answers.)
There is radiographic evidence of caries on the


-1 A. distal of tooth 2.3.
-1 B. mesial of tooth 2.4.
-1 C. distal of tooth 2.4.
.3 D. mesial of tooth 2.5.
.3 E. distal of tooth 2.5.
.4 F. mesial of tooth 2.6.
0 G. distal of tooth 2.6.
0 H. mesial of tooth 2.7.
-1 I. distal of tooth 2.7.
-1 J. mesial of tooth 2.8.
0 K. distal of tooth 2.8.

Question and Answer Framework

The Question and Answer framework for the ACJ is available in the Reference Material and Resources section of the website.


In 2009, the American Association of Endodontists adopted new endodontic terminology. The NDEB is aware of these changes and is currently updating the terminology used in its examination/assessment questions. Consistent with the manner that dental programs and textbooks adopt terminology changes, the NDEB will adopt new terminology over a period of time; therefore, examinees should be aware of both the previously used and recently updated terminology in endodontics.

The NDEB is aware of the most current guidelines for antibiotic prophylaxis and of guidelines published in North America and in the reference texts used in Canadian Dental Programs.

ACJ Protocol

The protocol contain important information regarding the ACJ. This document should be read carefully.

Download the 2017 ACJ Protocol in PDF format.


Assessment results are electronically scanned and processed. Results are then verified manually at least three times. An additional verification is done of all results close to the passing score before they are released to participants.

A test equated, re-scaled score of 75 or greater is reported as a Pass. A test equated, re-scaled score of less than 75 is reported as a Fail. Results will include the test equated, re-scaled score. No further breakdown of results is available.

Passing Standard

In order to ensure the consistency of scores on all the versions of the assessment, the NDEB uses a test equating procedure. This procedure correlates a standardized reference assessment with the current version of the assessment and determines the standardized mark. The NDEB maintains a standardized passing score of 75 on all assessments and examinations. 

For more information regarding the processes used to select questions and analyze and test equate assessments and examinations please download Information Regarding Test Equating

Participants can take the ACJ a maximum of three times.

Appeals and Rescores

Compassionate Appeal

What is a Compassionate Appeal?

If you feel you were disadvantaged by a personal circumstance beyond your control during an Assessment. You can make a request for a Compassionate Appeal to the NDEB. Compassionate Appeals must be received in writing within one week of the Assessment.

Where can I find more information?

For detailed information regarding the Compassionate Appeal Process view the NDEB By-laws & Policies regarding Assessments and Examinations.

Manual Rescore

What is a manual rescore?

Two NDEB staff members perform a manual rescore by comparing the answers on your answer score sheet with the master score sheet. In most circumstances, this process confirms that no errors were made during the scanning and electronic scoring process. Participants are notified of the result of their manual rescore by email within four weeks from the time of request.

How do I request a manual rescore of my assessment?

Manual rescores are available to participants who have failed the assessment. Although it is unlikely that a result will change after a manual rescore, eligible participants can request a manual rescore of their assessment within three months of the release of results.  Manual rescores are requested through the “Other Services” tab in your NDEB online profile.

Participants cannot review their assessments or scoresheets.