2020 Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge

2020 DSCKE Protocol

2020 Written Examination

2020 OSCE

2020 Assessment of Clinical Judgement

December 2019 Assessment of Clinical Skills

Policies for Assessments and Examinations

Revised February 8, 2019

Dates and Locations

  • The Written Examination and OSCE will be held on the first weekend in March, the last weekend of May, and the third weekend of November.
  • The Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge will be held on the first Saturday in February and the second Saturday of August.
  • The Assessment of Clinical Skills will be held either the first or second weekend in June and the first weekend in December.
  • The Assessment of Clinical Judgement will be held the Friday preceding the Assessment of Clinical Skills in June and the Friday preceding the Assessment of Clinical Skills in December.
  • The Dental Specialty Core Knowledge Examination will be held on the second Friday in September and the second Friday in February.
  • Centres are established one year before the date of the assessment or examination.
  • Centres will be established in Canada in several locations, provided there is an expectation of a minimum of 25 examinees at a location. Centres may be established outside of Canada. These locations must have acceptable security and an expectation of a minimum of 50 examinees.
  • Examinees may be transferred to another centre if less than 25 individuals register at a centre. Registration may appear as tentative until the minimum number of registrations is reached.
  • The NDEB will not accommodate transfer requests.


  • The application fee is payable once and non-refundable. Individuals who complete an online application more than once will be refunded the additional application fee(s) paid; however, will be subject to the administrative fee of $200 per additional application.
  • Applicants to the Equivalency Process who were candidates in the former ODQ Equivalency Process, former ACFD Eligibility Examination candidates, and NDEB candidates must pay the application fee.
  • Individuals who successfully complete the NDEB Equivalency Process are not required to pay the application fee for the NDEB Certification Process.
  • Individuals who were participants in the NDEB Equivalency Process and subsequently complete a Qualifying Program or Degree Completion Program must pay the application fee for the NDEB Certification Process.
  • A withdrawal fee of 25% of the fee will be charged in the case of withdrawal due to an unexpected or medical circumstance beyond the examinee’s control after the registration deadline date but before the assessment/examination date. Well documented evidence of illness or documentation of circumstances beyond the examinee’s control must be supplied at the time of withdrawal.
  • Manual rescore fees are non-refundable.
  • Participants may request to cancel their Assessment of Clinical Skills Appeal. Cancellations will be subject to an administrative fee of $200.
  • An examinee may request a withdrawal from an upcoming examination or assessment if the examinee receives a Pass resulting from a manual rescore or an ACS appeal. Withdrawal fees will be applied. If an examination or assessment is taken while a previous result is under review, no fees will be refunded. 
  • The ACS typodont viewing fee must be paid upon booking and is non-refundable.


  • The results for the Written Examination and OSCE will be released as a “Pass” for successful candidates and a test equated, rescaled score for unsuccessful candidates.
  • Results for the Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge and the Assessment of Clinical Judgement will be reported to participants as a Pass or Fail. Participants will also receive their test equated, rescaled score.
  • Results for the Assessment of Clinical Skills will be reported to participants as a Pass or Fail.  Participants will also receive their score for each requirement.


  • Uploaded photographs that do not meet the application requirement will be deleted from the online application and notification and instructions will be sent to the applicant by email. If an acceptable photograph is not uploaded by the registration deadline date, registration will be cancelled and the appropriate withdrawal fees will apply.
  • Requests to change assessment or examination language or dexterity must be received prior to the applicable registration deadline date. No language changes will be made after this time.
  • Documentation received from a third party (e.g. educational institution) will not be sent to the applicant. All documents submitted by the university become the property of the NDEB and will not be returned.
  • The NDEB reserves the right to change the application requirements, certification requirements, or instructions at any time.
  • Cancellation or interruption of an examination or assessment caused by circumstances beyond the control of the NDEB, shall in no way render the NDEB liable for any claim arising from such cancellation or interruption other than the refund of examination or assessment fees, which will be at the discretion of the NDEB.
  • A participant requesting to view their ACS typodonts must comply with the policies found on the NDEB website.

Electronic Examination Orientation

Test Equating

What is test equating?

Test equating is a standardized statistical process that is used to ensure each version of an assessment or examination is of equal difficulty. After the answer score sheets have been scanned, NDEB staff and Chief Examiners perform a detailed statistical analysis of the questions. Part of this statistical analysis involves identification and possible elimination of any questions that may not have performed as expected statistically. The questions selected for one version of an assessment or examination may be easier, or more difficult, than another version, so the NDEB uses a test equating process to ensure that all versions are of equivalent difficulty. The result is that the performance required to meet the standardized passing score is the same for each version and that participant and candidate results from different versions are comparable.

How are examination/assessment questions developed?

Questions used for each administration of the Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge (AFK), the Assessment of Clinical Judgement (ACJ), the Written Examination, and the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) are developed and reviewed by content experts who are primarily faculty members at Canadian faculties of dentistry. 

How are questions selected?

A committee, consisting primarily of general dentists recommended by Provincial Dental Regulatory Authorities, selects the questions for use on assessments or examinations.


ACS Resources

Handpiece Connections and Air Pressure

Each ACS location may have different handpiece connections. The handpiece connections and air pressure document provides images and descriptions of the handpiece connections at Canadian Faculties of Dentistry.

ACS Orientation video

This video should be watched prior to taking the ACS.

General FAQs

How do I change my name with the NDEB?

If you need to change your name with the NDEB, you will be required to send a Request for Name Change Form and the documents listed on the form to the NDEB office by mail or courier.

If I withdraw from an exam can I register for the same exam at a different location?

Yes, you can withdraw from a session and register in another session if there is space available. Be aware that withdrawals can take up to two weeks to process and you will not be able to register for another exam until the withdrawal has been processed.

When will I get my original documents back?

Original documents are returned after the review of the credential is completed. When you document is returned, you will get an email indicating that your document has been returned to you as well as the tracking information.

When will I know the location of my examination?

Location memos are usually posted to your online profile within two weeks of the registration deadline date. Keep an eye out for the email indicating new information has been posted to your online profile.