New Board Exam Format for Orthodontic Specialists

I just returned from the American Association of Orthodontists annual meeting (which is massive in size and attendance) which was held at the Los Angeles Convention Center this year. Several highlights: My family ate at the restaurant James Beach, which was featured in my wife’s favorite movie, “I Love You Man”. They serve amazing fish, shrimp, and lobster tacos.  We took our kids to Chinatown, toured several colleges in the area, and we watched real surfers for the first time!

Most of my time however, was spent teaching the new preparatory course for the American Board of Orthodontics Scenario Based Examination. As a councilman for the College of Diplomates of the ABO, one of our responsibilities is to educate our colleagues and the public about Board Certification for our specialty of orthodontics. I have taught the preparatory course since 2014, but this was the first year of the new board examination format, and the course was doubled from 4 hours to 8 hours. It has been very uplifting to watch the very positive response and interest within our specialty to pursue board certification in orthodontics. In an age where seemingly every month there is a new product on T.V. promising “quicker, faster, cheeper, easier” (most of which have no professional supervision, an unfortunate reminder that salesman have such a forum in today’s world), our profession is taking the higher road, and a vast number of orthodontists are renewing or continuing their dedication to providing the highest possible care for patients through education, research, science, and evidence-based techniques… which is what becoming board certified is all about.

During the course this past Friday, I saw the attendees grasp what a difficult examination this would be (a two hour oral examination in front of twelve peers, only after passing a written examination), and embrace the rigorous standards that are expected of them. It will be one of the most difficult things that they will ever have to prepare for, and it will be stressful. But I hope the general public realizes the amount of dedication that most orthodontists pour into this profession every day of our lives to make the quality of care we deliver soar way above what other, non- orthodontic specialty sources provide (especially unsupervised products such as Smile Direct). It was a lot off work on my part to prepare to teach this course, but it was so rewarding to see the continued dedication from my fellow peers.

 

Dr. Dan Rejman has two private practices in Castle Rock, Colorado, and has been Board Certified by the American Board of Orthodontics (ABO) since 2007.