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The Simulated Office Oral examination moves to a virtual delivery


(Mississauga, ON) The College of Family Physicians (CFPC) is pleased to announce that the oral component of the Certification Examination in Family Medicine will be administered virtually beginning in November 2021 for those repeating the Simulated Office Oral (SOO), and in spring 2022 for first-time examination takers. The SOO is a key component of the Certification Examination in Family Medicine.

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the examination process, preventing the delivery of the in-person format. The previous cancellations of the SOO component greatly impacted family medicine residents and family medicine training programs. Moving to a virtual delivery will provide benefits for examination candidates and examiners including:
  • Greater convenience and enhanced flexibility as candidates and examiners may not need to travel
  • Enhanced delivery unhindered by the limitations of the pandemic or other unanticipated environmental factors or circumstances
  • Optimal and progressive use of technology to support high-quality examination delivery
While the virtual method of delivery for this component of the exam is a change, the format/structure of the SOO and the high-quality standards and integrity of the certification examination process remain unchanged, ensuring examination candidates meet necessary requirements. The examination will continue to provide:
  • Extensive planning and leveraging the expertise of subject matter experts in the preparation of examination materials
  • Structured development and design of SOO examination questions and approval by the Committee on Examinations – Family Medicine
  • Oversight by the Board of Examinations and Certification
  • Participation by experienced examiners who serve an integrated role as patient and assessor
  • Training sessions for examiners including enhanced instruction on the use of a virtual examination format
  • Examination calibration
  • Fixed examination fees for 2021 and 2022
Examinations are an important final step in assessing the skills, expertise, and competence of family medicine learners. They help validate the knowledge and skills gained through a competency-based medical education. The oral component remains an important aspect in preparing family medicine residents for practice and testing their ability in a real-world approach.

Through consultations and input from internal and external stakeholders, along with a thorough review of the expectations of examination candidates and examiners, Fry-it has been procured as the vendor of choice for the fall examination. They offer a robust exam management software with proven success in Canada and abroad.

To ensure that the exam offers an optimal and secure experience, additional technical support will be available leading up to and on the day of examination. More information about the upcoming virtual SOO will be available on the CFPC website in September.


About the College of Family Physicians of Canada

The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) is the professional organization that represents more than 40,000 members across the country. The College establishes the standards for and accredits postgraduate family medicine training in Canada’s 17 medical schools. It reviews and certifies continuing professional development programs and materials that enable family physicians to meet certification and licensing requirements. The CFPC provides high-quality services, supports family medicine teaching and research, and advocates on behalf of the specialty of family medicine, family physicians, and the patients they serve.


Susan Monic
Manager, Communication Services
The College of Family Physicians of Canada
Tel: 905-629-0900 ext. 432
Email: [email protected]

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