Exam Committee Resources

National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants

Exam Development Committees
 December 2015 Update


CAQs - Launch of New Certificate of Added Qualifications Program

CAQs are available in Cardiovascular/Thoracic Surgery, Emergency Medicine, Hospital Medicine, Nephrology, Orthopaedic Surgery, Pediatrics, and Psychiatry. We appreciate the work of our specialty exam committee members in writing items for these CAQ exams. You can find detailed information on the CAQs on the NCCPA Web site by clicking on the following link and then selecting the particular specialty of interest: /Specialty-CAQs

As an exam committee member, you have two benefits related to the CAQ:

  • You will receive 10 credits of Category 1 CME for participating in the exam committee meeting, which you may use toward meeting the CAQ CME requirement.
  • You are not required to submit the $100 administrative fee or the $250 exam registration fee when you sign up for the CAQ program.
CME - Continuing Medical Education Logging and Certificates
NCCPA is approved by the American Academy of Physician Assistants to provide 10 CAT 1 CME credits per year for participation and attendance at one item writing committee meeting. Please be advised that you will be able to automatically log your credits from NCCPA’s Website. To view the instructions, please click on Log Your Conference Hours Conveniently at the NCCPA Website for instructions on how to log these credits. You will be allowed to log 10 CME credits for completing your item writing assignment and attending one Exam Material Development Committee (EMDC) meeting per year.

Your CME Certificate will be provided to you at your first scheduled meeting on an annual basis or every other year after you have attended one Exam Material Development Committee meeting. This should be kept for your records in case you are audited by a third party. Since credits logged in this manner are considered to be confirmed, you will not need to submit certificates if you are audited by NCCPA. Committee members who serve on the specialty committees can use the credit earned during this committee meeting to fulfill part of the CAQ CME requirement.


Committee Member Information Change Form - Please complete the Committee Member Information Change Form if you have any personal contact changes that we need to know about. Please submit to Kim Rocafort at kimr@nccpa.net or fax to 678-417-8175. It is very important to keep this information up-to-date, so we are able to communicate with you.

Blueprint and Disease and Disorder Lists - Refer to the Exam Developer Dashboard to access the appropriate blueprint and disease and disorder list for the exam for which you write items.

HIPAA Authorization for Use or Disclosure of Patient Image(s) form – The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) requires that covered entities comply with privacy and security rules protecting individual's identifiable health information. Since health care providers are one of those covered entities, the NCCPA has decided to require a patient's consent to use their identifiable image on our examinations or educational materials for pictorials in which the identity of the patient is obvious. For example, photographs that include a patient's face or identifying mark (i.e., tattoo or birthmark) will require this form. Please note that no form is required for the following types of pictorials:

  • CT scans, drawings, ECGs, ECHOs, MRIs, Ultrasounds or X-rays

Refer to the Exam Developer dashboard to obtain a copy of this form. Please include a digitized copy of this signed authorization form with your item writing assignment.

Reiteration of Committee Members Duties

As general information for the new committee members, and as a refresher to our current committee members, we have listed below some duties and rules of conduct regarding your role:

  • All items and pictorials submitted are your original work. Please review the Confidentiality, Originality, Work for Hire, and Conflict of Interest Statements in connection with NCCPA Examinations with NCCPA Examinations' agreement and the Important Information Regarding Plagiarism and Copyright Infringement.
  • Meet item writing assignment deadlines; if this is not possible, please contact the editor who notified you of your assignment (noelleh@nccpa.net or denisem@nccpa.net).
  • It is unacceptable to not participate in the pre-editing stage of the item review process.
  • Keep in mind as you review your items at the pre-editing stage that NCCPA staff edits all items to make them similar in format and consistent in style. The author’s role during the pre-editing stage is to simply accept the suggested revisions, revise items if possible, and answer editorial queries.
  • Use of the Internet, Blackberries, iPhones and cell phones is forbidden during all committee meetings unless the research pertains to the items.
  • It is important that you refrain from participating in potential conflicts of interest (i.e., writing for PANCE or PANRE review books or writing and presenting for review courses).
  • We now use Exam Developer to write all items. However, if you have any versions of these items (questions) on your personal or work computers; please make sure all electronic NCCPA items are deleted totally from your hard drive. Once you  submit these items to us, they are considered secure and the property of NCCPA.

The Exam Committee Member Job Description, Exam Committee Vice Chair Job Description and Exam Committee Chair Job Description, which can be accessed on the Exam Developer dashboard, have a more complete list of the duties that are expected of you as members. Please take a minute to review your specific job description and to become familiar with the duties. Also note that on a yearly basis, committee members will be evaluated by the chair of each committee and by NCCPA management, and each chairperson will be evaluated by NCCPA management. The evaluation entitled Exam Committee Member Performance Evaluation Form, which you can view on the Exam Developer dashboard, will provide the Exam Development team with valuable information regarding the efficiency of committee meetings as well as the functionality of committee members.

Waiving Fees - The following fees are automatically waived during your service as a test committee member:

  • CAQ Fees
  • CME Fees
  • Recertification Fees





Sheila Mauldin, MNM
Vice President, Research and Exam Programs
Office: 678-417-8103
Fax: 678-417-8175
*Exam development operations
Noelle Hammerbacher, MS
Managing Editor
Office: 678-417-8112
*Manager of item writing process and editorial inquiries
Karen Dietz, MS
Assistant Editor
Office : 678-417-8114
*Editorial inquiries
Jocelyn Sweatman
Meeting & Event Planner/Travel Consultant
Office: 678-417-8172
*Hotel, plane and ground transportation reservations
Matt Burke, PhD
Director of Exam Development
Office: 678-417-8173
Fax: 678-417-8175
*Exam development inquiries
Denise Moyer
Senior Editor
Office: 678-417-8149
*Specialty item writing assignments and editorial inquiries
Kim Rocafort
Coordinator and Production Specialist
Office: 678-417-8133
Fax: 678-417-8175
*PANCE, PANRE, and CAQ general communications