What Is Part III
Part III is a computer-based test, delivered on chiropractic college campuses.
Part III consists of two sessions, with a total of 110 standard multiple-choice questions and 10 case vignettes, broken down as follows:
- Each section has 55 standard multiple-choice questions, plus five case vignettes.
- Each of the five case vignettes contains three extended multiple-choice questions.
- Each extended multiple-choice question requires three answers.
Each session is allotted two hours of testing time, with an optional 15-minute break between sessions. Testing appointments are 4 hours and 30 minutes.
Part III tests nine clinical areas:
- Case History
- Physical Examination
- Neuromusculoskeletal Examination
- Diagnostic Imaging
- Clinical Laboratory and Special Studies
- Diagnosis or Clinical Impression
- Chiropractic Techniques
- Supportive Interventions
- Case Management
Who Can Take Part III?
- Your coursework must be at an eligible chiropractic college.
- You must have completed NBCE Part I.
- You must be within nine months of graduation before the administration of Part III.
- Your registrar must approve your application.
See additional eligibility requirements if you have graduated, or are retaking Part III.
Topics, Sample Questions, And Reference Texts
The NBCE develops every exam based on a test plan. The detailed Part III Test Plan includes topics, subtopics, and weightings (the percentage of the test devoted to each topic).
The NBCE offers a Sample Test for Part III. The sample test contains 69 questions and costs $20.
The NBCE uses reference texts from the chiropractic colleges. See the Part III Reference Text List.
Test Sites And Test Site Rules
The NBCE offers Part III at chiropractic colleges and Prometric testing centers across the country. Each test site utilizes computer-based testing. You can select a test site when you apply. See the list of accredited Test Sites.
The NBCE is committed to exam security. The only item you are allowed to bring into the secure testing area is one form of ID. The NBCE will provide a place to store your car key (one key allowed). Please review the additional Test Site Rules before you arrive to take your test.
Exam Administration Dates
|Administration Dates||Exams Offered|
|Mar. 21 OR Mar. 22, 2020||Part III and Physiotherapy|
|Jul. 18 OR Jul. 19, 2020||Part III and Physiotherapy|
|Oct. 17 OR Oct. 18, 2020||Part III and Physiotherapy|
What Is A Passing Score For Part III?
The NBCE recommends a passing score of 375 for the Part III Examination. Most states require or accept the Part III Examination in lieu of a state-level written clinical competency examination. For current information on state regulations pertaining to Part III scores, you must contact the licensing board of the state(s) in which you plan to practice.
Withdraw / Reschedule
Examinees may withdraw from or reschedule their Parts I, II, III, Physiotherapy computer-based exams using the Prometric scheduling tool. After published deadlines, you may not make any changes to your appointment and the NBCE will issue no refunds.