More changes to the NBDE on the horizon

Dental Students have been facing some changes lately. Recently the National Board Dental Examination (NBDE) was changed from a scoring to a pass/fail system. It took a while for us all to grasp the idea of what this all meant to us especially with regards to residency programs. We now know that with this new implemented system some of us who wish to apply into specialty programs will now have to take additional examinations. Such exams include the GRE and/ or the National Board Medical Examination (NBME). We now have to get more involved in community service activities, volunteer more and of course work really hard on improving our GPAs. Just when we think it’s over, more changes are on the horizon.

The traditional 2 part NBDE exam will soon be changed to one comprehensive exam termed the Integrated National Board Dental Examination (INBDE). This will integrate aspects of both the NBDE Part 1 and NBDE Part 2. Though it will not affect those of us already in dental school and the incoming class of 2016, it will definitely affect some of the current predentals. The changes come about as a more effective way to evaluate candidates for licensure as it will take on a more clinically relevant approach. The basic Science portion from NBDE part 1 will remain as such but the content will be integrated into a clinical context.

This will not be a mere combination of the NBDE Parts 1 and 2 but the 2 tests will be integrated such that your knowledge is tested in a clinical context. The INBDE will remain under the pass/fail system. Each school will determine the best time for their students to take this exam based on curriculum..

Some schools have started to make changes in their curriculum to prepare for these changes. Has your school made any changes to the curriculum lately?

~Patrice Smith, Howard ’14

Read more from Patrice Smith at her blog: Stu-DENT Diaries

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Comments (8)

    • Kim Schneider

      Good question, Garima. According to the JCNDE’s FAQ section on this test: “Developing the INBDE is a long term project. At least four years’ advance notice will be provided to stakeholders and communities of interest before the INBDE is implemented.” You can download the FAQ’s here:

  1. Mary

    Hi ! Do you know when they will start their inbde exam ? I was about to apply for registering for part 1 & now I am totally confused 🙁 is this december the last month that the part 1 exam is valid ?
    Please kindly advise

  2. Yash

    What effect will this cause on foreign dental graduates,applying for admission into dds?
    Would it make it out more difficult for them or vice versa?

  3. cybele

    Hi, I’m an international dental student, I took the test on Oct 20th, I studied really hard for the test for almost 8 months but I was shocked when I saw questions from part 2 and many were really difficult , I want to know please how this will affect my score? Because to be honest I’m really worried! I didn’t get my score yet but will be devastated if I didn’t pass.

  4. Marie O.

    I am an international dentist planning to take the Board l in February, I am concern now. Should I study for Board ll also? I would appreciate having some answers.
    Thank you.


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