Content Outlines for Subspecialties

Each examination adheres to a blueprint, also known as the content outline. The outline, which is developed by a committee of pediatricians and educators, defines the categories -- and the percentage of questions from each category -- contained in each certification exam.

Each content outline is developed and periodically reviewed by content experts based on analyses of practice in the specialty area and modified to reflect the breadth and relative importance of the clinical situations pediatricians encounter. The American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) test development staff uses the content outline to determine the number of new questions needed for each content area of the specialty. If questions are needed in a specific area, test committee members write new ones based on their areas of expertise.

Program directors and candidates may find the outlines helpful; however, keep in mind:

  • Content outlines are NOT intended to be a curriculum guides. There are many skills subspecialty trainees need to learn that cannot be tested in a multiple-choice format or within the time constraints of the exam.
  • Content outlines are NOT designed to be study guides; however, they may help candidates identify areas in which they are weak and need additional preparation.
  • Content outlines are dynamic works in progress. The ABP welcomes comments regarding content.

Download the content outline for pediatric subspecialties: