Orientation - The Day of the Exam

When & where do I sign in?

When you arrive for orientation on your test date at 9:00am, you will report to classroom 1045 in Burnett-Womack as you enter the Clinical Skills Center to sign in and pick up your testing materials. You will receive scrap paper, your starting room assignment, and an honor code agreement. Please remember to wear your UNC name tag. This will help patients and others easily identify you.

There will also be a short orientation to review the schedule and procedures for the exam. Please be on time. If you are late for the orientation, you will miss important information. If you are late for the exam, you will not pass any patients in your rotation whom you cannot see. No extensions will be made for students who arrive late.

The examination will be administered using the B-Line Clinical Skills System. You will use your onyen and password to log in at each station. All encounters will be video taped. Case information and post-encounter activities will be computer based. Please contact the Clinical Skills Center (919-966-3643) immediately if you require special considerations to not use the computer system.

What is the Honor Code?

You will be asked to sign an honor code in which you agree to keep confidential:

  • all details of the case itself, case specific exercises, and accompanying materials
  • your response to the case & case specific exercises
  • the identity and performance of all standardized patients

Your signature also gives your consent to video tape your performance for purposes of educational research and development. So that the CPX is fair for all students it is essential that you NOT discuss the contents of the cases with students who have not yet taken the exam.

How many patients will I see during the exam?

You will see 14 patients during the CPX exam. You will spend 15 minutes with each patient and an additional 10 minutes in a 'post-encounter' session, completing various tasks such as ordering lab tests or writing SOAP notes.

Each student will see the same 14 patients during the exam. Although you are actually taking the exam in the Clinical Skills and Patient Simulation Center, the cases may simulate a clinic, in-patient, or emergency room setting. You may be required to take a history, perform a physical examination, counsel the patient, explain procedures to the patient, or perform simulated tasks on the patient.

You will be acting in the role of the doctor, so remember to act professionally and be aware of your patient's dignity and privacy at all times.

In what order will I see these patients?

Students will rotate in sequential order from their starting exam room through all 14 encounters. there is no particular order to which you will see certain types of cases.

How will I know when I move on to the next patient?

You have a total of 25 minutes at each station. You have 15 minutes with your patient, and 10 minutes to complete the 'post encounter' exercises. You must log in to the computer as soon as you arrive at that station. The PA system in the building will also keep you informed about the time. For example, when the PA says "see your first patient", read the patient's information on the computer, knock and then enter.

When the PA says "15 minutes", wrap up your encounter with the patient and leave the room. You may depart the room early, but be sure that you ask all the questions and do all the things you deem appropriate. Once you leave the room you may not return.

What kind of information will I receive about each patient?

As you stand at the door of the patient's room, you will find a case stem on the computer screen (CLICK FOR EXAMPLE) , much as you would find a chart on a patient's door in the clinic. A paper copy of this information is also in the patient's room for your reference during the encounter.

The case will include:

  • patient's name
  • presenting complaint
  • setting for the encounter (clinic, ER, hospital)
  • type of questions or tasks you will be asked to complete following the patient encounter.

Take a few moments to read this information and plan what you want to ask and do when you enter the room.

What are the post-encounter exercises?

After seeing each patient you will be asked to write a note documenting your visit with the patient. This note will be in the same format as the Step 2CS. You will use the additional 10 minutes to complete these exercises.

As soon as you exit the patient's room, log out of the computer. Instructions will be found on the computer at the 'post encounter station'. You may leave the room early, but you will not be able to start with your next patient until the PA system announces "see your next patient".

Preparing for the Exam
How Your Performance is Evaluated