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COVID-19 Related Updates for NBEO® Part 1

Posted by Talin Amadian on February 24, 2021 at 1:03 PM
Talin Amadian
Dr. Talin Amadian is a practicing optometrist, writer and content contributor for Optoprep. She graduated from Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry and continues to practice in Southern California. Her clinical training includes Neuro-Ophthalmology, Cornea and Refractive Surgery, Glaucoma and Ocular Disease. Dr. Amadian takes pride in educating patients and providing specialized care and education based on each patient’s needs. She is passionate about dry eye treatment and management. During her spare time, she enjoys mentoring and helping prospective optometry students succeed.

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Feb01BlogIcon-1It’s time for NBEO® Part 1 ABS – are you ready? Studying for the exam is nerve-racking on its own, preparing for the logistics shouldn’t be. Here’s some information on what to expect on test day, including some COVID-19 related updates regarding testing at Pearson VUE test centers.

When you register for Part 1 ABS, you will get a confirmation email from Pearson VUE with information about the exam and scheduling. The exam consists of two sessions, four hours each. Each session consists of 185 items and the items are randomized and in no particular order. The first session also provides a 15 minute tutorial on how to navigate the program as well as an NDA agreement. There is an optional 45 minute break between session 1 and 2. Though this break is optional and you can begin the second session right after the first, It’s a good idea to take a meal break and rest before conquering the second half.

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In addition to all of the standard guidelines and procedures for testing at Pearson VUE testing centers, the centers have adapted protocols related to COVID-19. It’s important to check in with your particular testing center to find out their specific protocols as they vary from county to county.

The Pearson VUE centers follow all social distancing guidelines set by local authorities, wherever they are located. Some centers have adapted their schedules to work 24 hours a day to provide adequate testing times for students while maintaining social distancing.

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In order to test at PearsonVue, you must acknowledge that you have not tested positive for COVID-19, do not have any symptoms related to COVID-19, and do not live with someone who has symptoms or has tested positive for COVID-19.

The following guidelines are adapted from the Pearson VUE website:

  • You must bring and wear your own face mask while you’re at the test center and throughout your exam. Surgical and cloth face masks (including homemade) are equally acceptable, as long as your nose and mouth are fully covered. Candidates without a face mask will be denied testing services. 
  • You may be asked to stay > 6 feet away from other people in the waiting area. 
  • Candidates are allowed to wear disposable gloves during testing, though it’s not mandatory. Test administrators will inspect the gloves both before and after the exam, and the gloves will be disposed of in front of the proctor upon completion of the test.
  • Depending upon local requirements, some test centers may require candidates to provide a temperature check upon arrival.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure there are no travel restrictions in place for the location where you want to take your test. If you travel to test in another state or country with travel restrictions in place, you may be turned away.

Due to all of the protocol changes and social distancing guidelines, NBEO® and PearsonVue encourage everyone to register for their exams as early as possible to ensure they are testing at a convenient location. Traveling is discouraged as there are different guidelines and protocols in place. You must follow the travel restrictions where you live. For more information on the specific guidelines and protocols at PearsonVue, both standard and in relation to COVID-19, visit https://home.pearsonvue.com/nbeo. Here you will find NBEO® specific information, since PearsonVue administers a variety of other tests. 

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Though it is a stressful time for test-taking, you can do it! Prepare in advance for the testing environment by using the PearsonVue and NBEO® website resources – that way, you can show up calmly prepared on exam day. You’ve got this! 

Good luck!

~ Dr. Amadian

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Topics: NBEO Part I

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