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BOC Orthopedic Specialty Certification Eligibility Requirements Now Available

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The Board of Certification (BOC) for the Athletic Trainer is excited to announce the launch of the BOC Orthopedic Specialty Certification (orthopedic specialty), the profession’s first board-certified specialty certification. This release will provide credible recognition to Athletic Trainers (ATs) who provide specialized care in orthopedics and elevate the perception of athletic training within the health care community and initiates the expansion of the athletic training profession.

Here’s the most current details:

  • Eligibility requirements are now posted on the BOC website. The Specialty Council and Standards Committee collaborated to create the eligibility and recertification requirements, supported by a public comment survey in November 2020.
  • The “BOC Orthopedic Practice Analysis” and the “Content Outline for BOC Orthopedic Practice Analysis” including the exam domain weighting is posted in the orthopedic specialty section of the BOC website.
  • BOC orthopedic exam item writers continue writing and validating the item bank for launch. The initial administration of the BOC Orthopedic Specialty Exam is planned for summer 2021 which will be supported in April 2021 by the addition of the Orthopedic Specialty Needs Assessment. Based on this timeline, the first exam application deadlines will occur during July/August 2021.

Introduction of this first specialty is part of a larger strategy to advance the athletic training profession. The launch of the orthopedic specialty from the BOC is part of a continuing effort to build a pathway to improved working conditions, compensation, advancement, elevation, differentiation, respect and inclusion for ATs in the health care community. For ATs, this means a viable, long-term career filled with opportunities to distinguish themselves in the delivery of patient care earning recognition and respect for the experience, focus and skills they demonstrate.

Part of the focus of the specialty launch is to communicate directly with employers, articulating the value of this new board-certified orthopedic specialty within practice settings. The BOC is collaborating with the National Athletic Trainers’ Association in promotional efforts to align messaging and maximize reach.

Through an in-depth process, supported by multiple research projects and countless volunteer and staff hours over a multi-year period, the BOC Specialty Council is finalizing the new specialty, including the certification exam and exam support materials.

For up-to-date information, access to requirements and materials, and to purchase the OPA, visit the Orthopedic Specialty page on the BOC website.

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