Score reports are mailed to candidates following the examination. Your score report will indicate a “pass” or “fail.” Additional detail is provided in the form of raw scores by domain, or major content category. Test scores are reported as raw scores and scaled scores. A raw score is the number of correctly answered questions; a scaled score is statistically derived from the raw score. Your total raw score determines whether you pass or fail; it is converted to and reported as a scaled score ranging between 0 and 99.
The methodology used to set the minimum passing score for each examination is the Angoff method, applied during the performance of a Passing Point Study by a panel of content experts. The experts evaluated each question on the respective examination to determine how many correct answers are necessary to demonstrate the knowledge and skills required for the designation. The candidate’s ability to pass the examination depends on the knowledge and skill displayed during the examination, not on the performance of other candidates.
The minimum scaled score needed to pass the examination has been set at 75 scaled score units. The reason for reporting scaled scores is that different forms (or versions) of the examination may vary in difficulty. As new forms of the examination are introduced, a certain number of questions in each content area are replaced. These changes may cause one form of the examination to be slightly easier or harder than another form. To adjust for these differences in difficulty, a procedure called “equating” is used.The goal of equating is to ensure fairness to all candidates.
In the equating process, the minimum raw score (number of correctly answered questions) required to equal the scaled passing score of 75 is statistically adjusted (or equated). For instance, if the examination is determined to be more difficult than the previous form of the examination, then the minimum raw passing score required to pass will be slightly lower than the original raw passing score. If the examination is easier than the previous form of the examination, then the minimum raw score will be higher. Equating helps to assure that the scaled passing score of 75 represents the same level of competence no matter which form of the examination a candidate takes.
In addition to the candidate’s total scaled score and scaled score required to pass, raw scores (the actual number of questions answered correctly) are reported for the three major categories on the content outline. The number of questions answered correctly in each major category is compared to the total number of questions possible in that category on the score report (e.g.,15/20). This information is provided for the benefit of failing candidates, to aid in guiding preparation should they decide to reapply for the examination.
The Certified Geriatric Pharmacist examination is designed as a pass-fail examination. The subdomain scoring information is not used in making pass/fail decisions. Consult the content outline for subdomain descriptors.