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Examination Administration


Candidates must arrive 30 minutes before the start of the scheduled examination administration. Special site- specific requirements may be enforced as required by local, state, or federal mandates (i.e., social distancing, masking, etc.)


Candidates must bring one piece of identification, which must be a valid government-issued photo ID with signature, such as a current driver’s license, military ID, or passport, and will be scanned and retained by the NBOME. If the identification does not include a signature, candidate must provide a secondary form of identification with a signature.

A candidate whose name is changed by marriage or for some other reason must notify the NBOME at least fourteen (14) calendar days in advance of testing if the candidate is to be tested under the new name. Any candidate presenting an ID that does not match the name in the NBOME portal will not be permitted to take the examination and will be considered a “No Show” for all purposes.

For security purposes, all candidates will be digitally photographed and may be biometrically scanned (such as fingerprint or palm vein) as part of the registration process. This identification will be required to enter and exit the testing room.


Candidates should dress comfortably.

Late Arrival

Any candidate who arrives at the designated test center up to 30 minutes after the scheduled start time and requests to take the examination will be permitted to do so, but only if the test center is able to deliver the examination in its entirety.

Any candidate who arrives later than 30 minutes past the scheduled start time will not be permitted to take the examination and shall be considered a “No Show.” The candidate must re-register to take the examination and pay all required fees.

No Outside Information or Access to Personal Items

During the full test session, a candidate will not be permitted access to any information or data (except for information or data provided to the candidate by the NBOME or the test center) and the candidate may not communicate in any manner with anyone outside the test center. Candidates are required to place all personal property, including watches, in the secure lockers provided at the test center.

During scheduled break periods, (defined in “Breaks” section below) on the COMLEX-USA Levels 1, 2-CE, and 3 examinations, candidates will be permitted access to their lockers for food, drink, medicine, and other stored items including electronic devices such as cell phones. Candidates may only access personal items, including study materials or electronic devices during scheduled break periods.

Any candidate found with prohibited materials or otherwise in violation of the terms herein may be considered to have committed or contributed to irregular conduct regardless of the intent of the candidate.

In such cases the candidate may be removed from the testing area, and a notation of irregular conduct may be made on the examination record. See also “Irregular Conduct.”


Candidates will receive a pool of 60 minutes of break time, which can be used over the scheduled break periods as outlined in the examination format for each level of the COMLEX-USA as listed in this BOI. Candidates may use as much or as little of this break time as they feel necessary during any given scheduled optional break period.

Please note that if the entire amount of pooled break time (60 minutes) is exhausted before the end of the examination, any additional break time taken will decrease available remaining examination time. Remember that when you re-enter the testing room after any break, you will need to show a valid ID and your biometric information will be taken.

Please allow sufficient time to check in and be seated. Any individual leaving the testing area at any time other than during a scheduled break period will be reported.

Any additional break time which may be provided to a candidate as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act is not covered within this section as separate instructions for the utilization of those breaks are provided to those candidates on an individual basis.

Food and Drink

Candidates are not permitted to bring food or drink into the testing room. Food and drink must be stored in the assigned locker that candidates can access during the scheduled break periods. If a candidate has a medical need that requires food or drink during the testing period, they must submit the request in writing to the NBOME in advance for consideration.

Must Be Unaccompanied

A candidate may not have in the testing area assigned to the candidate any family member, assistant, or other person for any reason except as specifically approved by the NBOME as a test accommodation.

Special Assistance

Unauthorized possession of personal items in the secure testing area is prohibited. A candidate requiring the use of personal items for medical reasons during testing must contact the NBOME at least four weeks before their test date. Even though a candidate may not be a person with disability in accordance with the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the NBOME may provide limited special assistance if sufficient notification is provided to the NBOME. See also “Test Accommodation Requests” herein.

The test center professional staff may permit or provide special assistance in accordance with the business parameters established between the test center provider and the NBOME; however, under no circumstance may the test center professional staff permit any additional time to take the examination or modify the examination or testing conditions in any way that would alter the standards for measurement of the knowledge or skill being tested by the examination.

Examples of other special assistance that may be permitted include but are not limited to the use of ear plugs, dietary needs, taking of medication, breast pumps, or checking blood glucose during the exam.

Test Content Comments

Candidates are encouraged to report to the NBOME any comments regarding examination content in the item notes fields that are available during the examination, or in the post-examination surveys. These comments are reviewed by NBOME staff on a regular basis.

Emergency and Evacuation

In the event of an emergency during administration of a COMLEX-USA examination, the NBOME (either directly or through the test center) will endeavor to protect the safety of all candidates and staff while preserving the integrity of the examination. All candidates are required to follow the test center professional staff’s instructions and obey test center placards for their safety and the safety of others.

If as a result of the emergency or evacuation the examination cannot be completed in its entirety or the data from the examination is irretrievable, the examination will not be scored. The candidate may schedule a new appointment to test on a mutually agreeable future date without incurring an additional fee. Please contact NBOME Client Services (clientservices@nbome.org) should you have questions.

If a candidate has completed a valid examination before the emergency or evacuation, and the data from the examination are retrievable, the candidate’s examination may be scored and reported.

Cancellation Due To Inclement Weather or Other Force Majeure

In the event of severe inclement weather, force majeure, or other event beyond the control of the NBOME or the test center, the NBOME or the test center may in its sole discretion cancel a scheduled examination. If this occurs, candidates may schedule a new appointment to test on a mutually agreeable future date without an additional fee. Candidates will not be reimbursed for any travel or lodging expenses in the event that a test is canceled under these circumstances. Please contact NBOME Client Services (clientservices@nbome.org) should you have questions.

Test Center Contact Information

The specific test center contact information for examinations is provided on the electronic receipt candidates receive as confirmation of a scheduled test date. Candidates should retain a copy of the receipt for future reference. Test center information may also be obtained on the Pearson VUE website at home.pearsonvue.com.

Bulletin of Information 2023-2024