Ethics and Boundaries Examination (E&B)
The NBCE Ethics and Boundaries Examination is a computer-based essay test requiring a written four-part response to five case scenarios. The essay response must focus on the ethical or boundary issue assigned to each scenario. Each case scenario will address a specific topic as selected from a test plan by individual state board committees. The test requires that the examinee demonstrate an understanding of the appropriate clinical protocols and judgments necessary in unsupervised chiropractic practice.
The examinee will be allowed a maximum of 60 minutes to compose a type-written response for each case scenario. Test appointments are scheduled for up to a total of five hours and 30 minutes to allow for: a brief introductory tutorial; five hours for the essay writing; two 10-minute breaks; and a post-test survey.
Scoring is based on the relevance and thoroughness of the examinee’s responses to each of the five case scenarios. Content and expression of ideas are more heavily weighted in the grading than grammar, punctuation, or spelling. The essay format encourages full sentence paragraphs for each of four sections. Each of these sections has its own text box and will accommodate unlimited writing. Please refer to the “Essay Writing Exercise” for the format that will be used at the testing center.
The NBCE recommends that examinees pass all five essays to receive credit for completion of the examination. Each E&B essay has a possible maximum of 16 points; 12 points is a passing score. Points are assigned for each component of the essay response in accordance with the “E&B Scoring Criteria” (PDF file).
If an examinee fails to pass all five essays, the NBCE recommends the following retake policy:
- An examinee scoring below 12 points on three or more essays will retake the entire examination from topics originally designated by the state board with new scenarios randomly selected.
- An examinee scoring 12 points or above on three or more essays will retake only failed portions of the examination; topics will be as originally designated by the state board with new scenarios randomly selected.
For questions about the E&B retake policy, please contact the NBCE Processing Department.
For complete information about the post-licensure examinations, please refer to the most current Post-Licensure Examinations brochure. For your convenience, this is a printable PDF file.