Diplomate Exam Workshop
Improving the Standards of the Viva Voce
By Emmanuel M. de la Paz, MD, FPOAPBO Trustee
“Suertehan yan, lagot kung malas.”
“I don’t know what to study - they said they will ask anything under the sun.”
“I’m scared of mental block.”
“Hindi ako magaling magsalita, mag-explain.”
“Depende sa matapat sa ‘yo na examiner - sana hindi si Dr. ____.”
Excerpts from Dr. Crisostomo’s Lecture
The above comments are a reflection of the fatalistic attitude some examinees have taken about the Viva Voce (Oral Exam) component of the Diplomate Exam. For some, this might have imparted a negative impact on their exam preparation and eventual outcome. How to remedy the situation? Standardization of the Oral Exam. That was the meat of a recent workshop held by the Board, ably facilitated by University of the Philippines College of Medicine Professor of Surgery and Executive Director of the Philippine Board of Surgery (PBS), Dr. Armando C. Crisostomo.
Entitled, “Improving the Standards of the PBO Oral Examination," the workshop was held last 29 August 2009 at the Biomedis Office in Dynavision Bldg., Legaspi Village, Makati. It had the following objectives:
- Discuss the principles of oral examination
- Enumerate common pitfalls in giving oral examinations
- Prepare a standardized oral examination module in orthopaedics using the principles of standardized module preparation
- Present and critique an orthopaedic examination module towards its improvement
- In a role play exercise, administer a mock oral exam using the standardized exam modules prepared
In this workshop, Dr. Crisostomo presented a unique format (developed by the PBS) that improves the assessment of knowledge, but at the same time reducing the subjectivity in the evaluation of an examinee. Well received by the attentive board members in attendance, a commitment was made to implement the new method during this year’s edition of the PBO Diplomate Examination.
In attendance to the whole day activity were trustees Drs. Leslie Reyes, Ric Liwag, Antonio Tanchuling, Mario Geronilla, Venancio Garduce, James Paggao, Danny Caro, Pablo Ilano and Emmanuel de la Paz. Also gracing the occasion was POA North Luzon Chapter President Dr. JP Leung who, along with other Fellows who unfortunately could not come due to previous commitments, was an invitee of Dr. Reyes. The Board is currently mulling the option of securing the services of other Fellows of the POA to serve as ad hoc examiners for the PBO. Traditionally, the role of PBO Examiner has been limited to incumbent members of the Board.
Above. (From left) Drs. James Paggao, Ric Liwag, Leslie Reyes and Danny Caro.
Below. (From left) Drs. Venancio Garduce, Mario Geronilla and JP Leung.
This year’s Diplomate Examination is scheduled for October 10-13. Candidates are advised to coordinate their intent to take the exam with the PBO Secretariat and to keep posted on this website for further details and guidelines.
The workshop was made possible in part through an industrial sponsorship from Biomedis, a Division of United Laboratories. The Board extends its thanks for their gracious support. The Board also expresses its deepest gratitude to Dr. Crisostomo whose competence and knowledge on exam administration he willingly shared on a short notice despite his archaic schedule.