Making this to make your life a tad streamlined when coming through to Canada / US. Some of the stuff, I wish I’d known then. There is more detail for the Canadian setup compared to the US as that was my primary field.
Things to do to get NDEB NBDE Licensure when still in your university/country.
1. Submit your application to WES. Start your evaluations. Get all the credits from your university when you can do it yourself easily. Get ICAP! Ensure you get ICAP. Just in case you ever need your documents again you don’t have to get it from your university.
2. Submit your forms to NDEB / NBDE if possible.
3. Get reference letters. As many as you can. All sealed and signed. But keep ONE copy unsealed. For yourself. Just if you need an extra copy later, send a copy of that back and have them redo it and send it through. You’ll always have the ideal ones in that case. Otherwise your school might forget what they wrote when you asked for it the first time.
Things to do to get NDEB NBDE Licensure when you get to USA/Canada.
1. NBDE Part 1 – 2
i. My honest opinion, IF you have time (say you have a year before the AFK), do your Part 1 at least and possibly Part 2, BEFORE AFK. You’ll have a better foundation. All ASDA, Mosby, First Aid. Facebook groups full of it.
ii. Do both. Better your chances.
iii. Get work / shadow experience. That counts a lot.
iv. Get your applications in as early as possibly. Get them at the top of the pile.
v. Prepare for your bench test. US Bench tests are far easier than Canadian Bench Exams. But still practice. Find a centre if possible.
vi. Interview courses if needed. Practice.
2. (AFK) Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge (Minimum 75% needed to pass. (1st Week Feb)
3. Keep 85%+ as a goal to be “safely” considered in almost all universities across Canada. Under that, you’ll be lucky / have a great resume / possibly MDS / minority. People have got in with a 70% in University of Manitoba which is the only one that accepts candidates under 75%. I believe 65 is their cutoff.
4. What to study for AFK? This was my setup.
i. Past released NDEB Questions, 2011-2014. Check the Facebook groups, the questions have been asked, asked again, answered many many times.
ii. ASDA (I, J, K, L, M, N)
iii. Mosby Part 1 (Mostly the last chapter with the DA), Part 2 All.
iv. First Aid Q/A for NBDE, Part 2 All, Part 1 (last chapter)
v. Tufts Pharmac
vi. 5-6 Reviews / Revisions each before your exam.
5. Can you study yourself or do you NEED a class?
a. You do not NEED a class. Every answer with explanations is available online. I mean literally every answer. Alright maybe 99%, but that last 1% would be such that you won’t have a proper one till the end if that.
b. If you study better in a class, take a class. There are tons of options. Look for the instructors, who they are, what the results are like, and most importantly, find people who’ve taken that class and get their opinion. That’s the best. It’s good as most class room setups have the questions organized topic by topic.
Making your life just a bit easier. You still have 80% of the work to do. Read up BEFORE you get to the class.
c. I do better without classes, plan my schedule, setup my day, have my Bialetti expresso maker on hand and post tons of notes around me.
6. Order your magnification loupes (2.5 or 3) while studying for AFK, they take 4-8 weeks to come through. I’ve used Univet, love them. Order them with the headlamps! And make SURE you get an extra battery pack! Do NOT wait till you have to start your Skills prep to get them. It will be too late to get used to them. When you do get them and start wearing them, they WILL be uncomfortable. It’s alright. DO NOT take them off. Leave them on. Few days. An honestly, do not used pre-made eBay loupes … get proper ones.
7. Get full information / research into programs you will need for your Clinical Skills (be it for your bench exams or Assessment of Clinical Skills for Direct Licensing). If possible, get your seat booked to start immediately after your AFK. You might “want” to wait till you get your results, but honestly you don’t have enough time after to get used to the system plus get those perfect preps you need and study for ACJ. Do it right away. Do NOT loose the 7 weeks after AFK to start.
8. You’ve cleared AFK!! Give yourself pat on the back. The easy part is done. Now you have two options,
a. Direct Licensing or
b. Going through University. Getting your DDS.
This is one of the most difficult questions once you’re back in Canada. Should you go through direct licensing or should you go through the two years into university get your DDS? I’m going to try an bring the options to light in part two of this article.