NAC Preparation Resources

The following resources will help you prepare for the National Assessment Collaboration (NAC) Examination.

Pre-exam Orientation and Presentation

The Medical Council of Canada (MCC) has prepared an orientation presentation with instructions and details of the exam logistics. Please review this presentation before exam day.

MCC reference documents: We encourage you to review the common mistakes made on objective structured clinical examination stations.

Reference book

Prior to the examination, if you are unfamiliar with disease management practices in North America, you may wish to consult the latest edition of Therapeutic Choices edited by Jean Gray, published by the Canadian Pharmacists Association, as a source of general information.

Objectives for the Qualifying Examination

When creating NAC Examination cases, writers and committee members are guided by the Objectives for the Qualifying Examination, a document that outlines what candidates must know for any MCC examination. For this reason, the Objectives may be useful in your NAC Examination preparation. We recommend you go through each clinical presentation and carefully read the related objectives. If you feel your knowledge or skill on any given subject is weak, this could indicate that you need further study in that area.

Transition to DSM-5

In May 2013, the American Psychiatric Association published the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). The MCC has worked with its test committees to review the classification changes in DSM-5 and update the language in its exam content from the previous edition, DSM-IV-TR.

On the NAC Examination, candidates answering questions asked by the physician examiner must only use DSM-5 language as DSM-IV-TR language is no longer accepted.

Online Reference Materials

The following online reference materials may be of use for your exam preparation:

  • The Communication and Cultural Competence Orientation program on
  • The Canadian Medical Protective Association eLearning program
  • The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada’s Primer on Population Health

Preparation Courses

Unlike the USMLE 2CS and USMLE Step 3 Exam, the focus of the NAC Exam is quite different. Based fundamentally on a different set of unique competencies, the NAC Exam is wrought with unknowns. For most candidates, communication, organization and approach to common medical stations are lacking. Taking a comprehensive prep course, such as the NAC EXAM Crash Course with MedApplications is a great way to get oriented to this very important screening clinical exam.

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