Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

July 28, 2009

That’s what the TV show audience wants to know. And so does ACP!

The college is looking for volunteers to help develop two new competence assessment tools – a knowledge assessment and a professional portfolio.


At this time we are looking for volunteers to write the pilot version of the knowledge assessment. The knowledge assessment will be an open-book, multiple choice exam of clinical knowledge. It focuses on the application of the knowledge and skills needed to solve drug-related problems and provide direct patient care.

We would like to get a good cross-section of pharmacists – urban and rural, community and hospital, new grads and seasoned practitioners – so we can be sure the knowledge assessment is relevant to pharmacists in all types of practice.


Here is what we are asking of pilot participants:

  1. Write the pilot version of the knowledge assessment (70 multiple choice questions, maximum 3 hours to complete). 

    The knowledge assessment will be a computer-based test administered at six proctored sites across Alberta. Selection of the test sites will depend on availability of a test centre and the number of candidates asking to write in a particular location.
  2. Receive and thoughtfully consider feedback on your knowledge assessment results.
  3. Complete a confidential survey on your experience with the knowledge assessment. This survey will gather your impressions of both the test (e.g., fairness, applicability to practice, appropriate level of difficulty) and the computer-based testing processes, as well as possible outcomes of participating in a knowledge assessment.


The tentative date for the pilot assessment is the morning of Monday, Oct. 19, 2009.

What’s in it for you?

Pharmacists who write the pilot version of the knowledge assessment will be exempt from further competence assessment for three years from the date of writing the assessment. That is, if you write the pilot knowledge assessment in October 2009, the very earliest you could be chosen for another competence assessment would be November 2012.

The exemption does NOT include exemption from Audit of Professional Declarations, as the audit is not an assessment of competence.

Because the knowledge assessment this fall is only a pilot and has not be psychometrically validated, the results of your assessment in the pilot will NOT affect your registration with ACP in any way.

The fine print

Please note – we are unable to offer honoraria or per diems to pharmacists who volunteer to write the pilot version of the knowledge assessment. We are able to offer to reimburse mileage costs for travel from your home to the closest test centre for the pilot knowledge assessment.

Sign up

To participate, please respond to Roberta Stasyk, Competence Director.

If you have any questions about the pilot please contact the Competence Department.

Originally published in the July 28, 2009, issue of The Link

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