Exam preparation resources

The following resources will help you prepare for the Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination (MCCQE) Part I.

Examination demo

The MCCQE Part I multiple-choice question demo and clinical decision making demo show you how the computer-based testing interface work. They give you a chance to learn about each feature of the software before your examination. The multiple-choice demo includes 28 questions, while the clinical decision making demo features six cases. The correct answers are provided, and any answers that you submit will not be scored.

Please note that the time remaining functionality within the demo is not available in the actual MCCQE Part I. The site staff will inform you of the time remaining throughout the examination.

To become familiar with the exam interface and functionality, we also encourage you to review instructional videos for the multiple-choice and clinical decision making components of the exam.

Self Administered Qualifying Examination Part I

The Self Administered Qualifying Examination Part I (SAE – QEI) is an online practice exam to help you test your level of preparation for the MCCQE Part I. There are three different versions of the SAE – QEI, each consisting of 96 multiple-choice questions. Every version offers the same level of difficulty (i.e., QEI 3 is not more difficult than QEI 1 or QEI 2). While the SAE – QEI does not cover all of the material in the MCCQE Part I, it provides a good example of the type and style of questions that may be found in the MCCQE Part I.

After completing the practice exam, you will receive immediate feedback via email on the number of correctly answered questions along with information on how well you did compared to other MCCQE Part I participants. You will not receive details about which questions you answered correctly or incorrectly. Please make sure you enter your email address correctly to receive your results.

Unlike the MCCQE Part I, the SAE – QEI does not contain a clinical decision making component. At present, you can only use the SAE – QEI to prepare for the multiple-choice component of the MCCQE Part I.

Clinical decision making tips

The clinical decision making video features Tanya Rivard, Senior Test Development Officer & Special Projects at the Medical Council of Canada (MCC), who shares tips that will help you understand and prepare for this component of the MCCQE Part I. Time management, question instructions, scoring and scenario details are themes explored in this video.

Please note that the graphical elements in the video are not representative of the examination.

Write-in questions – what counts as one answer

The MCCQE Part I clinical decision making component includes questions where you will need to provide written answers. To offer extra guidance, the following examples depict what counts as “one” answer:

Examples of what counts as one answer:

  • Electrolytes including Na, K, Cl, CO3 (does not include glucose)
  • CBC and differential
  • Liver enzymes (includes AST, ALT, GGT, ALP, bilirubin)
  • LFT (bilirubin, INR, albumin)
  • Cardiac enzymes (includes CK, TNI,TNT)
  • Urinalysis (Urine R&M)
  • Urine Culture & Sensitivity
  • INR, PTT
  • Lipids (includes LDL, HDL, total cholesterol, TG)
  • Type & cross match
  • FSH/LH
  • Thyroid function (TSH only)
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Lumbar fluid analysis
  • Gonorrhea/chlamydia
  • Renal Function (includes creatinine, eGFR, BUN/Urea)

Frequently asked questions

If you have questions about the MCCQE Part I – for example, at what time you should arrive at the exam site, or whether you should take a review course – we encourage you to review our MCCQE Part I frequently asked questions.

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.

As of 2017, any questions that use the DSM-5 wording on the MCCQE Part I will no longer include equivalent language from the DSM-IV-TR. You will be required to answer with DSM-5 terminology as of 2017 to receive full marks.

For more information, please visit the MCC’s update on its transition to DSM-5.

Objectives for the Qualifying Examination

When creating MCCQE Part I questions, the MCC’s test committees 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 MCCQE Part I preparation. We recommend you go through each clinical presentation and carefully read the related objectives. If you feel your knowledge or skill for any given objective is weak, this could indicate that you need further study in that area.

Reference materials

The MCC has compiled a list of reference books and online reference materials that may be helpful in preparing for the examination.