Frequently asked questions for preparatory products | Medical Council of Canada
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Frequently asked questions for preparatory products

Depending on the preparatory product you are using, the access period and exposure time will be different.

The access period is the number of calendar days from the date of purchase or access code redemption during which you may answer questions, mark CDM write-in questions, or review the answer key. Once the access period expires, your test will be automatically submitted, and test results will be generated.

The exposure time is the total number of hours, within the access period, that you may view test content, including test taking and marking. Once your maximum exposure time has been reached, your test will be automatically submitted.

In addition, for the Preparatory Examination (PE) and PE-Lite you may choose to take the test in timed-exam mode or self-paced mode. This will also impact the exposure time permitted. If you switch to self-paced mode, you will not be allowed to return to timed-exam mode.

FeaturePreparatory ExaminationPreparatory Examination-LiteMCQ Practice TestCDM Practice Test
Access period180 days180 days30 days30 days
Test-taking (exposure time)Timed-exam mode:
MCQ section, 4 hours
CDM section, 3.5 hours
Self-paced mode:
No restriction
Timed-exam mode:
MCQ section, 2 hours
CDM section, 1.75 hours
Self-paced mode:
No restriction
4 hours3 hours
Marking (exposure time)1 hour1 hourNA1 hour
Abbreviation: CDM, clinical decision-making; MCQ, multiple-choice questions; NA, not applicable.

Yes, the correct answers are provided for all of the preparatory products. Your results will be presented in a grid format, according to the new MCCQE Part I Blueprint.

We have developed instructions on How to interpret your MCQ test results, How to interpret your CDM test results, How to interpret your PE-Lite results, and How to interpret your PE results. They will also be provided to you upon completing a preparatory product.

The preparatory products give test-takers a raw score that is based on the total number of questions presented and, therefore, has no correlation with the MCCQE Part I score scale.

Please be advised that the preparatory products are a sampling of questions and cases like the ones on the examination, and some quadrants of the MCCQE Part I Blueprint may be underrepresented.

Please see the CDM Marking Help module for assistance with marking write-in questions.

Because the PE and PE-Lite are designed to simulate the MCCQE Part I experience, you must complete the MCQ section before moving onto the CDM section. When you click Finish at the end of your MCQ section, you are submitting your answers for all the MCQs. Even if questions have been left blank, you will not be able to go back to review or modify them after clicking Finish and proceeding to the CDM section.

Once you have finished the MCQ and CDM sections as well as the self-marking module for the CDM section, you will be able to review your answers and the full answer key for both the MCQ and CDM sections for the PE or PE-Lite until the access period expires.

Yes, you can pause at any time unless you are completing a PE or PE-Lite in timed-exam mode, where pause is not available.

You can exit at any time and resume; your answers will have been saved in your Practice Test Portal.

Once you complete your preparatory product, you can review your questions and answers for the remainder of the access period. The access period is 30 days for the Practice Tests and 6 months for the PE and PE-Lite.

Preparatory products are intended to only be taken once, to imitate the design of the MCCQE Part I, so once you complete your preparatory product, it is not possible to retake it or revert it to an unfinished state.

If your exposure time finishes before you have completed your preparatory product, you cannot regain access to finish the questions. However, you will continue to have access to the questions, your answers, and the full answer key for preparatory examinations and correct answers for Practice Tests until the end of your access period.

There are no repeated questions across the preparatory products currently offered by the MCC. You could purchase all 3 MCQ Practice Tests, 3 CDM Practice Tests, 2 PE-Lite, and the PE and would not see any repeated questions. In total, there are more than 800 unique high-quality questions and answers available in all the MCC preparatory products.

The letter indicates the version of the form; there are some minor differences between letter versions (i.e., A, B, C, etc.), however, the majority of the questions between different letter versions remain the same. Version updates happen periodically as each Practice Test, PE-Lite, and PE forms are routinely reviewed to ensure that questions and answers reflect the most recent medical guidelines.

Forms with different numbers (i.e., MCQ-101B and MCQ-102B) contain entirely different sets of questions.

Please note that purchases are nonrefundable. If you purchase an updated version of a test, you had previously purchased, we will be unable to refund your purchase.

You can expect between 3 and 5 response options for MCQs. The list of options will include 1 best answer and 2 to 4 incorrect options, known as distractors.

Our terms and conditions, presented to you when you create an account in our Practice Test Portal or begin a new test, stipulate:

  • The MCC grants to me a limited personal, non-sublicensable, nonexclusive, nontransferable license to use the practice test software and content solely for my personal and noncommercial use. This license is only for my use from my account. Other persons are not permitted to use my account or access the practice test software and content.
  • Test security is important to the integrity of MCC exams, and we encourage you to review it.

Note taking during the completion of the preparatory product is acceptable because you will be able to take notes during the MCCQE Part I.

As a reminder, for MCCQE Part I test centre appointments, you will have access to a white board and while in the remote-proctoring environment, you will have access to an electronic scratchpad. As with all MCC assessments, you may not discuss, copy, reproduce, or share examination content in any way, including from memory. Please visit Test security for more details.

The MCCQE Part I and the preparatory products are delivered on different platforms. The preparatory products are offered through the Practice Test Portal whereas the MCCQE Part I is offered by Prometric.

These delivery platforms have different device/network requirements; therefore, to ensure your device/network meets the requirements for a Prometric remote-proctoring appointment, please review the Prometric User Guide.

The tools and layout in the Practice Test Portal (delivery platform) are similar to, but not identical to, those you will see during the MCCQE Part I.

The preparatory products are useful study tools for candidates preparing for the MCCQE Part I. They can help you develop familiarity with MCCQE Part I question types, as well as testing platform features, such as the highlighter and question flags.

On exam day, you will be presented with a tutorial that will include a walk-through of the functionality of the MCCQE Part I platform. You may review it at any time throughout the exam. For an overview, please see Exam tutorial.

Given the self-administered nature of the preparatory products, testing accommodations cannot be granted. Please note that the allotted time for MCQ and CDM Practice Tests is effectively doubled in comparison with the number of questions presented on the MCCQE Part I.

  • MCQ Practice Test: 4 hours to complete 100 MCQ questions
  • MCCQE Part I: 4 hours to complete 210 MCQ questions
  • CDM Practice Test: 3 hours to complete 14 cases
  • MCCQE Part I: 3.5 hours to complete 38 cases
  • PE and PE-Lite (timed-exam mode): If you require test accommodations regarding the exposure time in timed-exam mode, please send your request to [email protected]. Requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

For an optimal user experience on desktops and laptops, please use a recent version of:

  • Google Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Safari (macOS)

On tablets, please use a recent version of:

  • Safari (iOS)
  • Google Chrome (Android and Windows)

The use of cell phones and similar small-screen devices is not supported. Some features such as hover text and highlighting are not available on touch screens.

To ensure the system performs as expected, please verify that the time on the device you are using is properly set to your current time zone and local time.

Email [email protected] for help with any technical difficulties.