Test Prep for ADEX Computerized Examinations: OSCE

What is an OSCE?

OSCE is an Objective Structured Clinical Examination. They are a measurement of diagnosis, treatment planning and related clinical judgment skills of licensure candidates.

The CDCA delivers the ADEX computerized OSCE examinations Dental and Dental Hygiene candidates. Delivered to candidates nationwide,  it is the oldest, continuously maintained, independent, third-party OSCE in dentistry. It was first computerized in 2001. This page will help prepare you for the computerized examinations. For information about clinical examinations, see Test Prep for Clinical Exams.


The Commission on Dental Competency Assessments (CDCA) delivers a high-fidelity ADEX Dental Skills Examination (DSE) OSCE.

The DSE OSCE is the didactic computerized portion of the five-element American Board of Dental Examiners (ADEX) dental licensure examination. It includes scored items and pilot questions. Pilot questions have been a part of every examination given and are integral to the test development process. A thorough evaluation of piloted items leads to valid, reliable and fair examinations for all candidates.


Similarly, dental hygiene candidates seeking taking part in the ADEX examination will face the high-fidelity Computer Simulated Clinical Examination (CSCE) OSCE.

The CSCE is one of two parts of the ADEX examination for dental hygiene licensure, the other being a clinical examination. Like its counterpart, the CSCE also allows candidates to demonstrate their knowledge in an interactive format featuring a variety of item types.

The CSCE OSCE also uses pilots to maintain an item bank of fair, valid, relevant questions.

Item Types

Questions appearing on the ADEX DSE and CSCE OSCE are in the form of many item types. They include multiple-choice (single response); multiple choice (multiple response), extended match, drop down, fill in the blank, hot spot and drag and drop questions. The health-sector testing industry first saw AITs more than a decade ago. CDCA Subject matter experts and psychometricians have evaluated AITs, and believe with their inclusion, components of the ADEX blueprint will be presented in a context that adds increased fidelity with respect to the live practice of dentistry.

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Still need to schedule your exam?

Computerized examinations delivered by the CDCA take place at Prometric Testing Centers nationwide. Find one near you, or create your CDCA account now.