Becoming certified in vascular surgery

Vascular Surgery

Exams Offered

Use the links below to learn more about the following vascular surgery examinations:

  • Successful completion of the Vascular Surgery Qualifying and Certifying Exams is required for board certification in vascular surgery. The Qualifying Exam is an eight-hour, multiple-choice examination held once per year on a single day at computer-testing centers across the U.S. The Certifying Examination is an oral exam consisting of three consecutive 30-minute sessions. It is held once per year in a major U.S. city.
  • As of October 2014, prior successful completion of the Surgical Principles Exam or General Surgery Qualifying Exam is no longer required to enter the vascular surgery certification process.
  • The VSITE is a multiple-choice examination taken by surgeons while in residency; it is not required as part of the board certification process.

Seven-Year Limit for Certification

  • Surgeons who completed vascular surgery training in the 2012-2013 academic year or thereafter will have no more than 7 academic years to achieve certification in vascular surgery. The seven-year period starts immediately upon completion of training. If you delay in applying for certification, you will lose exam opportunities.
  • Within the seven-year period, applicants will receive no more than 4 opportunities within 4 years to pass the QE, and up to 3 opportunities within 3 years to pass the CE. Only one exam opportunity will be offered per year. Failure to take an exam when offered will result in a missed opportunity. The three CE opportunities begin immediately upon successful completion of the QE.
  • If you are unable to become certified within the seven-year period, you must pursue a readmissibility pathway to re-enter the certification process.
  • Please see our exam admissibility policy for further details.
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