Passing Standard

Obtaining a score at or above the Passing Standard demonstrates you have the knowledge necessary to practice sonography safely and competently at the entry level. We established the Passing Standard through a process using content expert judgment, empirical data and policy considerations.

Because the practice of sonography changes over time and content of an examination changes periodically, we re-evaluate and update the Passing Standard approximately every five years.

We use judgment-based approaches, such as the Modified Angoff method and Bookmark method, which are based on the judgments of a panel of content experts. These content experts are practitioners in the specialty and, in the case of existing examinations, ARDMS Registrants in the specialty of the examination the standard is being set for.

The panel is selected so that these content experts are representative of all practitioners in the field in terms of various factors such as age, gender and geographic region. The ARDMS Board of Directors reviews the results from the panel’s content-based standard setting exercises, trends in examinee performance, score precision and its effect on the pass/fail outcome, and historical record of passing standards when approving the passing standard.