IIP Exam Analysis Reveals Study Opportunities for Candidates

Individuals sitting for the Imaging Informatics Professional (IIP) exam previously had just the test content outline to study in advance of taking the test. Now, thanks to a peer-reviewed paper recently published online by the Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM), there's another tool: score analysis reveals some sections to be more difficult than others, suggesting study strategies that may benefit candidates.

The article, titled "The IIP Examination: an Analysis of Group Performance 2009-2011" and published January 9, 2013, in the Journal of Digital Imaging 26: 378-382, revealed that the IIP exam's most difficult sections were Image Management, Systems Management and Clinical Engineering. Also shown to be difficult were Information Technology and Medical Informatics. The easiest sections were Training and Education, Project Management and Communications.

The article also substantiated the IIP exam as a stable psychometric test to evaluate a candidate’s knowledge in imaging informatics. "The exam provides a significant hurdle for certification so that those passing the exam are well qualified," the paper notes. The pass rate of 86.8 percent was found to be in alignment with other professional certifications.

The journal article was coauthored by Ben Babcock, Ph.D., and Paul Nagy, Ph.D., CIIP, FSIIM – both experts on the IIP exam offered by the American Board of Imaging Informatics (ABII). Babcock was the psychometrician who assisted with test development; Nagy is a former ABII president. ABII was formed through a joint venture of SIIM and ARRT, the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.

Statistical analysis of exams is a useful feedback mechanism for exam creators in maintaining or improving the quality of test construction. The information is also useful to candidates before taking an exam — informing them of how difficult the exam has been on average to other candidates and, in particular, which sections of the exam proved most challenging.

"An individual preparing for the IIP exam," the paper notes, "could look at the section scaled score analysis and draw some conclusions about study strategies. First, the Image Management section is both the exam's longest section and one of its most difficult. Studying this material gives test takers the greatest potential on average for improving their score."