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News AAPC's CPC Certification Exam Is Now Online

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Here is what various people and CCO students are saying about the AAPC CPC Online Exam around the internet...

From Reddit: "Regarding the online portion, the proctors were 15 min late arriving to the sessions both times.... unsure why, maybe time difference or technical issues. The session is conducted via zoom. You will need a link or password to get into the session (which they failed to provide to me both times) so I easily just clicked on the "chat with an agent option and easily got it after some time.

I needed to present my ID both times and they needed me to scan the room to ensure no cheating or other folks were in the room etc. You will need an external camera (I purchased mine from amazon for 30 bucks and I returned it, so you're not stuck with it). My proctors did not scan my manuals, only asked for me to flip through it to ensure there were no loose notes etc. And no, you cannot leave your seat, you must stay seated the entire time of the test. The check in time overall was like 15 min or so.

You get your results super fast. I took my 2nd half yesterday and got my results today.

You can skip questions and return to them in the same session. You cannot return to a question from a different session, meaning the questions you skip in part A pertains to part A only - you cannot go back to part A if you are currently taking questions from part B.

And yes, the questions follow the sections in the book in order. I've never taken the in person exam, but according to break down of the questions on the AAPC website, it follows that for the most part.

They gave me an overall grade but they did not provide me with the breakdown of my score (7/10 integ, 5/8 icd-10-cm guidelines etc) if you want the breakdown, you will have to email the aapc for it."

Casey Finds on Facebook: "Took mine today. Be sure to account for at least an hour of pre-setup (camera position) question verification etc. ( Make sure you schedule part 2 at least 1:30 after the end of your 1st) Also dual monitors are not allowed! Be prepared to sit scrunched in a small area so they can see your face and screen the whole time. They ended up having me put the webcam on a table behind me at an angle so they could see the screen and my face. Be prepared to have things to stack it on to adjust the height. Glad to have had the opportunity to take the test but it was a rough setup and physically restricting."

Amy Staebell Reilly on Facebook: "I just took the CPC exam online 2 weekends ago. The exam itself was not an issue. It is getting the web camera set up per Examitys specifications that caused more anxiety."

Tracy Reeves Thomas on Facebook: "I took the online exam last week and outside of getting the external web cam adjusted, I loved it! Just not having to sit for 5 hrs and 40 minutes was a big motivation for me. I took Part 2 on Friday and my grades were posted today!!!"

From This Post by KhabibP_56212: "So, my first part of exam was yesterday, at 8pm. Before exam starts proctor reads rules, reminder - you cannot leave room, you have to have external cameras, no one allowed to enter the room, etc. I had some difficulties to connect to the proctor. My exam started about at 8:35pm. I had - 74 questions. After about 1 hour passed I felt already sleepy and tired.
My second part of the online exam was scheduled at 10am today morning. Same standard procedures at the beginning, besides proctor was very annoying, he did not like location of my cameras, he asked a lot to make higher, turn a little bit to the left, right, etc. Then he said ok. But when exam is started he started asking again to arrange my camera differently, it is repeated twice. At some point I asked to speak with his manager, and he said - ok, please keep working, after that he did not bother me. After I was done with exam I had about 25 minutes, so I had opportunity to go back and check some answers. "
Do you have any info on why it is in two sessions? I was scheduled for 4/25/20 but it was cancelled so I rescheduled it for June 6th but I am not sure if that will still be scheduled. Do you think they would allow me to sign up for it online still? Thank you in advance!
It has been divided into 2 sessions because the exam is typically 5+ hours long and they need 2 days to deliver it. I guess Examity (their exam provider) doesn't want its proctors sitting for too long?

By the way, the AAPC refuses to tell us where the sections "split" from Day 1 and Day 2. They claim it's an "integrity" issue. :unsure:
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AAPC is doing a Facebook Live to go over the details at NOON TODAY!!! I just pre-registered for the online CPC. I've failed it twice in the past. I do not do well in a classroom setting for testing. So hopefully what tricks I learn here on CCO and being able to take it online will help me significantly!!
Definitely recommend listening, very informative!
You cannot leave the room during a session; so the exam is divided into two sections to allow a break.
They do not expect examinees to hold bodily functions for six-ish hours. LOL

AAPC is doing a Facebook Live to go over the details at NOON TODAY!!! I just pre-registered for the online CPC. I've failed it twice in the past. I do not do well in a classroom setting for testing. So hopefully what tricks I learn here on CCO and being able to take it online will help me significantly!!
CPC Exam is Now Available to Take Online
AAPC recognizes the challenges that COVID-19 presents for our exam candidates. While we have extended the time you have to take your exam in-person, we are also offering the opportunity to take your CPC exam online.

Our New CPC Online exam will consist of two parts that will be given in Blackboard in two separate sessions and proctored by Examity®. You will schedule each part of the exam separately through the Examity® platform, which is accessible through Blackboard. Exam scheduling instructions will be emailed to you as soon as the CPC online exam voucher has been applied to your AAPC member account.

On the day of each exam session, you will connect with your Proctor through Examity (accessible through Blackboard) to complete the authentication and take your exam. Your results will be posted within 3-5 business days from the date in which your final exam session is complete.

cpc exam online.jpg

These FAQs were sourced from another school that also uses Examity for their testing:

What is online proctoring?
Online proctoring is a service universities and others are using with more frequency to ensure exam integrity. The reality is a minority of students and test takers cheat. Cheaters may employ a variety of methods in order to get ahead on an exam. Proctoring deters cheating by authenticating all students and also potentially recording personal computer activity during an exam. In some instances, Examity provides a human monitor who witnesses every exam taken by students in a course.

Cheating is not the only reason to employ a proctor. Sometimes technical problems arise during an online exam. The proctor not only witnesses the exam, but also provides technical support to get a student back up and running as quickly as possible in the event of a technical problem.

How do I get started?
  1. Complete the online registration process.
  2. Reserve an exam time within the window given by the instructor.
  3. Verify your computer meets Examity’s minimum system requirements.
  4. That’s it. Connect to Examity 15-20 minutes prior to the proctoring appointment date/time.

What are the system requirements to use Examity?

  1. You must use a computer with an ordinary monitor (i.e., a desktop or laptop). Chromebooks, Mobile devices (phones or tablets) will not work with Examity.
  2. You must have a webcam, and you must be able to move the webcam (or the laptop or monitor) to show your entire working space.
  3. You must have a microphone (which is now routinely built in to laptops and desktop monitors).
  4. Your Internet connection must have a download "speed" of at least 3 Mbps in both directions (download and upload). You can test your connection speed at http://speedtest.net or http://speedof.me . If your download connection speed is less than 3 Mbps, find another computer or location with a suitable connection, or ask your instructor about other options for the test environment.
  5. Your browser’s pop-up blocker must be disabled for examity.com.
  6. It is best to limit the number of browser plugins installed.
  7. You are not allowed to wear a headset during the exam.

May I use a tablet or other device to take the exam?
Unfortunately, no. Blackboard is not completely compatible with such devices, and neither is the technology Examity utilizes.

What happens if I miss my exam proctoring appointment?
You will pay the full price for the exam you scheduled and must pay to register again, possibly at a premium price. Please see the next question.

What happens if I register late?
We encourage you to register well in advance of the beginning of the exam. This gives you the most choice in terms of time slots relative to your exam window. Students across the country schedule exams through Examity. Registering early ensures you get your preferred exam slot.
If you begin the registration process very soon before the start of your exam window, Examity reserves the right to charge an additional convenience fee. Contact Examity for more details.

What happens on the date of the exam?
The student will connect to Examity within his or her course and begin the validation process.
Note: it is very important that students remember their Examity security questions exactly as they entered them during registration. Students who cannot answer part or all of the security questions may be denied entrance into the exam and may forfeit their registration fee.

What happens if I forget my login credentials or security questions?
You will not be allowed to take your exam. Therefore, it is very important that you remember your login credentials and Examity security questions exactly as you typed them in order to complete the authentication process.

What if something goes wrong during the exam?
It is important to have a phone accessible (but not within your immediate work space). The proctor will attempt to contact you by the phone number you provided during registration. You may also call 855-Examity (855-392-6489), Option 1 and tell the agent you are having a problem with your exam.
The proctor will work with you to try to get back into the exam. It is important to follow all the proctor’s instructions.
In the event you are unable to finish the exam, your instructor will be notified. We also encourage you to contact your instructor immediately after the exam or after the proctor determines you will not be able to continue so that you may work out an arrangement with your instructor.

What if my Internet speed is not sufficient?
The nature of this service requires a reliable high speed connection. You must find a suitable location in order to take your exam. Understand a public area (such as a restaurant or some library common areas) will not satisfy the general proctoring security requirements. If you have a special need, you must discuss this with your instructor far in advance of the exam.

What should I do if I have additional questions?
For questions purely about the Examity process, contact Examity via their web site (http://examity.com) or at 855-392-6489, press option 1.
For questions about Blackboard, contact the IT service desk (859-622-3000), your instructional designer, or your instructor.

AAPC Chapter Association National Secretary, and BOD Rep Rik Salomon CPC, CRC, CEDC, CEMA
Spoke live via FaceBook today & said AAPC does plan on having more exams available online in 2021 but he had no more details beyond that.
Did anyone took exam online? If yes, which external camera you have and recommend? Trying to buy right now.
Did anyone took exam online? If yes, which external camera you have and recommend? Trying to buy right now.

From the AAPC FAQ PDF:

You will be required to use an external webcam that can be placed to show:
  • Your face
  • Your hands
  • Your keyboard
  • The area surrounding your keyboard (about 10 inches)

So when they say "external", they basically mean a USB webcam that is connected to your PC/Laptop via a cable and capable of being moved around to show everything. If you plan on using your laptop's built-in webcam, that will not be accepted per their requirements. I also doubt you will be able to use an iPhone, iPad or smartphone as an external camera. Everything I'm reading clearly points towards a USB webcam that connects to the same computer where you will be testing.

I've also discovered that the AAPC is using Examity as their exam provider. This Examity PDF covers the full exam experience for students. I also found a PDF from a school that uses them which explains the process.

In the 2nd post of this thread, I've replaced my initial Don Johnson reaction GIF with excerpts of student Online CPC Exam experiences. So scroll up and read to see what they went through. I'll keep looking for more reactions and add them as I go.

Bottom line: You're going to need somewhat of a wide-angle webcam of some sort. I've read that Examity wants the camera behind you while you're studying so make sure the cable is long enough (USB extension cables are also available) to be moved behind you and capable of standing on its own in some way. I recommend looking at webcams online, then looking up review videos on YouTube to see just how wide it captures.

Keep in mind that right now, there is a major shortage of webcams due to the pandemic and limited Chinese exports., so other people's recommendations might not be in stock.

Here's a sample review video of some common webcams being compared.

Do you think is this camera would work?

The camera is not wide from what I saw on YouTube so the 58" (4 feet, 8 inches") cable may not be long enough to capture everything Examity requires. However, you could fix that problem with a cheap USB Cable Extension.
In the online exams, do they cover few sections in Part I of the exam and the remaining sections in Part 2?

For eg., 10000 series, 20000 series, 30000 series etc in Part 1 and say 40000, 50000, 60000 series in Part 2