Initial Certification for Diagnostic Radiology

Credentialers and Practices

Last verified on November 8, 2023
An important change occurred in the American Board of Radiology (ABR) certification status of individuals completing diagnostic radiology residency programs on or after June 30, 2014. Diagnostic radiology residents no longer have an opportunity to become ABR certified by the time they complete residency training. Individuals who have successfully passed the ABR Qualifying (Core) Exam, given after 36 months of training, must wait at least 12 months after satisfactory completion of their residency program to take the ABR Certifying Exam. The Qualifying (Core) Exam covers all areas of diagnostic radiology.
Candidates are considered “board eligible” for six full calendar years after successful completion of their ACGME-accredited residency program. A “board-eligible” radiologist has satisfactorily completed an ACGME-accredited diagnostic radiology residency program, and has verification by the program stating that she or he has demonstrated sufficient competence to enter practice without direct supervision. Such radiologists are therefore capable of practicing radiology independently prior to the ABR Certifying Exam. For more information about the ABR’s policy on board eligibility, please click here.
To download a letter clarifying the new process and describing the mandatory waiting period before certification may be earned, please click here.