Initial Certification for Medical Physics

Nuclear Content Guide and Sample Questions

Last verified on January 8, 2024
PLEASE NOTE: List of Constants and Physical Values for Use on the Part 2 Physics Exams
The ABR provides candidates with a list of constants, physical values, and related information, which can be found on this page. While the list includes many constants and physical values, the ABR does not warrant the list as a compilation of all constants and physical values needed on the examinations. Candidates should review the list carefully before their examinations to familiarize themselves with the contents and list organization.  

Content Guide

The content of all ABR exams is determined by a panel of experts who select the items based on a content guide that the ABR publishes. The content guides are assembled using guidance from medical physics organizations. The content guides are general documents, and individual exam items may not appear to be exactly congruent with the content listed in the guide. In addition, since there is only a limited number of items on any exam, selected items will only be a sample from the larger domain of the content guide.
To understand how exam questions are written and learn more about different types of exam questions, please see the ABR Item Writers’ Guide. For a look at the extensive QA process that each question goes through, please see the Illustrated Life Cycle of an ABR Exam Item.
  1. Radiation Protection & Professional Ethics
  • Radiation Risks
  • Protection Agencies & Groups
  • Radiation Protection Standards (10 CFR 20)
  • Medical Use Regs (10 CFR 35)
  • Shielding
  • Professionalism and Ethics
  1. Radiation Dosimetry
  • Dose Terminology
  • External Dosimetry
  • Internal Dosimetry (MIRD)
  • Expected Doses from Clinical Studies
  • CT Dosimetry
  1. Radioactive Decay & Radionuclide Production
  • Radioactive Decay Modes
  • Radioactive Decay Equations
  • Radionuclide Production
  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  1. Non-imaging Detectors
  • Detector Properties
  • Ionization Detectors
  • Scintillation & Semi-conductor Detectors
  • Counting Systems
  • Counting Statistics
  1. Imaging Systems
  • Planar Imaging Systems
  • SPECT Imaging Systems (Including hybrids)
  • PET Imaging Systems
  • CT Imaging Systems
  • Image Science
  1. Clinical Studies
  • Diagnostic Studies
  • Radioembolic Therapy
  • Radionuclide Therapy

Sample Questions

(includes new item type)
  1. How are 201TI and 123I produced?
    1. In fission by-products
    2. In particle accelerators
    3. In radionuclide generators
    4. In neutron activation
  2. A spatial resolution measurement of a SPECT system is performed using line sources of 99mTc according to the NEMA protocol. If the spatial resolution (FWHM) is 10.5 mm in the center of the phantom, what is the peripheral tangential spatial resolution (FWHM) at 7.5 cm from the center of the phantom?
    1. 8 mm
    2. 12 mm
    3. 14 mm
    4. 16 mm
  3. What is the effect of increasing an image matrix from 128 x 128 to 256 x 256?
    1. Improved contrast
    2. Improved resolution
    3. Improved signal-to-noise ratio
    4. Decreased noise
  4. If the minimum, mean, and maximum pixel counts in the central field of view of a smoothed intrinsic flood image are 4500, 5200, and 5500, respectively, what is the integral uniformity?
    1. 5%
    2. 6%
    3. 10%
    4. 14%
    5. 15%
  5. In a gate-synchronized ventricular function study, the color-coded phase image shows a group of pixels in the apex of the left ventricle displayed in the hue assigned to the atria. What is the most likely explanation for this observation?
    1. Global left ventricular hypokinesis
    2. Valvular insufficiency
    3. Malfunctioning software
    4. Cardiac arrhythmia
    5. Apical dyskinesis
Answers for this section:
1. B
2. A
3. B
4. C
5. E
New Item Type:
The candidate must type in the correct response:
  1. If the field of view of a scintillation camera is 20 cm and the matrix is 128 × 128, what is the pixel size of the image? ____________ mm (Round to two decimal places.)
Answer: 1.56, (1.54, 1.55, 1.56, 1.57, and 1.58 will also be accepted.)