Fisdap Testing + Accreditation - What Paramedic Programs Need to KnowBy Rachael Rosen

November 26, 2014

Take this short quiz. If you can’t answer all these questions correctly, we can help! Watch the webinar or read the cliff’s notes below.

Who should review your terminal competency exam(s)?
A. Students
B. Adjunct faculty
C. School dean
D. Medical director

Your medical director only needs to review the exam before a site visit.
A. True
B. False

Which statistical analysis does the program director need to understand?
A. Point biserial
B. Discrimination coefficient
C. Logit score
D. Cronbach’s Alpha

*Answer key below.



Fisdap exams are a valid and reliable assessment tool, and they are predictive of your students’ success on the National Registry exam. We use an established and inclusive test development process that involves the entire EMS community--from EMS educators who serve as subject matter experts when writing or reviewing test items to the EMS students who take the pilot exams.

Because the Fisdap exams are developed with the help and support of the community, we believe these tests belong to you just as much as they belong to Fisdap. That’s why we reward your participation with rewards points that you can apply to discounted or free testing. Nevertheless, our tests are a commercial product, and the CoAEMSP wants to make sure you’re not simply picking a testing product off the shelf without understanding how it works and what the impacts are on your students.

If you’re a paramedic program using Fisdap’s exams, we recommend taking into consideration the following 6 steps when you’re preparing for your site visit:

1. Ask your medical director to review the exam before your students take it.

This can be achieved by advising the medical director to request access via an official work email sent to Mike Bowen.

2. Attend online item review sessions and in-person workshops to learn and understand the test creation and review process.

Once you know how to write and validate test questions, you can become more involved in the team of educators who regularly work with Mike Bowen to write and review new test questions.

3. Run and interpret the statistics and data presented in the Test Item Analysis Report for your classes.

This is where understanding what the point biserial statistics mean will be very valuable and instructive.
It’s important to note that you should run the Test Item Analysis Report on your class, even if you have fewer than 30 students.

4. Flag poor performing items in the Test Item Analysis Report--for either your selected group or at the national level.

Flagging an item in the TIA report will start a dialogue between you and Mike Bowen about how and why particular items appear to be performing poorly.

5. Save emails or request a detailed history of your involvement in item reviews.

Documentation of your involvement in developing the Fisdap exams that your students take--that’s readily available during your site visit--is always smart to save.

6. Review your students’ group and individual Learning Prescriptions.

The Test Item Analysis Report is going to show you statistical information about how the test questions are performing. The Learning Prescriptions, in particular the Group Learning Prescription, will help complete the view of how your classes are doing and identify which topics your students are struggling with.


Answer key: D, B, A

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