Certified Tissue Bank Specialists (CTBS) Exam & Recertification Program
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
If I pass the CTBS Examination, am I considered an AATB Individual Member? No, if you pass the CTBS exam you become certified as a Tissue Bank Specialist (CTBS.) AATB Individual Membership is obtained and maintained by completing and submitting the application form with the appropriate individual membership fee each year.
Do I have to be an AATB Individual Member to sit for the exam and/or maintain my CTBS certification? If not, what are the benefits of membership? No, you don’t have to be an Individual member of AATB. However, as a member you will receive a discounted examination fee, as well as registration discounts for all AATB educational events, including online education and webinars. In addition, membership allows you to run for office and serve on AATB committees.
Is the exam held at more than one location?
Yes, in addition to the exam being held each year at the AATB Annual Meeting, and at the same time, various tissue banks host the exam in their respective states and/or countries. This is done on a volunteer basis and if space allows, these banks will offer seating to examinees from other tissue banks. Exam registration is done through the AATB website, on a first-come, first-serve basis, regardless of where you take the exam. The exam site list is available on the AATB website and is updated when additional sites become available.
Is the exam offered more than once a year?
No, not at this time. However, we are currently investigating the option of offering the exam on-line several times per year in the future.
If I sit for the exam at the main site, do I need to register separately, and pay to attend the AATB Annual Meeting?
Yes, you must register separately and pay the fee to attend the annual meeting.
I noticed that the AATB Standards for Tissue Banking contain Reproductive Tissue Banking references. How many Reproductive questions will be on the exam?
At this time, there are no questions related to Reproductive Tissue Banking on the CTBS Exam. A separate Reproductive Exam may be offered again in the future, as need dictates.
I attended the AATB Training Course. Am I eligible for CEUs toward my certification?
No, because you were not certified as a CTBS when you attended the Training Course. At this time, a CTBS may not earn continuing education for this exam prep course. The AATB offers many other opportunities for continuing education including attending live meetings, webinars, and accessing presentations through the Education Passport on the AATB website.
When will I receive my exam results? Where will they be sent?Do they have to go to my employer?
Exam results are mailed six to eight weeks after you sit for the exam and are sent to the address you indicate when you register online. If after that time, you determine that you want your exam results sent to a different address, please notify the AATB Executive Office
Note: Exam results will not be mailed unless your qualification/ employment verification letter and exam fee have been received at the AATB office.
I just found out that AATB has not received my payment and it’s too late to send it via regular mail. Can I still sit for the exam?
Yes. However, If at all possible, bring the payment with you. MC, VISA and AMEX are accepted.
If I oversleep and arrive late will I be allowed to sit for the exam?
Yes, your tardiness will be recorded. You will not be given additional time to make up for the time lost due to your late arrival.
What is the cut-off score? Why does it take six to eight weeks to mail or receive the examination results?
Exam questions are determined by the American Board of Tissue Banking (ABTB) and randomly chosen from the test question “item bank”. Consistency is ensured by validating each item (test question) and adjusting the cut off-score up or down, as needed. The ABTB and the contracted testing firm review each item after the initial test scoring for correctness, performance and difficulty level. The cut-off score is not arbitrary, but is determined by the overall test difficulty. Test questions that do not perform well are deleted from the item bank or flagged for rewrite. In addition, examinee comments from the critique forms are reviewed and test question revisions are made where deemed necessary. After this lengthy review process is complete, each test is scored again and the testing firm provides the final results to AATB. Individual test results are then prepared by AATB and provided to each examinee.
When will I receive my CTBS certificate? Why didn't it come with my results?
Exam results may take up to eight weeks to compile and are sent to the address you indicated on the exam application form. If your address changes after you registered for the exam, it is your responsibility to notify the AATB Executive Office to ensure you receive your exam results in a timely manner.
How do I determine when it is time for me to recertify?
Certification lasts for three years and expires on the last day of your 3-year certification cycle. For example, if you sat for the exam on October 5, 2013 you would need to recertify by December 31, 2016. Your subsequent recertification would be due by December 31, 2019, and so on. AATB will send you recertification reminders during the third year of your certification cycle. Beginning in July 2013 you will have the option of logging in to your AATB account to check when you are due to recertify.
How do I recertify?
You must earn 40 CEUs before you can recertify. Recertification will be done electronically beginning in July 2013. You will be required to upload a list of your continuing education activities and submit your recertification fee at one time, but only during the third year of your certification cycle. Recertification fees are $75 for members and $150 for non-members (or if you do not work for an AATB Accredited Institution). You will be required to keep the supporting documentation associated with the CEU activities you submit. AATB reserves to right to perform random audits of supporting documentation associated with recertification applications each year.
I no longer work for the company that paid for my initial certification. Can I still maintain my certification?
Your certification belongs to you, and is carried with you as long as you continue to meet the recertification requirements.
I work for a facility that is both a Tissue and Eye Bank and I recently began working in eye banking and would like to maintain my CTBS certification. Will you accept CEUs from EBAA?
Yes, we accept CEUs associated with education offerings from EBAA, as well as AABB.
While attending an AATB meeting I noticed that the various sign-up sheets requested my license number and/or partial Social Security Number (SSN) and full birth date. If I don’t provide this information will I still get CEUs?
If another organization or certifying body informs AATB they need this information, we may request it so you can obtain your CEUs.
AATB submits applications for its meeting attendees to some organizations for Continuing Education Units and not others. How do I find out which organizations? How do I get credit if AATB does not submit the application?
Our meeting brochures and/or meeting pocket agendas have a Continuing Education section. This section indicates the Organization, the amount of CEUs/CMEs awarded and if AATB will apply for retroactive approval. This information is also posted on our website. As an added service to our meeting attendees, AATB submits the applications to external organizations, which accept our programs in support of continued education requirements. We apply for continuing education credits for Physicians, Registered Nurses, and Certified Eye Bank Specialists. Applicable sign-up sheets are provided at each Meeting location. Many organizations only require the attendee to submit a Certificate of Attendance and Agenda. If you need a Certificate of Attendance, complete and submit the Meeting Evaluation within the specified timeframe following each meeting. Your certificate will arrive via email shortly after completing the evaluation. It is sent to the email address you provided during meeting registration. If you do not receive it, please check your SPAM/JUNK email folder.
I require Continuing Education (CE) from the various organizations listed at your registration desk. What must I do to make sure I get credit for all of them? The requirements for each organizational entity follow. Each certificate is provided separately.
- CTBS/CRCS (CEUs): Complete online Meeting Evaluation by the required deadline.
- MD/PA (CMEs): Endorse Sign-up Sheet, including your partial Social Security Number and full birth date and complete online Meeting Evaluation by the required deadline.
- RN (CEUs/Contact Hours): Endorse sign-up sheet including Nursing License Number, complete pink nursing form, and complete online Meeting Evaluation by the required deadline.
- Transplant Coordinators (CEPTCs): Complete online Meeting Evaluation by the required deadline and submit Meeting Certificate and Agenda to ABTC for credit.
- Certified Eye Bank Specialists (CEUs): endorse Sign-up Sheet; complete and submit the EBAA Continuing Education Request Form within 60 days to EBAA; and complete online Meeting Evaluation Report by the required deadline.
How do I determine the amount of CEUs awarded for a “session” at an AATB meeting?
One CEU is awarded for every 50 minutes of AATB educational content. Lunches, breaks, business meetings and Presidential Addresses do not apply toward Continuing Education Units. MD/PA (CMEs), ABTC (CEPTCs), and EBAA (CEUs) compute credits at face value, i.e., one hour equals one CEU.
How often can I submit CEUs for review and when will I get my results?
Beginning July 1, 2013 you will be required to submit your CEUs together with your recertification fee and verification of the CTBS Code of Conduct at one time. If approved, you will receive notification via email within 30 days that your certification has been renewed for an additional 3 years.
I have more than enough CEUs to recertify. Can the additional CEUs from this recertification period be applied to my next recertification cycle? No, continuing education units in excess of the required 40 may not be carried over to the next recertification cycle.
I’m afraid that I will not have enough CEUs to recertify. Can I have more time?
Because certification is a time sensitive issue, additional time cannot be granted to obtain the required number of CEUs. The most common mistake is assuming that attendance at large meetings is the only way to obtain CEUs. AATB offers a variety of online learning opportunities through the Education Passport on the AATB website. The key is not to wait until the last minute to earn the necessary CEUs.
Please contact Jon Boyd firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.