Special Purposes Exam for Chiropractic

The Special Purposes Examination for Chiropractic (SPEC) is a computerized exam designed for re-assessing clinical competency and licensing eligibility.

The overall test plan includes questions about patient interview, physical examination, neuromusculoskeletal examination, x-ray examination, clinical lab and special studies, diagnosis or clinical impression, chiropractic technique, supportive technique, and case intervention strategies. However, SPEC can be customized to reflect local needs.


  • SPEC consists of 200 multiple-choice questions, selected by a committee of state licensing board members.
  • SPEC includes clinical case presentations requiring that the examinee demonstrate the appropriate clinical understanding and judgments required in unsupervised general chiropractic practice.
  • SPEC requires approximately four hours of test administration time, divided into two equal sessions. Test appointments are scheduled for five hours to allow time for an optional, brief tutorial, an optional break between sessions and post-examination survey.
  • The recommended passing score is 375. Individual agencies may recognize either a higher or lower passing score.
  • Examinees must complete both sessions of SPEC in order to receive a score from the NBCE.

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