PLAR Exams

After completing Stage 1, the Paper-Based Assessment, PLAR applicants who have sufficient education and experience to move forward in the process are eligible to sit two PLAR exams (Stages 2 and 3 of the PLAR program) within one year of receiving notification of successful completion of Stage 1.

  • Stage 2: Ontario Biomedical exam on foundational medical knowledge of body systems and their interactions, body functions, dysfunctions and disease states.
  • Stage 3: Ontario Clinical Sciences exam on necessary naturopathic competencies for the treatment of patients.

Graduates of a CNME-accredited program complete identical examinations before they are eligible to register with the College.

Exam format

Both are multiple-choice exams (i.e., exams which require the test taker to choose the correct answer for each question, from a list of possible answers) comprised of case-based or “patient scenario” questions and independent questions. The Ontario Biomedical exam is 150 questions over three hours. The Ontario Clinical Sciences exam is 200 questions over four hours. Both examinations are administered by the College’s contracted third-party test administration company, Yardstick Testing Strategies.

You have three opportunities to successfully complete each exam and they must be completed in the order noted above. PLAR applicants must attempt Stage 3 within one year of receiving notification of successful completion of Stage 2 of the PLAR program. After two unsuccessful attempts of an exam, you will be required to complete additional training or education, as determined by a panel of the Registration Committee, before being allowed to make a third attempt of the exam. Exam decisions are appealable in accordance with the Exam Appeals Policy.

Study reference guides

Below you will find guides that provide information on testable content, reference texts and sample questions.

Ontario Biomedical Reference Guide
Ontario Clinical Sciences Reference Guide


The following fees are charged for each attempt of the PLAR exams:

PLAR Exam 1—Biomedical Exam: $450 + HST
PLAR Exam 2—Clinical Sciences Exam: $850 + HST


To learn more about about the PLAR exams, or about the PLAR program in general, please review the PLAR Applicant Handbook.