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Best OCS Exam Prep Materials and Study Resources

ocs ocs exam prep ocs resources

What are the best Orthopaedic Board Certified Specialist Examination Prep Materials?

Clinical Practice Guidelines

Knowing the CPGs is essential for the OCS. Here is a listing of all the published CPGs by the Academy of Orthopaedic Physical Therapy.

Medbridge OCS Prep 

Medbridge OCS Prep has over 500 OCS practice questions and a specific plan for studying. This plan allows you to 

  1. Identify Strengths
    Analyze your strengths & weaknesses with scores for practice areas.
  2. Personalize Your Plan
    Customize the program to meet your needs. Study in groups or on your own.
  3. Test your knowledge along the way
    Periodic re-tests allow you to focus on areas that you need to work on.
  4. There is also a Facebook group that you can ask questions and connect with others

Physio Field Guide

The Physio Field Guide website, podcast, free practice questions, and Patreon subscription ($3, $6, and $15 per month) came highly recommended.

The $3 per month "Supporter" Level includes "Access to Patreon supporters-only content, including OCS test-taking secrets, quick reference study guides, and recorded study sessions. These study sessions will respond to questions received from the Specialist tier of supporters and will be focused on helping you prepare for the OCS exam (but we may throw some more general PT Q&A sessions too)."

The $6 per month "Specialist" Level includes everything in the Supporter Level PLUS

  • Exclusive Content (OCS Test Taking Secrets, Quick Reference Study Guides)
  • Live Study Sessions
  • Exclusive Q&A Priority
  • Bonus Lectures

The $15 per month "Sherpa" Level is a level of support designed to "Cover the cost of our website hosting fees, and we will list your name as a supporter on our website," So it doesn't appear to increase content but gives you a shout-out. But, I know people who just donated because they found the material and community so useful.

Optim OCS Prep Course

This course contains:

  • online lectures covering each body region
  • Practice examination with 200+ questions
  • Examination will be graded and participants will receive specific feedback on areas of improvement
  • Weekly newsletters with pertinent tips and advice
  • Research breakdowns of top journal articles
  • Online question and answer sessions with OCS clinicians
  • Access to 100+ OCS study sheets and infographics

Current Concepts of Physical Therapy, 5th Edition


This has been recommended by people who have passed the OCS. From the Academy of Orthopaedic Physical Therapy website:

The authors of each monograph in this 5th edition have provided a comprehensive, contemporary evidence-based review. The first monograph describes the multifaceted process of clinical reasoning and utilization of evidence in physical therapy practice. Each of the 11 remaining monographs covers a major joint/region of the body, from the cervical spine to the foot and ankle. Each monograph starts with a review of clinically relevant anatomy and biomechanics followed by a presentation of the most evidence-based historical and physical examination procedures helpful in formulating a diagnosis, prognosis, and plan of care. This is followed by a discussion of common musculoskeletal conditions and their related optimal intervention strategies, again based on available evidence, supplemented by clinical expertise when evidence is lacking. Finally, at the end of each monograph, case scenarios are presented to invite clinical reasoning and the integration of the presented material. This collection of monographs, written by well-established expert clinicians, represents a unique and valuable source of information for physical therapists working with patients with musculoskeletal conditions.

Course Format: Online with an option to purchase the print version

Contact Hours: 96 contact hours


OCS Overhaul (

I have not used this course or have colleagues who have, but the authors submitted this information about it:

OCS Overhaul is a test preparation business started by two Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist Physical Therapists, passionate about elevating the practice of Orthopedic Physical Therapy. They created this business with the drive to provide support for busy clinicians trying to study in the most efficient way possible, while gleaning the important skills and knowledge needed to practice at an advanced level in orthopedic physical therapy settings.

The founders (Leda McDaniel, PT, DPT, OCS and Nick Davis, PT, DPT, OCS, CMPT, CSCS) are serious about giving back to the profession and currently offer some free study resources as well as paid resources that include group study sessions and one on one tutoring.

Email them at [email protected] to receive:

  1. FREE Knee Study Sheet, FREE OCS 8-Week Study Plan, and FREE OCS Study Smarter Tips Sheet
  2. Paid product information guide with pricing and scheduling information

Here is a graphic of the packages they offer.

OCS Overhaul_Study Packages.png

Physical Therapy OCS Exam Review
While I haven’t used this guide, it does offer 25 free practice questions which is worth doing even if you don’t purchase the guide. These practice questions are pretty robust, and if indicative of the entire product, it should be a great resource.

I particularly like the OCS Pop Quizes  from It is a great way to quickly review when you don’t have a lot of dedicated time.


ACE the OCS: 100 item practice test for the ABPTS Orthopedic Certified Specialist exam

“This book is a 100-item practice test designed to prepare you for acing the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties Orthopedic Certified Specialist (OCS) examination. Test items were written to feel similar to the actual test regarding their difficulty, as well as question breakdown by body region and content areas. The test taker will read and answer questions in 10-item question blocks followed by a detailed explanation on the correct answer with reference(s) to support the correct choice.”

Motivations CEU

OCS Orthopedic Certification Specialist Exam Prep LIVE and VIRTUAL Course

From Motivations CEU website:

“Dr. Eric Wilson has taught this Preparatory Course for the Orthopedic Certification Specialist exam with an 88% success rate since 2003. This 16 hour self study version includes complete video taping of his 16 lecture divided into individual movies on separate parts of the body. This course includes a complete review of the body by region, with sections on disease processes, modalities and research. This preparation includes more than 150 OCS exam style questions and test-taking strategies. As a former item writer, the instructor brings to light the mechanics for testing and logic for study. While the questions are not actual questions from the OCS exam, they do reflect both the content and style of the questions on the OCS exam.

The live and virtual course packet is now the most comprehensive selection of materials on the marketing including both live and virtual training:

+ 15 Video Lectures Online
+ Powerpoint Lecture Notes Online
+ 10 Journal Article PDF’s
+ Exam Practice 150 questions covering each lecture Section
+ Final Practice scored 30 question exam you can take multiple times”


If there are any resources that I missed (or if you have more insight/feedback on the resources), please email me or comment below so we can make this page as robust as possible for future exam takers. I would even love to add more in-depth information in the other specialty areas.


For the best deal or cheapest price on Medbridge CEUs (Over 45% off or $175 discount) use the promo code PLISKY. For PTs, if  you use promotional code PLISKY you get your MedBridge CEUs for $200 (a $175 discount). This is 47% off the normal price. For students, receive  76% off using promo code PLISKYstudent at checkout — $275 Off

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