University of Nebraska - Omaha
Program Director - Melanie McGrath
1) How many students are currently in your program(s)?
Currently, we have 37 students total. We have 22 in
our undergraduate program, and 15 in our entry-level
master’s program. We always have fewer students in
the spring, as some of our undergraduates are eligible to
graduate in December.
We will highlight one or two Program Directors (PDs) in each version of the PD Update. This information will provide insight on how other Program Directors ready their
athletic training students for the BOC exam and the real world.
2) Do you teach any class(es)? If so, which one(s)?
In the fall, I teach Rehabilitation Techniques in Athletic
Training, and Topics in Sports Medicine. In the Spring, I
teach Introduction to Athletic Training, as well as Lower
Extremity Evaluation. In the Summer, I teach Advanced
Orthopedic and Medical Aspects of Athletic Training.
the format of the BOC
exam (multiple choice,
multiple select, drag-and-drop matching,
etc.). I provide the
Reference List from the
BOC exam to
our library annually, to
ensure that our students have access to every textbook
utilized during preparation.
Melanie McGrath, PhD, ATC
PD at the University of Nebraska at
Omaha since August 2009
3) Do you use the BOC Self Assessment Exam(s) as tools
to assist your students in preparing for the exam? How?
I was lucky enough to receive 30 vouchers for BOC
Self Assessment Exams as payment for helping the
BOC with a project a few years ago. I gave those to
our graduating students, who used them to prepare
for their BOC exam. I now strongly encourage all of
our students to take at least one self assessment exam
as they prepare for the BOC exam. I encourage our
students to take it about 6-8 weeks in advance of their
exam date, so that they can focus their studying on one
or two key areas during those crucial final weeks prior to
the exam. I find the feedback provided to the students
after taking the self assessment exams truly helps our
students as they study.
Our Entry-Level Master’s students take a comprehensive
exam during their final semester, and we prepare that
exam so it aligns with the domains of athletic training
used on the BOC (as a percentage of questions in each
domain). We encourage our undergraduate students
to also take this comprehensive exam to prepare for the
BOC exam. Finally, we recently re-instituted BOC Study
Sessions, led by our ATEP instructors, to review material
during the spring semester of our students’ final year in
the program. However, the most important preparation
that our students have is simply passing all of their
courses and clinical rotations.
4) How do you prepare your students for the BOC exam?
We begin our students’ preparation as soon as they
begin their first athletic training class. We utilize
question formats in our classroom exams that mimic
5) What study materials do you recommend to your
As a way to get the students started, I have them return
to the most recent edition of “Arnheim’s Principles of
Athletic Training” textbook, and use the questions at the
end of each chapter. I find this is a simple way to initiate
the study process for our students. I also advise them to
reference the BOC Role Delineation Study, specifically
Appendix A which lists the domains and the specific
tasks, knowledge, and skills in each domain.