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MSL-BC® Exam Content

Exam Basics

  • The exam consists of 140 multiple-choice questions. Of these, 125 questions will be used to calculate your test score. The remaining 15 items serve as pretest questions, and do not affect your final score.
  • You will have a total of four (4) hours to complete the exam.
  • The exam is virtual and can be completed at your home or office (we do not recommend using company issued computers as there are often company firewalls which prevent the individual from properly accessing and completing the exam).
  • The exam will be administered through the Medical Science Liaison Society’s Learning Management System (LMS) and will be remote proctored live through ProctorU.


MSL-BC® Examination Detailed Content Outline

(Effective January 31, 2020)

The MSL-BC® detailed content outline was constructed from the results of the Job Task Analysis Meeting and a Job Task Analysis Survey which were both conducted in 2017. The results of these provided the framework for the knowledge and tasks important to the roles of an MSL and MSL leader and therefore the content of the exam. To be certified, an MSL or MSL leader is expected to have proficiency in three (3) main content areas, 14 tasks, and 60 steps.

The specific knowledge and tasks identified as important are provided in the MSL-BC® Detailed Content Outline (DCO) listed in the MSL-BC® Candidate handbook.


The best preparation is to understand the MSL-BC® knowledge requirements and their application to the MSL Role. Therefore, to prepare to take the MSL-BC® Exam, one should study this outline and especially consider the underlying knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to perform as an MSL or MSL leader. It is recommended that an eligible candidate use this outline to identify knowledge gaps for constructing a relevant preparation plan. Because of the nature of the exam, there is not one single comprehensive source to go to in order to study or prepare. Choice of study aids will depend upon learning style and current knowledge base.

A detailed content outline serves as the basis for the development of the examination and its test specifications. A valid examination accurately reflects the knowledge and skills required for competent practice. All questions appearing on the examinations have been validated using accepted psychometric rating scales. Subject matter expert volunteers from the MSL profession developed the questions on the examination. The Test Development Committee reviewed and finalized all questions for the examination. Each stage of the MSL-BC® examination development is an intensive peer review process. Each scored examination question has been verified for accuracy, and referenced to a United States published source.