Total Body Photography Certification

What Is TBP?

The Total Body Photography (TBP) Certification was created by the BioCommunications Association, Inc. (BCA) to provide the medical community with a standardized examination process for evaluating professionals who will be performing photographic documentation of the dermatological condition of living human patients.

Requirements for Certification

The certification process consists of three parts: a written exam, a demonstration of compentency and a practical exam-image set.

Written Exam

You will have one full year from the date of acceptance into the program to take the written exam. You may take the test a total of three times to achieve a passing grade.

Currently the exam is in PDF format and will be emailed to you when ready upon your request. After receiving the test document, you will have 24 hours to complete and return it to the certification chair. The test consists of five categories.

The categories on the exam are: Digital Materials and Processes (21 questions), Ethics and Confidentiality (7 questions), Total Body Photography (11 questions), Lighting and Portraiture (7 questions), and Theory of Light and Color (5 questions) for a total of 51 questions.

Although there is a vast resource of information available today on the web, some publications to get started in preparing for the written exam are as follows:

  • Digital Photography: A Basic Guide to New Technology by Jenni Bidner Kodak Publication KW-23
  • Digital Imaging for Photographers by Adrian Davies and Phil Fennessy, Focal Press
  • Biomedical Photography by John Paul Vetter, RBP, FBPA, Focal Press
  • Photographic Materials and Processes by Stroebel, Compton, Current and Zakia, Focal Press
  • Color Balance
  • Color and Color Space

If you are having difficulty finding study resources, please contact the Chair of the Certification Committee.

Practical Exam

The third part is a practical exam consisting of one complete series of photographs of a patient for Total Body Photography. The candidate will photograph a model patient and complete a set of images that will be placed in our DropBox site and be accessible for all of the committee members to evaluate. Please use a model for your photos and not a real patient. It is your choice to have the model covered. Please include a photo consent form with the photos when placing them in DropBox.

The Certification Committee will review the images and if there needs to be any corrections, the Chair will contact you.

Upon successful completion of all the requirements for certification, the candidate will receive a certificate suitable for framing and an invitation to the next BCA Annual Meeting for recognition during the Honors Banquet.

If you have any questions, please contact the Chair of the Certification Committee.

Demonstration of Competency

The second part of the exam will be a demonstration in a photography studio in which the candidate will perform all the necessary steps to demonstrate how Total Body Photography is performed, from setting up the studio and lighting to how to work with the patient and take the photographs, before an examiner either live or through a Skype connection.