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Tips for Passing the NBCOT® Exam

by Cara | Jul 19, 2018 | for OTs , Occupational therapists , occupational therapy , OT , Uncategorized | 0 comments

Tips for Passing the NBCOT® Exam

Why is the NBCOT® Exam so Hard to Pass?

Today’s guest blogger is Shannon Corcoran, OTR. Thank you to for the following tips.

As someone who had to take the NBCOT® Exam three times, I can speak on just how hard it is to pass that exam. Unlike other exams, students took during their academic tenures, the NBCOT® Exam is rigid, requiring you to adopt the mindset of the individuals who wrote the questions in order to pass. It’s arduous and of course, time-consuming. Below, we unpack just why this test is so hard to prepare for.


Understand Test Anxiety: Most of us know it, all of us loathe it. It’s that feeling of not thinking you’re prepared no matter how hard you prepare. If you’re like me, it can sometimes be debilitating. The best way to fix it? Trust in yourself and believe in the work you did. Before you exam date, get into a routine of saying positive affirmations to yourself as you go through practice exams, if meditating or yoga are your things, integrate that into your study routine to help you feel centered and present.

Know There Will be a Lot of Material: It’s no secret that the NBCOT® Exam covers a breadth of material. The amount of topics students have to learn can often feel overwhelming, making the idea of passing seem impossible. Break down the content to make it seem feasible, come up with reasonable short and long-term goals and of course, make a study schedule. You’ll be amazed to find out that the content is actually quite manageable. Of course though, don’t forget to do tons of practice questions too.

New Grads…..take our Pediatric OT Primer course….on-demand

Do not Overthink or Underthink: It’s easy to get wrapped up in the questions and tons of content on the exam or to skim over questions without thinking them through. To make this process easier, read the question, and immediately ask yourself what it’s asking. The answer you pick should only relate to what you just thought to yourself.

While the NBCOT® Exam will always be hyped up to be nearly impossible to pass, there are certainly ways to help make it a bit manageable. Follow these strategies amongst others, and you should be good to pass on your first attempt with ease.

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