Taking the NCE – Useful (maybe) Information on Study Preparation


Everyone wants to pass the NCE on the first try so there is this HUGE pressure on studying the “right” way. What materials do I study, should I join a study group, do I need flash cards, etc. I don’t have the answers to those questions but I can tell you how I studied for the NCE and I can pass on advice that I hear from others. So here is what I know about taking the NCE…

I bought the Encyclopedia of Counseling by Howard G. Rosenthal found here: http://www.amazon.com/Encyclopedia-Counseling-Tutorial-Counselor-Examination/dp/0415933676. I went through the book cover to cover making my own flash cards on the questions or information I didn’t know. The act of creating the flash cards was another way to getting the information into my brain instead of just buying them. This way I had to read the information, write it down, then read it again to make sure I wrote it down correctly.

Once I was done going through the book, I just used the homemade flash cards to study from – removing flash cards as I started to learn the material.

I took the exam as soon as I was able, was super nervous, and passed. My friends asked me what I could have studied to make the test easier and I honestly didn’t know what else I could have done to be more prepared. The answer for me was to remain calm, read the question twice, read the answers twice, then start to remove the answers that clearly were not correct. I got a good night’s sleep before the test and ate a healthy breakfast. No tricks, no magic.

Below are other people’s suggestions for studying for the NCE. I do not personally endorse these or know much about them since I stuck to the Rosenthal book but I thought I would pass the information along. I would appreciate feedback on these if you have any.

Please let me know if I should add anything to this list or take anything away.


Jill Palmer, LPC


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