Using AOTA Exam Prep/PDFs, NBCOT Study Pack, TherapyEd, and OTExamPrepper
Prior to beginning study program:
Find a binder so you can be super-organized. Print this document and fill in the dates in the left-hand column related to when you are starting and your test date. Put it in the very front of the binder.
Get some blank pages to go behind this document for notes.
Go to com and sign up with your email address. Download the PDF files and print them (don’t study them yet!). Make a section for them in the binder.
Make sure you have the ability to listen to the OTExamPrepper podcasts on your phone or computer.
Print the 16 PDFs (front and back if possible or there are too many pages) from AOTA Exam Prep, put them in a binder with labels. (Don’t study them yet)
Familiarize yourself with how to start an exam on the AOTA practice questions with questions from just one category or domain, and choosing practice or exam mode.
Check out on the NBCOT site how to register for the exam (and register if you are in that time frame)
Familiarize yourself with navigating the NBCOT site and Study Pack materials
Make a study spot. Try to mimic NBCOT exam such as no TV or radio.
I did not time the days. Some days may be short, some may be long. You don’t necessarily have to do them in order if you need what looks like a short day to fall on a weekend, for example. I had exactly 28 days, so I had to use every Break it up with doing other activities between. Listen to podcasts while you exercise, or in the car. This is a serious commitment. If you get behind, you may need to double up.
I included things I have not seen on other study guides, such as doing the OTR exam tutorial, reading Therapyed sections on the exam itself and study strategies, checking to be sure you have proper ID.
If you don’t have time to read a whole TherapyEd chapter, skim the base material (anatomy, description of conditions) and concentrate on anything to do with occupational impact, assessment, and rehabilitation about the particular chapter or diseases. Read the parts about WHAT we do.
I used Therapy Ed 8th Your pages may be different if you are using a different version
As you read the AOTA PDFs, if highlighting is useful to you, highlight important things to come back to on a review day. Don’t highlight everything. Be choosy.
If you have more than 28 days, add in some review days and extra test question days or consider a day completely off. For unstructured review, review the topics you have had the most trouble with so far (worst scores on 25 Q practice tests). You can also split long days (like the Peds one) into multiple days. If you find extra time, study Domain 3 Flash cards, pediatric milestones, and splints.
Each day, you will take at least 25 online practice questions on AOTA. Try to mix this up between “practice” and “exam” mode. You need to get used to taking questions without knowing if the answer is correct because the actual exam is frustrating in this way. After you have finished 25 questions, read ALL of the rationales—correct answer and incorrect answers and try to understand why you missed the ones you missed and why the others are right.
In the notes section keep track of scores on practice questions, topics that trip you up, or other things you may want to add back in to review later.
Each day cross off the things you do and keep notes about your progress. It may help to remove the PDFs from your notebook after you’ve read each section so you can SEE the material shrinking.
Start a page which goes in your binder behind the schedule: In any reading or practice questions and rationales if there is a term you don’t know, write it down in this document to look up later. Write things like “review Glasgow Scale” or “what is the difference in ataxia and apraxia” or “what is orthopnea?” Look these things up when you have time or need a break.
I never ended up doing the Therapyed practice exams because there just wasn’t time. I wanted to do the NBCOT ones because I wanted a similar score to the actual test to know how I was doing, and the AOTA practice questions because I like the Feel free to add Therapyed practice questions or tests into this guide however you think they fit.
Your goal for AOTA practice questions is an average of over 70% correct. Preferably over 75%.
Your goal in NBCOT is passing score, over 450. Preferably a cushion of 470 or so.
Note that in the NBCOT materials it is split up into 4 domains, and the NBCOT test is broken up as follows (Therapy Ed book lists outdated percentages in Chapter 1, page 3):
o Domain 1: 25% Domain 2: 23% Domain 3: 37% Domain 4: 15%