Best NBCOT Exam Taking Tips

NBCOT Exam Taking Tips


  • Positivity, faith, and love, PRAY!
  • Take care of yourself and do things you love.
  • Celebrate your successes!
  • Stop comparing, and work hard!
  • Be focused on the present moment.
  • VISUALIZE yourself succeeding!! You can do it Pat!!
  • WHAT ARE YOUR KNOWLEDGE GAPS. Let’s master those gaps.
  • Eat good dinner and get good NIGHT REST.
  • Eat good breakfast, plenty of time to get to testing center, GET THERE EARLY.
  • Eat Dark Chocolate.
  • Be grateful and count the ways that you are lucky.
  • “Power POSES!”, V hands for Victory! , hands behind head and open chest for confidence.


  • Textbooks and school notes (use to fill in the gaps of knowledge).
  • Writing our rationales.
  • Get some more pedretti’s in your life (Read your weakest chapters).
  • Study a bit of the OTPF.
  • Instant feedback see the sections right away that you struggled on, review sections that didn’t make sense in the textbooks.
  • Take breaks when you need it.
  • Teach the material to a friend.
  • read the rationales for incorrect and the ones you were like meh!
  • study one topic at a time.
  • Look at big picture before conquering details, what setting are you in? Progressive? General symptoms/presentation of clinical conditions.
  • Trust what you know, devote more time to topics you don’t.


Scenario tips

  • CAREFULLY read scene and highlight keywords.
  • Approach like you was TALKING IN REAL LIFE with patient, Go with what you feel is right!
  • Answer what the question is SPECIFICALLY ASKING YOU!!! PRIORITY ONE!!!!!!!
  • -What is the OUTCOME? Consistency with OT practice and standards and moves towards client goal attainment then it’s good.
  • If you are UNCERTAIN 50/50, DO NOT select “yes” as it as it may lead to NEGATIVE points, only select something that you are 95% certain something is right if possible.
  • Eliminate obvious INAPPROPRIATE WRONG answers first. Click on yes and no’s you are POSITIVE are RIGHT first!
  • Select assessments that IDENTIFY problem at hand or what is specifically mentioned in scenario, look at the problems that the person could be POTENTIALLY have and respond to that.
  • Take a breath before clicking on a choice. Move quickly and swiftly.

For MC Questions

Good Format to Consider:


    • D — Diagnosis
    • O — OT Process
    • C — Context
    • K — Key Words


    • S — Safe
    • C — Client Centered
    • O — Occupational Based
    • P — Positive
    • E — Effective/Ethical
  • May want to try reading answers BEFORE questions, or answering questions BEFORE you look at answers, read ALL answers before picking.
  • READ questions at FACE VALUE, only consider what is in the QUESTION, maybe read the question FIRST!!
  • Skim the question first, read the Q and understand, then go back and find the details!
  • The question is what you should read primarily but dont read into the whole thing if you dont have to. Don’t get caught up in the details.
  • When taking the test, make sure to read the question carefully and pay attention to key words such as “most important, next, and initial.” Also, remember safety first, client centered, and occupation-based.
  • Read questions carefully, “what is this REALLY about”? What is the question really asking?
  • Approach MC with what would i do with this setting and population before looking at answers, REALLY understand!
  • Anticipate the answer, rule out obvious wrong choices before making final decision.
  • Narrow choice to best possible then put each answer through the GAUNTLET (safe, client-centered, ethical, cost effective, Active vs Passive, etc. makes use of your critical thinking)!
  • Determine what you would pick at each stage of recovery (acute, inpatient, outpatient, etc)
  • Answers must be GRAMMATICALLY on point with the question.
  • SAFETY first.
  • If two answers basically say the SAME thing then eliminate them both. Similar answers may be incorrect so watch out for those.
  • Consider OPPOSITE answers, one may be right.
  • ELIMINATE ABSOLUTES like always never all only, there are few absolutes in OT practice.
  • Positive active choices rather than negative ones. POSITIVE ACTIVE vs Negative PASSIVE.
  • “TRUST your INSTINCTS”, pick logical obvious answer if can’t think about it
  • when you select answer, read the question and then the answer, DOES IT FLOW or MAKE SENSE?,
  • LIMIT SECOND GUESSES, if so just review the long questions you did not get to answer. Only change if you completely MISSED the KEY word or gained info from another test item. If possible DONT CHANGE ANYTHING! TRUST!


“You know everything you need to know to be successful on the exam”


“Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose! “

Learn something new everyday!

Know who you are, why you’re here, learn more, trust yourself, and know this is meant to be right now and when you become an OT you will be that much more prepared.

Every man at somepoint in a life is gonna lose his battle. He’s gonna fight and he’s gonna lose. But what makes him an man, is that in the mindset of that battle he does not lose himself. This game is not over, the battle is not over. Clear eyes, full hearts, can not lose” – Coach Eric Taylor

Our deepest fear is’t that we are in-adequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerfull beyond measure. It is our light, not our dark-ness, that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There are nothing enlightened about shrinking so, that other people would not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as child do. It is’t just in some of us ; it is for everyone. We as let our own lights shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. We are as liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

Going in one more round when you do not think you can – that is what makes all the difference in your life.

Every champion /winner was once a contender who refused to give up.

You are gonna have to go through hell, worse than any nightmare you have ever dreamed. But when it is over, I know you will be the one standing. You know what you have to do. Do it.

It is not about how hard you hit. It is about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

Read here: NBCOT Exam Pediatric Questions for Occupational Therapy

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