Guiding Candidate Exam Preparation

The information available here can help faculty members who are assisting candidates in preparing to take an exam.

An academic advisor might suggest to a candidate that he or she take the following steps in preparing to take an exam:

  1. Begin by completing the Student Profile Worksheet, where candidates record their academic background, required certification exam(s), and testing history, and complete a questionnaire about preparation steps for testing.
  2. Complete the mapping the exam framework to courses taken activity for the exam(s) the candidate will be taking. This activity involves the candidate reviewing the exam framework and his/her coursework to date, and recording on a worksheet whether his/her courses have covered the knowledge and skills described by each exam competency.
  3. Complete the Study Plan Worksheet. This activity will help the candidate organize the information gathered in the Student Profile Worksheet into an actionable plan.
  4. Meet with his or her academic advisor to review the completed worksheets and exam preparation steps taken to date, and to obtain assistance in evaluating his or her readiness to test.

When meeting with a candidate to review the completed material listed above, an academic advisor may wish to take the following steps:

  1. Review the completed Student Profile Worksheet to learn the candidate's academic background, exam preparation activities, and testing history.
  2. Review the completed worksheet for mapping the exam framework to the courses the candidate has taken to determine if he or she has completed sufficient coursework to take the exam. If there are competencies for which the candidate has not studied the knowledge and skills being assessed, the advisor may wish to recommend that the candidate take additional courses before testing.
  3. Review the Study Plan Worksheet and the Student Profile Worksheet to guide the candidate in gathering and using preparation materials and, if needed, learning or reviewing exam content and test-taking strategies.

The meeting may also help the advisor clarify with the candidate the role the exams play in the certification process, the content and structure of the exams, expectations for performance on the exam, or available program and institutional resources.