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5 Things You Must Know About The NBCOT Process

by Matt Alpert, OTR/L

young-woman-doctor-older-man-patient-smiling-1

Recently, I was asked to take part in a Q&A session with a new graduate occupational therapist about the NBCOT. Considering I was just in school, it's interesting being on the opposite end of the spectrum. I decided to create a series of articles discussing the hottest topics before adding my own personal experiences. Below are some of the questions that came up.  

Can you explain the process of signing up for the NBCOT?

While signing up to take the NBCOT is not difficult, it should be clearly understood. There are five steps that break down the process, outlined below. 

Step 1: Create an account on MyNBCOT

First things first, you'll want to create your account. You can do so by clicking here. Once you've created your account, complete the online application process for taking the exam. Be sure to give yourself enough time to finish the application in one sitting; it cannot be saved and finished at a later time.

Step 2: Determine if you are eligible to take the exam

Here is your checklist!

  • You have graduated from an accredited/approved Entry-level Masters or Doctoral occupational therapy program.
  • All required fieldwork has been completed.
  • You have submitted an official transcript with graduation date and degree earned or submitted an NBCOT Academic Credential Verification Form (ACVF).
  • You abide by the NBCOT Code of Practice Standards in addition to the NBCOT Code of Conduct.

Step 3: Submit your academic verification documents

This will either be your official transcript or the ACVF form.

Step 4: Wait for the Authorization to Test (ATT) Letter

The Authorization to Test (ATT) letter is what allows you to officially sign up at a Prometric testing center. Be mindful once you receive this, the ATT is only valid for 90 days before you'll have to request to reactivate it!

Step 5: Scheduling your NBCOT exam, after receiving your ATT

Once you've officially scheduled your NBCOT exam, it's time to consider when you'll actually take the exam. At this point in the process, you've already started studying. But how much studying is enough? For most, we recommend setting aside 9-10 weeks to prepare and work through several practice exams.

Memorize, take notes, and work through your weakest areas to make sure you are confident with all of the material. Then, think about when your brainpower is at its peak, and schedule your exam within that timeframe. The NBCOT is a 4-hour exam, you'll want to make sure you're well-rested!

Closing Thoughts

When learning about the NBCOT, you will find the NBCOT Certification Handbook to be useful. Refer to this guide before creating your MyNBCOT account and take the time to learn more about the ACVF. Also, NBCOT provides a Procedure Checklist to make sure you have all your bases covered when signing up for your exam.

If you have any additional comments about the NBCOT that were not answered in this Q&A, drop them in the comments below!

Wondering which OT setting is the right one for you? Press the link below to find out!

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