Applicants will be scheduled for the examination after they apply for the credential with the department. The department will coordinate with the applicant to determine the date and time you wish to take the examination.
The department is using a new provider, Examsoft, to administer the examination. This will allow candidates to take their examination on their home computer and not travel to a testing location. Further information will be provided upon scheduling the exam. The exam fee will be paid directly to the Department of Health.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Who may take the computer based exam for certified counselor and certified adviser?
We will send the applicant an email approval informing them of their eligibility to take the exam. To take the exam, the applicant must:
- Submit the application
- Pay the application fee and exam fee
- Set up the examination time with the department.
- When, where and how will the exam be administered?
Examsoft will allow the candidates to take this examination on their home computer. It is monitored by the camera and microphone. Further instructions on taking the exam will be provided when it is scheduled. It is an online-only exam.
You cannot register for an exam with less than 24 hour's notice.
- How do I request ADA accommodations for an exam?
You must submit requests for ADA accommodations at the time you schedule the examination with the department. All requests are handled on a case-by-case basis.
- How do I reschedule or cancel an exam?
If you need to cancel or reschedule an exam you must contact the Department of Health, Counselor Program by email.
- How many questions are on the exam?
The exam will have 50 multiple choice questions.
- How long does the exam take?
You're allowed two hours to complete the exam.
- Can I bring reference materials and my own notes to the exam?
No. You're not allowed to bring any materials to the examination.
- How much does the exam cost?
The cost of the exam is $85. You must pay the exam fee to the department.
- What topics are covered on the exam?
The exam covers risk assessment, ethics, appropriate screening using the global assessment of functioning scale, client referral and Washington State law.
- What should I study to prepare for the exam?
Exam content will come from a variety of sources, the primary references for the exam are:
- Chapter on the Global Assessment of Functioning in Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), Fourth Edition, American Psychiatric Association.
- Washington State Law (available at libraries or online) .
- National Institutes of Mental Health Publications on Disorders, Populations, and Other booklets, easy-to-read guides, fact sheets available free of charge.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Suicide Prevention information is available free of charge.
- Caring for women subjected to violence: a WHO curriculum for training health care providers presentations available free of charge.
- Are there sample exam questions?
Below are a few samples of exam questions. These samples will not be on the exam.
- According to the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), in some settings, scales in addition to the Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) may be useful. These other scales include all of the following EXCEPT the:
A. Defensive Functioning Scale
B. Psychometric Functioning Scale
C. Social and Occupational Functioning Scale
D. Global Assessment of Relational Functioning
- According to the Counselor statute, RCW 18.19, which of the following persons is EXEMPT from the requirement to be credentialed in the state of Washington?
A. A person practicing peer counseling
B. A student practicing counseling as part of a course at a university
C. A person practicing counseling under the auspices of their church
D. All of the above
- According to the Counselor statute, RCW 18.19, which one of the following is required to complete continuing education?
A. Certified adviser
B. Registered counselor
C. Registered hypnotherapist
D. Certified human services counselor
- According to Chapter 70.02 RCW - Medical Records, when an authorization permits the disclosure of healthcare information to an employer of a patient for purposes other than payment, unless renewed the authorization shall expire after:
A. 60 days
B. 90 days
C. 180 days
D. One year
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all of the following are challenging issues within a person’s community that contribute to suicide risk except:
A. Loss of relationships
C. Community Violence
D. Lack of access to health care
Answers: 1-B, 2-D, 3-A, 4-D, 5-A
- What is the passing score for the exam?
State law requires certified counselors and certified advisers to pass an examination in risk assessment, ethics, appropriate screening and referral, and Washington State law. (Chapter RCW 18.19) The legislature established that applicants must pass the examination to become credentialed. A passing score is 70 percent.
- When will I receive exam results?
We will send the exam results by email to the email address on file with the Department of Health within five business days.
- If I don't pass the exam, when can I retake it?
You must wait at least one week from the date of your last exam.
- Can I find out which questions I missed on the exam?
State law prohibits us from releasing examination questions. (RCW 42.56.250) Whether you pass or fail the exam, we cannot provide you with the questions you answered incorrectly.