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PhD/PsyD Cannot pass the EPPP :(

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PsychDr05

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I am reaching out to everyone and anyone after feeling extremely defeated.

I have now taken the EPPP 4 times (yes you read that correctly) with no success. Let me start out by saying the first time I took the test was last March 2015, then August 2015, November 2015, and just today. Since last March, my scaled score has declined overall. It is mind boggling being that my study has been consistent and in fact how I am studying has changed to incorporate more (if that makes sense). I would say on average I study approximately 15-18 hours per week. Yes there are weeks I study less due to weekend events or such but I usually make up that time. Recently, the scores on my practice tests were in the high 80s. Not to mention that I felt extremely prepared for the exam.

What gives?! How is it that my studying has remained consistent, I have good scores on practice tests, yet my scaled scores are declining over the months??!! Honestly, I am not sure what else to do at this point. Does anyone have any advice, pointers, etc. I am all ears.
 

AcronymAllergy

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My knee-jerk response is that if you've been studying consistently for >1 year, and you've recently been hitting the high 80's on practice tests, then you know the material, so that probably isn't the stumbling block. How has the actual testing experience gone for you? Are you consistently running out of time? Having trouble narrowing down your answers? Potentially mis-reading or mis-interpreting questions? Feeling very anxious/flustered and having difficult concentrating? Etc.

Edit: Just a heads up (to all) in advance to remember to not discuss specific test items/content.
 
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Ollie123

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For what its worth, that was my gut reaction as well. Most people have said the practice tests are much more difficult than the actual exam so someone doing that well on them should be doing even better on the real thing (not significantly worse). Unless the materials were borrowed from a supervisor who passed the exam in 1973 (did it even exist back then?) or from some non-standard party...something's not right.
 

PsychDr05

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My knee-jerk response is that if you've been studying consistently for >1 year, and you've recently been hitting the high 80's on practice tests, then you know the material, so that probably isn't the stumbling block. How has the actual testing experience gone for you? Are you consistently running out of time? Having trouble narrowing down your answers? Potentially mis-reading or mis-interpreting questions? Feeling very anxious/flustered and having difficult concentrating? Etc.

Edit: Just a heads up (to all) in advance to remember to not discuss specific test items/content.
My knee-jerk response is that if you've been studying consistently for >1 year, and you've recently been hitting the high 80's on practice tests, then you know the material, so that probably isn't the stumbling block. How has the actual testing experience gone for you? Are you consistently running out of time? Having trouble narrowing down your answers? Potentially mis-reading or mis-interpreting questions? Feeling very anxious/flustered and having difficult concentrating? Etc.

Edit: Just a heads up (to all) in advance to remember to not discuss specific test items/content.

I definitely experience a great amount of anxiety. I have always experienced anxiety when it comes to tests. I must say that I feel that I do have difficulty with the test questions thinking "why is there all this unnecessary information?" Or "why is it to convoluted?" (If that makes sense) Time is not really an issue for me. I am beginning to think that it's got to be the testing experience and/or how I am answering the questions rather then the content.
 

PsychDr05

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For what its worth, that was my gut reaction as well. Most people have said the practice tests are much more difficult than the actual exam so someone doing that well on them should be doing even better on the real thing (not significantly worse). Unless the materials were borrowed from a supervisor who passed the exam in 1973 (did it even exist back then?) or from some non-standard party...something's not right.

The materials I have are brand new. I bought them last year. I find it so hard to comprehend when people say the practice tests are harder than the real exam. I definitely have to be missing something when it comes to the real exam. I definitely think the practice tests are way easier.
 

PsychDr05

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You have to change something up. Tough to tell what from the info provided. Different study materials, practice tests, study strategies.

Yes I agree I'm just not sure what to do. I have all the content chapters, made study guides after reading the material, and taken multiple tests over and over.
 

PsychDr05

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I agree with others that something has to be fundamentally wrong here. I did terribly on practice tests and passed on my first go, and that's a theme on the EPPP thread. What materials are you using?

I used PsychPrep materials.
 

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You might be over-thinking and second guessing yourself. I am a really good test-taker and what I find is that if I studied hard (as you seem to be doing), I only need a very short time on each question. What takes other people an 1hr 30mins takes me 30-40mins. Just stop over-thinking. Read the question, think of what the answer is before seeing the options (if you can't t think of it within 10 seconds), look at the options..and if one of the answers stands out (even if you don't know why 100%.. select it)..and just move on.
 
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I agree with above. Try to relax and think about the answer before you see the choices. If not, look at the choices than listen to your heart. Which answer do you truly feel is right ? What is your gut feeling telling you (A,B,C or D). Second guessing is really bad and I had to stop doing it myself. I am horrible at test-taking, not as in failing, but as in being extremely nervous, sigh.
 

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I have always heard (and followed the practice successfully) that it is best to go with your first choice unless you are certain that is wrong. Second-guessing relatively equivalent choices decreases performance.
 
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eremitestar

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I took the EPPP a couple months ago, and my experience was that the actual test was much more straightforward than the practice tests (the structure was easier, not the content). A lot of the questions on the practice tests seemed worded specifically to trip you up. I found myself missing questions in my area of expertise because there were multiple "right" answers, but one was more right than the others (very Animal Farm). My experience with the actual test was that the questions were more or less straightforward, and I didn't find myself torn between two answers that seemed equally right nearly as often. So, I agree with others that maybe you're overthinking things. If you've gotten really good at the super tricky practice test questions, then maybe you're reading too much into the more straightforward questions on the actual exam. Maybe you could find some retired exams to get a better idea of actual test items.

Also, I had a supervisor tell me before the test that any questions that seem completely out of left field are probably the ones that are under review and aren't scored. I don't know if that's true or not, but telling myself "this question probably doesn't count toward my score, anyway" whenever I was really stuck definitely helped lessen my test anxiety :)
 
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Psycycle

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I don't know your situation exactly, but PsychPrep would not have been enough for me. I used Taylor, PsychPrep tests, and the ASPBB practice tests. I think the ASPBB tests are very helpful. They feel nearly impossible and I rarely scored over a 65, but they helped quite a bit.

Again it's hard to say for sure because I don't know your exact situation, but if I were to venture a guess as to how to fix it, I'd say diversify your study materials.
 

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Also, I had a supervisor tell me before the test that any questions that seem completely out of left field are probably the ones that are under review and aren't scored. I don't know if that's true or not, but telling myself "this question probably doesn't count toward my score, anyway" whenever I was really stuck definitely helped lessen my test anxiety :)
Someone told me this too, and it felt better. They have increased the # of experimental questions from when I took it, so it'll be even more important to put in (hopeful) perspective.
 

erg923

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practice tests in the 8os and no defined areas of weakness/deficit? Got to be anxiety related? I vote for propanalol.
 
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PsychDr05

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I have always heard (and followed the practice successfully) that it is best to go with your first choice unless you are certain that is wrong. Second-guessing relatively equivalent choices decreases performance.

Yes I hear this too but find myself often second guessing.
 

PsychDr05

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I don't know your situation exactly, but PsychPrep would not have been enough for me. I used Taylor, PsychPrep tests, and the ASPBB practice tests. I think the ASPBB tests are very helpful. They feel nearly impossible and I rarely scored over a 65, but they helped quite a bit.

Again it's hard to say for sure because I don't know your exact situation, but if I were to venture a guess as to how to fix it, I'd say diversify your study materials.

I still just wonder if diversifying the study materials are what is needed or is it my test taking strategies (e.g., critical thinking)? However, I have never seen ASPPB tests so perhaps someone at work will have a sample I can look at.
 
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Psycycle

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I still just wonder if diversifying the study materials are what is needed or is it my test taking strategies (e.g., critical thinking)? However, I have never seen ASPPB tests so perhaps someone at work will have a sample I can look at.

The ASPBB materials really made a big difference to me. Just to warn you, they also made me feel like I'd never pass because I only really passed one of them. So don't go by the score you get on them.
 
D

deleted343839

I still just wonder if diversifying the study materials are what is needed or is it my test taking strategies (e.g., critical thinking)? However, I have never seen ASPPB tests so perhaps someone at work will have a sample I can look at.

Academic Review (http://www.academicreview.com/) offers some sort of free trial. Maybe there is a practice exam. You can also get a set of retired EPPP items to practice with.

If you do well on other practice tests, then that's more evidence that your performance is not for lack of knowledge.
 
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AcronymAllergy

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Academic Review (http://www.academicreview.com/) offers some sort of free trial. Maybe there is a practice exam. You can also get a set of retired EPPP items to practice with.

If you do well on other practice tests, then that's more evidence that your performance is not for lack of knowledge.

+1. And diversifying the types of practice tests taken may also get you exposure to different wording patterns in questions and answers, which might help you to better evaluate your test-taking strategies and/or what aspects of the questions on the actual EPPP are tripping you up.
 

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If you do consult with a physician about taking a beta blocker to help with the physiological aspects of anxiety, it might be a good idea to do some practice tests while trying the medication before you do the real deal.
 
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bmedclinic

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I used ASBPP and Academic Review. I'm also a terrible test taker, by our population standard (psychologists). Anyways, I found that the AR tests were nearly identical to the actual test for many of the questions, which made the actual test much easier for me. In fact, it made it so that when I got in there and took the test I only flagged like 40 questions I wasnt sure of, and spent the next few hrs actually pondering those.
 

erg923

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Is I/O still on the test or did they do away withy that content area? If so, where does it fit in these domains? Number 6?

w1 Biological bases of behavior (12%)
w2. Cognitive-affective bases of behavior (13%)
w3. Social and cultural bases of behavior (12%)
w4. Growth and lifespan development (12%)
w5. Assessment and Diagnosis (14%)
w6. Treatment, intervention, prevention, supervision (14%)
w7. Research Methods and statistics (8%)
w8. Ethics/legal/professional issues (15%)
 
D

deleted343839

I used ASBPP and Academic Review. I'm also a terrible test taker, by our population standard (psychologists). Anyways, I found that the AR tests were nearly identical to the actual test for many of the questions, which made the actual test much easier for me. In fact, it made it so that when I got in there and took the test I only flagged like 40 questions I wasnt sure of, and spent the next few hrs actually pondering those.

Same here! I studied with some hand-me-down materials and the Academic Review guides were my favorite. I also used a free Taylor Study Method trial, but I stopped trusting them after I found errors in their practice questions.
 

Oh the Irony

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Is I/O still on the test or did they do away withy that content area? If so, where does it fit in these domains? Number 6?

w1 Biological bases of behavior (12%)
w2. Cognitive-affective bases of behavior (13%)
w3. Social and cultural bases of behavior (12%)
w4. Growth and lifespan development (12%)
w5. Assessment and Diagnosis (14%)
w6. Treatment, intervention, prevention, supervision (14%)
w7. Research Methods and statistics (8%)
w8. Ethics/legal/professional issues (15%)

I took it last week. I/O is still on the test, but they say that it is distributed through the different content areas (like, for example, they may ask a question pertaining to I/O as it relates to the culture of the workplace (domain w3)). Which made it a bit difficult to study for IMHO because it was unclear what percentage of the test could fairly ask I/O -related questions.
 

erg923

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I took it last week. I/O is still on the test, but they say that it is distributed through the different content areas (like, for example, they may ask a question pertaining to I/O as it relates to the culture of the workplace (domain w3)). Which made it a bit difficult to study for IMHO because it was unclear what percentage of the test could fairly ask I/O -related questions.

In your approximation, how many I/O related questions did you get on the test 5? 10? 15?

Im giving a EPPP prep didactic to our interns tomorrow, so...
 

Oh the Irony

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It was a fair amount--maybe between 15 & 20? Of course, I don't know which were experimental questions, but I was surprised to get even that many.
 
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Oh the Irony

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I will add that I noticed some overlap in the content between I/O and social/cultural from the readings I was handed down. So some of my questions on the exam may have been technically categorized as social, but it helped to have read the I/O section as well since they included slightly different definitions of concepts.
 
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PsychDr05

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If you do consult with a physician about taking a beta blocker to help with the physiological aspects of anxiety, it might be a good idea to do some practice tests while trying the medication before you do the real deal.

Good Idea!
 

PsychDr05

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In your approximation, how many I/O related questions did you get on the test 5? 10? 15?

Im giving a EPPP prep didactic to our interns tomorrow, so...

Honestly, I think I only had like 5 questions. There weren't that many.
 

PsychDr05

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I took it last week. I/O is still on the test, but they say that it is distributed through the different content areas (like, for example, they may ask a question pertaining to I/O as it relates to the culture of the workplace (domain w3)). Which made it a bit difficult to study for IMHO because it was unclear what percentage of the test could fairly ask I/O -related questions.

Yes I would have to say that alot of questions overlap in the domains so it's not specifically one domain weighted against the other in my opinion.
 

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I took the EPPP a couple months ago, and my experience was that the actual test was much more straightforward than the practice tests (the structure was easier, not the content). A lot of the questions on the practice tests seemed worded specifically to trip you up. I found myself missing questions in my area of expertise because there were multiple "right" answers, but one was more right than the others (very Animal Farm). My experience with the actual test was that the questions were more or less straightforward,

I took my test in the past month (May 2016) and the questions were NOWHERE NEAR STRAIGHT FORWARD! I found myself ANGRY with test makers to play such stupid games. To earn a Ph.D. from an APA accredited program and internship and having 2000 hours of SUPERVISED experience what need does the licensing authority have to play games. The subtleties in answers were not even critical differences. They played games by throwing in population distractors. I feel very angry. We have more patients than we can possibly see! WE NEED MORE LICENSED PSYCHOLOGISTS! Can we please put some sanity back into the assessment experience? Just ask questions about clinical issues and leave the gameplaying to the borderline situations! PLEASE.
 

LPPSYD

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Edited to say, this is in response to drmarshall's post above mine.

I'm so glad someone said this, because I had the same experience. A friend and I took it the same day at different test centers and were stunned. I could not believe how angry I felt after passing, mainly because I spent the second half of the test panicked thinking that I was going to have to figure out how the hell to study for this thing again. I used Academic Review materials (plus ASBPP CDs) and felt very prepared. I was memorizing the questions/answers at some points. Maybe two questions had similar versions of these questions. The vast majority of our questions were completely out of left field. It was very strange and frustrating, but I'm obviously appreciative that I did pass. Our experience does not seem to be the norm, and to this day I wonder WTF was that lol....
 

G Costanza

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Edited to say, this is in response to drmarshall's post above mine.

I'm so glad someone said this, because I had the same experience. A friend and I took it the same day at different test centers and were stunned. I could not believe how angry I felt after passing, mainly because I spent the second half of the test panicked thinking that I was going to have to figure out how the hell to study for this thing again. I used Academic Review materials (plus ASBPP CDs) and felt very prepared. I was memorizing the questions/answers at some points. Maybe two questions had similar versions of these questions. The vast majority of our questions were completely out of left field. It was very strange and frustrating, but I'm obviously appreciative that I did pass. Our experience does not seem to be the norm, and to this day I wonder WTF was that lol....

I had the exact same experience as well but insert AATBS. The practice exams were much more straight forward. My EPPP had spelling errors, grammar errors, and content that was totally foreign to the prep materials. The wording of many of the questions seemed unnecessarily confusing and mentally taxing. It's really difficult to see a clear connection between the successful evaluation of a psychologist's knowledge and the purpose of such terrible writing.
 
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psychdoc32

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I am reaching out to everyone and anyone after feeling extremely defeated.

I have now taken the EPPP 4 times (yes you read that correctly) with no success. Let me start out by saying the first time I took the test was last March 2015, then August 2015, November 2015, and just today. Since last March, my scaled score has declined overall. It is mind boggling being that my study has been consistent and in fact how I am studying has changed to incorporate more (if that makes sense). I would say on average I study approximately 15-18 hours per week. Yes there are weeks I study less due to weekend events or such but I usually make up that time. Recently, the scores on my practice tests were in the high 80s. Not to mention that I felt extremely prepared for the exam.

What gives?! How is it that my studying has remained consistent, I have good scores on practice tests, yet my scaled scores are declining over the months??!! Honestly, I am not sure what else to do at this point. Does anyone have any advice, pointers, etc. I am all ears.

Don't get down on yourself... I haven't taken it yet, but I have a supervisor who told me it took her 3 times to pass... On the 3rd time (success), while also focusing on studying, she focused taking practice exams in similar testing environments (i.e., going to a public library and sitting in cubical, similar to testing centers), reducing any stressor on the day (had someone else drive her to testing center-- don't need to focus on traffic or driving, just deep breathing), took 2 weeks off to focus on calming nerves instead of needing to attend to patients/clients, etc. Choose the time of day deliberately- when are you most alert? She also said the workshop was helpful and practice exams (look for ones that have retired questions).

Another good piece of advice was to not just focus heavily on the domain A content-- these questions are the most difficult because you often need to choose the "best" of many good choices or the least bad of many not-so-ideal choices, i.e., there's more subjectivity at play. Domain B and C are essentially definition answers and, if you know the definition, the answer is clear.

You will pass. It is going to happen.
 
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psychdoc32

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Don't get down on yourself... I haven't taken it yet, but I have a supervisor who told me it took her 3 times to pass... On the 3rd time (success), while also focusing on studying, she focused taking practice exams in similar testing environments (i.e., going to a public library and sitting in cubical, similar to testing centers), reducing any stressor on the day (had someone else drive her to testing center-- don't need to focus on traffic or driving, just deep breathing), took 2 weeks off to focus on calming nerves instead of needing to attend to patients/clients, etc. Choose the time of day deliberately- when are you most alert? She also said the workshop was helpful and practice exams (look for ones that have retired questions).

Another good piece of advice was to not just focus heavily on the domain A content-- these questions are the most difficult because you often need to choose the "best" of many good choices or the least bad of many not-so-ideal choices, i.e., there's more subjectivity at play. Domain B and C are essentially definition answers and, if you know the definition, the answer is clear.

You will pass. It is going to happen .

Also, keep track of the question topics you keep missing-- focus on reviewing those as much as possible.
 
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I agree others who suggest that the issue is likely not content but anxiety or some other kind of test-taking process. Perhaps do a functional analysis of what happens to you in a testing situation. When do you start to get nervous, when you walk in the door or the night before? Can you sleep? Are you eating well before the test? Do you get more anxious in the morning or the afternoon (e.g., have you varied at what time of day you take the test)? What kinds of thoughts are going through your head when you sit down to take the test? A mindfulness practice might be helpful to let go of other thoughts (e.g., judgments about the task makers) and bring yourself back to the question at hand, though that will take effort and practice. But go through the times you've taken the test from the night before until the end of the test as best you can remember and recall thoughts, feelings and physical sensations. You could then try some imaginal exposure so that you can work through some of that stuff ahead of time.

When you study, are you taking the entire practice test at one time? Can you simulate a test-taking environment as much as possible? What are the processes you use? Do you go through and answer each question as it comes up, or do you go through and do the ones you know first, and then mark the ones you don't know? A few years ago at least, you could "cross off" answers you knew were wrong and/or mark questions to come back to. Have you done this, and can you find a way to PRACTICE doing this?

Basically, focusing on content does not seem to be working, so you need to do some analysis of HOW you are approaching the test, and do the necessary emotional preparation work needed to score similarly as you do on the practice tests. Beta blockers could definitely help, but that other stuff I mention above might help too.
 
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psych1238015

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I'd like to chime in share my recent experience with the actual EPPP exam as well. I found that I had a very similar experience with the questions being completely out of left field and mainly foreign to me. I had trouble even understanding the questions with convoluted wording (even vocabulary I wasn't familiar with and I have a generally wide vocabulary from what most people tell me and even ask for definitions of words I use at times). I am by no means a great test taker, but studied pretty solid for the last three months scoring in the mid 70's across the last few AR practice tests I took. I am unsure if I had some harder version but want to believe that I must not have prepared correctly in some way. I failed by about 40 scaled points (which I can't even interpret in terms of how far off I was or by how many questions I had gotten wrong). I assume I need to change up my strategy since I seem to know the content, but felt I couldn't even apply it to any questions I encountered on the actual exam. This makes me worried for the next try, although I hope to modify my study approach. Hopefully looking for some feedback from previous posters who have had experience. I am reluctant to continue studying the AR online materials I purchased since I found them to be less than helpful, other than learning content (which didn't match up with the EPPP questions) and helping me get good at their practice quizzes and exams, but which didn't necessarily generalize to my test taking ability for the actual test. I welcome any suggestions people can offer since I feel lost in my study approach. I guess in the meantime, I will practice some handed down retired test items not associated with the AR materials, but which are much older. Need advice!
 

LPPSYD

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I'd like to chime in share my recent experience with the actual EPPP exam as well. I found that I had a very similar experience with the questions being completely out of left field and mainly foreign to me. I had trouble even understanding the questions with convoluted wording (even vocabulary I wasn't familiar with and I have a generally wide vocabulary from what most people tell me and even ask for definitions of words I use at times). I am by no means a great test taker, but studied pretty solid for the last three months scoring in the mid 70's across the last few AR practice tests I took. I am unsure if I had some harder version but want to believe that I must not have prepared correctly in some way. I failed by about 40 scaled points (which I can't even interpret in terms of how far off I was or by how many questions I had gotten wrong). I assume I need to change up my strategy since I seem to know the content, but felt I couldn't even apply it to any questions I encountered on the actual exam. This makes me worried for the next try, although I hope to modify my study approach. Hopefully looking for some feedback from previous posters who have had experience. I am reluctant to continue studying the AR online materials I purchased since I found them to be less than helpful, other than learning content (which didn't match up with the EPPP questions) and helping me get good at their practice quizzes and exams, but which didn't necessarily generalize to my test taking ability for the actual test. I welcome any suggestions people can offer since I feel lost in my study approach. I guess in the meantime, I will practice some handed down retired test items not associated with the AR materials, but which are much older. Need advice!

For what it's worth, the friend that I mentioned in my experience above did not pass the exam. He then retook it about a month later and passed it, noting that he had a much easier, more straightforward version that was almost identical to the AR questions we both studied. Very frustrating, but may end up happening to you as well.
 

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Thank you for the words of encouragement, it's good to hear that I am not the only one with that experience. I am a little lost in how to proceed with further studying and am trying to use old psych prep materials handed down to me as opposed to my current AR material. I don't know if that's the right approach, but I find it less dense and more to the point. I also took an old exam (not sure which company) and scored a 73% (with material based on wisc3 at that). I am just worried that if I encounter the same exam I took, I wouldn't know any material anyway since it was so confusing that I walked away unable to even identify what domains questions came from. Do you know how your friend approached studying after his failure? Did he have trust in the AR materials, did he change things up? I know I have areas of weakness and I can work to raise my scores into the 80s on AR exams, but I found that I was starting to simply remember the questions too, although I know I have retained some content judging by my performance on an older exam.
Also, did your friend take it at the same testing site or different? Don't even know whether that makes a difference really.....I am in the northeast and wondering if there is any pattern to which exams get administered. I know I am probably going overboard and overthinking things, but had I failed the exam that had some content related to what I studied, at least I would know where my deficiencies were, with this experience I felt I knew nothing about what was asked.
 

LPPSYD

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Thank you for the words of encouragement, it's good to hear that I am not the only one with that experience. I am a little lost in how to proceed with further studying and am trying to use old psych prep materials handed down to me as opposed to my current AR material. I don't know if that's the right approach, but I find it less dense and more to the point. I also took an old exam (not sure which company) and scored a 73% (with material based on wisc3 at that). I am just worried that if I encounter the same exam I took, I wouldn't know any material anyway since it was so confusing that I walked away unable to even identify what domains questions came from. Do you know how your friend approached studying after his failure? Did he have trust in the AR materials, did he change things up? I know I have areas of weakness and I can work to raise my scores into the 80s on AR exams, but I found that I was starting to simply remember the questions too, although I know I have retained some content judging by my performance on an older exam.
Also, did your friend take it at the same testing site or different? Don't even know whether that makes a difference really.....I am in the northeast and wondering if there is any pattern to which exams get administered. I know I am probably going overboard and overthinking things, but had I failed the exam that had some content related to what I studied, at least I would know where my deficiencies were, with this experience I felt I knew nothing about what was asked.

I hear you. It was incredibly frustrating, even after knowing I passed. I can't speak to anything specific he did, but I know he continued studying the same way and it appears he simply got an easier form of the exam. I think he may have changed testing centers to take it sooner but I can't imagine that matters. I'm not aware of any pattern and would think it's random.
 

psych1238015

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Thanks, it helps knowing that at some point I may get a version that I may actually pass, if I keep studying. I've decided to stick with AR materials and supplement them with old PsychPrep materials someone handed down to me, although some content is somewhat conflicting. I just don't get how the versions can vary so much, seems frustrating and maybe unfair (despite them purportedly scaling/weighing them differently).
 

DrTisMe

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If you do fail the first time you take it, are you allowed to retake it right away? Does this vary based in your state? I'm trying to decide if I've studied enough in if it's too risky to take it so soon.
 

Therapist4Chnge

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If you do fail the first time you take it, are you allowed to retake it right away? Does this vary based in your state? I'm trying to decide if I've studied enough in if it's too risky to take it so soon.

In some states they have a required waiting period, though many o not. Some states also have a process for applicants who fail the exam more than once, which could include a waiting period and/or additional hoops before the applicant is cleared to sit for the exam again.
 
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