Information on Comprehensive Exams

All programs within the Counseling and Psychological Services Department require the successful completion of a comprehensive examination. Since January 2002, the Counseling and Psychological Services Department has utilized nationally prepared and standardized examinations for each program's comprehensive examination. Specifics for each of the comprehensive examinations are given below.

Students enrolled in the School Psychology program typically will sit for their examination during their internship year. Students in the Counseling Services program typically will sit for their examination during their internship semester. Students enrolled in the Mental Health Counseling program will typically sit for their examination upon completion of 30 semester hours of coursework. Students in the Counseling Services program and the Mental Health Counseling program may not take the comprehensive exam until they have achieved candidacy. All students should confer with their advisors if there is any question about the timing of the comprehensive examination.

Preparing for the examination should begin early and should involve a broad range of preparatory actions so that students may achieve a "professional synthesis" of their varied training experiences. A review of textbooks, lecture notes, and other course materials should serve as one component of the review process. It is important to note that students will be accountable for material covered in those required courses that were waived during the development of the student's Individualized Student Program.

Note: The comprehensive examinations are pass/fail. If a student does not successfully pass the examination, he or she must retake the entire examination during a future administration.

If you have a disabling condition that may interfere with your ability to successfully complete the comprehensive examination, please contact the SUNY Oswego Office of Disabled Students Services, 210 Swetman Hall, (315) 312-3358.

The Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE)

Both the Counseling Services Program and the Human Services/Counseling Program use the CPCE for their comprehensive examination. Students enrolled in either program are expected to take and pass the CPCE as part of their graduation requirements. In addition, students in the Counseling Services CAS-only program are expected to successfully complete the CPCE.

Content: The CPCE is published by the Center for Credentialling & Education, Inc., (CCE), an affiliate of the National Board for Certified Counselors, Inc. (NBCC). The CPCE consists of 160 items, covering the eight common-core areas identified by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP):

  1. Human Growth and Development
  2. Social and Cultural Foundations
  3. Helping Relationships
  4. Group Work
  5. Career and Lifestyle Development
  6. Appraisal
  7. Research and Program Evaluation
  8. Professional Orientation and Ethics

Preparation: There is no official study guide for the CPCE. Since the CPCE and the National Counselor Examination (NCE) are based on the same eight knowledge areas, any study materials developed for the NCE should be useful for the CPCE. Study guides for the NCE exam can be found in the Browsing Section of Penfield Library, in the library at Jefferson Community College, or may be ordered online at the following web site:http://www.nbcc.org/

A practice exam for the NCE exam can be found at http://www.ncestudyquestions.com/ . The NCE exam is very similar to the CPCE and this is a very useful resource.

An excellent book to help you prepare for the exam is "Encyclopedia of Counseling: Master Review and Tutorial for the National Counselor Examination and State counseling Exams" by Howard Rosenthal. One copy is in our browsing collection and can circulate for 2 weeks and the other copy is in our reference collection of Penfield Library.

Cost: See NBCC web site for current test fee.

Time allotment: Students are allowed four hours to complete the CPCE examination.

To Register: The CPCE is administered twice a year (typically April and October) by the Counseling and Psychological Services Department at a site on the main SUNY Oswego campus. Signup sheets will be available in room 321 Mahar Hall. Deadline dates for each administration will be posted.  Payment is due at time of sign-up; students must submit a check or money order payable to the Center for Credentialling & Education, Inc.  Click here for exam dates and further registration information.

 

The School Psychology Praxis Exam

Students in the School Psychology Program, including students in the CAS-only program, are required to take The Praxis Exam for School Psychologists, which is administered by ETS. The Praxis Exam is also required in order for program graduates to become Nationally Certified in School Psychology (NCSP).

Students may obtain a copy of The Praxis Series: Guidance, Administration and School Services and The Praxis Series Registration Bulletin by calling (609) 771-7395. They may also get further information about the Praxis series on the Internet at http://www.teachingandlearning.org/.

Content: As stated in The Praxis Series, "The test assumes that candidates have had some form of supervised practicum or internship experience." Consequently, the optimal time to take the exam may be during internship. The test is made up of 120 multiple-choice questions that cover the following areas:

1. Diagnosis and Fact Finding

2. Prevention and Intervention

3. Applied Psychological Foundations

4. Applied Educational Foundations

5. Ethical and Legal Considerations

Preparation: The Praxis Series: Guidance Administration, and School Services provides a full description of the test along with sample test items.

Cost: See Praxis web site for current test fee.

Time Allotment: Students are allowed two hours to complete the Praxis examination.

To Register: The Praxis exam is administered six times per year. The closest ETS test center is at Onondaga Community College. Students must have their scores reported to the Chair, CPS Department, SUNY Oswego, Oswego, NY 13126. Students should follow the directions in The Praxis Series Registration Bulletin.