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My Experience Taking the PTCB Exam

Test day finally arrived
After months of studying for the Pharmacy Tech exam and a few more procrastinating, it was finally time for me to take it. I arrived at the Pearson Vue testing center early, which gave me time for a few final minutes of reviewing the Top 200 drugs and alligation math. Those were my weakest subjects. After rifling through my study-stack of flashcards, I wandered inside and checked in.

The test center
There were several other people in the lobby, I assume they were there for a variety of other exams. The receptionist asked to see my Authorization To Test letter from the PTCB, then to place my index finger on a scanner and show my state issued ID. After signing a confidentiality form, I received a locker.

The check-in was surprisingly fast. As soon as I put away my wallet and car keys, I pulled the key out of the locker and someone called my name to go back into the testing area. The first stop was the proctor area, which is a glass enclosed room with monitors and a central view of all of the testing cubicles. I was given a calculator, some dry erase paper, pens and disposable ear-plugs. The proctor told me clearly to not erase any scratch paper work. She asked if I was ready, then took me to a testing station.

The computerized test
The computer was super easy to use and the buttons and menus were plain and straightforward. The fonts were easy to read and pleasant to look at. The test questions were multiple choice with four options just like I had read about on the PTCB website. There was a time remaining clock discreetly placed in the corner and another screen which you could see how many you had completed. The program that administers the exam is well put together.

My strategy
My strategy going in was to go through all of the questions and do the easy ones first. The plan seemed to work good for me and I felt more ready when it was time to dig into the tougher questions. There were a lot of questions which I totally did not expect, but then I remembered that ten of the questions are experimental and don’t even count. I got done with about 20 minutes to spare, which I used to re-calculate all of my math problems. Good thing too, because it revealed some that I had not deciphered the wording correctly and had initially answered wrong. With less than a minute left, I clicked the finish button.

Same day pass/fail results
The screen went blank for a few seconds, and then another screen popped up that said “Pass”. What a relief. The whole process took about two and a half hours, yet seemed like it passed instantly. Although I knew I’d passed that day, my scores and certificate arrived about two weeks later. They showed up in a big white envelope via snail mail.

The pharmacy Tech test is not easy, but I can tell you that having some strategy in mind will help immensely with test anxiety. The very best strategy, of course is to study a Pharmacy Technician Training program and be prepared.


Source by Keith B Nelson