2023 Edition

NCE - National Counselor Exam Practice Test

Take this free NCE practice test to get an idea of the types of questions on the National Counselor Exam. Once you pass the NCE, you can become a National Certified Counselor (NCC), a credential offered by The National Board for Certified Counselors. Counselor exam questions cover such areas as assessment, intervention and rehabilitation. When you are ready to prepare for the actual test, try our full-length 800 question NCE Practice Exams Plus that includes online flash cards, exam review and a 50 state guide.

After trying our free practice test below, here is a second free NCE Practice Exam.


1. A counselor intensifies a client's emotional state to show the client the irrationality of her emotional reaction.  What is this technique known as?
2. Despite its age, Kohlberg's Theory of Moral Development is still in widespread use. Which of the following is the final level in the theory?
3. Which of the following interventions is not commonly used in Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)?
4. Members of a counseling group that score high in authoritarianism also tend to score high in independence.
5. If a child is learning to use abstract concepts, which of Piaget's stages is she in?
6. About how old is the child in question 5?
7. If someone is thinking about committing suicide, asking them whether they are thinking about suicide will not cause them to commit suicide.
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8. Under which of the following circumstances is it not okay to break patient confidentiality?
9. You are using the ABC model of cognitive therapy. Which model are you trying to promote in your clients after a negative event?
10. Carl Jung's Theory of Archetypes is still very influential, and several of them are listed below. Choose the one that is not correct.
11. The mean, median and mode are not at the same point on a normal curve.
12. Which of the following kinds of therapy seeks to help clients find their answers to questions such as: Why am I here? Is this all there is? Why do people suffer?
13. A client is 35. She is married, has two kids and is working on a big promotion at work. She is focused entirely on her family and career. Which of Erickson's Stages of Psychosocial Development is she in?
14. Crites is the researcher that first described the concept of "career maturity."
15. A dog is trained to salivate at the ringing of a bell. What form of conditioning is this?
16. All humans have a five-stage sleep cycle and all cycle through the stages in the same order. Choose the correct sequence.
17. The "fields and levels" approach to group career counseling uses one of the theories developed by which famous theorist?
18. What traits originate in the cerebral cortex?
19. A conditioned association is not a learned association.
20. What type of partial reinforcement produces the best response to stimuli?
21. The archetype of the "Shadow" encompasses which of the following?
22. A counselor that decides his consultancy fee job-by-job instead of setting a standard rate is using a variable-ratio reinforcement schedule.
23. Some counseling methods are "product-oriented," while others are "process-oriented." Which of the following is more interested in the product than the process?
24. Which type of memory retrieval requires a person to reconstruct a memory?
25. Behavioral reinforcers always raise behavioral probability.
26. What is one of the most important hallmarks of the Formal Operations stage of cognitive development?
27. What will the standard error of measurement tell you about a test?
28. The four lobes of the human brain are each responsible for handling different tasks. Which of these lobes is responsible for processing tactile sensory information?
29. Which of the following would not be a part of a standard first counseling session with a therapist who was practicing client-centered counseling?
30. If a counselor's role changes from a nonforensic evaluative role to a therapeutic role, the client must be informed of the change as a matter of __________________.
31. Who developed the technique of paradoxical intention?
32. John and Carol took the same test. John got a score of 87 and Carol got a score of 73. To determine if the differences in scores is the result of chance, a counselor would need to know which of the following characteristics of the test?
33. Who has most extensively researched and described the concept of career maturity?
34. The correct order of Piaget's 4 stages is:
35. John Bowlby is associated with:
36. Culture can be defined as:
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37. Cultural norms:
38. Talking about difficulties to purge them is a curative process known as:
39. Which theorist spoke of social connectedness?
40. The difference between open and closed groups is:
41. An advantage of having coleaders for a group is:
42. Which theorist believed a person's personality needs to be congruent with their work environment?
43. Which person is associated with the beginning of the guidance movement?
44. What does RIASEC stand for?
45. Which is NOT an example of a Computer Assisted Career Guidance System (CACGS)?
46. Most ethical dilemmas are related to:
47. One of your clients who is a minor comes into your office with visible bruising and you suspect abuse. You should:
48. Which test measures key personality factors?
49. The most valuable type of research is the:
50. A man comes to you and has been through a series of traumatic events. You have no training or experience in helping clients overcome trauma. Ethically, you should:

NCE - LPC Practice Test

Quality starts with who wrote the material.
Our practice exam writer
Diane Dean, LPC, RN-BC, MA,
 is a licensed professional counselor and educator with 20 years experience in healthcare. She has taught at many colleges and universities, including the University of Pittsburgh.

Stacy Fruhling, LCPC, LCADC, NCC, MAC,
 is an adjunct professor in psychology and counseling at the Ann Arundel Community College and the Community College of Baltimore.

Lisa Slade, MS, LPC, NCC,
 is an adjunct professor in psychology, counseling, sociology and human services at Caldwell University in the Graduate School of Psychology, at the University of Bridgeport and at the Housatonic Community College.


The NCE contains 200 multiple-choice, non-sectioned questions. There are different versions of the test. Test questions come from a pool of questions that have been extensively reviewed and researched for content accuracy and clarity.

Below are the six domains tested by the NBCC on the NCE:
• Professional Practice & Ethics
• Intake Assessment and Diagnosis
• Areas of Clinical Focus
• Treatment Planning
• Counseling Skills and Interventions
• Core Counseling Attributes
Covering the eight CACREP Common Core Areas::
• Professional Counseling Orientation and Ethical Practice
• Social and Cultural Diversity
• Human Growth and Development
• Career Development
• Counseling and Helping Relationships
• Group Counseling and Group Work
• Assessment and Testing
• Research and Program Evaluation