Item Writing

Introduction

If you want to have an impact on your profession, are an experienced professional, and would like to supplement your income, the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the Center for Credentialing & Education (CCE) are recruiting item writers for their examinations. Please explore the examinations and the requirements for item writers.

Selected participants must complete a complimentary item writing training to learn:

  • how to critique multiple choice items.
  • how a test blueprint is established and used for item writing.
  • how to write effective item stems and distractors.
  • how psychometric methods are used for evaluating test items.
  • how to write items that measure specific counseling theories and job tasks.
  • how to write items that measure knowledge and skills at different cognitive levels.
  • how to properly cite test items.

How to apply:

In order to be considered for a position, please identify the exam(s) you are interested in and submit a copy of your current CV, a copy of your active license if applicable, and a professional letter of endorsement from an employer or colleague to itemwriter@cce-global.org.

NBCC will review each applicant’s submitted materials and will direct them to a survey to determine how their skills and expertise align with the requirements of the examination. After completion of the survey, invitations will be sent out on an individual basis to attend follow-up trainings and meetings. Time commitments can vary. Item/narrative writers will be compensated for each item/narrative as outlined in the agreement with NBCC. Most of the training and work on items/narratives will be done virtually. Some of the training and work may take place at the NBCC office in Greensboro, North Carolina, and NBCC will cover travel and accommodation expenses during your trip. If you need additional information, please email itemwriter@cce-global.org.

NCMHCE

The National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE) measures an individual’s ability to apply and evaluate the knowledge necessary to perform as a minimally competent professional counselor. It does so by assessing an entry-level clinical mental health counselor’s ability to apply knowledge of theoretical and skill-based tenets through response to clinical case studies.

The National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the Center for Credentialing & Education (CCE) are excited to announce the new format of the NCMHCE. This new format of the NCMHCE will be composed of case studies consisting of a clinical narrative and multiple-choice questions. Clinical narratives will be used as examination prompts for writing test items to measure an individual’s ability to apply the knowledge necessary to perform as a minimally competent counselor. Clinical narratives on the NCMHCE represent identified clients with presenting concerns and/or diagnoses frequently encountered by practicing clinical mental health counselors.

We are currently contracting clinical narrative writers and item writers for the NCMHCE.

Narrative Writers

Requirements:

  • A minimum of a master’s degree in counseling from a program accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) or a regionally accredited university counselor education program
  • Licensure as a clinical mental health counselor
  • Experience as a provider of clinical counseling services, including assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up for 10 or more clients per week for two or more years
  • Demonstrated excellence with English writing skills
  • Ability to accept constructive criticism when working with others
  • Should not be involved in test prep or other educational and/or required training

Requirements:

  • Ability to write multiple-choice questions
  • Credentialed as a clinical supervisor (e.g., LPC-S or ACS)
  • Previously taken and passed the NCMHCE

NCE

The National Counselor Examination (NCE) measures an examinee’s knowledge and understanding of theoretical and skill-based tenets necessary to practice safely and competently as an entry-level counselor. The content validity of the NCE is anchored on the six empirically validated work behaviors determined to be most relevant for competent counseling practice and the eight Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) curriculum educational standards.

Requirements:

  • A minimum of a master’s degree in counseling from a program accredited by CACREP or a regionally accredited university counselor education program
  • At least two years of active practice as a licensed professional counselor (LPC) or a licensed professional counselor associate (LPCA)
  • Demonstrated excellence with English writing skills
  • Familiarity with CACREP curriculum standards and the knowledge and skills necessary for the practice of professional counseling
  • Ability to accept constructive criticism when working with others
  • Previously taken and passed the NCE
  • Should not be involved in test prep or other educational and/or required training

CPCE

The Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE) is an evaluation tool that assesses students’ competence of foundational, counseling-related knowledge. The CPCE is designed to assess students who have completed graduate-level courses that are grounded primarily in a counseling curriculum. The CPCE parallels the nationally recognized standards published by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).

Requirements:

  • A minimum of a master’s degree in counseling from a program accredited by CACREP or a regionally accredited university counselor education program
  • Demonstrated familiarity with CACREP standards
  • Demonstrated excellence with English writing skills
  • Ability to accept constructive criticism when working with others
  • Should not be involved in test prep or other educational and/or required training

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