Preparation and Review Sample Exam #1

How to use this sample exam

The test questions found in the sample examination are representative of the knowledge required in the field of chemical dependency counseling.  They are NOT actual test questions from either the ICRC or NAADAC exams.  They are intended to assist you in assessing your own knowledge and understanding of information regarding the chemical dependency profession. 

The sample exam will give you a good exposure to the credentialing exam and the types of questions typically asked.  Use this exam  to predict what you will need to prepare for. Your focus is to determine both

  1. the content of the questions and
  2. the type of memory/intellectual skills you will be asked to use.

Examples of these skills include:

  • remembering specific facts;
  • comparing, contrasting, and otherwise interpreting meaning in the information studied;
  • applying principles and theories to solve problems (that may not have been covered explicitly in the materials);
  • predicting possible outcomes given a set of variables;
  • evaluating the usefulness of certain ideas, concepts, or methods for a given event or situation.

Once you complete this sample exam, a confirmation page will open that contains your results.  For both the ICRC and NAADAC exams, your goal is to obtain a test score of 70% or greater (both ICRC and NAADAC scale their exams, but you will not know how this scaling will impact your score).  That would equate to a score of at least 35 out of 50 on this sample exam.  The confirmation page will show you which questions you got right, and which questions you missed.  For those questions missed, the confirmation page will also provide you with important information about the question to aid you in your continued preparation.  Be sure to scroll down to the very bottom of the confirmation page - there will be a button there that will allow you to print out the questions and results to help you as you continue to prepare.

PLEASE NOTE: IC&RC has changed there basic exam beginning with the June 2008 administration.  The final 13 questions of the 150-question exam will be one question each on the 12-Core Functions of counseling, and one question on Ethics.  These 13 questions will be answered based on a short case history that will be included prior to these final questions.  To help you experience these types of questions, we've included a short case history that you'll need to read in order to answer questions 48, 49, and 50.  We have also changed the format for the test to match the method used - you will see one question per page as you work through the examination. 

This is a TIMED EXAMINATION.  ICRC currently allows you three and one-half hours to take a 150-question exam if taken in the pencil/paper format, or three hours if using the computer-based test (which most states now offer); NAADAC allows four and one-half hours to take a 250-questions exam.  Ideally, you would need to complete 50 questions in 70 minutes to stay on task for ICRC's exam; 50 questions in 54 minutes to stay on task for NAADAC's exam.  FOR THE PURPOSE OF ILLUSTRATION, YOU WILL BE ALLOWED 60 MINUTES TO COMPLETE THIS EXAM. So let's get started. 

For each of the following questions, select the response that best answers the question.  

First Name:   Last Name:   
Email Address:    
A cocaine-dependent client admits being fired from his job for absenteeism, losing his home and car by defaulting on his loans, and associating only with peers who use cocaine. He states that he does not require residential treatment because his problem is not serious enough. He further states that he has lost his house and car because his wife didn't work enough hours. Which defense mechanisms is this client displaying?
Which statement reflects the MOST appropriate understanding of "success" in evaluating the outcome of treatment for chemically-dependent persons?
In order to refer clients to meet identified needs, a counselor must:
Violation of a code of ethics MOST frequency results in:
Some programs utlized a pretreatment period, especially in cases where there is a waiting list for services or if a client expresses reluctance to become fully engaged in primary treatment. What might be a danger of this pretreatment period?
Based on Marlatt’s model of the relapse process, which of the following is NOT a true statement?
According to current DSM standards, which of the following is NOT a criteria for psychoactive substance dependence?
8. Mark is a case manager at an intensive inpatient treatment facility. He recently was assigned a client, Clarice, who presents not only with cocaine addiction but has also been diagnosed with AIDS. To assist Clarice in her treatment and recovery needs, Mark would probably need to have knowledge of all of the following areas EXCEPT:
Case management is needed because services tend to be fragmented and inadequate to meet the needs of the substance-abusing population. This lack of coordinated services may result from all of the following factors EXCEPT:
Counselors rely heavily on the work of developmental theorists as they attempt to stimulate clients to initiate relevant growth. According to Erickson, one of the leaders in developmental theory, the task to be accomplished in adulthood is:
Drug use by adolescents is:
During the intake, a counselor can expect to address all of the following issues EXCEPT:
Effective case management for persons in need of multiple services requires:
In determining whether a chemically dependent patient should be treated in an inpatient or outpatient program, all of the following should be considered EXCEPT:
Long-term effects of alcoholism may include:
It is crucial for the case manager to be aware of what may inhibit minorities' participation in the substance abuse treatment continuum. Suppose that you are a case manager, working in an outpatient program with a Somali client. AA is an integral part of your program, yet you are aware of the fact that while "accepting one's powerlessness" is a central tenet of 12-Step self-help programs, members of oppressed groups may not accept it, given their own societal powerlessness. What would be the BEST thing to do in such a case?
It is important to understand clients and their expectations for counseling. Clients coming in for treatment carry with them both helpful and harmful expectations. Which of the following is a harmful client expectation?
Joe is a 27-year old addict who has begun counseling, but has not yet been able to give up using drugs. During one session, he tells his counselor that he is beginning to feel that "it is useless to try to stop," and that "sometimes life is not worth living." The counselor is concerned that Joe could be suicidal. The counselor should:
One of the counselor’s tasks is to guide the client in relating and communicating in specific terms, rather than in general or abstract terms. That characteristic or ability is called:
One of the earliest models for case management services in the criminal justice system was created in 1972, when the White House launched a demonstration program known as:
Ralph is a recovering alcoholic. He as been sober for several months, and has managed to find gainful employment and re-establish family relationships. He is in a twelve-step program as well as individual counseling. One day, he arrives to a counseling session quite upset. He reveals that he had a "slip" and drank a beer at a party. He did not get drunk, but feels terribly remorseful and has promised himself that he will not do it again. Which of the following is MOST true?
Record keeping is an important part of the counseling process. Which of the following BEST reflects the type of information which should be kept in a client’s record?
The agency you work for wants you to lead a group for dually diagnosed clients. You have no training in this area. You should:
Stress inoculation focuses primarily on:
The CAGE test is a simple assessment that is administered to individuals with a drinking problem. The questions on this test refer to:
The focus of intervention in the criminal justice system is first to:
The initial stage of crisis intervention involves:
The measurement of progress toward treatment plan goals is best assessed by:
The PRIMARY purpose of a professional code of ethics is to:
The PRIMARY purpose of professional standards of practice is to:
The tendency of the family to try and maintain balance is called:
The therapeutic reasoning for self-disclosure in group counseling is to:
Therapeutic communities differ from Synanon because:
There are many benefits of having a group that is highly cohesive. One possible risk, however, is the development of a process known as “groupthink.” “Groupthink” entails all of the following EXCEPT:
There are several psychological and sociological differences between male and female alcohol abusers. Which of the following BEST describes one of those differences?
When a client discloses suicidal thoughts, the counselor’s first step is to:
When assessing the signs and symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, all of the following may be noted EXCEPT:
When conducting an assessment, what is the counselor’s primary focus?
Which of the following is the BEST indicator that an individual is physically dependent upon alcohol or another drugs?
Which of the following statements about dysfunctional families is TRUE?
Before beginning treatment a counselor must:
Which statement MOST accurately describes the relationship between Alcoholics Anonymous and the professional treatment community?
Which term refers to a client’s projecting past emotional feelings and/or attitudes onto the counselor?
While taking an alcohol drug history, which of the following is a good clue to alcohol dependency?
You have assessed your client and determined that he is a problem drinker. He insists that the reason he drinks is because of his wife’s behavior. Your initial objective should be to help him:
Your client has been advised by his sponsor to discontinue a needed antidepressant medication. You believe this advice to be premature and possibly harmful. What action should you take as a first step?
A common error that counselors make when conducting an assessment is:


Please answer the final three (3) questions (48, 49, and 50) based on information provided in the following brief Case History.

CASE HISTORY:  Jack is a thirty-seven (37) year old auto mechanic who works for a major car dealership in Our Town, USA. He is married and has two daughters ages 8 and 12. His wife, Nancy, works full time as a sales representative for a leading computer company whose office is near their home.

Jack has been a patient at the XYZ Hospital in-patient treatment program for the past seven days. He admitted himself for treatment at the urging of his work supervisor who noticed that Jack’s work performance had deteriorated substantially in the past six months following an accident on the job when Jack injured his back and sustained a ruptured disk. This is his first treatment experience.

When confronted by his supervisor, Jack admitted to frequently taking far more than the recommended dosage of pain medication to manage his back pain and said that he often mixed his medication with several mixed drinks in order to fall asleep at night. When that didn’t work, he also took over-the-counter sleeping pills for relief and to get to sleep. Jack admits he has had a pattern of excessive use of alcohol since his teenage years, but states this is the first time his drinking has interfered with his work as an auto mechanic. He blames the accident for his problems.

During the first week of Jack’s treatment our program has monitored and stabilized his pain medication and helped him withdraw from his excessive use of alcohol. As his counselor, you have found Jack to be intelligent, cooperative and responsive in the development and initial implementation of his treatment plan.

On his eight day of treatment, Jack rushes in to your office and says he is going to have to leave treatment immediately.  He just received a call from his wife, Nancy, with the news that her father had been involved in a traffic accident and was seriously injured.  He's demanding to be allowed to leave treatment so he can drive his wife to her mother's house, some eight hours away, as a sign of his suport for her.  He promises to return to treatment as soon as possible in order to complete his treatment program.

The most appropriate response to Jack given what he has shared with you in your office today would be to:
Jack stays in treatment after talking to his wife’s mother and arranging for Nancy to travel to her mother’s home with her aunt, who will also assist in watching over their children. The very next day, you receive a call from Jack’s work supervisor inquiring “how Jack is doing.” You discover that Jack has not signed a release of information form allowing you to talk with his supervisor. How do you respond to this call?
Prior to his discharge from treatment, Jack’s wife refuses to participate in family programming, stating that she’s angry that Jack didn’t leave treatment to drive her to her parent’s home. Which of the following alternatives would be your BEST response to this situation?

Remember, when you submit your results, you will see a confirmation page that shows you your test results, including which questions you answered correctly and which questions you missed. Your goal is to obtain a score of at least 35 out of the 50 question. Regardless of your score, the information we will provide you on the confirmation page will be a valuable study tool - be sure to use the "PRINT" button at the bottom of the following page to print out your results for review or study.