The ASWB exam is a vital milestone in a social work career. But the exam can be a daunting experience--even the most well-prepared test takers can make mistakes that can hinder their performance. In this post, we highlight the top mistakes to avoid on the ASWB exam and provide tips for maximizing your score.

Mistake #1: Not knowing the exam format

One of the most common mistakes that test takers make is not familiarizing themselves with the exam format. The ASWB exam is a computer-based test that consists of multiple-choice questions, mostly with 4 answers each, some with 3.

Tip: Take practice tests to get comfortable with the test structure and types of questions asked.

Mistake #2: Not managing time properly

Some test takers struggle to complete the 170 questions within the allotted time, which of course negatively impacts their score. It is important to pace yourself and manage your time effectively.

Tip: Again, practice tests are the way to go to get a sense of how you need to pace yourself for the long sit. On test day, budget your time wisely and prioritize questions that you feel confident answering.

Mistake #3: Not reading questions carefully

This one's huge. The ASWB exam includes complex and nuanced questions. It's crucial to read each question with care to fully understand its meaning and intent. Skimming and misinterpreting questions inevitably leads to selecting incorrect answers.

Tip: Take your time to carefully read and analyze each question. If you are unsure of a question's meaning, take a moment to re-read it or break it down into smaller parts. If you're completely stumped, mark it to return to later.

Mistake #4: Not reviewing content areas thoroughly

The ASWB exam covers a wide range of content, and it can be challenging to get to--nevermind remember--all the material. Test takers who do not review all the content areas thoroughly risk missing important concepts and facts that could be tested on the exam.

Tip: Look at the exam outlines on the ASWB website to familiarize yourself with what you can expect. Create a study plan that includes review of all the content areas covered on the exam. Focus on areas that you feel less confident in and spend extra time reviewing them.

Mistake #5: Not taking care of yourself

Test preparation adds an extra stressor--most social workers are already at capacity. Poor sleep, diet, and exercise habits can negatively affect your ability to concentrate and perform well on the exam.

Tip: Take care of yourself! Prioritize self-care habits such as getting enough sleep, eating healthy meals, and exercising regularly. Take breaks during study sessions and engage in relaxing activities to reduce stress.

Avoiding these common mistakes will help you pass the ASWB exam. Did we mention how helpful practice tests are? We did. We're mentioning it again. If you haven't already, get started now with SWTP's very awesome full-length practice tests.

Happy studying and good luck on the exam!

May 1, 2023
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