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BBS advances two key changes to the California MFT Clinical Exam

BBS advances two key changes to the California MFT Clinical Exam

At its quarterly meeting this week, the California BBS announced one forthcoming change to the California MFT Clinical Exam, and voted to move ahead with an even bigger one.

The first change will come on September 1, when the exam moves from 170 total questions to 150. Under the current 170-question structure, 150 items are scored, and 20 are non-scored. As of September, 125 items will be scored, and the other 25 non-scored). The 4-hour time limit for the exam will be unchanged. The exam content, including how much of the exam comes from each content area, will continue to follow the existing Exam Plan. Our prep program for the California MFT Clinical Exam will adjust our mock exams accordingly as the September transition approaches.

The second transition will take longer, but is more consequential. The BBS voted today to move forward with a planned transition to the AMFTRB National MFT Exam. The vote was conditional, requiring that some outstanding issues be resolved. For example, the national exam is currently only offered one week out of each month; the sheer number of California examinees will require that to be expanded. But board staff expressed confidence that this and other issues could be addressed.

Considering that it will likely require regulatory changes, in a best-case scenario board staff estimated that the actual transition to the National MFT Exam would happen in January 2027. But today's vote meaningfully moves the conversation forward.

I go to each BBS meeting to learn of these changes as they happen, and to impact board decisions where necessary and appropriate. While I'm on record as opposing clinical exams in general due to concerns about exam bias, the National MFT Exam is presently doing more than the California test in assessing for bias. So while it remains true that my ideal policy solution would be to get rid of the exams entirely, I still supported this change, and testified in favor of it.

As usual, no other exam prep companies were present in person, and none of them participated online to speak about these planned changes. I'm proud to be not just reporting on the future of licensing exams, and not just helping you prepare for that future, but showing up to actively help shape it.

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