Covid-19 and Licensing Exam Updates

By Robin Gluck on April 27, 2020

Person Scheduling for a Licensing Exam


We hope everyone continues to stay safe and that you and your loved ones are doing well during these challenging times.  Over the past month, a lot has changed, and as a consequence many questions have arisen. The goal of this blog is to answer frequently asked questions we’ve recently received about licensing exams. 

Are testing centers open?

The answer to this question depends on where you live. At this time, mental health is considered an essential service. As a consequence, some testing centers have reopened to allow MFT, social work, and PCC candidates to sit for their exams. However, due to varying local ordinances, not all testing centers are operational as of yet (updated April 26, 2020). We do not have a list of which test centers are open (nor are we aware of one that exists), so you will need to contact your individual test center. 

In addition, due to social distancing and safety considerations more broadly, test sites that are now open have very limited availability. Even if centers near you are open, it is still quite possible that you will not be able to schedule your exam until late summer or early fall. We recommend you schedule your exam as soon as possible. You may choose to check intermittently on the test centers’ website to see if earlier spots are available.

How do I schedule my exam?

National Social Work

The Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) contracts with Pearson Vue to administer their exams. Once you are registered with the ASWB and approved to take your exam, you can schedule it through Pearson Vue’s website:

You will need to log into your account to find availability and schedule your exam. 

National MFT

The Association of Marital & Family Therapy Regulatory Board (AMFTRB) has a bit more of a complicated process for exam scheduling. Once your jurisdiction approves you for licensure, you apply to take the National exam with PTCNY. PTCNY sends the initial authorization and then you schedule your exam with Prometric. Therefore, if your exam was cancelled, you will need to contact both PTCNY and Prometric.

First, contact PTCNY to receive a new testing period authorization:

Second, schedule your exam date through Prometric:

Due to limited availability, the soonest you will be able to reschedule your exam will be the end of summer or early fall.

California Exams (MFT Clinical and all Law & Ethics Exams)

The California Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) contracts with Pearson Vue to administer their California MFT Clinical exam, as well as the Law & Ethics exams for social workers, MFTs, and PCCs. To schedule one of these exams, visit Pearson Vue’s California BBS page: You will need to log into your account to find availability and schedule the exam. If you do not have this information, reach out to the BBS.

Will the testing environment have a different set-up?

Yes. All testing centers are following the safety guidelines established by public health experts. Testing centers are disinfecting their sites regularly and using fewer computers to ensure test takers are at least 6 feet apart.  

Pearson testing centers now require all test takers to wear masks for the entire duration of their exam appointment (updated 5/13/2020). With this in mind, we encourage you to wear a mask when you are taking your practice exams in order to become more comfortable with them prior to exam day.

If you have any questions about the specific precautions at your test center, we encourage you to contact that test center directly. 

What happens if I cannot take my clinical exam before my deadline?

Each state is handling this differently, so you will need to check with your licensing board. 

Some states are providing extensions and allowing you to renew your associate registration; however, we encourage you to schedule your exam as soon as possible.

What happens if I cannot schedule a test date before my associate registration expires?(California Specific)

Each state is handling this differently, so you will need to check with your licensing board. The information in this section is specific to California.

In California, the following waivers were issued through executive order:

  • All registrants (associate MFTs, associate social workers, associate PCCs) whose registrations were set to expire between March 31, 2020 and June 30, 2020 can renew their registration without first attempting the Law and Ethics exam.
  • All registrants are still required to pay the registration renewal fee and can do so through the BBS Breeze website:
  • If you renew your registration before taking the exam, you will be required to take it prior to September 30, 2020. This date could change if the executive order is extended; however, we would recommend trying to schedule your exam prior to this date to ensure compliance with the order.


  • The BBS will be hosting a Facebook live event on May 1, 2020 at 1:30pm (once the Governor’s update has ended) to answer common questions. You may submit your questions on their Facebook page in advance of this event:

How should I study for my exam?

If you have any questions on how to study for your exam or manage anxiety during this time, please check out our past blog on this topic here:

Coronavirus: Preparing for your Exam and Managing Anxiety

We’re here for you.

TDC coaches, as always, are available via email to answer any questions you may have during this time.

We will continue to provide updates as we obtain new information. Please request future topics in the comments section.




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4 Responses to “Covid-19 and Licensing Exam Updates”

  1. Ricky


  2. Alyssa

    Hi – Just sending my experience with rescheduling. I was scheduled to take SW exam yesterday 4/27 and Pearson rescheduled it to the tentative location for 5/27 (thus making me reschedule my exam to my preferred location). I checked everyday and noticed that there are more openings than there has been in the last month for May – June, etc, so it appears that they are opening more test centers if people are eager to take it sooner than later. I would just keep checking in daily! Good luck to all and stay safe!

  3. Mary Moore

    I am going to take the CA MFT clincial exam too and wondered if I’m out of state at the moment, can I take the test at the Pearson Vue center near me instead of in CA? I’m guessing not but thought to ask! Thx.

    • Robin Gluck

      Hi Mary, I believe that Pearson Vue has test centers in different states and you would be able to take the California exam at those test centers. I would encourage you to contact Pearson Vue to find out the options available to you.


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