A respiratory therapist is a healthcare professional specializing in treating and caring for patients with breathing problems. They work with patients of all ages–from premature infants with underdeveloped lungs to elderly patients with chronic respiratory diseases. They also work in various settings, including hospitals, clinics, and home care.
Respiratory therapists are critical in diagnosing, treating, and managing respiratory disorders such as asthma, emphysema, and pneumonia. So, they must be duly qualified. If you plan on becoming a respiratory therapist, passing the Therapist Multiple Choice exam is essential.
The Therapist Multiple Choice (TMC) Exam is a vital certification exam for individuals looking to become certified respiratory therapists. This exam is administered by the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC). It measures a candidate’s knowledge and understanding of respiratory therapy concepts. Because the exam is a prerequisite to obtaining licensure, you must pass it. In this article, we’ll provide tips and strategies for passing the TMC Exam with flying colors.
Understanding the format and content of the TMC exam
The Therapist Multiple Choice (TMC) Exam is a standardized exam used to evaluate the knowledge of people who want to become certified respiratory therapists (CRTs) or registered respiratory therapists (RRTs). The exam is a computer-based test that consists of 160 multiple-choice questions. Candidates have 3 hours to complete the exam. The questions on the exam cover various respiratory therapy topics, including;
- Patient assessment
- Mechanical ventilation
- Oxygen therapy
- Cardiopulmonary anatomy and physiology.
- Airway management
Tips on how to pass the TMC exam
Now that we know the passing score for the TMC exam, the next step is to put in the work. Before taking the exam, you should have completed an accredited respiratory therapy program. It would help if you reviewed all the available study materials and resources. Some include practice exams, study guides, and review courses. Here are some general tips on how to pass the TMC exam:
Understand the format
The TMC exam is a computer-based multiple-choice exam with 160 questions. You will have three hours to complete the exam. Understanding the format of the exam will help you better prepare for it. Also, review the content outline for the examination. This will help you develop an appropriate study plan.
Develop a study plan
A study plan is essential for adequate preparation. Allocate sufficient time for each subject area, and ensure you have enough time to revise and practice before the exam. If you need help creating one, register for a study plan here.
Use study materials
Several study materials are available for the TMC exam, including textbooks, study guides, and online resources. Utilize these resources to help you understand the subject matter and practice answering multiple-choice questions.
Practice time management
The TMC exam is timed, and you will have three hours to complete it. Practice time management in your studying because there is a lot to cover. Here are a few tips on how to manage your time;
- Set specific goals: Setting clear goals helps you prioritize tasks and manage your time effectively.
- Prioritize tasks: Focus on completing high-priority tasks first and delegate or postpone less urgent tasks.
- Use a planner or calendar: Use a planner or calendar to schedule your day and allocate specific blocks of time for each task.
- Minimize distractions: by turning off notifications and dedicating specific time to checking emails or messages.
- Take breaks: Regular breaks can help you stay focused and energized throughout the day. Breaks can also help reduce stress and prevent burnout.
- Review and adjust: At the end of each day, review your progress and identify areas where you can improve.
Practice answering multiple-choice questions
The TMC exam is a multiple-choice exam, so it is important to practice answering questions in this format. Take practice exams and quizzes, and ensure you understand the logic behind each answer. Take a TMC practice exam here.
Review anatomy and physiology
Anatomy and physiology are essential concepts for respiratory therapists to understand to provide adequate care to patients with cardiopulmonary disorders. A significant portion of the TMC exam covers anatomy and physiology. Ensure you have a solid understanding of these subjects and can apply this knowledge to respiratory therapy.
Understand respiratory therapy procedures
The TMC exam also covers respiratory therapy procedures, including patient assessments, mechanical ventilation, and oxygen therapy. Ensure you thoroughly understand these procedures and how to perform them.
The TMC exam also covers pharmacology, including medications used in respiratory therapy. Ensure you understand each medication’s indications, contraindications, and side effects.
Remain calm and confident
Finally, remain calm and confident during the exam. Remember that you have prepared adequately and trust in your abilities. Answer questions to the best of your ability, and do not second-guess yourself.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the passing score for the TMC Exam?
The passing score for the TMC Exam is determined by a panel of subject matter experts who review the exam content and establish the standard of knowledge and skills required to effectively perform respiratory therapy duties.
Thus, the TMC Exam has two passing thresholds. The first score is 86. Candidates who score 86 or higher on the exam can earn the Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT) credential. The second threshold is 92. The participants that score 92 or higher get a chance to take a higher exam called the Clinical Simulation Exam (CSE). It is a hands-on test that assesses clinical skills and decision-making abilities.
Passing the TMC Exam with the first threshold score earns you the Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) credential. It is the highest level of credentialing offered by the NBRC and the standard for respiratory therapy practice in the United States.
What happens if you don’t pass the TMC?
We hope that this is not the case. But, if you do not pass the TMC, there is no need to worry. If you don’t pass the TMC on your first attempt, you may retake the exam after a waiting period. You can take the exam three times. But you are required to wait 120 days between attempts.
The Bottom Line
The TMC exam requires extensive knowledge and preparation. By following the tips and strategies outlined in this blog, you can increase your chances of success and achieve your goal of confidently passing the TMC. Remember, passing the TMC allows you to pursue your career in respiratory care and signifies your commitment to excellence in the field.