Reflections on the NBHWC Exam

I'm breathing a big sigh of relief this week after writing the NBHWC exam on Saturday!

I found the exam itself to be fair. It was 150 multiple choice questions from the topics of Coaching Structure, Coaching Process, Ethics/Legal and Health and Wellness. You have 4.5 hours to complete the exam.

I felt well prepared after going through an exam prep course over the last five months. It really helped me focus my studying.

I can't imagine trying to prepare and organize all of the material on my own! Honestly though, I didn't get through all of the required texts.

The questions were all health coaching scenarios. It was not about regurgitating memorized numbers, theories or acronyms.

You really had to understand and apply the info to the coaching situation. But you did have to know your health and wellness numbers!

I took my time with each question, read them carefully, highlighted the important bits, then crossed out the answers I knew were incorrect and then selected my answer from the remaining couple of choices.

Overall I felt pretty good about it. Now I wait for 6-8 weeks to get my results.

More than the grade or the title, I feel so grateful to have studied this material and to have this knowledge to apply with my own health coaching clients and also to share with you my health coaching community.

As I went through the studying process, I made sticky notes of all the tips and info I want to share in our Facebook group, in my skills tutorials and in my Health Coaching Essentials program I'm creating.

One final huge thank you for all the love, support and encouragement you provided as I prepared for and wrote the exam. It was so great to share the journey with you all and to know you were cheering me on.

With deep gratitude,

P.S. Are you thinking the NBHWC path is for you? If so I'd be happy to answer questions or share what the journey was like for me.

Here's a link to the exam prep course I took


  1. Michelle Sheppard on July 31, 2021 at 7:45 pm

    Do you have any guidance as to the number of hours to study for this exam after the required education? Or how many hours do you feel you prepped?

    I realize that this isn’t a guarantee of knowing the content, but I have found it helpful in the past to have a study time goal as I prepared for other professional examinations.

    • Michelle on September 16, 2021 at 5:36 pm

      The study prep course I took suggested 10 hours per week. I didn’t do quite that much but definitely did 5-8 hours per week for 3 months.

  2. Roxanne DuVivier on January 6, 2023 at 6:46 pm

    What exam prep course did you enroll in? I’m planning to test this March and would love to be in a program that offered test preparation guidance.

  3. Roxanne DuVivier on January 6, 2023 at 6:48 pm

    What test prep course did you take?

  4. Michelle on June 20, 2023 at 11:29 am
  5. Jessica on July 21, 2023 at 4:53 pm

    Hi Michelle, I am planning to take the exam soon and was wondering how well you feel the prep course prepared you for the exam? Did you pass the first time?

    • Michelle on July 23, 2023 at 1:55 pm

      I loved the prep course and passed the first time with flying colours. I did really well! Highly recommend. I recorded this video with more on the prep course.

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