Recommended Books for Studying the NPTE 2013

Are you planning to take the NPTE exam this year? There are new editions of the recommended books for studying for the NPTE. I really don’t advice to get ALL of the books since it can be quite expensive AND WOULD YOU REALLY HAVE TIME to go through it all? I would recommend getting one or two core REVIEW BOOKS and the following textbooks to get into the nitty gritty of a particular case that needs further explanation for you.



1. National Physical Therapy Examination: Review & Study Guide 2013

2. McGraw-Hills NPTE National Physical Therapy Exam, Second Edition

3. PTEXAM: The Complete Study Guide

4. Kaplan National Physical Therapy Exam – I just like this one since it has two practice exams that you can use.

Recommended NPTE Reference Textbooks

1. Physical Rehabilitation (O’Sullivan, Physical Rehabilitation)

2. Therapeutic Exercise: Foundations and Techniques

3. Differential Diagnosis for Physical Therapists: Screening for Referral, 5e (Differential Diagnosis In Physical Therapy)

4. Orthopedic Physical Assessment, 5e (Orthopedic Physical Assessment (Magee))

Among the Reference Textbooks though, I would invest on number 3; Differential Diagnosis by Goodman. I have the 4th edition and I love how easy it was to understand the cases that will help you RULE OUT other diseases that may mimic other neuromusculoskeletal conditions.

I will update the Pass the NPTE Calendar and Study Guide within this year as well with updated information and more tips to help you pass the NPTE. Please subscribe to our email updates or by Liking Pass The NPTE Facebook page too! I will be holding a contest soon and will be giving away one of the recommended review books!

How NOT to Study and Review for the NPTE

With just two months to go for the April date of the NPTE and two more testing NPTE exams for this year, I am sure that everyone who is reviewing or even planning on reviewing for the NPTE are overwhelmed with HOW to study for this exam.

Well, I know I have created a basic study review guide and provided study tips on how my studying and reviewing , this time around I would like to point out MY MISTAKES when I reviewed for the NPTE back in 2010, for my first attempt to take the exam.

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1. Trying to Cram my head with too many books. You name, I tried reading it! Trying to read reference  text books like Magee, Kisner and Sullivan from cover to cover. And then trying to read two to three physical therapy review books did not help either! It is useful to have the mentioned reference textbooks on hand just to read through if there is a certain topic that you want to get a more detailed explanation of.

2. Reading one Review Book at a time.  I remember getting so excited when I received my IER or the Sullivan National Physical Therapy Exam Review Book in the mail the first time. I didn’t have an exact plan on how to really review, I just read it from page one up until the end for a month! It did not help me retain the must needed knowledge that you really need to be able to answer the NPTE. Best way to go about it is focus on a topic or case for a certain amount of days. For example, you can read the neuromuscular chapters of the IER, Mark Dutton’s McGraw-Hill NPTE book and Scorebuilders in two to three days to help you retain the cases in your head better than just trying to zip through a whole review book. I personally only used TWO REVIEW BOOKS, just to give me a better understanding on a per case basis. I used IER and Mark Dutton’s book; I did not have the resources and time to get the Scorebuilders, just thought I’d let you know.

3. Not Doing Enough Practice Exams. This was MY WORST MISTAKE on my first attempt to take the exam. I only did three practice exams for my 2010 exam and my mind and MY BODY was not prepared enough to take a 5-hour long exam in one sitting. Just think of the NPTE as a marathon, do at least one practice exam a day 3-4 weeks before your NPTE exam date. The review books I mentioned have practice exams in CD included and you can rotate these exams on a daily basis. I would also highly recommend that you purchase the PEAT and include it in your mix of practice exams; it gives you a FEEL on how the REAL NPTE is like on screen. The NPTE is 5 hours long; so take advantage of the breaks every 50 items and do that during your Practice exams and your body won’t get into shock of getting so overwhelmed when you take your actual NPTE.

These are just my two cents on how NOT to make the same mistakes I had when taking the NPTE. I will share more when I get more information along the way.

NPTE Schedule of Exams for 2013

I have finally almost  settled in to my new life and new career as a Physical Therapist here in the United States. I would just like to update every one for the NPTE testing schedule for the year 2013

NPTE 2013 SkedTaken from

Review the NPTE Online with Therapy Exam Prep

I actually signed up for Therapy Exam Prep during their pilot class. But, I wasn’t able to maximize their online reviews and classes because of unforeseen circumstances on my personal life. However, I would recommend that you enroll online if you are the type of person and student who thrive on discussions and support whether online and offline.

You will have assignments that you need to do, and post your answers online on the forums. This was one of the tasks that I remember doing that was helpful in retaining information. One of the hardest thing in reviewing is knowing what to KNOW. There are so many information both online and offline that can be pretty overwhelming, and the assignments really helped with getting you to remember what indeed is needed to be remembered.

The Therapy Exam Prep NPTE review lasts for 3 months, with a scheduled live webinar that you can attend and join in. As well as download the webinar on-demand if you missed it or you just want to listen to it again. What’s great about joining a live webinar is the chance for you to asks  any question that will help you better understand the topic at hand.

If you need another way to help you review and pass for the NPTE. You can head on to Therapy Exam Prep website and check if this one will work for you. Investment for their program is US$375 and you can pay via Paypal and Google checkout.

Why You Should Pass the NPTE: Physical Therapy Career Infographic

Why all those sleepless nights, long days of balancing NPTE review with work and family, as well as sacrificing night outs for four to five months is WORTH IT. Here’s a nice visual graph from Advanced Medical website.

Books you Need for the NPTE: Differential Diagnosis for Physical Therapists by Goodman and Snyder

Aside from the 2012 NPTE (National Physical Therapy Examination) Review & Study Guide that is a must read when you are preparing for the National Physical Therapy exam. Another book that I highly recommend is Differential Diagnosis for Physical Therapists: Screening for Referral, 5e (Differential Diagnosis In Physical Therapy). I used the 4th edition of this textbook when I was reviewing for the NPTE, and it proved to be an asset in helping rule out cases and diagnosis.

I highly recommend this book because:

  • Very easy to read, easy on the eyes and on the brain. Not very preachy like some other textbooks. Explanation is structured in a good flowing manner.
  • Discusses past medical history, clinical presentation, signs and symptoms and review of symptoms thoroughly.
  • It has sample case studies that helps with your memory and imagination (pretending you’re actually making the diagnosis)
  • Key points to remember at the end of every chapter
  • Questions that you must answer at the end of every chapter. Certainly helped me understand the cases better, and it stuck in my head too.

NPTE 2012: Getting Ready For the October 12 exam?

It’s the first of August 2012, you have roughly three months to go before the next NPTE exam, which is slated this coming October 12, 2012. If you think you have the time and focus to take it this October, remember that the deadline of registration is on September 16, 2012.

How is your review style? Do you read and finish one NPTE reviewer from cover to cover before opening up yet ANOTHER NPTE review book? It might help if you review on a PER CASE or STUDY basis. It helps keeps your frame of thought in the same subject, and makes it better and easier for your brain to retain.

Jumping from one subject or case to another may just jumble up the way your brain thinks. So for now, if you’re just starting; here are the basics you can cover for your first week:

1. Overview of the Muscle Origin, Insertion, Action and Innervation

2. Memorize the Brachial Plexus

3. Memorize the LumboSacral Plexus

4. Understand the Special Tests

If you have time and the resources you can also join a review class, like the one from Therapy Ed. Or you can download the PASS THE NPTE CALENDAR GUIDE to help you find the right books and how to PREPARE for the NPTE!

For Those Who Passed and Failed the NPTE

The month of July of the year 2012 is very big for Physical therapists aiming to pass the NPTE exam. Two exams are slated for July, first one was on the first week of July and the second one for this last week. Thank you for the handful of people who shared both bad and good news after getting the results last July 10, 2012.

I actually have mixed emotions.

I was super happy with those who passed.

And I felt very sad for those who weren’t able to make it.

I know both feelings, and no amount of words and encouragement helped me get the sadness out of my system. So, I know how rotten you might feel if you didn’t see the fruits of your hard work go through. I actually cannot imagine how it feels to fail the NPTE the third, fourth or fifth time.

But, when I hear of news of individuals like you who KEEP ON TRYING.

I cannot help but be IN AWE OF YOU.

Perhaps, it is just not the time for you to pass yet. But you will soon ONE DAY – WHEN IT’S YOU TIME TO DO SO.

In hindsight, I really wasn’t supposed to pass the NPTE the first time I took it. If I did, I would have been miserable working in the US, with a very unsupportive husband – who kept telling me that I should never show off or be proud of my degree. B*llsh*t.

So, if you happen to have failed the last time… DIG DEEP. BREATHE. REVIEW. PRACTICE. PRACTICE. PRACTICE… And take it again.


Prepping for the NPTE is no easy feat, most of whom I know who are preparing for the NPTE had to juggle reviewing with keeping a job and maintaining a family.

So my heart and prayers go out for those taking the NPTE in a few hours.

Planning on taking the NPTE soon? Download the Pass The NPTE Calendar below to help you get started. Just right click and save as…

Physical Therapy Exam Track App for Android Phones

Found this android app by Scorebuilders online. I am not exactly sure if it’s working right, since I don’t have an android phone. But based from the site that I found it from:

Physical Therapy Exam Track is designed specifically for candidates who have attended Scorebuilders’ two day PTEXAM: On-Campus Review Course. 

The application is an ideal tool to assist candidates to customize their remedial activities and to objectively examine their readiness to take the National Physical Therapy Examination. Specifically, the application is designed to allow candidates to: 

1. Track sample exam scores in relation to established target scores. 
2. Track the types of mistakes on sample exams (i.e., academic, decision making, test taking). 
3. Offer remedial strategies to candidates based on their current scores and portfolio of mistakes. 

Company Information 
Scorebuilders is the recognized market leader in licensing preparation for the National Physical Therapy Examinations. Our product line consists of review books, two day review courses, web based comprehensive exams, flash cards, and iPhone applications. 

Copyright © 2012 Scorebuilders 

PTEXAM Track is the exclusive property of Scorebuilders. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted, in any form, without the express written consent of Scorebuilders. 

Latest version: 1.0 (for Android version 2.1 and higher)

Physical Therapy Exam Track App

Physical Therapy Exam Track App

You can go ahead and download it here: or download this Physical Therapy Exam Track App here.

Note: Just sharing this app and I bear no responsibility on the contents of this app. I am hoping this app would be helpful to NPTE takers who have android phones.

NPTE Tips: Practice, Practice and Practice

With just less than a month to go before the July 31st NPTE exam for 2012, by this time around all you should be doing is practicing. Doing a full 200 or 250 exam NPTE or National Physical Therapy Exam practice exam. I think, the practice sessions that I did last year really helped me get my brain get used to the rigors of thinking and evaluating for 4-5 hours straight.

I know what you might say right now.

I just don’t have the TIME.

Well, I will be blunt. But, if you have gone this far from taking the NPTE. Sacrifice just a month more of waking up early to have the chance to sit down through an exam for at least 4 hours if possible. Wake up at 4:00AM. Start your exam at 4:30AM and finish it off by 8 to 8:30AM. Or take the exam at night – whatever works best for you.

Practice NPTE exams

What are the best NPTE Practice Exams to Take?

1. PEAT by Federation of State Board of Physical Therapy

2. Practice exams of 2012 version of Sullivan and Siegelman

3. Online exam from Therapyed

4. Kaplan NPTE Practice exam

5. Scorebuilders Online Advantage Student’s Version

6. Practice CD exams in McGraw-Hill’s (by Mark Dutton)

Just remember to practice, practice and practice! The NPTE is not just a test of wits and intelligence in the realm of Physical Therapy. It will also test how much your brain can take in the 250 choices in the 5 hour exam!