Registration for the October 2014 Lamaze exam will close September 15th 2014. The Lamaze exam is being held in locations worldwide October 23-25, 2014. Passing the Lamaze exam is one component for those individuals on the path to Lamaze certification. Candidates for the exam will have successfully completed all the requirements in one of the three pathways and all that remains is the final step; sitting for and passing the exam.
You may be interested to know that the Lamaze Certification exam is the only childbirth educator exam that is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies. Regular contributor Judith Lothian wrote a wonderful piece for Science & Sensibility this past spring, on the science behind the exam and what makes it the gold standard in the world of childbirth education certification.
My exam experience
I remember very clearly taking the Lamaze exam many years ago, when I first became certified. My local test site at the time happened to be at a local airfield. When I checked in for the exam I was handed ear plugs along with scrap paper and a pencil. There was so much air traffic, planes of all sizes, taking off and landing right outside on the runway, vibrating the windows and sometimes the entire building. I can laugh at it now, and I think I laughed at it then. I was the only Lamaze registrant and took my exam amongst many flight students. The “background noise” must have helped, I did well and passed the exam. I know that test site is no longer in use, so future exam takers won’t face the same situation.
What I do remember about the exam is that 3 hours given for the exam felt like an ample amount of time. There are 150 multiple choice questions and I did not feel rushed. I had time to go through all the questions and return to those I was unsure of and then check over all of them one more time. I felt like it was a fair exam. A firm exam but very fair. I recall the questions definitely
The Lamaze study guide is a very helpful tool for preparing for the exam, even for experienced educators. If you have not yet acquired your study guide yet, you can order it here. The study guide is available in both English and Spanish. The Lamaze exam is based on 7 competencies
The exam is based on 7 competencies
Competency 1: Promotes the childbearing experience as a normal, natural, and healthy process which profoundly affects women and their families.
Competency 2: Assists women and their families to discover and to use strategies to facilitate normal, natural, and healthy pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, and early parenting.
Competency 3: Helps women and their families to understand how complications and interventions influence the normal course of pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and early postpartum.
Competency 4: Provides information and support that encourages attachment between babies and their families.
Competency 5: Assists women and their families to make informed decisions for childbearing.
Competency 6: Acts as an advocate to promote, support, and protect natural, safe and healthy birth.
Competency 7: Designs, teaches, and evaluates a course in Lamaze preparation that increases a woman’s confidence and ability to give birth.
Some tips for studying and taking the exam.
Definitely consider using the study guide. It can help you with being up to date with current best practices and covers topics in all the competencies.
Consider setting up study groups – either virtually (post in the comments here if you are looking for a study buddy) or locally in your community. Having the support of others who are going through the same thing can really help make it a fun and enjoyable process.
Get a good night’s rest the night before the exam
Enjoy a nice healthy breakfast with a good source of protein (personally, I need a very robust cup of coffee as well!) Maybe even take yourself out to your favorite breakfast place for a great meal.
Do something grounding in the hours before the exam. A yoga session, a massage or a walk or run outside in the fresh air can be just the thing you need to get the jitters out and feel confident.
Remain calm and confident before the start of the exam. You have studied, you are prepared and you are ready. Some deep breaths and a few shoulder rolls and stretches before you start will have you alert and ready to begin.
Take your time going through the exam. The three hours allotted should be adequate. The exam software makes it easy to move around the exam, answer the ones you know and go back to the ones you wanted to wait on.
Check your work one more time thoroughly before you leave the testing site.
Celebrate your success at completing the process and settle in to receive your results in December. Be proud of the work it took to get to this point. Know that you are going to be an excellent childbirth educator teaching the principles of safe and healthy birth to families in your community.
If you, too, want to become a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator, but have not yet started on the journey, click here to find out how you can become certified. There are pathways for new educators, experienced educators and midwives/student midwives. Then hop over to our workshop page and find a workshop near you.
Remember to get your registration in and good luck on the exam. Looking for that virtual study group – post in our comments section. Come back after the exam and tell us how you thought it went. If you have taken the exam before, share some tips and information to help those sitting this fall.
Photo credit: creative commons licensed (BY) flickr photo by The Secret History GRSG: http://flickr.com/photos/rmdemsick/5065345783