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Tips for Taking and Passing the Cosmetology Exam in Florida

by Christopher Cascio, studioD

The State of Florida Cosmetology Licensure Examination is a computer-based test that evaluates your knowledge of hair and nail care, make-up application, safety and sanitation procedures, client services, business ethics and legal requirements. The test is 130 questions and split into two portions: Written Theory and Written Clinical. It's important to learn effective test-taking strategies and practice them before test day.

Read Instructions and Questions Carefully

Some questions will require you to carefully analyze complex situations. For example, you might be presented with a client's long and convoluted history of hair maintenance, and then have to choose which types of products to apply, so be sure to read each question carefully. Furthermore, make sure you listen to the proctor and read any additional instruction sheets regarding the rules of the test. For example, you can bring a calculator, provided it is silent, but you won't be allowed to use the calculator function on your cell phone because it could be used to cheat.

Manage Your Time

You will have three hours total to complete this test: 1 1/2 hours for the Written Theory Examination and 1 1/2 hours for the Written Clinical Examination. Each exam consists of 65 questions, and each one is scored. When faced questions you are unsure of, lightly mark the answer you think might be correct. Then, lightly circle the question number so you can come back to it after you've answered all the questions you can. Don't waste too much time on any one question.

Answer Every Question

This test is in multiple-choice format, and each question is weighted equally. This means if you leave a question blank, you are guaranteed to lose points. However, if you provide any answer -- even a guess -- you give yourself at least a 25 percent chance of getting a correct answer. However, when faced with a question that you don't know the answer to, apply a strategy to better your chances: see if you can eliminate any answer options that you are certain are incorrect, thereby raising your probability of choosing the correct answer.

Learn From The Test

Learning from the test will enhance your own understanding of the subject matter, but it can also help you to score higher on the exam. For example, you might have skipped a question early in the test because it was taking too long, but through the context of a later question, you might learn the answer to that first question. Pay attention to all of the information provided on the exam, and take any cues that it gives you.

About the Author

Christopher Cascio is a memoirist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and literature from Southampton Arts at Stony Brook Southampton, and a Bachelor of Arts in English with an emphasis in the rhetoric of fiction from Pennsylvania State University. His literary work has appeared in "The Southampton Review," "Feathertale," "Kalliope" and "The Rose and Thorn Journal."

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