International Certification & Reciprocity Consortium

Exam Preparation

Candidate Guides

IC&RC has developed Candidate Guides to provide candidates with guidance for the IC&RC examination process. Candidate Guides provide background information on the examination development and administration process. They also contain exam content guidelines, sample questions, and examination reference lists. Each IC&RC examination has a coinciding Candidate Guide which can be found linked below:


Practice Exams

Practice Exams are available for the Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ADC), Clinical Supervisor (CS), and Prevention Specialist (PS) examinations. Practice Exams were developed in conjunction with IC&RC’s testing company to mimic the exact look and feel of IC&RC’s Computer Based Testing (CBT) platform.

Each practice exam has 50 questions, which candidates have 60 minutes to complete. After completing the practice exam, candidates will receive a score report identifying their areas of strength and weakness. Practice exam questions are not provided at the end of the examination for review. 

Candidates should note that there is currently only one version of each practice examination. Purchasing multiple exams will result in candidates taking the same examination with each purchase. 

More information on Practice Exams can be found here.


Available Study Guides

Alcohol and Drug Counselor Examination

Getting Ready to Test: A Review and Preparation Manual for Drug and Alcohol Credentialing Exams, 8th Edition

  • IC&RC has endorsed Getting Ready to Test: A Review and Preparation Manual for Drug and Alcohol Credentialing Exams, 8th Edition for its Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ADC) exam.
  • This unique, self-guided, 734-page manual provides ReadyToTest’s most comprehensive set of materials designed to help refresh and enhance candidates’ knowledge on many of the major, need-to-know areas of information required for the IC&RC ADC exam.
  • The manual includes a 150-question sample written exam, designed to make candidates feel more comfortable with the actual exam as well as to help focus study and preparation time.
  • The manual includes four unique sections of material: Section 1: Basic Addiction Information; Section 2: Core Functions; Section 3: Specialty Information; Section 4: The Testing Process.
  • The manual can be purchased at ReadyToTest.com.

IC&RC Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ADC) Certification Examination Study Guide (2015)

  • IC&RC has endorsed the new IC&RC Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ADC) Certification Examination Study Guide (2015), created by the Florida Certification Board.
  • This full-color, 208-page study guide is in alignment with the current IC&RC ADC examination blueprint, which encompasses four performance domains and 33 job tasks. The first chapter provides an overview of addiction and drugs of abuse, plus current perspectives on recovery. Chapters 2-5 relate directly to the performance domains (Screening, Assessment and Engagement; Treatment Planning; Collaboration and Referral; Counseling; Professional and Ethical Responsibility) with job task statements interspersed within the text to match review content with each task for ease of studying. Each chapter is fully referenced and contains a resources section to direct the learner to other sources that augment the study guide content.
  • Purchase this study guide online through Comprehensive Education Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Florida Certification Board, at flcertificationboard.org/icrc-adc-study-guide.

Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor AND Co-Occurring Disorders Professionals Examinations

Getting Ready to Test: A Review and Preparation Manual for Drug and Alcohol Credentialing Exams, 8th Edition

  • IC&RC has endorsed Getting Ready to Test: A Review and Preparation Manual for Drug and Alcohol Credentialing Exams, 8th Edition with its supplemental guide Getting Ready to Test: A Supplemental Review/Preparation Manual for the IC&RC Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor Credentialing Examination for its Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (AADC) exam.
  • This 2-manual set of comprehensive study materials, covering 4 unique sections, includes a 150-question sample written exam and can be purchased at ReadyToTest.com.
  • This 338-page supplement is specifically geared towards content and   information included on the Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (AADC) credentialing examination.
  • It is not designed as a stand-alone product, but will add information relevant to the AADC examination not covered in the larger Getting Ready to Test manual.
  • Candidates preparing for the AADC exam can purchase both guides from ReadyToTest.com.
  • Please note that while IC&RC strongly recommends purchasing guides listed above, the AADC exam contains a lot of questions on co-occurring disorders that requires supplemental knowledge to that presented in the ReadyToTest supplemental manuals above. As such, it recommends that candidates order SAMHSA’s TIP 42 from samhsa.com or purchase The Basics references below.

The Basics: A Curriculum for Co-occurring Psychiatric and Substance Disorders (2nd Edition)
  • IC&RC has endorsed The Basics: A Curriculum for Co-occurring Psychiatric and Substance Disorders (2nd Edition) as a study guide for the CCDP, CCDP-D and AADC examinations. It is an excellent resource for professionals preparing for their exam or who want to further their knowledge of this important subject.
  • The 2-volume set, by Rhonda McKillip, M.Ed., LMHC, MAC, CCDCIII, CDP, contains over 1,600 references, as well as detailed lesson content and handouts for group, topics and information for individual sessions, and a cross-training guide for mental health and chemical dependency professionals.
  • The Basics may be purchased directly from McKillip’s website at rhondamckillipandthebasics.com

Prevention Specialist:


This 91 page free manual was developed by the Rhode Island Prevention Resource Center with the assistance of the Rhode Island Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals (BHDDH) for those preparing for their Prevention Specialist Examination.

The first half of the guide summarizes key concepts and strategies so that users can review content areas essential to prevention practice including:
  • public health approaches to prevention in behavioral health
  • prevention theories and strategies
  • strategic planning for prevention
  • cultural competence in prevention
  • coalition development
  • communication strategies
  • ATOD-effects of drugs on the brain
  • ethical issues in prevention

The remainder of the Guide is comprised of practice activities including over 50 sample questions similar in format and level of difficulty to those on the exam, along with an answer key and explanations of the correct responses. Two worksheets and a set of flashcards for study-on-the-go are also included, along with an extensive glossary, a list of acronyms, and references to consult for more in-depth review of important topics. Study tips and test-taking strategies are also provided.

While the guide was specifically developed for use by those seeking certification in Rhode Island, the Prevention Specialist Examination is a international examination making this guide applicable to anyone preparing for IC&RC's Prevention Specialist Exam.


Peer Recovery:

The Rhode Island Peer Recovery Specialist Certification Guide: A Study Guide for the Certification Exam is a 45-page free manual developed to serve as a study guide for those preparing for their IC&RC Peer Recovery Examination. It was funded by the Rhode Island Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals (BHDDH) and developed by JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., in consultation with BHDDH, subject matter experts in the behavioral health field, and input from peer recovery specialists who have taken the certification exam, or are working in recovery settings. The content of the guide is based on the knowledge, skills and job tasks derived from the 2013 Peer Recovery Job Analysis conducted by IC&RC.

The first half of the Guide summarizes key concepts and strategies so that users can review content areas essential to peer recovery support practice, including:

  • Guiding principles and aspects of recovery
  • Roles and core values of peer recovery specialists
  • Relationship building and communication skills
  • Cultural competence in recovery support
  • Boundaries and ethical issues in peer recovery support
  • Trauma-informed approaches
  • Recovery and wellness planning

The guide also contains study tips and test-taking strategies. It includes 20 practice questions similar in format and level of difficulty to those on the exam, along with an answer key and explanations of the correct responses. A glossary and list of references to consult for more in-depth review of important topics are also provided.

While the guide was specifically developed for use by those seeking certification in Rhode Island, the Peer Recovery Examination is an international examination making this guide applicable to anyone preparing for IC&RC's Peer Recovery Exam.

Click Here to download The Rhode Island Peer Recovery Specialist Certification Guide: A Study Guide for the Certification Exam.


Additional Free Resources for All Examinations:

Also see Free Additional Resources for many or all IC&RC examinations. Resources are listed by subject and may be relevant to study for some or all IC&RC examinations. For example, SAMHSA TIP 59, Improving Cultural Competence, might prove helpful on all IC&RC examinations.

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