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Five Tools I Used to Pass the Registered Dietitian Exam

On January 25, I returned from orientation week for my dietetic internship. That day, I sat down and mapped out my study plan to pass the Registered Dietitian exam. I planned to study the sections of the test when I was in that same rotation in my internship. I was reviewing medical nutrition therapy while practicing it in my clinical rotation, and I was reviewing principles and management during my food service rotation. I took every practice quiz I could find. On August 2, I passed the RD exam on the first try.

Here are five tools that I used to help prepare for my exam:

1. The Jean Inman study guide and recordings cover about 70% of the material that you will see on the exam. Most students start with this one because it has received the highest reviews. The study guide breaks down each section of the exam and describes the content in detail. Take notice in the recordings, when she says "note" such material, be sure to highlight that text. This study guide also includes almost 1,200 practice questions.

2. The AND offers the EatRight Prep study program. This has almost 500 pre-made flashcards and games to help recall the flashcard material. This also includes about 800 practice questions, different from those in the Inman study guide. This program also helps to set study goals and space out your studying before your test date. There is a three-day free trial too if you'd like to test it out.

3. The app Pocket Prep is great to have on your phone. You can take quizzes and practice anywhere. There are 500 practice questions in this program. It will also send you a practice question of the day. My internship preceptors and I had fun answering these together and discussing the material. This one offers a money-back guarantee if you complete all of their questions and don't pass your exam.

4. Quizlet is a good flashcard app to be able to practice the material on the go. I liked using these flashcards in the beginning stages of my studying. I would study on my lunch breaks. It has a great collection of flashcards made by other students and you can create your own cards. This one is free!

5. Eat some blueberries. Work out. Read a book. Pet a dog. Make sure you are getting enough sleep and recovery. Plan your study time and plan your rest time. Rest is just as important.

Update: All Access Dietetics has created the Pass The Exam Prep study materials. This is a tested study method and highly recommend by many RDs.

The best piece of advice that I can pass on is to get your hands on as many practice questions as possible. The test itself feels a bit random, but the more material you can be familiar with, then the more comfortable you might feel on test day. The test is designed to challenge you. It's no joke. Do not feel bad if you have to retake the exam. Every Dietitian will tell you that they know many great RDs who passed the second or third try. It is not a true reflection of the Dietitian you are going to be. Take your time to thoroughly prep for it, you can beet this exam too.

Good luck!

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