Sample Questions from our BCPP Exam Q-Bank

The sample questions below were taken directly from our BCPP Q-Bank & Flashcard Database.  They represent 270 other practice test questions you will encounter with the use of our BCPP Q-Bank.  We believe our BCPP practice test questions and flashcards system will prepare you to pass the BCPP exam the first time.  Each question comes with a concise rationale supporting the right answer or concept being tested.   

Sample BCPP Question 1

A 47-year old patient with schizophrenia, type 2 diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidemia is to be treated with an antipsychotic. Which one of the following medications would be the LEAST likely to cause metabolic side effects?

     a. aripiprazole
     b. olanzapine
     c. trazodone
     d. clozapine

Correct Answer = a

Rational Provided:

Antipsychotic medications are associated with metabolic side effects (e.g., hyperglycemia, hypertriglyceridemia, weight gain, etc.) but to varying degrees. Of the currently available agents, clozapine and olanzapine are associated with the greatest ability to worsen metabolic parameters. Trazodone is not an antipsychotic and not an appropriate monotherapy for the treatment of schizophrenia. Aripiprazole possesses one of the mostly metabolically neutral side effect profiles among the antipsychotics.

J Clin Psychiatry 2009;70:572-81.
Schizophr Res 2008;101:273-86.
Am J Psychiatry 1999;156:1686-96.



Sample BCPP Question 2

Which one of the following regimens represents the best choice in a 23-year old patient with schizophrenia deemed partially responsive to olanzapine 10 mg QHS? The patient has no laboratory abnormalities, no complaints of medication side effects, and affirms adherence. Past medication history is noncontributory except for tobacco use and occasional alcohol use.

     a. switch to quetiapine extended release 300 mg daily
     b. increase to olanzapine 10 BID
     c. add aripiprazole 5 mg daily
     d. switch to paliperidone depot injections

Correct Answer = b

Rational Provided:

Cigarette smoking in the presence of olanzapine use creates a clinically significant drug interaction via the CYP1A2 isoenzyme. Serum levels of olanzapine in smokers has been reported to be approximately half that of non-smokers as a result of the induction of hepatic metabolism and subsequent increase in the rate of drug clearance. An increase in the olanzapine dose represents the most rational choice since the patient achieved a partial response with what is really a low dose of olanzapine.

J Clin Pharmacol 2008;48:157-65.



Sample BCPP Question 3

While interviewing an inpatient in the psychiatric unit were you work, you note that the patient demonstrates severe impairment and some danger of hurting others. Which one of the following represents the most accurate Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) score based on the patient's presentation?

     a. 15
     b. 35
     c. 55
     d. 75

Correct Answer = a

Rational Provided:

A patient with a score of 15 would demonstrate danger of hurting themselves or others and would have gross impairment. A patient with a score of 35 would have some impairment and impairment in reality tests and communication. A patient with a score of 55 would have moderate symptoms. A score of 75 would best correspond to mild and/or transient symptoms.

Psychosomatics 1995;36:267-75.


Sample BCPP Question 4

Which one of the following patients most likely has Alzheimer's disease?

     a. Abrupt onset of memory complaints, mood changes, and slurred speech
     b. Gradual onset of memory complaints, inability to care for self, and impaired concentration
     c. Sadness, crying episodes, loss of appetite, feelings of guilt, and impaired concentration
     d. Sexually inappropriate, disinhibition, delusional, and no appreciable memory dysfunction

Correct Answer = b

Rational Provided:

Insidious onset and worsening cognition over time are key components of Alzheimer's disease. Abrupt changes in memory, mood, and sleep should alert clinicians to the possible presence of vascular dementia (answer a). Depression is common among older adults and can occur in patients with or without dementia (answer c). Patients who are behaviorally inappropriate with relatively intact memory would have frontotemporal dementia high on their differential diagnosis.

Alzheimer's & Dementia 2011;7:263-9.
Lancet Neurol 2011;10:162-72.



Sample BCPP Question  5

When calculating power, the reduction in Beta (β) will likely result in what type of change to the sample size needed? 

     a.     Increase
     b.     Decrease
     c.     No change
     d.     Beta is not used in the calculation of Power

Correct Answer = a

Rational Provided:

Since Beta (β) by definition is the probability of a Type II error, then Power = 1-Beta is the probability of NOT making a Type II error. Note: the larger the Beta the lower the power of study and greater chance of making a Type II error.  Therefore, the smaller the Beta the larger the power and less chance of making a type II error, results in the study that needs more patients or larger sample size in order to find a difference if it in fact does exist.  Type II error occurs when a study states there is no difference between the groups assessed but in reality there is a difference.  Any time a study fails to find a statistical difference between two groups the greater the chance that a Type II error has occurred.