Sage Nutrition Associates - RD Exam Prep

3 P’s to Pass the RD Exam: Positivity, Plan, Practice

Do you want to know the magic potion behind passing the rd exam?

After many years of working with students prepping for the RD exam, there are common traits we have seen that will make a student successful or traits that will crush their hopes and dreams.  Successful students tend to have a positive outlook, solid plan for execution, and know exactly what study methods and materials they will use. 

1) Positive Mindset

Mastering mindset is the first step in successfully studying and passing the RD exam.  The main thing that can be the deciding factor in passing is you.  Your perception, doubts, fears, frustrations all play a role in how you approach study habits. 

Power of positivity – mantras

Let’s look at this more closely. You have probably heard of many people saying this before. 

“Think before you speak.”

Your thoughts manifest into your reality.  When you have a mind of doubt, despair, or being unsure, this manifests in your daily life in how you approach tasks.  A negative outlook often clouds the mind and overshadows any good that comes into your world. 

Below are some simple mindset strategies that work!

  1. Write out your desired rd exam score. Look at it every day. Visualize the number. Believe you have already achieved that score. 
  2. Write out your mantras. “I am a study master.” “I pass every exam I take.” “I am grateful for passing the RD exam!.” Always start your mantra with the words “I am.” Think of the words gratitude and abundance.
  3. Visualize taking and passing the exam. Write down every detail about the date, time of day, what you are wearing, how you are feeling and what score you will make on your exam. Write it down.

So, common thread here… write everything down. The power of pen to paper is powerful in manifesting reality. Even if you don’t believe it, telling yourself these mantras and stories on a daily basis will shift your thoughts, and in turn actions, towards the direction you truly want to go.

Use  meditations. Here is a blog post that provides some insight on free apps to help with a meditation practice.

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3 P’s to Pass the RD Exam: Positivity, Plan, Practice 3

2) Plan

What is the most important function of management? Planning! Every successful venture starts with a good plan.

When I talk with students and they lack confidence, the doubt often stems from lack of planning. I’ve seen so many students let life get in the way of their success.  They allow things and situations to happen to them, instead of them leading the way. 

For instance, many times after the internship, students want to pass their exam as soon as possible. While studying for the RD exam, they simultaneously look for work, start work, move into a new place, hang out with friends, travel abroad, go on a long road trip, prepare for a wedding and a host of other life-altering activities.  Studying for the rd exam takes a back seat. 

You may be one of those special unicorns that can do anything they want and make a great grade. Congratulations, you seriously are a unicorn.  For the rest of us mortals, we must step back and evaluate our situation.  Prioritize and make the first things first.  If you are going through any life-altering events, give yourself more time to study. Don’t be afraid to give yourself 3, 4, or 5 months.  

A proactive approach is the best approach

Recognize when you need help.  Successful people understand when something is above their heads and aren’t afraid to reach out. If you are struggling with a concept, which direction to go, contact someone who can help you.  We all need mentors in some way because no one knows everything.  The sooner you reach out for help, this will accelerate your progress faster than doing it alone.  

For instance, I’ve had students reach out to me before they take the exam.  I help get them on the right path, figure out their weaknesses, strengthen them, THEN take the exam.  Passing the exam is more likely at this point.  

Craft a great study plan. 

Here is another blog post that will take you step-by-step through the process of creating a study plan that will work for you.

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3 P’s to Pass the RD Exam: Positivity, Plan, Practice 4

3) Practice

Serious time wasters are ineffective study habits. Simply reading over notes and highlighting has been shown to be the least effective way to retain knowledge for long-term retention.

Avoid the following:
  • reading and rereading without writing
  • memorizing questions
  • not making time to study every day
  • highlighting 
  • using outdated materials
Instead, replace them with the more effective methods:
  • Reading aloud
  • Taking tests/quizzes
  • Creating questions if your bold enough! Get inside of what makes the questions tic. 
  • Teaching concepts to other people
  • Retrieval practice (brain dump, retrieval worksheets, writing down what you remember before or after a study session, two things – what are two things you learned about this topic?)
  • Study a little bit each day

Here are some free resources from one of our favorite books, Powerful Teaching. They have retrieval cards, metacognitive techniques.

Let me know if you have used any of these techniques and how they worked for you.

Study hard,


rd exam prep
Lauren & Laura of Sage

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