Studying for the Exam

ALA offers a variety of resources to help you prepare for the exam:

Next: Taking the Exam

Study Groups

Study methods for the exam vary, as do individual study techniques. Some find a Study Buddy. Others go it alone. Many join a chapter’s Study Group.

Interested in starting a CLM Study Group? Here are some tips:

Along with the potential resources, there are many ALA chapters forming study groups — be sure to check out ALA’s list of current CLM Study Groups. Shared knowledge, sample testing, and camaraderie among members are a few of the benefits of getting together with people who share a common goal.

If you need help forming your CLM Study Group, the following Study Group leaders have graciously offered their assistance:

Your business partners can also be an excellent resource for your CLM Study Group. They may either have speakers to offer or know of speakers relevant to your topics. Additionally, they may be willing to sponsor programs or study groups or provide the study group with a meeting location.

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Exam Content: Topics in the Body of Knowledge

The CLM exam covers topics detailed in the Body of Knowledge. The job analysis upon which this body of knowledge is based was accomplished with the assistance of an independent testing contractor, the Human Resources Research Organization (HumRRO). 

Each exam is created by pulling questions from an “item bank.” These test items can appear on a future exam, but may or may not appear right away. Even within each testing session there are different test forms being used.

The members of the Certification Committee, all of whom are ALA members and all CLMs, write the exam questions. Committee members are chosen for their expertise in the subjects of the body of knowledge (finance, human resources, legal industry & office operations).

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Sample Test Questions and Answers

The sample test consists of 10 items that represent the types of questions that will appear on the exam.

An additional 25-question self-scoring practice test will be sent upon acceptance of your CLM Application. All of these questions were actual exam questions. Once they are used as a sample they are not used on future exams. The Certification Committee reviews these questions annually, and from time to time will add new ones. The purpose is to give you an idea of the types and style of questions that are on the exam.

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Exam questions may cover any of the areas on the Content Outline of the Body of Knowledge. It is important to note that no single resource covers all of these areas to the extent you will want or need.

One place to start in preparing for the exam is the list of resources available here and in the CLM Application Guide. The #BizLaw in a Flash mobile app is another simplified study tool for on-the-go.

Note: These are suggested resources only. One does not need to study all the resources listed.

CLM®Book Bundles

Save on these valuable CLM resources:

  • Law Firm Accounting and Financial Management, Fifth Edition
  • Human Resource Management, 14th Edition

The Business of Law E-Learning Center

  • 6 or 4 week online courses that also meet live each week
  • Available on-demand later at your convenience
  • Earn valuable CLM application or re-certification credits

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