--Exam Information
  What is the NCLEX®?
What is the HESI® or ATI?
Pearson VUE and ATT
How do I register?
Boards of Nursing Contact Info
  --Review options
3-10 Day Seminars
Online Review
  Home Study
  Review Centers

NCLEX® Information

NCLEX® National Council Licensure
  • What is the NCLEX exam?
  • What is the HESI Exit Exam® or ATI?
  • Pearson VUE and ATT
  • How do I register?
  • NCLEX Review Options
  • Boards of Nursing Contacts
  • FAQ's

    What is NCLEX®?

    Also known as the state boards, it's the examination you take and are required to pass in order to get your nursing licence. The National Council of State Boards of Nursing develop this exam to be used in all states. By passing this exam you are considered to have the knowledge, skills and abilities essential to the safe and effective practice of an entry level nurse.

    The NCLEX® It is made up of mostly multiple choice questions with some "Alternate Item Formats" including fill-in-the-blank and "select all that apply". Both the NCLEX-RN® and the NCLEX-PN® are variable length adaptive tests. An NCLEX-RN examination can be anywhere from 75 to 265 items long. Regardless of the number of items administered, the time limit for this examination is six hours. An NCLEX-PN examination can be anywhere from 85 to 205 items long. The time limit for this examination is five hours.

    The cost of the exam is $200 if you plan to take it in the United States, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, or the Virgin Islands. It is offered at other locations however, additional fees apply.


    What is the HESI Exit Exam or ATI

    HESI is Health Education Systems, Inc., and Assessment Technologies Institute, LLC, (ATI) are testing companies specializing in producing standardized and custom tests for nursing schools. HESI is now part of Elsiver, a major publisher of nursing textbooks. ATI also adninisters the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS). Both companies administer practice tests mimicking the actual NCLEX. Their tests analyze your strengths and weaknesses in each testing area. They will identify your weaknesses and will suggest areas to review to help prepare you for the actual NCLEX. If required, your school will choose a testing site, usually on-campus.

    These exams are not required for licensure however; some schools require students to take it and other schools make it mandatory to pass it to graduate. In addition to providing personal results for the student, HESI and ATI provide feedback to your school as to how the class preformed overall, per testing area, and how your school compares to national average. This provides valuable information to your school so they know what program areas need improvement and where remedial classes could help. New nurses have said these tests are more difficult then the actual NCLEX.

    Links for more info. . .
    HESI Exams: An Overview of Reliability and Validity
    Nursing School Exit Exams
    RN Exit Exam® Summary

    ATI RN Comprehensive Predictor
    ATI PN Comprehensive Predictor

    Pearson VUE and ATT

    Pearson VUE, is the professional testing company who administers the NCLEX exam. They have testing centers all over the world. After graduation, visit the Pearson VUE web site to find a location and to sign up to take your exam. Once you sign up and are approved by your state board to sit for the exam, Pearson VUE will send you your "Authorization To Test" (ATT). The ATT will have info you need to schedule your exam appointment with Pearson and is your entrance ticket into the testing center.

    Did you rush into signing up for the test and getting your ATT? Do you need more time to review? Be careful. ATT's have expiration dates. On average they are good for 90 days. That time frame is set by your state. The time frame varies from 60 days to one year.

    Getting married and changing your name? Make sure the name you sign up with is the same on the ID you bring with you at your testing appointment.

    For more info:
    Pearson VUE


    How to register
    for the NCLEX

    Step one is to contact your local Board of Nursing. Click here for a listing of contact and web info. They will tell you how to begin the registration process, paperwork needed, amount of any processing fees, and where to send it all. Make sure you make copies of everything you send in to keep in your personal files.

    For more info:
    The Eight Steps of the NCLEX Examination Process 2007
    State Boards of Nursing



    Q:How does the computer testing work and why doesn't everyone answer the same number of questions?

    A: The test uses computerized adaptive testing (CAT) technology. Once the computer administers a minimum number of questions it then decides if the candidate is clearly below standards, ending the exam, clearly in the top percentile, ending the exam, or somewhere in the middle and, continues your exam. Once the computer feels comfortable making a decision, pass or fail, the exam ends. The decision is more then just a percentage of correctly answered questions. Questions are given a value of difficulty that is figured into the evaluation process.

    Links for more info:
    The See Computerized Adaptive Testing (CAT) Overview
    Example-Pass (Power Point)
    Example-Fail (Power Point)

    Q:What are the alternate item format questions?

    A: There are questions on the exam now calling for fill in the blank answers, choose all that apply, and other newer formats in addition to the traditional multiple choice questions.

    For more info:
    Fast Facts About Alternate item formats and the NCLEX® Examination (pdf)
    Alternate format Tutorial

    Q: Can My friends and I schedule the test together?

    A:Yes. Your whole study group may be able to take the test the same time and testing center. Fax your group's (5 or more candidates) request to Pearson VUE's Group Scheduling Coordinator at 952-681-3899.


    NCLEX is a registered trademark and/or servicemark of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Inc



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    NCLEX is a registered trademark and/or servicemark of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Inc