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There are a diversity of learning styles among nursing students. It is important you choose resources like a NCLEX Test Study Guide that fits your individual learning style. Many students also find NCLEX Exam Flashcards helpful, but ultimately your success on the NCLEX is your responsibility.

Both the NCLEX PN test and the NCLEX RN test are variable length, adaptive tests that are given on a computer. The lengths of the examinations are determined by a candidate's responses to test items, so candidates will have varying examination lengths, as well as varying questions on the exams. Testing will stop when the minimum number of test items has been answered, and the candidate's ability is determined to be above or below a passing standard, within a 95% certainty. Candidates have up to five hours to complete the NCLEX PN test, and up to six hours to complete the NCLEX RN test. These time limits include any necessary breaks as well as any computer tutorial time. The NCLEX PN test will have between 85 and 205 questions, and the NCLEX RN test will have between 75 and 265 questions. Out of these questions, 25 questions on the NCLEX PN test are pretest questions, which are not scored. On the NCLEX RN test, 15 questions will also be pretest questions. All questions that are presented must be answered, and candidates are instructed to make their best guess if they do not know the answer to a particular test item. Most of the test items are multiple choice in format, but there are some other formats as well. Information about these other test formats can be found in the candidate tutorial on the Pearson VUE website or on the NCSBN website.

Both the NCLEX PN test and the NCLEX RN test are based on four major client needs categories. These categories make up the test plans for the exams. For the NCLEX PN test, the client needs categories are safe and effective care environment (further broken down into coordinated care and safety and infection control), health promotion and maintenance, psychosocial integrity, and physiological integrity (further broken down into basic care and comfort, pharmacological therapies, reduction of risk potential, and physiological adaptations). Typical percentages of questions on the NCLEX PN exam are as follows: 11-17% coordinated care, 8-14% safety and infection control, 7-13% health promotion and maintenance, 8-14% psychosocial integrity, 11-17% basic care and comfort, 9-15% pharmacological therapies, 10-16% reduction of risk potential, and 12-18% physiological adaptations. The client needs categories on the NCLEX RN test are safe and effective care environment (further broken down into management of care and safety and infection control), health promotion and maintenance, psychosocial integrity, and physiological integrity (further broken down into basic care and comfort, pharmacological and parenteral therapies, reduction of risk potential, and physiological adaptations). Typical percentages of questions on the NCLEX RN exam are as follows: 13-19% management of care, 8-14% safety and infection control, 6-12% health promotion and maintenance, 6-12% psychosocial integrity, 6-12% basic care and comfort, 13-19% pharmacological and parenteral therapies, 13-19% reduction of risk potential, and 11-17% physiological adaptations.

NCLEX & HESI test breakdown | NCLEX RN Review | NCLEX PN Review

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Last Updated: 08/14/2014

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