What are the eligibility requirements for taking the NCLEX?NCSBN does not maintain a list of eligibility requirements to take the NCLEX examination. Contact the board of nursing where you are seeking licensure for their requirements. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page.
What are the requirements for taking the NCLEX as an internationally educated nurse?As an internationally educated candidate, you will need to complete the two processes listed in the next question. Additionally, regulations and requirements regarding internationally educated nurses vary from board of nursing to board of nursing. Requirements may include: Obtaining Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) certification Taking an English proficiency examination Obtaining official review of credentials (i.e. review of nursing education) NCSBN does not maintain a list of requirements for internationally educated nurses for individual boards of nursing. Candidates do not need to be U.S. citizens to take the NCLEX examination, however, there are some boards of nursing which will not allow candidates without U.S. Social Security numbers to apply for licensure or obtain a license. It would be up to a non-U.S. citizen to find out from the board of nursing whether either of these situations apply. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page.
How do I register for the NCLEX?To take the NCLEX examination, you will first need to complete two separate processes: 1. Contact your board of nursing and request a licensure application.
- You will pay a licensing fee to the board of nursing along with the submission of your application materials.
- Licensure applications must be obtained from the board of nursing in the state/jurisdiction where you are seeking licensure, as requirements vary from board to board.
- Obtain a copy of the online NCLEX Candidate Bulletin or by calling the board of nursing.
- Online - Visit http://www.pearsonvue.com/nclex and choose one of two payment options: credit card or certified check/cashiers check /money order. (When registering online using the pay by certified check/cashiers check /money order option, you will need access to a printer).
- Phone - Call Pearson VUE NCLEX Candidate Services at 866.496.2539 and pay the $200 by credit card.
- Mail - Obtain a registration form from your board of nursing and enclose a $200 certified check, cashiers check or money order (no personal checks accepted).
Can a school/agency/employer pay for my NCLEX?Yes, nursing schools, agencies or employers may register and pay for the NCLEX examination on behalf of the candidate. This is considered a Workforce Exception, or a Third Party Payment. Beginning January 1, 2014, all third parties will be required to register and pay for exam registrations through the Pearson VUE website or over the phone (866-496-2539) with a credit or debit card. Money order, certified check, and cashier's check payments will no longer be accepted. To register using a third-party payment, follow the instructions below: 1. Visit www.pearsonvue.com/nclex and complete a registration using the 'online certified check/cashier's check/money order payment registration option.' At the end of the registration, make sure to print the confirmation document. 2. Write 'Workforce Exception' in the memo line of the check (made payable to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing) and mail both the NCLEX registration confirmation document and payment to: NCLEX Workforce Program Pearson VUE 5601 Green Valley Drive, Room 220 Bloomington, MN 55437 This address is for third-party payments. Registration forms/confirmation documents with a $200 certified check, cashiers check or money order be sent to the P.O. Box address listed on the enclosed envelope. The online certified check/cashier’s check/money order registration option can be used for schools, agencies or employers that are paying for multiple candidate registrations at a time; payment must be accompanied by an individual confirmation document for each candidate being provided for. If you cannot register using the above payment option, you may request a hard copy of the registration form from your board of nursing and mail the completed form in with the third-party payment to the mailing address above. Do not use the envelope provided with the registration form when sending this type of payment. NCSBN and Pearson VUE have established specific guidelines for this provision (Workforce Exception). Failure to follow the steps above will result in the rejection and/or a significant delay of your registration. For more information on these types of payments, visit the Third-Party Payments page.
I have registered for the NCLEX, when will I get my Authorization to Test (ATT) letter?Starting January 1, 2014, once you have been made eligible by your board of nursing, you will receive an Authorization to Test (ATT) via the email address you provided when registering. You must have your ATT email to schedule an appointment to take the NCLEX.In addition, a paper copy of the ATT will no longer be necessary for admittance to the NCLEX. To gain access to the NCLEX, you will be required to present one form of acceptable identification. The first and last name on your identification must match exactly the name you provided when registering.For further details, visit Authorization to Test. After you register with Pearson VUE and your board of nursing declares you eligible, you will receive your Authorization to Test (ATT). All application materials and fees must be submitted to the board of nursing before they can deem you eligible to test. Once the board of nursing declares you eligible to test and your ATT is issued, you must test within the validity dates of your ATT nursing (varies from 60 days to 365 days; however, the average is 90 days). These validity dates cannot be extended for any reason. If you do not test within these dates you will have to reregister and repay the examination fee. The ATT contains your authorization number, candidate identification number and an expiration date. You need the ATT to: a. Schedule an appointment to take the NCLEX examination b. Be admitted to the test center on the day of the examination appointment. Candidates will not be admitted to the examination without their ATT's and will be required to reregister and repay to take the examination. Call Pearson VUE NCLEX Candidate Services at 866.496.2539 or at one of the international telephone numbers listed on the inside front cover of the NCLEX Candidate Bulletin to report a lost ATT or if it has been two weeks since you registered and have not received your ATT. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page.
When a candidate calls to schedule an exam, how soon can they expect to get an appointment for?First-time test takers will be offered an appointment within 30 days of the call, or online attempt, to schedule an appointment; repeat candidates will be offered an appointment within 45 days. If you wish, you may decline the appointment offered and schedule later than the 30 or 45 days.
How does a candidate with special needs request testing accommodations?A candidate must contact their board of nursing for instructions on how to apply for accommodations and what documentation is required. A candidate may receive testing accommodations if they provide documentation from an appropriate medical professional to support their request. This documentation must include a diagnosis included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Among the accommodations available are additional testing time, separate room and/or assistive personnel (i.e., reader).
Can you recommend review courses and/or study materials to help me prepare for the NCLEX?NCSBN does not recommend or endorse any review courses or study materials. If you are interested in participating in a review course or purchasing review materials, please consult a nursing education professional for suggestions. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page.
Where can I take the NCLEX?The NCLEX examination is given year round and is administered by Pearson VUE. Candidates can take the examination at any Pearson Professional Center in the U.S. (including U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Guam, Northern Mariana Islands). International locations where the NCLEX is offered for purposes of domestic licensure include Australia, Canada, England, (Germany - temporarily not testing at this location), Hong Kong, India, Japan, Mexico, Philippines, Puerto Rico and Taiwan. Candidates are able to take the NCLEX examination at any Pearson Professional Testing location, regardless of the board they are applying for licensure. Candidates can find U.S. and international test center locations by going to the Pearson VUE website at www.pearsonvue.com/nclex. For more information on where the NCLEX is offered, visit the Test Center Locations page.
What forms of identification are accepted at the test center?The only acceptable forms of identification in test centers in the United States* are:
- U.S. drivers license (Department of Motor Vehicle-Issued) (if expired, a renewal slip that contains a photograph and a signature must be presented in order to be admitted)
- U.S. state identification (Department of Motor Vehicle-Issued)
- U.S. Military Identification
Does the middle name need to match the ID and the ATT letter?Only the first and last names need to match between the candidate’s ID and ATT.
Do candidates have an option to challenge items on the exam that they do not believe were valid?Candidates who applied for licensure in jurisdictions where boards of nursing authorized Items Review and Challenge may participate in the process. The Review and Challenge process allows candidates to review the items in question with a representative from their state board. Once a Review and Challenge is initiated, NCSBN staff will conduct content review of the items in question and determine validity of the candidate’s assertion
When will I get my results?Candidates whose board of nursing participates in the Quick Results Service can receive their ‘unofficial’ results 48 hours after their exam date and time (a fee is required). Official examination results are available only from the boards of nursing and will be mailed to candidates approximately one month after taking the examination. Pearson VUE and NCSBN do not provide examination results. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page. For more information about getting NCLEX results, visit the Results Reporting section.
If I fail the NCLEX, when can I take it again?Candidates must wait a minimum of 45 or 90 days between each examination. This length of time is determined by the board of nursing and will be reflected in the new ATT’s validity dates. Please Note – If you missed an exam appointment or your ATT expired, you do NOT have to wait the 45 or 90 day period before you can retest. Questions regarding testing limits, resubmitting materials, background checks, or licensing fees should be directed to your board of nursing. Links to all boards of nursing websites and contact information are available on the Contact a Board of Nursing page. To retake the NCLEX examination:
- Contact your board of nursing and notify them that you plan to re-take the exam. Determine what materials or fees you need to resubmit to the board.
- Reregister with Pearson VUE and pay the $200 dollar fee.
- Once the board makes you eligible you will receive a new Authorization to Test (ATT) and be able to schedule an exam date.