How many "dummy" questions are there in the database?

  1. I am thinking that there must be a lot and not only 15 else everyone will get all the 15 dummy questions in their exams. The computer must have been randomly picking dummy questions from the database. Statistically, it should be more than a thousand so that the chance of having two persons who knew each other getting the same question is less.

    If somebody gave a tip on NCLEX questions which he took to another, and that another happened to encounter the same questions, chances are that is a dummy question.

    So there is no point of really sharing exams questions to another except for good relationship.
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from FutureUSRN
    I am thinking that there must be a lot and not only 15 else everyone will get all the 15 dummy questions in their exams. The computer must have been randomly picking dummy questions from the database. ....

    So there is no point of really sharing exams questions to another except for good relationship.
    Correct. Each person WILL get 15 pilot, or "dummy" questions, but obviously not everyone will have the same 15. Certainly it would be obvious that the Examining Board would wish to "test drive" more than 15 each year, I should think.

    And you're not supposed to be sharing exam questions anyway, so that's moot
  4. by   EricJRN
    There are tons of questions (scored and unscored) in the database at any given time. I'm not sure why a question that popped up on two exams would be more likely to be unscored, but I do think that we should be mature enough to honor our agreement and not share exam content.
  5. by   FutureUSRN
    Well, I am working on a premise that the database contains unscored questions that is lot less than scored questions, about less than 20%. Meaning, if the database contains fewer unscored questions, then the chance of a question being given to higher than the scored question. This is only true if even 265 items contains more than 15 dummy questions. If 265 items also contains 15 dummy questions, then the probability is negligible.
  6. by   colleennurse
    I couldnt share what was on my exam really anyway, I swear I couldnt remember what the questions were 5 minutes after I walked out of that place. Other than maybe one or 2 of the drugs or a lab values I saw, I dont remember the questions really
  7. by   FutureUSRN
    hahaha...I don't even remember if mine stopped at 75 or at 76....I cannot even recall the last question...

    I think NCLEX questions are designed to be installed in our short-term memory...lol....and then like Gov. Arnold's movie, it will be erased in our memories once the blue screen flashes.....lol.....
  8. by   RNsRWe
    Not sure where you're going with this, but if I understand you correctly, you're asking how many pilot questions each tester would get. Each tester gets 15 questions within the first 75 questions she or he has.

    Of the first 75 questions, therefore, 60 are valid, scored questions. And anything after 75 is also a valid, scored question.
  9. by   EricJRN
    I know! I'm always amazed at people who say, 'I had eight check-all-that apply in the first 25 questions, then four check-all-that-apply later in the exam, sixteen priority questions, fourteen med questions...'
  10. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from EricEnfermero
    I know! I'm always amazed at people who say, 'I had eight check-all-that apply in the first 25 questions, then four check-all-that-apply later in the exam, sixteen priority questions, fourteen med questions...'
    LOL! Yeah, I just read something like that....I'm thinking "how on EARTH did you keep track of what kind of question you had....did you put a tick mark on the whiteboard every time??" I swear, if you're paying THAT much attention to the kinds of questions you have, you might wonder if you're paying enough attention to the questions themselves?
  11. by   ICU_JOSIE
    They must be truly gifted .... a counter in their brain perhaps or maybe just photographic memory at work even under stress !!!
  12. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from jrhyle
    They must be truly gifted .... a counter in their brain perhaps or maybe just photographic memory at work even under stress !!!
    Or, that other possibility: that focusing so much on keeping track of questions landed them all 265 questions on the test! I know I would have been a bit distracted from the question, but maybe that's just me
  13. by   ZASHAGALKA
    You are talking about two different 'databases' of questions: valid and verified questions and test pilot questions. (test pilot questions are not part of the validated database of questions yet.)

    For NCLEX RN, there are about 10,000 actual validated questions in that database. For NCLEX PN, there are about 8,500.

    So, for the RN exam, IF you get 265 questions, your odds of getting any particular question is about 1:39 (You will answer questions from about 1/39th of the database.) IF you get 75 questions, your odds drop to 1:133 (You will answer questions from about 1/133rd of the database.)

    On the NCLEX RN exam, you WILL get exactly 15 test pilot questions, and they will ALWAYS be in the first 75 questions. If you are on question 76 or higher, EVERY question at that point comes from the valid question database.

    For NCLEX PN, you will get exactly 25 test pilot questions, and they will ALWAYS be in the first 85 questions. If you are on question 86 or higher, EVERY question at that point comes from the valid question database.

    I believe you are asking, how many questions are being test piloted at any given time. I don't know the answer, but I can guess. Nursing changes all the time. Many things I did 13 yrs ago are out of date today. New therapies and technology must be addressed on a continual basis.

    Another factor to consider is HOW LONG they pilot a question before they consider it validated. I don't know that answer.

    Another factor is keeping questions 'fresh'. If they keep a static 10,000, it becomes easier and easier for companies to 'teach the test'. So, the same concepts would need to be represented in a different form to keep the test 'fresh'.

    So, out of the 10,000 questions in the database, there is always a percentage that becomes outdated and needs to be replaced, or need to be replaced in order to be 'fresh'. What percentage? If you say that 10% of the questions in the database are being changed over any given year, then your answer would be that there are about 1,000 test questions being 'piloted' at any given time.

    IF I had to guess, based on the length of time needed to validate a question, the number of questions that must be replaced because they are outdated, and the number of questions being 'retooled' in the validated pool at any given time, I'd guess: 750 - 1,500 questions are being 'piloted' at any given time.

    That puts the odds of getting any given pilot question at about 1:50 to 1:100, or roughly, the same odds of getting a question from the validated pool, depending on how many questions you answer. So, I think this is probably a good guess range.

    But, It''s just a guess.

    (If you assume a range for pilot questions that mimics the range of valid questions as a percentage, that would bring my guess range to 585 - 1995 questions, or the odds of getting any given pilot question as 1:39 to 1:133. I think it's a safe bet that the actual number of pilot questions DOES fall in at least this range.)

    Finally, the number of actual pilot questions are probably a 'float' at any given time. There are probably times when they need to replace MORE outdated questions, and times when they need to replace LESS. I imagine they check to see how many of their questions are compromised, to their knowledge, and that would affect how many questions they need to retool at any time. So, the actual number of pilot questions at any given time is probably variable and probably DOES fall within a range and is not an exact and consistent number.

    I hope that makes sense.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Aug 11, '06
  14. by   suzy253
    Quote from colleennurse
    I couldnt share what was on my exam really anyway, I swear I couldnt remember what the questions were 5 minutes after I walked out of that place. Other than maybe one or 2 of the drugs or a lab values I saw, I dont remember the questions really
    Same with me. Within 5 minutes it was all a big blur! :spin:

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