NCLEX Computerized Adaptive Testing (CAT) - page 3

by TheCommuter 12,778 Views | 29 Comments Senior Moderator

NCLEX, an acronym that stands for National Council Licensure Examination, is a crucial gatekeeper in the nursing profession because no one is granted a nursing license in the US without satisfactorily passing this test. The... Read More


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    I took my boards yesterday and got 193 questions and didn't pass. This was for my RN. I have been an LPN for 7 years and don't remember how many questions I got back then. I did the Kaplan review and not so sure that it really helped me when I was reading the questions. Any suggestions to help me prepare to take it again?? I have the Saunders nclex RN review book. Have looked at Hurst but not gotten too much into it yet to see if it something I want to do bc I have to renew my LPN license now and repay for the boards. Thanks
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    One person out of the 27 in my class got all 265 questions; apparently some percentage of applicants are randomly assigned to get all the questions to test for internal reliability of the questions (i.e., people who answer these 10 questions right will also be likely to answer these other 10 questions right). I had read that the test gets you to where you are answering about half the questions right (like the tipping point/balance analogy someone made above) and looks at what level those questions are.

    I don't know. I am glad I didn't have to take 2 days of exams on paper, but I do think it's weird that the tests are different for everyone. On the other hand, the longer I work as a nurse (coming up on 1 1/2 years), the more I think that the NCLEX tests whether you can be trusted to even be in the room with patients, and you actually become a good, knowledgeable nurse by being a nurse!
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    Quote from wannabecnl
    One person out of the 27 in my class got all 265 questions; apparently some percentage of applicants are randomly assigned to get all the questions to test for internal reliability of the questions (i.e., people who answer these 10 questions right will also be likely to answer these other 10 questions right). I had read that the test gets you to where you are answering about half the questions right (like the tipping point/balance analogy someone made above) and looks at what level those questions are. I don't know. I am glad I didn't have to take 2 days of exams on paper, but I do think it's weird that the tests are different for everyone. On the other hand, the longer I work as a nurse (coming up on 1 1/2 years), the more I think that the NCLEX tests whether you can be trusted to even be in the room with patients, and you actually become a good, knowledgeable nurse by being a nurse!
    STOP SPREADING THIS RUMOUR! The NCLEX does not randomly give people the whole 265 Q's!

    If you get 75Q and pass, then that means you answered most questions right INCLUDING the 15Q they use to ensure exam validity.

    If you get 75Q and fail, that means the computer determined that you got too many wrong to ever get back above the passing level.

    If you get, say, 265, you rode the line and you better hope the last 60Qs were correct and above the passing level.
    Rosehill and Lev <3 like this.
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    Quote from wannabecnl
    One person out of the 27 in my class got all 265 questions; apparently some percentage of applicants are randomly assigned to get all the questions to test for internal reliability of the questions (i.e., people who answer these 10 questions right will also be likely to answer these other 10 questions right). I had read that the test gets you to where you are answering about half the questions right (like the tipping point/balance analogy someone made above) and looks at what level those questions are. I don't know. I am glad I didn't have to take 2 days of exams on paper, but I do think it's weird that the tests are different for everyone.

    This is absolutely false. Read the NCSBN FAQ's rather than spread rumors.

    Source: https://www.ncsbn.org/1201.htm

    Are candidates randomly selected to receive maximum length examinations?

    Items are administered following the principles of CAT. Candidates are NOT randomly selected to receive a designated number of examination items. As a candidate takes the examination, items are selected based on the candidate's response to previous items. The exam ends when it can be determined with 95% confidence that a candidate's performance is either above or below the passing standard, regardless of the number of items answered or the amount of testing time elapsed (six-hour maximum time period for the NCLEX-RN examination and five hour maximum time period for the NCLEX-PN examination).
    Lev <3 likes this.
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    Wow, okay, sorry I repeated what our professors told us. They did not want us to get worried if we were given all of the questions.

    God help us all if nurses can't cut each other a modicum of slack.
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    Quote from wannabecnl
    Wow, okay, sorry I repeated what our professors told us. They did not want us to get worried if we were given all of the questions. God help us all if nurses can't cut each other a modicum of slack.
    I'm sorry if it came off a little harsh but people need to understand the concept of CAT. If you got all the questions, then you rode the line the whole time and the computer couldn't decide before you took all the questions. Instructors are not the end all, be all of info for NCLEX. The people who compose the test are.
    Lev <3 and LadyFree28 like this.
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    The Nclex seemed easier then some of the tests we had in NS. I passed the nclex-PN with 85 questions, granted it was much longer then any nursing test. The only thing is there seemed to be a lot of conference questions.
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    I think there is way too much hysteria about CAT and how few versus how many questions. It seems like a psychological mind game to create anxiety and take time from actual studying by reading how the test functions. Study and know the material and understand decisions and focus on being a critical thinker. I wish there had been a class in Critical Thinking especially since NCLEX can't take into consideration for prioritization questions that a nurse will probably be doing at least two maybe three things at the same time.

    We are not being tested on the "concept of CAT" so, stop worrying about that which you cannot control and focus on studying.
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    I think of taking the nclex as a positive thing... You did SO good in nursing school, that you passed and graduated.. and are now able to go take an exam to PROVE how great you are as a new nurse. That's all it is
    30days2nclex and shopgirl571 like this.
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    It's all critical thinking you not given a direct answer you just have to use the right judgment for the patient. It's a skill but just practice questions to get the hang of it 😊


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