In October 2011 the NJ Board of Nursing issued a statement about the use of commercially prepared exams in nursing programs
. It restricted the use of such exams to 10% of the course grade and primarily for assessment and diagnostic purposes.
Here is the situation:
In an LPN program, there are about 5 modules, and for each module, ATI exams are used. For example, in one module, exams, quizzes, attendance amount to 20 % whereas two ATI exams are weighted at 40% each for a total of 80%. Students who fail either of these exams are given a second chance, failing which they are terminated from the program and given the option of leaving or re-taking the entire module with another class later. Students are deeply worried about this policy, as two were already terminated. This is not explained in handbooks or other materials. They only note that the passing grade for the module is 75%, which is fine, but there is nothing about ATI exams constituting a high percentage of the grade.
Does such use of ATI exams comply with the NJ board of Nursing's policy that emphasizes only 10% of the course grade as appropriate and not, as in this case, 80%?
The major problem is that students are being terminated from the program for passing all exams in the module but not getting through the ATI exams. In addition to blatantly misusing commercially prepared exams, such use appears to directly contradict the NJ Board of Nursing's stipulation.
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Have you had such experiences?
Any thoughts on this? What would you suggest is the best option to pursue?
Thanks in advance for your input.