Next Generation NCLEX (NGN) changes and how to prepare

Next Generation NCLEX (NGN) changes and how to prepare
Photo by Joshua Sortino / Unsplash

The National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) is a standardized exam that all aspiring nurses must pass in order to become licensed in their state. The NCLEX is designed to assess the skills and knowledge necessary to provide safe and effective patient care.

What's the NGN?

The Next Generation NCLEX (NGN) is the latest version of the NCLEX exam, and it brings several changes to the format and content of the exam.

What's changing?

One of the most significant changes in the NGN is the incorporation of more complex and higher-level thinking questions. The NGN now includes new item formats, which are designed to assess a student's ability to analyze and apply knowledge in a clinical setting, rather than just memorizing facts. These types of questions require students to think critically and apply their knowledge to real-world scenarios, making the exam more reflective of the complex and dynamic nature of nursing practice.

Another change in the NGN is the use of case studies including multimedia items, such as images, audio, and video, to present questions. This allows for a more realistic simulation of clinical scenarios and also provides a more diverse range of question types. The multimedia questions are designed to test the student's ability to understand and interpret visual information, as well as their ability to listen and respond to audio instructions.

The NGN also includes changes to the exam format, such as the length of the exam. The NGN will have a minimum of 85 questions and a maximum of 150 questions.  The NGN still uses the computer adaptive testing (CAT) format of the old NCLEX.

The NGN also brings changes to the content of the exam. The exam now includes a greater emphasis on patient safety, cultural competence, and the use of technology in nursing practice. Additionally, the NGN now includes questions on the role of the nurse in healthcare systems, health promotion and maintenance, and the use of evidence-based practice in nursing.

How to prepare

The best way to prepare for any new change is to experience a simulation and practice for it.  Several NCLEX programs have been updated to reflect the NGN changes including UWorld, Hurst Review, and Archer Review.

Of these programs, Archer Review includes the most features for the most affordable pricing and is our #1 recommendation.  

Here's a list of our favorite NCLEX program recommendations.
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