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​The REx-PN uses computer-adaptive testing (CAT) format. This page provides more information about CAT testing and what you can expect when you write the exam. 

How CAT works 

With CAT, the test questions are not pre-determined. Every time you answer a question, the computer re-estimates your ability to respond based on all of your previous answers and the difficulty of those questions. The computer then selects the next item, which you have a 50% chance of answering correctly. This way, the next item should not be too easy or too hard. You should find each item challenging as each item is targeted to your previous response's difficulty level. With each item answered, the computer's estimate of your ability to provide safe nursing care becomes more precise.

The following video provides an overview of CAT:

Types of questions​​

​The REx-PN uses a variety of question types, including: 

  • Multiple choice: You will need to select a single response.
  • Multiple response: You will need to select multiple or all responses.
  • Fill-in-the-blank calculation: You will need to calculate an answer using numbers, and may make use of an integrated calculator if needed.
  • Exhibit: You will be presented with a problem and will need to review the exhibit to select an answer.
  • Graphics: Images are used as part of the stem or as options.

How a pass is determined

​​​The exam's goal is to get as much information as possible about your true ability level. You must achieve a certain ability level on the exam—known as the passing standard​—to pass.

The passing standard is the minimum level of ability required for safe and effective entry-level nursing practice. Rather than provide a "mark" or a percentage result, you will pass or fail. If you are unsuccessful, you will be sent a candidate performance report that will indicate whether you performed above, near, or below the passing standard in each section of the exam.​​