The NCLEX Is Changing. Are You Ready for the Next Generation NCLEX?
Have you heard that the NCLEX is being updated in 2023? Recent changes in the nursing landscape have given rise to the Next Generation NCLEX (NGN), a new and improved version of the NCLEX-RN (Registered Nurse) and NCLEX-PN (Practical Nurse) exams.
Why Is the NCLEX Changing?
The Next Generation NCLEX (NGN) was developed by the NCSBN (National Council of State Boards of Nursing). The NCSBN revises the NCLEX every three years based on a practice analysis of the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed for entry-level nurses to achieve competency in nursing practice. A nursing knowledge survey conducted by the NCSBN in 2017 identified that modern nurses must meet the challenges of caring for severely ill patients while making complex clinical decisions and navigating an ever-expanding scope of practice. The need for a new model and new methods to evaluate clinical judgement is what ultimately led to the development of the NGN exam, which will launch April 1, 2023.
What Will the Next Generation NCLEX Be Like?
The NGN will introduce new concepts not covered in previous versions of the exam. These newer concepts focus on patient safety and effective nursing practice within the context of the NCSBN Clinical Judgment Measurement Model. The NGN will also introduce new features, including but not limited to, extended multiple response questions, matrix/grid items, and a partial scoring system.
A key feature of the exam is its use of computer-adaptive testing technology. This is where questions of varying difficulty are presented based on a student’s previous responses. The exam adapts to the test-taker’s skill level, which more accurately assesses a student’s competency in their understanding of nursing concepts and skills.
How Can Nursing Students Prepare for the Next Generation NCLEX?
With all these new testing procedures and question types, students may wonder where they can find resources to prepare for exam day. Thankfully, the NCSBN has several resources posted online which include sample exam items and an updated NCLEX tutorial, which is current to the items that will be included starting April 1, 2023. These resources will be the best options for students to get the necessary information about new NGN items.
How Does Northwest University Prepare Students for Success on the Next Generation NCLEX?
Faculty at the Mark and Huldah Buntain College of Nursing (BCON) have been preparing to support nurse learners to adapt to this new NCLEX exam by integrating more interactive learning methods into the classroom that promote clinical judgment development. Faculty begin preparing students for NGN early on in their nursing studies by teaching the foundational concepts that help them better understand the content that will be seen in the NGN. One of these major, foundational concepts is the nursing process. The nursing process provides structure to help students better develop strong clinical decision-making skills.
According to Cheri Goit, associate professor of nursing, the BCON “implements an NCLEX preparation program into the curriculum during each of the four semesters. Students take multiple assessments that integrate new NGN test items, and the College of Nursing encourages self-assessment of strengths and weaknesses and provides an NCLEX live review course at the very end of the senior year.” Throughout the BCON prelicensure nursing program, students apply their learning using an interactive learning model known as Socrative. The BCON’s selected NCLEX preparation program allows students to observe their rationale and problem-solving strategies in real time, which gives them the opportunity to identify areas where more study may be required to perform their best on the actual NGN exam.
If you are interested in finding out more about how the Buntain College of Nursing is preparing nursing students for successful licensure as a registered nurse, visit our website. The new version of the NCLEX may feel overwhelming and concerning, but with good guidance and a supportive nursing program like the one you’ll find at NU, you will receive the preparation you need to achieve your goals in the nursing profession.
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