Passing the NCLEX: An Overview
NCLEX stands for National Council Licensure Examination, and it's administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN). In the United States (and other countries, including Canada), it's a common licensing requirement for practical and registered nurses.
From January to March of 2017, out of all candidates who sat for this exam (including international students and repeat test-takers), 73.96% received a passing score on the NCLEX-RN exam and 71.23% passed the NCLEX-PN exam. This is comparable to the 70.18% (RN) and 70.59% (PN) yearly passing rates for 2016, out of 232,385 (RN) and 64,509 (PN) test takers.
Pass Rates By School
When looked at individually, the pass rates of colleges and universities will vary. Many campuses boast a pass rate of 100%, while others hover closer to the overall passing rates.
Here is a brief chart showing the 2016 results from a few different colleges and universities across the United States, including the type of test and the number of test takers. For example, looking at the entry for Central Oregon Community College, 45 associate's degree candidates sat for the NCLEX-RN and 97.78% of them received a passing score, while all 9 students in the LPN program passed the NCLEX-PN that year.
|College or University||Program Type||# Candidates||NCLEX-RN/PN Pass Rates|
|Azusa Pacific University (Azusa, CA)||BSN||287||82.23%|
|Beebe School of Nursing (Lewes, DE)||Diploma||21||90.48%|
|Central Oregon Community College (Bend, OR)||ADN/LPN||45/9||97.78%/100%|
|Centralia College (Centralia, WA)||ADN/LPN||23/3||82.61%/100%|
|Concordia University (Portland, OR)||BSN||36||91.67%|
|East Carolina University (Greenville, NC)||BSN||259||95%|
|Houston Community College (Houston, TX)||ADN/LPN||130/67||80%/74.63%|
|Mid-Plains Community College (North Platte, NE)||ADN/LPN||24/24||79.17%/87.50%|
|Northwest University (Kirkland, WA)||BSN||44||96%|
|Shasta College (Redding, CA)||ADN||59||84.75%|
|Shenandoah University (Winchester, VA)||BSN||114||86.8%|
|Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi (Corpus Christi, TX)||BSN||253||83.79%|
|University of Alaska, Anchorage (Anchorage, AK)||ADN||(N/A)||87.9%|
|University of Alaska, Anchorage (Anchorage, AK)||BS||(N/A)||87.6%|
|University of Delaware (Newark, DE)||(N/A)||166||88.55%|
|University of Nebraska Medical Center (Omaha, NE)||BSN||288||92.36%|
|Wayne Community College (Goldsboro, NC)||ADN/LPN||36/16||97%/94%|
|Wytheville Community College (Wytheville, VA)||ADN/LPN||35/26||77.14%/88.46%|
Source: State nursing board websites; results listed for Alaska, California and Delaware are from 2015-2016.
If your school is not listed here, try looking up the website for your state nursing board. Many of these websites archive NCLEX results by college and type of program.
NCLEX Study Resources
If you are still trying to decide where you should study nursing, the board exam pass rate is something to add to your considerations. Of course, a high pass rate is not a guarantee that you will pass your exams if you attend that particular college - you'll still have to study and work hard!
On that end, you can find helpful review resources right here at Study.com. Check out our specialized study guides for both NCLEX-RN and NCLEX-PN candidates. These guides are completely online, allowing you to tailor your studies to your schedule and needs. Each study guide consists of several subject chapters, broken down into brief, modular lessons that you can cover at your own pace. Also, a quiz at the end of each lesson allows you to assess your progress and determine where you need extra practice!