As of March 25, 2020, NCLEX-RN testing resumed on a limited basis at the Edmonton (south) and Calgary (downtown) Pearson VUE test centres. To check scheduling availability or to schedule a test please log into your Pearson VUE account. For more detailed information on the impacts of COVID-19 to NCLEX candidates, click here. If you have any further questions please email email@example.com.
About the exam
Anyone applying to practise as a registered nurse in Alberta who hasn't passed a Canadian licensing exam must pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) exam. Passing the exam is one of several requirements set by CARNA for entry to practice.
The NCLEX is an exam for the licensing of nurses administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) and delivered by Pearson VUE. It tests the competencies nurses need at the beginning of their careers.
CARNA assesses an applicant's eligibility to write the exam, and grants access to the NCLEX for applicants wishing to be registered in Alberta.
How to apply to write the exam
Please read this first before applying
You do not need a provisional graduate nurse permit to write the exam.
- For new Canadian graduates only: Complete the Confirmation of Program Completion form.
- Download and complete Part A of the form that applies to you:
- Send the form to the staff member assigned by the Dean or Director of your nursing program to complete Part B.
- When both parts of the form are complete, your school of nursing will return the form to CARNA via email, fax or regular mail (see form for details).
- Sign in to MyCARNA or create an account, then:
- New Canadian graduates: Complete the new graduate assessment application. This is your initial exam application.
- Internationally educated applicants: If CARNA has determined that you are eligible to write the exam, complete the NCLEX-RN application.
- If your name has changed since you began the application process with CARNA, send us two pieces of updated government-issued identification. Documents must show your name and birthdate, and one must be a picture ID. Your name must be spelled the same on both documents. Email your documents to:
- If you are diagnosed with a disability, impairment, condition or disorder that prevents you from writing the exam in the usual method or environment, you can request custom testing arrangements.
- Review the NCLEX Candidate Bulletin. The Transitional NCLEX Candidate Bulletin for Canadian Candidates is online and is a complete source of information about the exam, how to apply, and what will happen on exam day.
- Register to write the NCLEX with Pearson VUE. Pearson VUE charges a fee of $360 CAD to write the NCLEX.
- Create an account on Pearson VUE's website.
- Ensure that you enter the correct school code when creating your account. An incorrect school code could result in a delay in your exam registration.
- You will receive an email confirming your registration within two days of registering for the exam. Contact NCLEX Candidate Services at 1.866.496.2539 if you do not receive this email.
- Pearson VUE will send you an Authority to Test (ATT) by email after we have reviewed your application and notified Pearson VUE that you are eligible to take the exam.
- Follow the instructions on the ATT to schedule an exam date and time. Once you receive your ATT, you must test within the dates specified. These validity dates cannot be extended for any reason.
National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) website
Full details about the NCLEX including what you need to know before the exam, for exam day and after the exam.
Test plan for candidates
Outlines the content covered on the exam and includes sample questions. It is critical that students thoroughly review the test plan.
Learn about the processes NCSBN takes to develop and maintain the validity and reliability of the NCLEX.
Testing centre information
Rewriting your exam
If you need to re-take the exam, take your time to prepare. We recommend that you review NCSBN's exam resources before you apply again.
Applicants can write the exam as many times as they need within two years of graduating their program, however NCLEX has a policy that candidates can only take the exam every 45 days to ensure they do not see the same question.
Graduate nurses who fail the exam may have additional conditions applied to their provisional permit. If a graduate nurse fails the exam twice, their provisional permit will be cancelled.
How do I apply to re-take the exam?
If you are ready to re-test, you can complete the steps outlined below before the 45-day waiting period is complete. However you will not be given authorization to test until the waiting period is over.
- Apply to CARNA for an assessment of your eligibility to take the exam.
- Complete an online exam application with Pearson VUE.