The Next Generation NCLEX (NGN) exam took effect on April 1, 2023.  Read the full release on the launch of the exam here.

Important Notice: As of November 1, 2022, Pearson Vue will revert to their pre-pandemic policy. This means that if you need to cancel or reschedule your exam due to COVID-19 symptoms, you must follow Pearson Vue’s rescheduling policy

As part of the process to become licensed as an RN in Nova Scotia, you must successfully complete the NCLEX-RN Exam. The NCLEX-RN Exam is a modern, state of the art entry-to-practice exam in that it uses computer adaptive testing to tailor questions to the exam taker as a way to better measure entry-level nursing competencies. This video provides more details on computer adaptive testing.

Note: The NCLEX-RN exam is the mandatory exam required for RN registration and licensure in Nova Scotia. NSCN does not recognize any other nursing exam, including CASN’s voluntary Canadian Examination for Baccalaureate Nursing. Please contact if you have any questions

About the Next Generation NCLEX 

The NGN uses questions with real-world case studies to reflect scenarios nurses will encounter in practice and test their ability to think critically. The NGN will assess candidates to ensure they demonstrate that they have the entry-level nursing competencies required to provide safecompassionatecompetent and ethical care nursing care.

In 2013, the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) Strategic Practice Analysis highlighted the increasingly complex decisions newly licensed nurses make during the course of patient care. Over the past years, research and student beta testing by NCSBN were conducted to determine whether clinical judgment and decision-making in nursing practice could be assessed, and the NGN was the objective of this project.

How to Apply

You must apply and pay fees to NSCN and Pearson VUE before being eligible to take the exam.

  1. Apply to NSCN through the Registrant Portal.
  2. Register with  Pearson Vue or by telephone at 1.866.496.2539 . You will not be given an exam date by Pearson Vue until we provide confirmation to Pearson Vue that you have completed your nursing program.

Apply to The Regulatory Body Where You Completed Your Program

If you apply to write the NCLEX-RN through the regulatory body where you completed your nursing program, they will receive your exam results. You must do the following:

  1. Apply to write the NCLEX-RN exam through the regulatory body in the province or territory where you completed your nursing program
    1. IMPORTANT: If you wish, you can choose to sit for the exam in Nova Scotia. Simply choose Nova Scotia as your exam location when you apply to Pearson-VUE
  2. Register in that jurisdiction. You are not required to hold a practising licence in that jurisdiction, you only need to be registered)
  3. Request that the regulatory body send us official verification of your registration

If you apply to write the exam with us, there are additional steps to complete within the application process:

  1. Complete the online exam application on our Registrant Portal
  2. Submit the Confirmation of Program Completion from Regulatory Body to the registering/licensing authority in the province in which you have completed your nursing education. This form will be forwarded to NSCN. 
  3. You will be made eligible to write the NCLEX-RN exam. We will share your exam results with you when we receive them. 
  4.  Complete the additional requirements to obtain registration and licensure with NSCN. 

If you have completed your nursing program outside of Canada and have never registered in another Canadian jurisdiction, you can apply to take the NCLEX-RN Exam once you have been deemed eligible. We will contact you when you are eligible to apply for the exam. 

Questions and Answers

Knowing that exam preparation can be stressful, we have made every attempt to make the exam registration process as simple as possible with supports and resources provided to you along the way.

One of the most important resources for applicants is the National Council of State Boards of Nursing’s (NCSBN) NCLEX Examination Candidate Bulletin. This bulletin will guide you through all aspects of taking the exam and we strongly recommend that you review the bulletin prior to taking the exam. Other NCLEX-RN exam resources include:

We do not endorse any preparatory resources outside of what NCSBN provides. For more information on the NCLEX-RN Exam, please visit the NCSBN website.

As an educator who plays an important role in preparing student for the NCLEX-RN Exam, there are specialized resources for you in your role. These resources include:

We do not endorse any preparatory resources outside of what NCSBN provides. For more information on the NCLEX-RN Exam, please visit the NCSBN website.

Employers, the public and other stakeholders also have an interest in the exam performance of new graduates. Resources for stakeholders include: 

We do not endorse any preparatory resources outside of what NCSBN provides. For more information on the NCLEX-RN Exam, please visit the NCSBN website.

If you believe the administration of the NCLEX-RN® Exam discriminates against you on the grounds prohibited by the Nova Scotia Human Rights Act, you may request in writing that you be provided accommodation to eliminate or reduce the effects of the prohibited discrimination during the exam.

If you have applied to take the exam and your testing accommodation is approved by us, you must take the exam at Pearson VUE permanent testing location such as the one located in Halifax, Nova Scotia. You are responsible for submitting a written request to us before you apply to take the exam. Please reach out to to request an exam accommodation.

There are a number of organizations involved in this process so it can be confusing as to who can answer questions on a particular topic. To alleviate confusion and clarify the roles of each organization in the process, we have created a chart which outlines who should answer any of your questions.  

If you have any questions about registration or licensure in Nova Scotia, email us directly at  

Registering to take the NCLEX   X     
Lost Authorization to Test (ATT) email   X     
Scheduling/rescheduling an exam appointment   X     
Acceptable forms of identification    X     
Comments about the test centre  X     
Methods of payment   X     
NCLEX development      X   
Questions related to exam administration     X   
NCLEX eligibility       X 
Licensure        X 
Name or address change      X 
Name corrections on ATT       X 

Registration Services (NSCN)

Pearson VUE NCLEX Candidate Services

NCLEX Contact at NCSBN

Once you apply to us and register with Pearson Vue, you can schedule your appointment online or by telephone.

There are three locations to write the exam depending on the time of the year:

Permanent Test Centers:
Pearson Professional Centre
6960 Mumford Road
Suite 220
Mumford Professional Centre
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3L 4P1

Pearson Professional Centres-Halifax (ClaytonPk) NS
287 Lacewood Dr
Suite 201
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3M 3Y7

Temporary Testing Centre in Sydney Nova Scotia

If you’ve already passed the NCLEX-RN Exam, you are not required to re-take the exam.

Although the exam is scored as you complete each item, no results are released at the test center. In fact, test center staff do not have access to the exam results.

Examination results are only available to us. Exam results will be released to candidates within 2 weeks of their exam test date.

If you are successful on the exam, you are sent the following by email:

  1. NCLEX-RN Exam results
  2. Instruction sheet on how to register and licence with us

If you are not successful on the exam, you are sent the following by email:

  1. NCLEX-RN Exam results
  2. Candidate Performance Report
  3. NSCN letter informing you of the next step(s)

There is no limit to the number of times you can write this exam. However, if you have previously passed the NCLEX or another registration exam accepted by NSCN, you are not permitted to write the NCLEX through us.

The NCSBN Clinical Judgment Measurement Model (NCJMM) was developed by NCSBN researchers as a framework for the valid measurement of clinical judgment and decision-making within the context of a standardized examination. To create the model, NCSBN researchers drew upon the prevailing literature in nursing, nurse pedagogy, cognitive psychology, psychological assessment, and decision science related to decision making and nursing clinical judgment. Learn more here.

NCSBN Chief Operating Officer Phil Dickison, PhD, RN, explains how clinical judgment is the underpinning of all the things nurses do. Watch the video here.

For additional information, watch the NGN Talks: Clinical Judgment Measurement Model video here.

NCSBN Director of Outreach Jason Schwartz, MS, explains why NCSBN uses Computer Adaptive Testing (CAT) and what it means for NCLEX candidates. Watch the Computer Adaptive Testing video here, which explains CAT, item selection and pass/fail rules.

To learn more about CAT, visit here.


If you have any questions, please reach out to us at We strive to respond to you as soon as possible. However, due to the high volumes of emails and complexity of inquiries, our response time may vary.  

Please be advised that registration requirements and fees are subject to change. All registration and licensure fees are non-refundable. Click here to learn more about fees and payment options