Like with every other field of work or career that you may have considered over the years, becoming an LPN involves an LPN entrance exam that you simply cannot avoid. However this is a test that should present you with very little trouble if you work and study hard ahead of time. Many nurses pass these tests without any trouble at all.
The LPN entrance exam can refer to two main tests that you have to write during your time as an LPN:
- The LPN pre entrance exam for entering the school or program through which you plan to study as an LPN
- The actual LPN entrance exam for becoming an LPN with a license who can practice
There are several factors and facts that you will need to know about and take into account with both of these exams.
LPN Pre Entrance Exam For Getting Into LPN Programs
The following factors are included in an LPN pre entrance exam for entering an LPN program:
The Pre-Nursing Assessment Test-PN consists of 150 items and requires three hours to complete. The three major areas of the test are:
Reading Comprehension/Reasoning Ability – 40 Questions (1 hour)
The content and reading level of exam passages are similar to the applied-science passages found in LPN textbooks. Topics of the passages include nutrition, infection, safety, child abuse, exercise, etc. There are two diagnostic scores:
- Reading comprehension–20 items.
- Reasoning ability–20 items.
Numerical Ability – 50 questions (1 Hour)
There are three diagnostic scores:
- Basic operations with whole numbers (add, subtract, multiply, divide)–10 items.
- Fractions, percents, decimals (basic operations plus conversions of fractions to decimals & vice versa)–20 items.
- Applying skills in actual situations (ratio and proportion, non-algebraic formulas and conversions)–20 items.
Language Ability – 60 questions (1 Hours)
The questions involve common terms that are used frequently in nursing practice. There are three diagnostic scores:
- Vocabulary – 20 items.
- Spelling – 20 items.
- Grammar and usage (sentence correction)–20 items.
How To Register For The LPN Exam
There are a number of things that you will have to do before you can write the NCLEX-PN exam, or, as you may know it, the LPN entrance exam. If you follow these steps and make sure that you comply with everything mentioned here you will have very little trouble with the registration process.
- You will need to contact your state board of nursing and apply for a license to practice as an LPN before you will be eligible to take the test. It is very important that you look into the details and LPN requirements in your particular state as they can differ significantly from state to state. For example some states will let you practice with this license on a conditional basis before you have even passed the exam while others require you to pass the LPN entrance exam before you are allowed to work as an LPN. Sometimes there are also different age requirements from state to state. Some states expect you to be 17, others expect you to be 18, and still others expect you to be 19.
- You will need to provide your state board of nursing with all of the necessary documentation to prove your eligibility to write the LPN exam. This includes your high school and college transcripts and identification documents. Before you can write the test you will need to receive confirmation from your state board of nursing that you are in fact eligible to do so.
This is just the first step of the process. You will then need to actually register for the examination. There are three main ways in which you can register for the LPN entrance exam:
- You can apply online. Go to the Pearson Vue website. Pearson Vue is the group that administers the LPN entrance exam. You will need to answer all of the questions that are asked on the website. Answer them truthfully and do not leave any out. Once you have completed the application form for the exam you will then need to pay the exam registration fee. This is $200 in all states. You can pay using your credit card online, or you can download the confirmation and post a cashier’s check or money to Pearson Vue. The address that you should post it to is on the website.
- If you want to apply entirely by mail you will also have to download the application form and send it along with certified check, cashier’s check, or money by mail to the Pearson Vue address.
- You can also register for the LPN entrance exam via telephone. To do this you must first download the application form and fill in the answers so that you will be able to answer them quickly when you call. Then call 1-866-496-2539. You will be directed to a customer representative who will ask you for the answers that you filled out on the application form. It will be a far quicker process if you have already thought about your answers. You can also pay the $200 fee over the phone using your credit card.
- Select an examination date and study for the exam.
Once you have done the above all you will need to do is to show up at your testing center on the day of the test with a printed copy of authorization to test (ATT) from Pearson VUE and one form of acceptable identification. Take the test by following the instructions that you are given and wait for your results. These should take about one month to get back to you and will either confirm or deny your right to practice as an LPN. If you fail you have the option to retake the test.
Requirements For The Exam
If you want to write the LPN entrance exam there are a number of requirements that you will have to meet. The first requirement is education. This refers to what qualifications you will need before you can write the test. For one thing you will need a high school diploma or an equivalent qualification before you can write the test. In addition to that you need to complete an LPN training program from a school or institute that is properly accredited with the state board of nursing for your state. If the program is not accredited you will be wasting your time. There 1500 accredited schools across the country for you to choose from. The program will be about 12 months long and you will be required to study both practical and theory work. It’s impossible to write the LPN exam if you attend a program that does not have an adequate focus on clinical practice. There are four broad areas of coursework that you will be required to be knowledgeable in for the exam:
- Creating a safe and efficient care environment (including management and safety)
- Promoting and maintaining health
- Psychosocial integrity
- Physiological integrity
In addition to the above various states may have other requirements. Look carefully into these requirements. Some states will require you to be a certain age or to have received a certain score in high school in order to be an LPN. When it comes to licensing after the exam you may need to do a background check and pay for your fingerprints to be taken. Drug screening may also occur and you will have to have a clean bill of health. Before you embark on the journey to become an LPN you should look closely at the specific requirements for your state.
How To Study For The LPN Entrance Exam
When studying for the exam there are a number of factors that you will need to consider in order to ensure that you are making the most of your study time and preparing adequately for the LPN entrance exam:
The first thing that you will need to consider is the structure of the exam. There are a few important things to keep in mind here. One is that the exam will be multiple choice, so make sure that you prepare for it by answering as many example questions as you can (more about that later). The second is that the test will be conducted at specified locations via computer. If you do not have very good computer skills you will be doing yourself a favor by improving the skills that you will need for writing the LPN entrance exam online. If you are sure that you know what you are doing you will feel far more confident when it comes time to write the actual test. You will have five hours to answer the multiple choice questions. When you get your grade it will be marked simply as a pass or as a fail. If you fail you can take the test again.
In order to know where to focus your energy when you are studying it is important to consider the breakdown of the test:
- Safe and effective care environment = 11 to 17 percent of the exam material
- Safety and infection control = 8 to 14 percent of the exam material
- Health promotion and maintenance = 7 to 13 percent of the exam material
- Psychosocial integrity = 8 to 14 percent of the exam material
- Basic care and comfort = 11 to 17 percent of the exam material
- Pharmacological Therapies = 9 to 15 percent of the test
- Reduction of Risk Potential and Physiological Adaptation = 10 to 16 percent of the exam material
About LPN Entrance Exam Practice Test
If you want to be properly prepared for the LPN entrance exam you need to take an LPN entrance exam practice test. There are many of these available online at resources such as Study Guide Zone. The point of doing a practice test is to ensure that you are well prepared to write the actual test. There are a few ways in which an LPN entrance exam practice test can help you:
- It will prepare you for the type of questions that will be asked. The test conveners often repeat questions form test to test, and there is a fairly good chance that some of the questions you are asked will be the same as the ones that you study in a practice test. Therefore you need o answer as many example questions as you possibly can in order to be adequately prepared for the LPN entrance exam.
- It will also prepare you for the format of the questions. This is an important part of doing well as multiple choice questions are often asked in very specific ways. Practice with the testing method will do you well.
- You will develop a good idea of how long you will need to spend on each question in order to be certain that you can complete the test in the time period provided. The more you practice, the faster you will be.
- Last but not least you will feel more confident about the LPN entrance exam if you prepare in this way as you will have a clear idea of what is coming. Nurses who use this method report higher levels of confidence when taking the test than those who do not, so it is a method that is well worth trying if you are serious about doing well on the exam.
Exams can be frightening, but you need to remember that, as long as you have followed the instructions listed above, and as long as you have done the best that you can in terms of your coursework and your study habits, you will be fine. Panic, as well as nerves and an elevated stress level, are big things that stands in the way of success on the LPN entrance exam, so if you are able to control your emotions and remain positive a large part of the battle will already be won.