nclex pn pass rate

NCLEX PN Pass Rate: Things You Need to Know in 2024

Passing the NCLEX PN exam is always a dream of lots of individuals who want to enter the financial field. So what is the NCLEX PN pass rate?

Updated at September 20, 2023

When you’re getting ready to take the NCLEX, the most important item on your mind is probably attaining a high enough score to pass the exam. And, while you’re working on attaining that passing score, you’re probably also wondering, “What is the pass rate for NCLEX PN?” In this article, we will provide you with all the beneficial information about the NCLEX PN pass rate.

How Many Questions Are on the NCLEX-PN Exam?

There is a minimum of 60 questions and a maximum of 145 questions on the NCLEX-RN and PN exams, respectively. Each examination will consist of a total of 15 questions based on experimental material. Many applicants now have the opportunity to take part in a one-of-a-kind research section for the development of upcoming questions on the Next Generation NCLEX. When the test is over for you will depend on how well you consistently do since that is what decides when it will end for you.

Because the NCLEX is a computer adaptive test, also known as a CAT, this means that the questions on the exam are created by an algorithm based on your responses to the questions that came before. If you answer correctly, you will be given questions that are more difficult, and if you answer incorrectly, you will be given questions that are easier. On this test, you won’t be able to bypass any of the questions in any way!

As a candidate for the exam, it is your duty to provide accurate responses to the questions and make progress through the increasing degrees of difficulty in order to demonstrate that you possess the knowledge and skills essential to be a dependable and effective nurse. The amount of time you have to complete the test is based on how soon you can reach the level of competency established by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN).

The exam is considered to be successful if the test-taker is able to answer enough questions correctly to remain over the passing line with a confidence level of 95 percent; otherwise, the exam is considered to be unsuccessful and the test-taker is considered to have failed the exam. It is possible to pass or fail the NCLEX-RN/PN with any number of questions, including 60, 145, or any other number.

How is the NCLEX Scored?

nclex pn pass rate

The NCLEX is a computer-based examination that adapts its material to the individual’s current level of knowledge and experience taking the exam. To get things rolling, the level of difficulty of each question has been sent to the same level throughout. The difficulty of the next question will increase for each question that you answer correctly. As a consequence of an error in a previous answer, the level of difficulty of the next question will be somewhat reduced.

In order to demonstrate that you have the knowledge and skills necessary to pass the NCLEX exam, you will need to correctly reply to a certain number of questions. If you do very well on the test and answer a significant number of questions correctly, the number of questions on your test might be reduced to 75. If you answer multiple questions wrong during the course of the test, the total number of questions on the exam might reach up to 265.

The National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX) is meant to measure your ability to correctly answer questions. If you regularly answer questions at a level that is above a certain threshold, then you will pass the exam. If you do not respond to questions of this level on the exam, you will get a failing grade.

What is The Pass Rate for NCLEX-PN?

During the same time period, there were 64,871 persons who attempted the NCLEX-PN, and 66.92 percent of them were successful. Sixty-three thousand seven hundred thirty-six individuals were conceived and delivered in the United States, where they also obtained their primary and secondary schooling. The total number of participants included a total of 46,356 people who were taking the exam for the first time and 17,420 people who were taking the test for a second time. Participants who were taking the exam for the first time had a pass rate of 79.60 percent, while those who were taking it more than once had a pass rate of 35.42 percent.

Out of the total number of people who took the test, only 1,095 were from countries other than the United States. There were a total of 435 individuals who attempted the test for the very first time, with a passing score of 51.49 percent. The overall percentage of those who passed the test the second time around was 18.18 percent, and there were 660 of them.

Test-taker types

Numbers of candidates

Pass Rate




First time, US-educated



Repeat, US-educated



First time, International



Repeat, International



Rough Estimates of First-Time NCLEX-PN School Pass Rates

According to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, the NCLEX-PN pass rates for doctors trained in the United States in the year 2020 were 83 percent. The passing rate for those who attempted the PN test more than once was just 35.6%. The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) publishes annual and quarterly pass rates on their website, 

so you may check to see where your school stands in terms of NCLEX pass rates on a state and local level. If the percentage of students who pass the NCLEX at your institution is lower than the national average, you should be aware that the process of preparing for and taking the exams is totally within your control.

The low pass rate for repeat test takers may be attributed to a multitude of factors; nevertheless, the bottom line is that the best way to increase your chances of passing the NCLEX is to prepare yourself well and work hard to achieve success on the very first attempt. You really need to have a well-planned study approach that covers test-taking strategies, content review, and lots of NCLEX PN practice test with genuine exam questions.

Please keep in mind that the pass percentages for these standardized tests may vary substantially not just from state to state but also from school district to school district. These national averages do not take this into consideration.

States with the Highest NCLEX PN Pass Rate

nclex pn pass rate

5. South Dakota

General pass rate: 92.4%

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the shortage of registered nurses is anticipated to be the most severe in the state of South Dakota by the year 2030. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are 31.93 registered nurses for every 1,000 full-time employees in the state of South Dakota, and the city of Sioux Falls has the highest concentration of RNs of any other city in the state.

In addition, Sioux Falls is home to a number of reputable nursing schools. The University of Sioux Falls’ nursing programs features a regular Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree as well as an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing for students who already possess a Bachelor of Arts degree in another field. Additionally, the University of Sioux Falls offers classes with a limited number of students. The NCLEX pass rates for this accelerated training program are quite high: one hundred percent in 2019 and 2017 and ninety-six percent in 2018. The average BSN graduation rate is also very exceptional, coming in at 95 percent for 2019, 100 percent for 2018, and 92 percent for 2017.

4. Louisiana

General pass rate: 92.8%

Prior to the impact that Hurricane Ida had on an already overworked medical workforce in Louisiana, the state already had one of the highest COVID-19 case rates in the whole country. As of July 2022, there were over 6,000 nursing positions that had not been filled and were still available for applicants. According to the director of a nursing school in New Orleans, the problem is not a lack of prospective students who are interested in working in the nursing profession. The number of qualified applicants for nursing jobs that are turned down by state nursing schools every year is getting close to 1,400. This is a direct result of low salaries and a lack of available faculty members.

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is one of the nursing schools in the state that is considered to be among the most complete. It provides students with a choice of entry points into the profession and has a nearly perfect NCLEX pass rate for the class of 2020. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, and Doctor of Philosophy programs at McNeese State University each have an NCLEX pass rate of 98%.

3. Nevada

General pass rate: 93.2%

According to statistics provided by the state, Nevada has the 48th-lowest number of registered nurses per capita in the whole US. The COVID-19 epidemic has put a strain on these numbers to the point that hospitals that are close to reaching capacity may be compelled to refuse emergency patients. The low cost of living in Nevada, along with the high annual mean salary of $83,790 for registered nurses, makes the state a favorable destination for RNs to find employment.

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at Nevada State College had a pass record of 97 percent on the NCLEX in 2019. This impressive result may be attributed, in part, to the school’s availability of online and part-time study alternatives. Students have the opportunity to graduate with the same level of scientific training as their classmates who attended nursing school for four years at Arizona College’s Las Vegas campus by enrolling in the three-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program offered at that location. By the year 2020, a total of 96 percent of students who had taken this class had earned a passing grade.

2. Delaware

General pass rate: 93.6%

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are 26 registered nurses for every one thousand persons in the state of Delaware. The Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington statistical area, which includes the state of Delaware, which is rated fourth in the United States, has a large number of open positions for registered nurses (RNs). In response to the severe shortage of nurses, the governor of Delaware signed into law in August 2022 a bill that would allow nurse practitioners to practice independently, without the customary oversight of a physician. This was done in an effort to alleviate the state’s nursing crisis.

It should come as no surprise that the venerable University of Delaware offers more than the standard Bachelor of Science in Nursing. In the year 2020, the percentage of BSN graduates who passed the NCLEX was 96%. The sole program that is able to compete successfully is located at the Beebe Medical Center, which is primarily a hospital but also has a tiny nursing school. In the year 2020, all 29 students who participated in the NCLEX exam were successful.

1. New Hampshire

General pass rate: 96.2%

The lack of registered nurses in New Hampshire is predicted to reach crisis proportions by the year 2030, and the Granite State is tenth on the list of states facing this problem. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the nonmetropolitan area of West Central-Southwest New Hampshire in the state of New Hampshire has 30 registered nurses for every 1,000 people. It is difficult to find registered nurses working in hospitals, especially in nursing and assisted living facilities.

The NCLEX pass rates in New Hampshire are among the highest in the United States, which is one of the reasons why the state is now ranked first. With a passing score of 96 percent on the NCLEX, New Hampshire nurses do far better than the average nurses throughout the country. The associate degree programs at White Mountain, River Valley, and Lakes Region community colleges, as well as the two bachelor’s degree programs offered by St. Anselm College and Keene State University, all had perfect pass rates of one hundred percent.

The majority of the remaining programs, with the exception of a select handful, were approved with a high proportion of the vote. The University of New Hampshire provides high-quality nursing education at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in order to take advantage of its location in close proximity to the well-known medical community in Boston.

Failure in the NCLEX-PN

nclex pn pass rate

Chances Of Failing NCLEX-PN On The First Attempt

According to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, 13.43 percent of NCLEX-RN candidates fails on their first attempt (NCSBN). The failure rate is low when compared to the 86 percent of test-takers who pass the examinations on their first try. Those who failed the first time may retake the NCLEX-PN 45 days after the first attempt. Keep a watch out for warning signs that you failed the NCLEX-PN as you prepare for your final results.

Signs of Failing the NCLEX-PN

If you’re planning on taking the NCLEX-PN, you’re probably wondering what the telltale signs of success are. Knowing if your test was successful or failed before receiving official results may help you decide what to do next. These 15 symptoms will be present in failed NCLEX-PN applicants in 2022.

In no particular order, you were presented with questions that varied from simple to exceedingly tough

The NCLEX-PN is administered via computerized adaptive testing (CAT). This means that on the following tries, each correct answer will result in a more challenging question. If you get one question incorrect, the rest of the questions get easier. The test is aimed to certify your ability to practice as an entry-level nurse for at least 95% of the time. One sign that you failed the NCLEX in 2022 is that the test questions range from simple to challenging rather than becoming increasingly difficult.

The questions on your exam were not increasing in complexity

As you improve at answering the NCLEX questions, they grow more challenging. Getting questions that are either easier or stay at the same degree of difficulty is one of the clear signs that you failed the NCLEX.

Fail in performing well in an NCLEX-prep course

You will cover all of the NCLEX content areas and take practice tests in an NCLEX-prep program to help you prepare for the exam. You will have a better chance of passing the NCLEX test if you study these courses. Poor performance in an NCLEX prep course may suggest an inability to pass the NCLEX-RN exam.

The specified time for the test has gone before it shuts down

The NCLEX exam’s purpose is to cut you off once you’ve answered enough questions to determine if you’re capable of working as a nurse practitioner in a safe and effective manner. The NCLEX-PN is a five-hour test that determines whether you are qualified to practice as a registered nurse.

The Pearson Vue NCLEX Trick provides you with a bad pop-up

Many NCLEX candidates utilize the Pearson Vue NCLEX Trick to verify whether they passed the exam. The PVT may be used as one of the signs that you failed the NCLEX-PN to assist you to decide whether or not to repeat the test. Wait at least 2 hours after completing and submitting the NCLEX-PN before trying the trick. Then go back onto your Pearson Vue account and attempt to register for the NCLEX again. If you may register and pay for a new test date on the internet, you failed the NCLEX, which is considered a bad pop-up.

Can’t look for your name and license number with the state board of nursing

The state board of nursing is unable to locate your name and license number. The NCLEX results might take up to six weeks to arrive. You may discover your state’s license number on the website of the Board of Nursing in your state. You may have failed the NCLEX test in 2022 if you can’t find your name on the website after a few weeks.

You feel that you didn’t do well on the test because you weren’t well prepared

It’s possible to be concerned that you failed the NCLEX due to jitters or test anxiety, just to find out that you did well and passed the exam. When a person believes they did not pass an exam after taking it, regardless of whether they really did, this is a big signal of failure.

You didn’t know much about the subject matter of the questions

NCSBN criteria are followed throughout the curriculum of accredited nursing schools. If you finished the course and prepared for the NCLEX, it is fair to presume that you are familiar with the subject. It’s conceivable that you failed the NCLEX because you weren’t familiar with the questions or the subject, in which case you didn’t study enough.

Above is our analysis of the NCLEX PN pass rate. Hope this article on the NCLEX PN pass rate can help you in passing this exam. Good luck!