Odds of Passing NCLEX® With All Questions

Odds of Passing NCLEX® With All Questions

NCLEX is set up so that there is no set number of questions. The questions progressively get easier or harder depending on how well you’re doing. For these reasons, testers are bound to have a lot of questions about what to expect. One common question people ask about NCLEX is this: What are my odds of passing NCLEX if I get asked the maximum number of questions? Let’s delve in!


All about the NCLEX Changes
Sophia M.


March 7, 2024

The Odds of Passing NCLEX with All (145) Questions

The maximum number of questions on NCLEX is currently 145 and the minimum is 75. If you’re doing really well, you could pass in 75 questions. But if you’re doing really poorly, you could fail in 75. And so on… 

Just because you get asked the maximum number of questions on NCLEX does not mean you’ve failed the exam. The exact odds of passing with 145 questions is hard to say, but it is important to keep in mind that there is no way to know until you’ve received your score.

Current NCLEX Pass Rates

Currently, the first-time pass rate for NCLEX is 80%. However, this number will vary depending on where you go to school. So, regardless of how many questions you’re asked, your odds of passing NCLEX are fairly high. 

What Influences the Amount of Questions You Get on NCLEX?

The amount of questions you’re asked on NCLEX is influenced by how well you’re doing on the test. If the computer is having a hard time determining your competency level, then it will continue feeding you questions in order to gather as much information as possible. The computer will keep giving you questions until one of two things happens:

  1. It determines that you’ve passed or failed the exam
  2. You’ve reached the maximum number of questions

Just because you get a lot of questions doesn’t mean you’re doing poorly.

It just means you’re getting some questions right and some questions wrong and the computer needs additional information to assess your level of competency. 

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Is it bad if you get all 145 questions on NCLEX?

Lots of people get asked the maximum number of questions on NCLEX and still pass. If you get asked the full 145 NCLEX questions, it isn’t necessarily a bad sign. All it means is that the computer needs as much data as possible to determine your competency. Sure, this doesn’t mean that you were getting every single question right, but you were clearly getting some right: If you weren’t, your test would have shut off earlier and you would have failed. 

Do most people pass NCLEX in 75 questions?

The current NCLEX pass rate for first time test takers is 80%. This means that most students who sit for NCLEX will pass it. Based on my experience, plenty of students pass the test in 75 questions (I know of at least 5 people in my graduating class alone who all did). Because the likelihood of passing in general is so high, I wouldn’t get discouraged about being asked 75 questions. Again, the only way to really know is to wait until your score is back – I know, it’s hard to wait! 

Can you fail NCLEX in 75 questions?

Yes, you can fail NCLEX in 75 questions. If the majority of your answers are incorrect, the test will shut off after the minimum amount of questions has been asked and you will fail. However, keep in mind that it is very common to think you’ve failed when you actually have not, so don’t make any assumptions. Wait until you’ve received your actual score, since this is the only concrete way to know whether you’ve passed. 

How soon will I know if I’ve passed or failed NCLEX?

Usually, you will be given access to your “quick results” or unofficial NCLEX results about 2 business days after taking the exam. These results will tell you whether you’ve passed or failed. You will receive your official results and nursing license about 6 weeks after passing the exam. 

Everyone freaks out about NCLEX, but how could you not!? You’ve worked hard for years to sit for this one exam which determines so much of your future. Of course it’s scary, but keep in mind, statistically, most people pass, so the odds are in your favor. 

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