Applying to take the NCLEX involves two
different processes: an application and
And you'll want to start this process as you
are nearing graduation because these steps
can take quite a bit.
So starting early will help you be eligible
to take the test as soon as possible and just
get it over with and move on with your life.
In terms of specific requirements for
eligibility to take the NCLEX and to
get a nursing license in your state of
choice, there's going to be some variability
based on the state that you live in.
Each state's nursing regulatory body, the
Board of Nursing, gets to
make its own rules.
So definitely start by checking with your
state board what they want a few months
before graduation so that you have a
heads-up on what you need to be doing.
And keep in mind that your school may have
absolutely no idea what your
licensing requirements are for the state
that you are actually applying for,
particularly if it's out of state.
But you can always call the Department of
Nursing to get help.
Many, many of mine have known me by name at
They probably saw my name on caller ID and
were, like, sad.
Sorry, Linda. I talked to Linda a lot.
You were great, though. You helped me so
I appreciate you. So after you have looked up
your state's requirement, here
is what's next.
First, you're going to want to submit an
application for licensure and registration to
the External Link Nurse Regulatory Body
where you wish to be licensed or
registered. This will allow you to be made
eligible for the NCLEX.
The External Link register for the NCLEX is
through a company called Pearson
Vue. And once you have created an NCLEX
registration, it will remain open
for 365 days.
I was going to say about and I was, like, no,
That's an exact number.
Waiting for notification of candidate
eligibility by the Nursing Regulatory
Body of your choice.
How does the Nursing Regulatory Body of
choice know that you are eligible?
Your school will send them confirmation that
you are graduating or already did
graduate. And this varies a little bit by
state to state, depending on if they can send
it early before you even graduate or not.
So, as you can see, this involves a lot of
And once your school verifies that you did
the nursing school thing and they send it
over to your Nursing Regulatory Body, who
then contacts Pearson Vue
to say, "yes, this person is eligible", then
and only then will you
be given an authorization to test or an ATT
And this will allow you to pick the test day
and then schedule the NCLEX
. Each ATT, and in case you're wondering how
long the act is valid for, it is of
course specified by your state's board of
Nursing, and it's usually around 90 days.
So you have to take the test once you get
all of that approval within 90 days of
getting that fancy email.
And then when you go to schedule your test,
you are going to pay for it because of course
it is not free, you silly human.
The cost is currently $200 to take the NCLEX
I'm sure it'll change. And don't forget to
also budget in for your licensing costs,
which will vary by state and are totally
different than your NCLEX costs.
Yay! Clearly, it is super-duper
straightforward and not at all confusing.
But don't worry.
Your school really, really, really does want
you to pass this test because it looks good
for them. So they really should, even if
they're not totally familiar with it, help
you in the process.
It really feels, like, if you can figure out
how to apply for your nursing license, you
should just be allowed to be a nurse.
But alas, you must still prepare for the
And let's look at some ways to do that.