How Long Does It Take to Get NCLEX Scores Back?

You’re done taking the NCLEX examination. Congratulations! Now, what’s next? This is when the waiting period starts before you get your NCLEX results. Excruciating, isn’t it? Before you fret, it’s important that you know how long it takes to get the results to avoid worrying unnecessarily.  

How Long Does It Take to Get the NCLEX Results?

Your official exam results for the NCLEX will take around six weeks to be released. It takes almost two months because the tests are graded twice, resulting in a longer processing period compared to other standardized tests. 

Are There NCLEX quick results?

Yes, there are and they are available for selected states in the US only. The Pearson VUE NCLEX provides quick and unofficial results in some locations. These test results can be acquired two business days after you have taken the test for $7.95.

In order to access these NCLEX unofficial results, you can simply go to the Pearson VUE website (1) and login to your account. After doing so, you can proceed to request and pay for the quick results option (2).

The unofficial results option is not available for test-takers who seek nursing licensure in Australia and Canada.

Here are the states and territories that offer quick results for the NCLEX:

Alaska Maine Oklahoma
Arizona Maryland Oregon
Arkansas Massachusetts Pennsylvania
California Michigan Rhode Island
Colorado Minnesota South Carolina
Connecticut Mississippi South Dakota
District of Columbia Missouri Tennessee
Florida Montana Texas
Georgia Nebraska Utah
Hawaii Nevada Vermont
Idaho New Jersey Virginia
Illinois New Mexico US Virgin Islands
Indiana New York Washington
Iowa North Carolina West Virginia
Kansas North Dakota Wisconsin
Kentucky Northern Mariana Islands Wyoming
Louisiana Ohio  

Who Processes the NCLEX Scores and How Do I Obtain Them?

As early as you finish the examination, your performance in the computer-adaptive testing is already graded at the test site. However, no NCLEX exam results is released in the test center. Test center administrators also do not have access to these scores. Instead, the completed exams are forwarded to the Pearson VUE for review and verification to ensure that all test scores are accurate.

After a thorough review, the Pearson VUE transmits every examinee’s scores to their respective Regulatory Body (RB) or Board of Nursing (BON). It is then the regulatory entity that distributes the scores to the students. Keep in mind that there are no other regulatory body or entity that processes your scores other than the ones mentioned here. 

What Happens If I Fail the NCLEX?

If you fail the NCLEX examination, then you will receive a candidate performance report. It is an individualized document that breaks down your test performance in every test plan (3) content area. The report also indicates if you are close, below, or right at the passing standard for each test area.

Understanding the content of your candidate performance report will help you distinguish which areas you need to work on for improvement before you consider retaking the exam. 

How to Retake the NCLEX Examination if I Fail?

In case you fail and you plan to retake the examination, then you must follow the steps below:

  1. Contact your NRB (4) and inform them that you want to retake the exam.
  2. Find out what materials you need to submit and how much to pay the NRB.
  3. Register with Pearson VUE again and pay your dues with them.
  4. Wait for your new ATT to be sent to you.
  5. Schedule your new test date. 

Also, pay attention to the retaking policy that includes waiting for a minimum of 45 days from the date of your previous examination. This policy is applicable to every retake option. However, you are restricted to eight attempts only per year based on the guidelines set forth by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

What’s Next?

The whole process of preparing, taking the exam, and waiting for the NCLEX results are nerve-wracking. If you fail, I would understand your devastation, but always remember that there is a next time. Planning to pass on your next attempt requires that you double your effort and, perhaps, switch some prep strategies that can work this time.

Anyway, if you find this content helpful, share this article with your nursing friends who might need this guide as much as you do!