Ultimate Guide: Philippine Nurse Licensure Examination

Ultimate Guide: Philippine Nurse Licensure Examination

The Philippine Nurse Licensure Examination is a 500-item multiple choice exam to test basic nursing level competency which considers the objectives of the nursing curriculum, the broad areas of nursing and other related disciplines and competencies. It is held every June and December annually in various public schools throughout the Philippines. Room assignment for the exams are posted outside the Professional Regulation Commission building at least three days before the exam.

According to the Philippine Nursing Act of 1991, also known as the Republic Act No 7164, it is a requirement for all applicants for a license to pass a written examination conducted by the Board of Nursing of the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).

Per this law, the Nurses Licensure Examination (NLE) is conducted twice a year by the PRC through the Professional Regulatory Board of Nursing. The PRC has recently announced the schedule of PRC Licensure examinations for 2021, including the opening of online processing of applications and the deadline for filing applications.

Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE) Qualifications

Before you consider filing your application for the licensure examination, it’s best to identify if you’re qualified to take the board exam. Check the full qualifications below: He or she must be a citizen of the Philippines;

  • Must be at least eighteen (18) years of age at the time of the issuance of a certificate of registration;
  • Must be in good health and is of good moral character; an
  • He or she holds a bachelor’s ′s degree in nursing from a college or university duly recognized by the proper government agency.

Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE) Requirements

First-time takers

For those who are taking the Nurse Licensure Examination (NLE) for the first time, they are required to submit the following documentary requirements at the nearest PRC satellite office during their scheduled appointment dates:

  • Original and photocopy of PSA issued Birth certificate
  • Original and photocopy of PSA marriage contract for married female applicants
  • Original copy of Transcript of Records with scanned picture and remarks stating: “For Board Examination Purposes.”
  • Duly-notarized copies of the summary of Related Learning Experience (RLE) and OR & DR cases
    • Minor Scrubs – 3
    • Delivery Room Handled – 3
    • Assisted – 3
    • Cord Dressing – 3
    • If under CMO 30 – Certificate of Undertaking
    • Notarized Certificate of Undertaking (CMO #14 Series of 2009 )
  • Payment fee of Php 900.00

Repeaters or Retakers

For Nurse Licensure Examination repeaters or retakers, you must provide the same documentary requirements mentioned above except for the copies of the summary of Related Learning Experience (RLE) and OR & DR cases. The exam application fees are as follows:

  • Php 900.00 – complete
  • Php 450.00 – conditioned / removal

Aspiring applicants that graduated with a nursing degree years back and want to take the Nursing Licensure Board Exam this year are encouraged to take refresher courses to improve the applicant’s fundamental knowledge and skills for the nursing board exam.

Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE) Online Application

Filing an application online to take the licensure exam has been made convenient by PRC’s Licensure Examination and Registration Information System (LERIS). The PRC requires applicants to secure an appointment date before they proceed to any PRC office to file their application.

You can simply go to the LERIS online portal – or if you need further guidance in setting an appointment date, you can simply read our step-by-step guide on PRC Board Exam to learn more.

Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE) Coverage

The Nurses Licensure Examination (NLE) consists of five subjects:

  1. Nursing Practice I – Community Health Nursing
  2. Nursing Practice II – Care of Healthy/At Risk Mother and Child
  3. Nursing Practice III – Care of Clients with Physiologic and Psychosocial Alterations (Part A)
  4. Nursing Practice IV –  Care of Clients with Physiologic and Psychosocial Alterations (Part B)
  5. Nursing Practice V –  Care of Clients with Physiologic and Psychosocial Alterations (Part C)

The examination covers basic skills, knowledge, and attitude in the major subject areas: maternal and child nursing, fundamentals of nursing including professional adjustments, community health and communicable disease nursing, nursing of adolescents, adults and aged, psychiatric nursing, and mental health.

Nursing Licensure Exam (NLE) Passing Rate

For an examinee to become a registered nurse in the Philippines, they first must obtain a general average rating of at least 75%, with a rating of not below 60% in any of the five subjects.

However, suppose the examinee receives a passing score or higher in the general average rating but gets a rating below 60% in any of the five subjects. In that case, the examinee must take the examination again, but only in the subject/s where the examinee rated below 60%.

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Nursing Licensure Examination Schedule in 2022

According to the Professional Regulation Commission, the Nursing Licensure Board Exams are administered at least twice a year (May and November)

Please be advised that the board examination date is on May 29 & 30, 2022 on the first batch. The opening of online processing starts on March 1, 2022, and ends on April 29, 2022 for places in NCR, Baguio, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Koronadal, Legaspi, Lucena, Pagadian, Pampanga, Rosales, Tacloban, Tuguegarao, and Zamboanga.

Ultimate Guide: Philippine Nurse Licensure Examination 1

The second batch of the Nursing Licensure Examination is on November 12 & 13, 2022. Online processing opens on August 12, 2022, and ends on October 12, 2022. This schedule contains all licensure examination dates. This document explains when and how applicants will take the Nursing Licensure Board Exam. Please consult the test schedule published by PRC.

June 2006 Philippine Nurse licensure examination controversy

The controversy stemmed from the complaint of 92 examinees alleging leakage of questions in the nursing board examination. The complainants asked the Professional Regulation Commission to nullify the affected sections to preserve the integrity of the licensure examination.

Examinees told the Senate and House of Representatives that on both days of the exam, they saw other examinees wearing white jackets with R.A. Gapuz Review Center printed on the back reading photocopies of what she would later discover were leaked questions from the review center.

The controversy triggered a debate on whether or not all the 42,000 examinees should retake the licensure test to maintain its integrity and standard.

The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) eventually reversed its earlier pronouncements that there was no cheating when it announced that two BoN members leaked questions. According to one of the two members who were removed for “negligence,” she just inadvertently left copies in a Photocopy shop near the PRC-Manila office where she was photocopying her 500 questions.

Others charged that the BoN members were bribed by the review centers to provide them with copies of their questions and answers. U.S. based media coverage of this scandal was sparse and little follow-up occurred. The test scandal was covered in depth in at least one nursing magazine, the article “A Breach of Integrity” by Geneviève M. Clavreul, RN. Ph.D. was published in November 2006.

In order to become eligible for a VisaScreen Certificate, CGFNS has required that a June 2006 passer must first re-take and pass, with a score of 75 percent or better, the “special voluntary examination” covering the subject matter of Tests 3 and 5. Passage of the NCLEX or the CGFNS Examination by any passer of the compromised June 2006 PRC examination will not substitute for the requirement that he or she take the “special voluntary examination” authorized by Executive Order 609 issued by the Philippine Government on March 12, 2007.

Some 42,000 students sat the nursing examination last year but only about 17,000 passed. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has since ordered all 17,000 to re-take the exams, sparking an uproar from nurses who denied any involvement in wrongdoing.

A special review conducted by the Department of Labor and Employment in coordination with Centers of Excellence Nursing Schools provided for voluntary special review classes in preparation to the voluntary retake of the equivalent of Tests III and V of the June 2006 Board of Nursing Examination pursuant to Executive Order No. 609, series of 2007 from March 21 to April 4, 2007.

The Special Review refers to the series of classes covering the topics included in Tests III and V of the June 2006 of Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE). This is offered exclusively on a voluntary basis to all nurses licensed under the June 2006 NLE. The voluntary examination will not affect the validity of licenses issued. It is offered merely to enhance employability of successful examinees to qualify for the CGFNS VisaScreen Certificate.

Tips on Passing the Nursing Licensure Exam

Becoming a Registered Nurse is not an easy feat. You have to earn a bachelor’s degree and pass the licensure exam before taking your oath. It will include sleepless days and nights studying or doing your internship for clinical experiences.

Here are some tips on how to pass the Nursing Licensure Exam:

Motivate Yourself

“Remember why you started” is cliche but there’s a reason it works. Why do you want to become a registered nurse? Remind yourself every day of your WHY and keep your goal in mind, whether it’s to simply pass or become a topnotcher.

Turn Mistakes Into Lessons

The purpose of reviewing your subjects is to do better during the real thing. Don’t be too hard on yourself when you make mistakes while self-reviewing or doing a practice test. Take note of what you get wrong and study that topic or subject more.

Summarize The Concept

The best way to know if you learned is if you can explain the concept or principle of the topic with ease. Don’t focus on memorizing answers to specific questions. Train yourself so that no matter how the question is phrased, you have an answer.

Study English

The nursing licensure examination will be in English. Even if you understand the concept, it would also help you to be familiar with the jargon used in the nursing field. This helps you to answer questions no matter how they are worded. English skills will also open great employment opportunities for you.

Structure Your Review

If you are enrolled in a review center, this will be easier but you can also structure your self-study based on the subjects included in the exam. Focus on the areas where you need the most help!

The journey to becoming a Registered Nurse is a long and tough one, but it can be easy once you have a strategic way of preparing for it. Best of luck, future nurses!

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