The NCLEX, or National Council Licensure Examination, is a challenging exam that all aspiring nurses must pass to become licensed. Over the past several years, the question bank and complexity of questions on the test have significantly increased.
So if you are studying for your NCLEX-RN exam and would like to know what types of questions are considered “easy,” then this blog post should be able to help!
Here I will share some tips about which topics tend to contain more straightforward questions on the NCLEX-RN examination. Read on for an overview of these course areas and how you can best prepare yourself for success!
Table of Contents
What is NCLEX-RN Test Pattern?
The NCLEX-RN exam is divided into four main categories: Health Promotion and Maintenance, Safe and Effective Care Environment, Psychosocial Integrity, and Physiological Adaptation. You’ll be expected to utilize your education and clinical experience to analyze circumstances and apply critical thinking skills to provide safe care for clients.
The NCLEX-RN Test Pattern is organized into four major Client Needs categories. Two of the four types are divided into subcategories, as shown below:
1. Safe and Effective Care Environment
- Management of Care
- Safety and Infection Control
2. Health Promotion and Maintenance
3. Psychosocial Integrity
4. Physiological Integrity
- Basic Care and Comfort
- Pharmacological and Parenteral Therapies
- Reduction of Risk Potential
- Physiological Adaptation
What Are Considered Easy Questions On The NCLEX?
Easy questions on the NCLEX are lower on Bloom’s taxonomy level. Low-level questions are those that require the application of fundamental concepts, such as memorization and recall. These are typically lower-level cognitive tasks than higher-level thinking processes such as analysis, synthesis, or evaluation. Questions about topics like hygiene, nutrition, pharmacology and basic anatomy/physiology tend to be among the lowest questions on the exam.
National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) has developed a system to measure this difficulty. They use Bloom’s Taxonomy – which ranks concepts according to their cognitive domain – to classify each question’s level of complexity.
We’ll discuss more on Bloom’s taxonomy more below.
What Is Bloom’s Taxonomy?
Bloom’s Taxonomy is a way to classify the complexity of questions on the NCLEX-RN. It is based on psychologist Benjamin Bloom’s work from 1956. The taxonomy classifies each question into six levels according to its cognitive domain: remembering, understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating.
Questions considered “easy” typically require remembering or understanding the material.
Questions at the “analyzing” or “evaluating” level of Bloom’s Taxonomy tend to be more challenging because they involve higher-level thinking and problem-solving. Aspiring nurses need to focus on the fundamentals when studying for the NCLEX-RN.
They are arranged in the following manner:
- Remembering: Questions that require the test taker to recall information from memory.
- Understanding: Questions requiring the test taker to comprehend or interpret the material in question.
- Applying: Questions requiring the test taker to use their knowledge and skills to solve a problem.
- Analyzing: Questions that require the test taker to break down the material into its parts and explain how these components interact or fit together.
- Evaluating: Questions requiring the test taker to judge based on criteria.
- Creating: Questions that require the test taker to generate new ideas, products, methods, or solutions based on their knowledge.
Aspiring nurses need to be aware of Bloom’s Taxonomy to prepare effectively for the NCLEX-RN examination. By understanding which questions are more accessible and complex, you can ensure you are studying the suitable material and focusing your energy where it counts! Good luck on your NCLEX journey!
Which Criteria Make “Easy” NCLEX Question?
Easy NCLEX questions require a basic level of understanding and knowledge, such as recall, memorization, and application of fundamental concepts.
They typically ask about topics like hygiene, nutrition, pharmacology and basic anatomy/physiology. Questions at the “analyzing” or “evaluating” level of Bloom’s Taxonomy tend to be more difficult because they involve higher-level thinking and problem-solving.
Everyone has their definition of what makes an “easy” question. However, the NCLEX exam objectively evaluates each candidate’s knowledge and skill by using Bloom’s taxonomy to rate the question’s difficulty level and your performance in answering it.
The system displays the next question from the lower level of Bloom’s taxonomy (easier question), to see if you answer that correctly. If you provide the correct answer, the following question will be more difficult. The system arrives at the pass or fails grade by analyzing your responses.
Few Example Of The “Easy” NCLEX Question
Multiple response questions are easy NCLEX questions that typically require selecting two or more options from a list of choices. These questions often involve basic concepts such as hygiene, nutrition, pharmacology and anatomy/physiology.
Here is an example of how “easy,” lower-level taxonomy questions may look on the NCLEX exam:
- Which of the following is a common symptom of dehydration?
- Dry mouth
The correct response is D—Dry mouth.
In this example, all needed to answer the question correctly is to recall and understand what dehydration is and its associated symptoms. As you can see, these questions are not difficult as they require only basic knowledge or facts already learned in nursing school courses such as anatomy, physiology or pharmacology.
- Which type of communication is most effective when giving a patient instructions?
The correct response is C—Verbal.
In this example, the test taker is required to understand the different types of communication and the effectiveness of each when conveying instructions. This question involves comprehension, not just recall, of the material.
Easy questions may also require more than just a basic understanding and knowledge to answer correctly. However, they are still considered “easy” because they don’t involve complex problem-solving or higher-level thinking such as analyzing, evaluating or creating.
Some Career Guides & Tips By Registered Nurses:
- Research the NCLEX-RN exam thoroughly and obtain study guides, materials and resources to help you prepare.
- Develop a comprehensive study plan – break down your material into manageable chunks that can be studied over time.
- Set realistic study goals and stick to them.
- Practicing with sample questions is an effective way to familiarize yourself with the exam format and content.
- Utilize study groups or one-on-one tutoring sessions to get feedback on your progress and ask questions.
- Take practice tests regularly – they are an excellent way to measure your knowledge of specific topics and areas of study.
- Ensure you get enough rest and nutrition – this will help you stay focused and alert during your study sessions.
- Feel free to ask for help if needed! Your instructors, school advisors, family members and friends can all be valuable resources.
If Students want to pass the NCLEX successfully, they must practice answering questions of all difficulty levels. The NCLEX examination is taken through Computer Adaptive Testing (CAT).
The CAT system asks questions in a way you can objectively measure your knowledge and skills. Knowledge of Bloom’s Taxonomy can predict the difficulty level of questions you may encounter on the NCLEX exam and allow you to focus your efforts on preparing for those topics that are most likely to be tested.
With practice and a good understanding of Bloom’s Taxonomy, you should feel confident in your NCLEX prep and have a good chance of succeeding on the exam.
Mrs. Marie Brown has been a registered nurse for over 25 years. She began her nursing career at a Level I Trauma Center in downtown Chicago, Illinois. There she worked in the Emergency Department and on the Surgical Intensive Care Unit. After several years, she moved to the Midwest and continued her nursing career in a critical care setting. For the last 10 years of her nursing career, Mrs. Brown worked as a flight nurse with an air ambulance service. During this time, she cared for patients throughout the United States.