NLN PAX-RN Information | HCC

National League for Nursing Pre-Admission Exam (PAX-RN)

Anyone who plans to apply to HCC’s RN, Medic To RN (for military medics), or PN Program.

The PAX exam is a general knowledge, standardized test consisting of multiple choice questions over three subject areas.

  • Section 1: Verbal (60 questions)
    • Subsection 1: Reading Comprehension
    • Subsection 2: Word Knowledge
  • Section 2: Mathematics (40 questions)
    • Includes both computation and word problems related to:
      • Integers
      • Decimals
      • Fractions
      • Percentages
      • Ration Conversion
      • Measurement Conversion
      • Algebra
      • Geometry
      • Mathematical Concepts
  • Section 3: Science (60 questions)
    • Includes both knowledge of general principles and an ability to use cognitive skills related to:
      • Biology
      • Human Anatomy
      • Human Physiology
      • Physics
      • Chemistry
      • Health

Test takers will have 120 minutes (2 hours) to complete the exam.

Go to to set up your NLN account.  Be sure to list Hopkinsville Community College as the school to receive your scores.

Once your NLN account is set up, you have two options for how to test:

Option 1 - On-site testing at the HCC Workforce Assessment Center

  • Select "Register for Exam"
  • NOTE: Search for facility name typed exactly as Hopkinsville Comm College – ON-SITE TESTING to see dates. When typing the college name, be sure to include the space between College and the hyphen as well as the space between the hyphen and ON-SITE.
  • Once you select an exam date (usually Thursdays), you will pay for the test online through NLN.
    • Please note the PAX exam start times listed are for Central Time zone. If your device is set for a different time zone, please be aware of the time difference.
  • On the day of the exam, please arrive 30 minutes before the scheduled start time. Report to the Workforce Assessment Center, located in the Technology Center, Room 109. This will allow time to log in to the computer and confirm you have access to the exam before the exam begins.
  • Allow time prior to reporting to the Workforce Assessment Center to pay the $25 proctor fee in the Workforce Solutions Office, located in the Auditorium Building, Room 13. They will give you a receipt to show to the proctor before your exam.

Option 2 -Remote-proctored exam (test on personal device with camera and microphone in a quiet, uninterrupted space using NLN’s computer-based proctor)

  • Select "Buy Exam"
  • NOTE: Look for exam name H-PAX_1 Pre-Admission Exam for HyFlex (description says verbal but will actually have all three sections on same exam)
  • You will not choose a specific exam date for the remote-proctored option. Once you purchase H-PAX_1, you should be able to see the exam in your My Assessments or My Exams tab in your NLN account. When you are ready to take the exam uninterrupted, you will go to that section, click on the title, and begin the test.
  • You will pay for the test online through NLN. No additional proctor fee is charged.
  • You can take the remote-proctored PAX exam at any time, 24/7, unless NLN announces their system will be down for maintenance for a specified window of time.

Depending on which exam option you choose, costs are listed below.

  1. On-site exam (at HCC Hopkinsville campus):  $52.50 exam fee (when you register) plus $25.00 proctor fee (pay day of exam)
    • The proctor fee may be paid in the Workforce Solutions office, located on the Hopkinsville campus, Auditorium Building, Room 13.  Acceptable forms of payment:  cash, debit/credit card, and checks.
  2. Remote-proctored exam (your device):  $65.00 (total for both exam and remote proctor fee)

Please contact NLN Customer Service (800-732-8656) if you have questions about their refund policy or fees associated with rescheduling an exam prior to the exam date.

On-site testing is offered approximately two times per month in the Workforce Assessment Center on the Hopkinsville campus. Remaining exam dates prior to the application deadline for Fall 2023 are:

  • Thursday, March 23 at 9:00 am
  • Thursday, April 6 at 9:00 am
  • Thursday, April 20 at 9:00 am
  • Thursday, May 4 at 9:00 am

Note: All times are Central Time zone. Seating is limited to 8 people per test session.  Registration closes 2 days prior to exam date or when all seats have been taken.

Remote-proctored testing is available 24/7, unless NLN announces their system will be down for maintenance for a specified window of time. Once you have purchased the exam, look under the My Assessments or My Exams tab in your NLN account. Do not start the exam unless you know you have the quiet, uninterrupted space to complete the exam. You cannot pause the exam and return to finish later.

  • One (1) form of identification with the name on the ID matching the name on the exam registration
  • Your NLN username and password that you created when you set up your NLN account
  • Receipt showing payment of the $25.00 proctoring fee (if taking exam at Workforce Assessment Center)
  • Calculator (optional) - exam portal should have online calculator built-in to exam
  • For on-site testing, the Workforce Assessment Center will provide an erasable note board, pen, and basic calculator
  • For remote-proctored exam, be sure to review any guidelines from NLN when you register on how to prepare for taking the exam.

NLN advises score reports should be available within 4 hours after completion of the exam.  Students can log in to their NLN account to view a score report.

The HCC Nursing Department's retest policy for the PAX exam is once every six (6) weeks.  If you take the exam more than once, you must allow 6 weeks between exam dates in order for us to consider your score reports as valid.  When applying to the program, we will use the highest PAX score from the exams you have taken as long as you abide by the 6-week retest policy.

We consider scores to be good for three (3) years from the exam date.

RN Program:  The minimum composite score to be eligible is 111.

Medic To RN Program: The minimum composite score to be eligible is 111.

PN Program:  The minimum composite score to be eligible is 99.