Candidate Examination Handbook

Choose language: English | Français

Candidate Examination Handbook

CNPE Nurse Practitioners Exam: Family/All Ages

Contact Yardstick Assessment Strategies
Registration for Examination Process Overview
Application and Fees
The Exam
Deadline Dates
Testing Location
Disability Accommodations
Schedule your Exam
CNPE: F/AA Preparatory Tool
Examination Interface Tutorial Exam
Candidate Information Change
Exam Cancellation by Testing Site or Yardstick Assessment Strategies
Exam Cancellation by Candidate
Admission to the Exam
Security / Testing Restrictions
Late Arrival at the Testing Centre
Washroom Breaks
At the End of the Exam
Confidentiality
Misconduct or Irregular behaviour
Pass/Fail Score Determination
Candidate Performance Report
Definition of Categories
Taxomonmy Levels
Examination Blueprint 2018-23


Introduction

The objective of this document is to provide candidates with information regarding procedures and policies related to the Canadian Nurse Practitioners Examination: Family/All Ages (CNPE: F/AA). Effective October 2018, the assessment will be Computer Based and delivered with the Yardstick Assessment Strategies test centre network and examination software.

Contact Yardstick

In the event you have a booking reservation, testing centre or general candidate inquiry, contact Yardstick Assessment Strategies using the following:

Email: support@yas.getyardstick.com
Phone: 1-888-900-0005, Option 1
Hours of Operation: Monday through Friday – 8:00am to 5:00pm (EST)

 

 

Registration for Examination Process Overview

  1. Submit an application for registration to the regulatory body
  2. Meet all of the regulatory body’s eligibility requirements to take the CNPE:F/AA
  3. Register on-line for the CNPE:F/AA with Yardstick Assessment Strategies
  4. Receive registration booking confirmation email from Yardstick Assessment Strategies
  5. Arrive at testing Centre and present your identification
  6. Receive official results from your regulatory body

Application and Fees

Candidates are made eligible to take the exam by their regulatory body. The regulatory body provides the name of each candidate to Yardstick Assessment Strategies. Candidates will pay examination and seating fees directly to Yardstick Assessment Strategies (See section on How to Schedule Your Exam below). Additional application and registration fees may be charged by the regulatory body. Exam fees are non-refundable.

The Exam

The computer-based exam is four hours long. The exam consists of 170-190 multiple –choice items (questions).

Deadline Dates

After completion of the application for the CNPE: F/AA, candidates will be granted access to the Yardstick Assessment Strategies seat reservation and examination delivery site. Approximately 4- weeks prior to the scheduled examination sitting, all candidates will receive an email notification from Yardstick Assessment Strategies with instructions on how to reserve their seat for the upcoming administration of the exam. If more information is needed, candidates can contact their regulatory body about how to begin the application process.

Testing Location

Yardstick Assessment Strategies assists in the administration, scoring, and analysis of the exams. A current list of available writing regions is available here. Candidates will be provided the final testing location information including addresses, map links and location details approximately 4- weeks prior to the examination sitting date.

Disability Accommodations

Testing accommodations can be provided to candidates with the authorization of the regulatory body. All requests must be submitted and approved no later than 40-business days prior to the desired writing date. For additional information, contact your regulatory body.

How to schedule your exam

Approximately 4-weeks prior to the examination date, the seat reservation window will open. Candidates will receive a “notification to book” communication from Yardstick Assessment Strategies regarding this date window and instructions to login to the examination system.

Once logged in, candidates will be navigate to the “Products” tab and pay the exam fee of $768.75 and seating fee of $105.00 plus tax. After the purchase has been completed, candidates will be able to immediately reserve their seat in the region they indicated in their initial application.

NOTE: Candidates must book their exam in the same province that granted them the eligibility to attempt the CNPE: F/AA. Choosing a different province may result in a change of fees and YAS may not be able to guarantee a seat due to delays in processing your reservation.

CNPE: F/AA Preparatory Tool

The new CNPE: F/AA Prep tool is an optional resource which candidates can purchase to help them prepare to take the CNPE: F/AA. This consists of two parts: documents containing information to help candidates prepare to take the exam and an 80-question online practice test. After completing the online practice test, the candidate is provided with a scorecard which will include the rationale and the reference for each item on the test. The new CNPE:F/AA prep tool is available at the link below and will cost $80.00 + tax.

https://cnpepreptool.ysasecure.com/

Examination Interface Tutorial Exam

Access to the Yardstick Assessment Strategies examination platform tutorial will be included in the “notification to book” email. Please note – this tutorial is for platform practice only – there are no content specific questions. Candidates can take this examination as many times as they choose to gain familiarity and comfort with the functions and layout of the exam platform prior to the examination day. This will also be made available to candidates on the scheduled examination date, however, we recommend this be taken prior to the date to ensure a prompt examination start after the registration process.

Candidate Information Change

Should candidates require an update to their personal information (such as name change, address change, email change, etc.) the candidates must contact their regulatory body immediately. The first and last names on their identification provided to the proctor at the testing centre must match the names used on the candidate examination application form.

Exam Cancellation by Testing Site or Yardstick Assessment Strategies

In the unlikely event of an unexpected examination site change, candidates would be able to reserve a seat at a different location. Yardstick Assessment Strategies will work with affected candidates to secure a seat in a new testing location.

If a previously scheduled testing venue needs to cancel due to an unforeseen circumstance (such as weather, power failure or an emergency), all candidates affected will be contacted by email and/or phone in order to confirm the new testing location.

In the event an unforeseen circumstance occurs at a testing centre on the scheduled examination date, candidates will be sent email communication from Yardstick Assessment Strategies as soon as possible notifying the candidates of the issue. Further direction will then be provided to candidates as the events develop.

An emergency number will be included in the exam confirmation e-mail so candidates are able to contact Yardstick support in case of any unforeseen circumstances.

Exam Cancellation by Candidate

Candidates needing to cancel their exam must submit their request a minimum of 10-business days prior to the scheduled examination date directly to their regulatory body. Candidate requests received with less than 10-business days’ notice may not be entitled to a refund.


On Exam Day

Admission to the Exam

Upon confirming the seat reservation, candidates will receive a ‘booking confirmation email’ which will specify the testing venue location address, any necessary map links, parking information and details on what to bring to the assessment centre. All candidates will be required to bring a copy of their ‘booking confirmation email’ as well as government issued photo identification confirmation (e.g., Driver’s license, passport or permanent resident card) which has an expiration date and a signature. Expired identification will not be accepted by testing centres.

The candidate identification will be used by the proctor to confirm identity on examination day and will be compared to the candidate roster to ensure accuracy of the information. Upon completion of the identification verification process, the proctor will direct candidates to the candidate personal belongings designated area (this can vary from lockers, desk areas, or secure storage area within the testing room). Candidates are not permitted to bring any electronics (e.g., mobile devices, calculators, smart watches), paperwork, books or writing materials into the testing room. These articles must remain in the candidate personal belongings designated area for the duration of the examination. Permissible items include a sweater without pockets, disposable ear plugs and, if approved by the testing centre, water/juice/coffee/drink in a spill proof, clear and label free container.

Security / Testing Restrictions

Yardstick Assessment Strategies maintains exam administration and security standards that are designed to assure that all candidates are provided the same opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and abilities. Candidates will at all times be monitored by Proctors and be required to provide a piece of valid government issued photo identification to the proctor for identity confirmation (e.g., Driver’s license, passport or permanent resident card).

Before candidates are permitted access to the examination room, proctors will ensure the following:

  • All clothing with pockets or hoods are empty checked to ensure there is nothing inside (candidates will be required to turn out their pockets for confirmation)
  • Cell phones and other electronic devices are turned off and left with the candidates personal belongings
  • Glasses are checked to ensure they are not video equipped
  • Hats are left with candidates personal belongings
  • High boots are removed and inspected to ensure nothing is inside them

Late Arrival at the Testing Centre

All candidates are instructed to arrive at their reserved testing venue 30-minutes prior to the scheduled start time of their examination. In the event a candidate arrives past the scheduled start time, the following policies will apply:

1 to 29 minutes after the scheduled start time: the candidates may write their examination, however, they will lose any late time as this will not be added to their examination.

30+ minutes after the scheduled start time: the candidates will not be able to test and will be considered a ‘no-show’. Candidates must re-apply for the next administration window.

Washroom Breaks

Candidates will be permitted to leave the secure testing room for washroom breaks, however, the time used will not be added to the examination and the countdown timer does not pause. It is highly recommended candidates use the washroom prior to the examination start time. All proctors are required to note each candidate’s washroom break exit and re-enter times. Candidates will not have access to their personal belongings during breaks.

At the End of the Exam

At the end of 4 hours, or before if the candidate submits their examination early, the candidates will be provided the opportunity to complete a post-examination feedback survey. The survey will ask questions regarding the examination process, the testing centre environment and overall examination experience. This survey is not mandatory; however, it is highly recommended for candidates to submit their feedback.


General Information

Confidentiality

Candidates will be required to sign a confidentiality agreement and are expected to demonstrate professional integrity related to the exam, e.g., no cheating or disclosure of exam items to others.

Misconduct or Irregular Behaviour

Irregular behaviour is any attempted violation(s) of the rules regarding any part of the examination process. This includes cheating, providing false information, taking the test for another person, removing or trying to remove examination materials from the testing venue and any activity that would be considered illegal such as harassment, theft or assault.

Pass/Fail Score Determination

Candidates will receive official results from their regulatory body. The pass mark is set in reference to the content and the difficulty of the test questions. The pass mark is not set using a norm- referenced approach such as “bell curving”. The pass mark is set by a panel of content experts from across Canada. These content experts work closely with nurse practitioners, and include educators, experienced practitioners and administrators. The pass mark is set at a level that represents the performance expected of a competent entry-level nurse practitioner.

The panel of content experts reviews each exam question and produces ratings based on a common understanding of a competent entry-level nurse practitioner. In addition to these ratings, a variety of relevant data (for example, information on the preparation of new graduates, data on results from previously administered exam) are carefully considered to ensure that the pass mark that candidates must achieve on the exam is valid and fair. Based on this information, an appropriate pass mark is set. Also, to ensure fairness, the different versions of the exam are equated so that all candidates have to meet the same standard regardless of the version of the exam.

For each form of the CNPE/FAA, the pass mark is the same across writing centres and across jurisdictions. The pass mark is also the same for English and French versions of the CNPE/FAA.

A number of quality assurance steps are taken when scoring the exams. Candidates are all scored using two independent systems to ensure accuracy. In addition, a number of other steps are taken including random manual rescores and a careful review of unusually low scores. Unsuccessful candidates will also receive a Candidate Performance Profile. The Candidate Performance Profile provides information on the exam performance using scaled scores. A scaled score is a conversion of a raw score to a common scale. For the CNPE: F/AA, the passing (scaled) score is 450 on a scale of 100 - 700.

Candidate Performance Report

Candidates who do not pass the CNPE/FAA will receive a candidate performance profile in order to help the candidate identify areas of strength and weakness, and guide future studying.

Definition of Categories

To obtain more information on these categories and the target percentages of questions on the exam, refer to the Blueprint for the Canadian Nurse Practitioner Examination: Family/All Ages, 3rd Edition which is available on the CCRNR website http://www.ccrnr.ca/familyall-ages.html.

These competencies are based on the Canadian Council of Registered Nurse Regulators (CCRNR) 2015 Practice Analysis Study of Nurse Practitioners, available at http://www.ccrnr.ca/nurse-practitioners.html.

CLIENT RELATIONSHIP BUILDING AND COMMUNICATION
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner uses appropriate communication strategies to create a safe and therapeutic environment for client care.

ASSESSMENT
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner integrates an evidence-informed knowledge base with advanced assessment skills to obtain the necessary information to identify client diagnoses, strengths, and needs.

DIAGNOSIS
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner is engaged in the diagnostic process and develops differential diagnoses through identification, analysis, and interpretation of findings from a variety of sources.

MANAGEMENT
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner, on the basis of assessment and diagnosis, formulates the most appropriate plan of care for the client, implementing evidence-informed therapeutic interventions in partnership with the client to optimize health.

COLLABORATION, CONSULTATION, AND REFERRAL
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner identifies when collaboration, consultation, and referral are necessary for safe, competent, and comprehensive client care.

QUALITY IMPROVEMENT AND RESEARCH
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner uses evidence-informed practice, seeks to optimize client care and health service delivery, and participates in research.

LEADERSHIP
The competent entry-level nurse practitioner demonstrates leadership by using the NP role to improve client care and facilitate system change.

EDUCATION
The competent, entry-level nurse practitioner integrates formal and informal education into practice. This includes but is not limited to educating self, clients, the community, and members of the healthcare team.

Taxonomy Levels

To ensure that competencies are measured at different levels of cognitive ability, each question on the CNPE: F/AA is classified into one of the three levels.

KNOWLEDGE/COMPREHENSION
The knowledge/comprehension level combines the ability to recall previously learned material with the ability to understand its meaning. It includes such cognitive abilities as knowing and understanding definitions, facts and principles, and interpreting data (e.g., knowing the effects of medications to prevent adverse drug interactions when prescribing).

APPLICATION
The application level refers to the ability to apply knowledge and learning to new or practical situations. It reflects the entry-level nurse practitioner’s ability to apply rules, methods, principles and theories in different practice situations (e.g., applying principles of drug administration and concepts of comfort and safety).

CRITICAL THINKING
The critical thinking level deals with higher-level thinking processes. It includes the ability of entry- level nurse practitioners to judge the relevance of data, to deal with abstractions, and to use clinical reasoning and inquiry along with an evidence-informed approach to solve problems (e.g., identifying priorities of care, evaluating the effectiveness of nurse practitioner actions). The entry-level nurse practitioner should be able to identify cause-and-effect relationships, distinguish between relevant and irrelevant data, formulate valid conclusions and make judgments concerning the needs of clients.

Examination Blueprint 2018-23

The CNPE:F/AA Blueprint helps the candidate to prepare for the exam. It identifies the competencies (i.e., knowledge, skills, attributes, and judgments) tested within the examination to enable accurate decisions to be made on a candidate' readiness to practice safely, effectively, and ethically. Below is the Summary Chart: CNPE:F/AA Development Guidelines