February 26, 2018

Top 5 NCLEX Review Courses (With Cost)

Student in public place studying hard
Amy Blitchok By: Amy Blitchok

You have successfully completed nursing school, but now there is one last hurdle to jump before you can receive your license and begin practicing. Even if you have been an exemplary student, passing the NCLEX can feel like a daunting task. 

How Is The NCLEX Broken Down?

The NCLEX is a comprehensive exam designed to measure your competency as you work through the test. After a minimum of 75-85 questions, you may be prompted to answer additional questions in order to better gauge your knowledge.

The ultimate goal is not only to pass but to avoid having to answer additional questions by demonstrating your competency after the first stage. The best way to master the test is with the help of NCLEX prep courses. 

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The Best NCLEX Prep And Review

Ultimately, there are a lot of choices out there when it comes to NCLEX prep courses and they are not all created equal. You want to make sure that you find the best combination of resources and support for a price that fits your budget. 

To help you narrow down your choices and prepare for the exam, here are the top 5 NCLEX prep courses worth looking into:

1. UWorld

UWorld is one of the highest rated prep courses by both experts and student users. It is designed to offer an extensive bank of sample questions that mirror that style and difficulty of questions that will be on the exam. This allows you to not only test your knowledge but become familiar with the style of the test so that there are no surprises on test day.


  • Easy to use interface. With an intuitive design, you can easily navigate the dashboard. It also helps that it is almost identical to the NCLEX design, so you everything will look and feel familiar when you test.
  • Extensive question bank. You can take as many practice tests as you want and never worry about repeat questions.
  • Mobile app. Practice no matter where you are. The mobile app allows you to access questions from your phone to make the most of any downtime.
  • Thorough explanations. UWorld doesn’t just tell you whether your answer is correct or incorrect, it gives a rationale so that you can learn and avoid mistakes down the road.
  • Coverage of all subjects. The UWorld prep course does a great job of covering all the important subjects and avoids focusing too heavily on just one.
  • Customer support. If you have problems, you can quickly reach a knowledgeable support person who will provide answers.


  • Cost. When you want the best, you have to be prepared to pay top dollar, but the cost of UWorld may be too much for some people to swallow, especially if you are fresh out of school and already stressed about finances. However, it does offer one of the most flexible pricing plans available.


UWorld does offer several pricing plans that can help you budget. The cheapest option is $139 and offers 60 days of access to the Qbank along with one self-assessment. The most expensive package is $249 and includes 360 days of access and two self-assessments.

2. (formerly NRSNG)*

This prep course was designed by an experienced RN who was looking for an easy and concise way to deliver material. It offers a unique teaching method centered on the idea of linchpin concepts that users really seem to respond to.


  • Variety of teaching materials. You get access to over 600 videos and audio lessons along with 900 pages of printable resources and 50 laminated clinical reference cards.
  • Online study groups. Join a private study group that will offer you support and motivation.
  • Money-back guarantee. If you complete the academy and don’t pass the exam, you are eligible for a 200% refund.
  • Lifetime access code. Unlike other programs where you pay different rates depending on how long you want access to materials, offers ongoing access to valuable materials.


  • Poor customer service. There are quite of few reports of users running into problems and having to wait a few days for a response. If you are already stressed about the exam, the last thing you want is to have to hunt down customer support.

Cost: offers a variety of plans and prices. The lowest cost option is the NPQ plan which costs $99, offers 6 months of access and 6,000+ NCLEX practice questions. The next tier is the NPQ + SIMCLEX plan which also has a 200% NCLEX pass guarantee, and 3 SIMCLEX simulation exams. The NCLEX Prep Academy option, which is normally $329, also includes 5 SIMCLEX simulation exams, a review course, an ebook, and 4 study plans. is offering discounted rates due to COVID-19 for new signups until May 15, 2020. 

*Affiliate link. If you decide to use, may receive a commission.

3. Kaplan

Kaplan is a trusted and recognizable name in test prep and a great choice to help you study for the NCLEX.


  • Question analysis training. Kaplan doesn’t just help you memorize answers, it teaches you how to break down and understand questions so that you can reason through problems and develop a strategy when it comes to choosing the right answer.
  • Plenty of practice questions. There are thousands of questions in the Kaplan test bank.
  • Mobile app. Study on the go and access practice questions from your phone or tablet.
  • Diagnostic test. This test will identify your strength and weakness when it comes to test content and help you focus your studies.
  • Pass guarantee. If you take the test within 6 months of graduation and don’t pass after using the Kaplan course, you may be eligible for a 100% refund or an additional 3 months of enrollment.


  • Cost. Again, Kaplan comes with a hefty price tag although it might be worth the money if it means passing the NCLEX on your first try.


The live online option gives you the classroom experience from the comfort of your own home and costs $424. 

4. Hurst

Hurst is one of the few test prep companies that specializes in the NCLEX, which means that it comes with a few more specialized features.


  • Extensive question bank. Enjoy access to thousands of questions and the eBook.
  • Builds critical thinking skills. Their organized and strategic approach to reviewing core content and developing critical thinking will help you tackle difficult questions.
  • Focuses on testing strategies. Hurst provides strategies that are specific to the NCLEX exam.
  • Four review exams. You can take four different exams that follow the pattern of the NCLEX.
  • Support. Receive support from nursing coaches who will help you through the course.
  • Various learning options. Choose between a live class, online class or streaming webinar.


  • There are no major complaints against Hurst. Students and experts both seem to like the program, especially since there are plenty of resources and options to support different types of learning. 


Live classroom instruction and the online live stream course both cost $399. The online class comes with 90-day access and costs $250.

5. ATI

ATI is another test prep service that solely serves nursing students. Some users prefer this level of specialization from their test prep provider because can mean less of a focus on testing in general and more on the specific challenges of the NCLEX.


  • NCLEX style questions. Review material and get used to NCLEX types questions along with extensive rationale reports.
  • Mobile app. All the materials are online and can be accessed from your phone or tablet.
  • Diagnostic exams. Testing can identify your strengths and weaknesses and help you focus your efforts. 
  • Live coaches who will help you review the test.


  • While ATI sells the live coaches as a great feature, not all students enjoy or benefit from this teaching method.
  • Students have reported inconsistent instruction and a lack of cohesion between segments.
  • Limited locations for LIVE class review. You may not be able to attend live classes close to home.
  • Delivery of material can be boring. While ATI offers an extensive database of information and questions, some users were turned off by how dry it is.


If you are an existing ATI member, you can save money on the course, but new customers will pay $474 for the RN course.



If you want the absolute best in test prep courses and resources, be prepared to spend upwards of $300. When cost isn’t the deciding factor, your best bet is to think about how you learn best and choose a course that speaks to your learning style.

If online courses work for you, there are plenty of options that are complemented by review support and coaching. However, is one of the few courses that also cater to those who still appreciate being able to print study materials and actually hold and organize flashcards.

Next Up: 31 Sample Nursing Interview Questions With Answer Guide

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