Preparing for the CPNRE

The following are strategies to consider when preparing to write the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination (CPNRE).

Applicants may choose to use all or some of these suggestions, or may decide to develop their own strategies for taking the test. Regardless of how they choose to prepare for their test, all applicants should evaluate their learning needs and upgrade their skills and knowledge where needed before attempting the test.

  • Review the College’s practice documents.

  • Review content from your nursing educational program. Focus on health and wellness promotion and illness prevention across the lifespan. Pay particular attention to issues involving the nurse/client relationship, curative/supportive care, rehabilitation and professional practice.

  • If you are an internationally educated nurse, consider enrolling in a program offered by an educational institution designed to help applicants to the College become familiar with current nursing practice in Ontario.  

  • If English or French is not your first language, take an English or French language course that emphasizes both written and oral skills.

  • Consider joining a nursing peer support group. These groups can provide suggestions for preparing to write the exam.
  • Four weeks before your exam window opens, you’ll gain access to an interactive exam demo. To access the demo, go to, then click the “Forgot your password?” link in the User Login box and follow the instructions. You can find more information about this demo in ASI’s “Computer-Based Testing Demonstration Guide” on the CPNRE.CA website.
Examination Preparation Courses 

Some applicants may choose to enrol in an examination preparation course that may help them review content and learn techniques for responding to multiple-choice questions.

Applicants writing the CPNRE should use materials developed by the exam’s administrator, Assessment Strategies Inc., for the specific purpose of preparing for the CPNRE.

There are fees for the CPNRE study guides and practice examinations. Contact the exam administrator for details.

Please note the College of Nurses does not endorse any other course of study that advertises itself as a way to help applicants successfully complete any registration examination.


Page last reviewed June 11, 2020