NCAS uses a Computer-based Assessment (CBA), a Simulation Lab Assessment (SLA), and an Oral Assessment (OA) to assess the extent to which applicants demonstrate the skills and competencies required for practice. The CBA is taken at a proctored computer lab operated by Prometric, and is offered in many countries and cities in the world. The SLA and OA are offered ONLY at the Langara School of Nursing in Vancouver. Candidates MUST attend in person The SLA and OA are taken at the same time; there is no need to register or pay for them separately. Because assessment results are based on the outcomes of all three assessments, candidates MUST complete all three components to complete the NCAS process. Candidates have one year to complete the NCAS process.
Step One: NCAS receives a referral directly from a nursing regulatory college or health care aide registry. NOTE: If you're being assessed for two professions at once (we highly recommend that you consider doing this from the outset), we might need to receive two separate referrals.
Step Two: You receive an email from NCAS confirming your referral. You sign the Non-Disclosure Agreement attached, and submit it to NCAS.
Step Three: You receive two emails, one asking you to pay for the CBA, the other asking you to pay for the SLA/OA. NOTE: You do not need to pay for and schedule the CBA and SLA/OA at the same time. While the assessments may be paid for and taken in any order, we urge you to take the CBA first, as it will help you prepare yourself better for the SLA/OA.
Step Four: Once you have paid for the CBA, you will be sent an email directing you to the relevant webpage. There you will see information about dates, times and location that will help you schedule your CBA. Please click here to view a list of eligible CBA testing centres, that are run by a company called Prometric. You can also visit www.Prometric.com to find the testing site nearest you.
Once you have paid for the SLA/OA, NCAS will contact you within three business days to schedule the SLA/OA. The SLA and OA are taken at the same time, in person, at Langara College in Vancouver.
You have one year from the date of referral to complete the entire NCAS process.
The CBA is a three-hour, proctored, computer-based assessment. You can take the assessment at one of more than a hundred testing centres in 60 countries in the world.
The CBA seeks to assess your knowledge of the skills and competencies required to enter practice in the health practitioner role you desire.
The assessment is made up of gradually unfolding cases that take you through the step by step process of clinical thinking and decision making.
There is no pass or fail. Rather, the assessment is aimed at identifying strengths and gaps. Your results will not be sent to you until you have completed the Simulation Lab Assessment.
The SLA is a three- to six-hour assessment. The SLA must be taken in person at a nursing simulation lab in Vancouver, BC., and there are no exceptions to this rule.
At the lab, you will be taken to four different stations. Each station will focus on one clinical scenario. Some stations will have a mannequin, while others may use a specially-trained actor acting in the role of a patient.
The mannequins are programmed to simulate various health conditions appropriate to your nursing role. The simulation environment will contain the necessary healthcare equipment to support appropriate patient care within the scope of your role.
Our actors are called standardized patients, and are going to be used in all the stations, even if you don’t see them. Sometimes they will play the role of the patient, and sometimes they will be the voice behind the mannequin, speaking to you in real time, as you care for your patient.
An assessor will be present in the room with you, and will observe your interactions during each scenario.
Like the CBA, the SLA offers you the opportunity to demonstrate your abilities. It seeks to assess the extent to which you can demonstrate the skills and competencies required to enter practice in the health practitioner role you desire. Specifically, the simulations allow you to demonstrate your ability to conduct patient assessments, perform nursing interventions, communicate effectively with patients, and make clinical decisions in a safe environment.
There is no pass or fail. Rather, the assessment is aimed at identifying strengths and gaps. Your results will not be sent to you until you have completed the Computer-based Assessment.
The Oral Assessment takes place at the same time as the SLA and in the same place. In fact, after each simulation, you will complete a clinical decision-making oral as sessment with the assessor. That oral assessment comprises three questions and takes about 10 minutes.
In the oral assessment, the assessor asks you structured questions designed to measure your critical thinking and clinical judgement, as well as the thought processes that influenced your actions during the simulation scenarios.
Results of the NCAS assessment will help inform the nursing regulator and the registry about your competencies. They use this information, along with other information they have received from you, to make decisions about registration.
NCAS will send a report both to the regulator or registry, as well as to you. NCAS does not send a results report for each assessment. Rather, NCAS sends only the final report that blends the results of all three assessments. That's because each assessment evaluates distinct, as well as some overlapping competencies, and each evaluates them in different ways. Only by blending the report do we get a true picture of the applicant's competencies.