​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​What to expect — Simulation​ Lab Assessment — RN/LPN


  • Stethoscope
  • Face mask
  • Snack and a water bottle for breaks 
  • One form of non-expired, government-issued, photo- and signature-bearing ID 
  • Arrive dressed in scrubs

Note: If one piece of ID does not have your name, photo and signature, you may present two pieces of non-expired, government-issued ID that together demonstrate all three requirements.

Acceptable forms of primary ID include:

  • driver's license
  • government-issued ID
  • government-issued work ID
  • military ID
  • NEXUS card
  • Passport
  • permanent resident visa or green card
  • provincial health card (if the photo is included)

Acceptable forms of secondary ID include:

  • province or state health card
  • social security card (US)
  • study permit (must be original and non-expired)

You are encouraged to bring as few personal belongings as possible; all items will be placed in a locker for the duration of your SLA.


Some of the equipment you might encounter in your SLA includes:

  • Wheelchair
  • Transfer belt
  • Walker/cane
  • Bedpan
  • Commode/toilet
  • Foley and urine drainage bag
  • Meal tray and feeding implements; water
  • Bedrails and brakes 
  • Call bell
  • Oxygen
  • Linen cart

Note: You will not find a sink in the simulation rooms.  Any water you need for patient purposes will be provided in a basin or pitcher. Each room will have hand sanitizer and gloves for your use.

The RN/LPN Simulation Lab Assessment (SLA) allows for showing knowledge and skills in a series of simulated patient encounters.

  • Move through five stations of unfolding case scenarios. Three stations for LPN.
  • Two stations will involve a face-to-face encounter with a standardized patient (trained actor).
  • Three stations will involve a high-fidelity mannequin.
  • It will take 25 minutes to complete each station.
  • 3.5 hours to complete the assessment.

Do I need to complete the RN/LPN SLA? 

The RN/LPN SLA is required if you apply to the IEN pathway or have been referred to NCAS by the BC College of Nurses and Midwives, Nova Scotia College of Nursing, Nurses Association of New Brunswick, or the College of Registered Nurses of PEI.

This page explains what to expect from the RN/LPN SLA.

Check the HCA SLA page to learn more about this part of the triple-track assessment. 


British Colum​​​bia

The west coast SLA occurs at the NCAS Assessment Centre, located within the Nursing Simulation Centre at Langara College in Vancouver, BC.

Maritim​e Canada

The Maritimes based SLA will occur at the NCAS Assessment Centre, located within the Centre for Collaborative Clinical Learning and Research at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

​What Happens During the SLA​

Arrive 20-minute s in advance of the scheduled appointment with a stethoscope and dressed in scrubs. Masks are needed at the assessment centre.

Upon arrival at the NCAS Asses​​sment Centre

  • Watch an orientation video about the simulation assessment.
  • Receive an orientation to the simulation lab and equipment.
  • Personal belongings will be put in a secure area.


The Simulation Lab Assessment provides an opportunity to apply knowledge and skills in simulated patient encounters. Applicants visit three to five simulation lab stations and take on a nurse's role. Each room is set up to reflect a specific kind of practice setting and to allow for a thorough assessment or treatment to be performed, allowing you to demonstrate a full breadth of nursing practice. The rooms may look like an acute or chronic care facility or represent a community care setting like a community clinic or someone's apartment or home. 

At the start of each station, applicants are given a chart with a brief written statement introducing the presenting clinical problem and stating the task needed to perform. The chart also includes a variety of supporting documents to assist in the planning of care. Five minutes are given to review the chart. Applicants act in each scenario as one would in a real-life practice setting.  

The assessment room includes the following:

  • Standardized patient (a live actor) or a high-fidelity mannequin.
  • An assessor who evaluates performances.
  • Paper, pencil, and calculator.
  • Clock.
  • Station props based on the context of the setting. For example, a monitor, medication cart, blood pressure cuff, etc.

A camera technician will be recording the assessment from a nearby observation area. Additional people may be present in the observation room only for training purposes, and their presence does not impact your scoring.  

You will also notice cameras in the assessment room that will record your performance. The assessor will first have you face one of the cameras and state your name and NCAS ID. 

Once you enter the room, you will have five​ minutes to read the chart. You may make notes (paper provided). The assessor will indicate when you may begin the simulation. Each of the five simulations is 20 minutes long, for 25 minutes at each station. The assessor will notify you when your time is up. If you have completed your nursing practice before the time is up, review the chart to ensure you have not missed anything. You will be asked to leave the room after your assessment. You will be met outside by NCAS staff and asked to sit outside the next assessment room.