Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia - Multiple-choice question (MCQ) exam
Look up a health practitioner


Check if your health practitioner is qualified, registered and their current registration status

Multiple-choice question (MCQ) exam

What is the MCQ exam?

The multiple-choice question (MCQ) exam assesses the candidate’s professional knowledge. There are separate exams for internationally qualified nurses and midwives (IQNMs) intending to register in Australia as a registered nurse (RN), enrolled nurse (EN), or midwife:

  • The MCQ exam for RNs is the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) develops and delivers the NCLEX-RN through Pearson VUE test centres in most countries.
  • The MCQ exam for ENs information on the EN MCQ exam will be published soon.
  • The MCQ exam for midwives is delivered through Aspeq test centres in most countries.

Stream B candidates must successfully complete the MCQ exam once they have completed Orientation Part 1 and Portfolio. The MCQ exam must be passed before candidates can proceed to the Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE). This is with the exception of:

  • RN candidates who have passed the NCLEX-RN exam within 10 years of establishing their portfolio. Evidence of passing the NCLEX-RN must be uploaded at Portfolio.
  • midwifery candidates who have passed the Midwifery Council of New Zealand’s modified National Midwifery Exam since 2020. Candidates who have passed this exam must contact Ahpra before submitting their Portfolio.

Handbooks are available that provide further information on the MCQ exams, including processes and policies.

The NMBA does not run preparation programs for the MCQ exams or the OSCEs.

All MCQ exam candidates should ensure they are well prepared before sitting the exam. This may include revising nursing or midwifery theory and becoming familiar with the format of computerised MCQ exams.

It is recommended that candidates read the relevant handbook which includes references to some resource material (soon to be published).

For RN candidates, it is recommended visiting NCSBN’s website for more information about the NCLEX-RN.


Enrolled nurses

Information for internationally qualified enrolled nurses

Find out more »

Registered nurses

Information for internationally qualified registered nurses

Find out more »


Information for internationally qualified midwives

Find out more »

Applicable Policies:

Page reviewed 17/07/2020