What is Objective structured clinical examination (OSCE)?
Registered Nurse Objective Structured Clinical Examination (RN OSCE) is a test that examines foreign registered nurses. RN OSCE is administered to such nurses but desiring to become registered as nurses in Australia. After the candidate successfully passed the NCLEX-RN, they will proceed with OSCE or objective structured clinical examination which is a behavioral assessment and developed to determine if the IQNM demonstrate the knowledge, skills and competence.
How do OSCE differs from NCLEX?
NCLEX is multiple choice while OSCE is an actual exam. OSCE will simulate a clinical environment and patient scenarios which Registered Nurses are likely to encounter when they assess, diagnose, plan, implement and evaluate care. Nurses are expected to utilize a contemporary evidence based and effectively demonstrate the safe practical application of nursing skills.
How much is the fee for OSCE?
OSCE costs $4,000 AUD. It will be used by AHPRA in running and maintaining OSCE.
Are there offered courses for OSCE Preparation?
Yes. There are institutions offering OSCE Preparation courses. Most of them offer 6 weeks course structure and training and the fee costs around $3,500 – $5,500 AUD.
What is the content of OSCE?
The RN OSCE tests has ten clinical scenarios meant to evaluate persons based on the NMBA Registered Nurse Standards for Practice. RN OSCE is the minimum entry practice level for RNs in Australia.
It is a regulatory and not an educational OSCE. It integrates consistency for all candidates, meaning: The candidate will not be coached, prompted or given extra explanations of responsibilities or findings by the examiners.
Is the fee for OSCE refundable?
Like NCLEX examination fee, OSCE fee is non-refundable regardless of reasons.
When can I register for OSCE?
Once you passed the NCLEX, your OBA IQNM Dashboard will advise the candidate for OSCE exam eligibility.
Will AHPRA book a travel for the candidate to take OSCE?
No. It’s the candidate who will book travel for him/herself including accommodation.
For any reasons, can I reschedule my OSCE?
Yes. Rescheduling exam is possible. The IQNM should make a request for a reschedule at least three (3) days or 72 hours before the schedule date of examination.
Is rescheduling OSCE possible anytime?
The IQNM should consider the Australia’s territorial and national holidays when deciding for a reschedule. During these times, offices are automatically closed. A confirmation notice will be sent to the candidate once reschedule is approved.
How long will OSCE take?
The examination will take approximately 3-3.5 hours. It may be morning or afternoon.
How is the exam being executed?
OSCE has 10 individual stations. Each station has 10 minutes allocation for reading (2 minutes) and Interaction (8 minutes).
When will I know the results of exam?
The examination result will be sent to the candidate within six (6) weeks thru registered email.
What if I failed? Can I retake the examination?
Candidates who failed the OSCE can apply to retake the examination as soon as they have received their result notification. Firstly, by ensuring the fee for their next OSCE has been paid via the IQNM dashboard. Once the IQNM exam team has been notified of the payment, booking selection email will be sent and this will include next available examination schedule.
What should I bring to the Examination?
The RN must give a photographic ID on the registering date. The only ones acceptable one includes:
- Australian or overseas passport
- Australian drivers’ licence
- The photographic ID should have a similar name present in the IQNM portfolio submitted to AHPRA.
What skills will I be assessed on?
Each candidate will be tested on a series of practical skills, these may include but are not limited to:
- Physiological observations
- Vital signs
- Calculating drug dosages
- Subcutaneous/ Intramuscular injection
- Aseptic Non-Touch Technique (ANTT)
- In hospital resuscitation
- Safe disposal of sharps
- Medication administration
- Wound care
- Hand hygiene
- Therapeutic patient communication/consent
- Infection control practices
- Patient identification
- Intravenous therapy administration/management
- Risk management in the clinical environment
- Communication Skills
What does the Examiner assess in relation to communication?
Verbal, non-verbal, and written skills will be examined including the interaction with the patient. The patient may be acting or a manikin. The examiner will also look at the candidate’s approach in handling the patient and evaluate critical skills such as:
- A clear explanation of care, diagnosis and any medications.
- Ability to involve the patient in making critical decisions
- Interacting with the patient’s relatives and other medical professionals.
- Ability to seek and acquire informed consent
- Listening actively to the patient
- Managing an anxious patient or anxious household members
- Giving clear instructions that the discharged patient should follow
- Being compassionate and empathetic while communicating with the patient
- Documenting information correctly
Does the RN OSCE involve working with real patients?
Patients will be simulated patients (actors) in most of the stations. In other instances manikins may be used. The candidate is expected to show sympathy and interaction as one would a real patient.
How do you register for RN OSCE
Successful RNs that have passed the NCLEX-RN MCQ Examination, will be called and updated from their dashboard to pay for the OSCE test. Once confirmation of payment is made that AHPRA has received it, then IQNM teams will call the RN and book them for next present RN OSCE session.
What are Examination cycles and Maximum Candidate Numbers
Examination cycles are the timelines for each of the RN OSCE tests. Each cycle will handle two days of examinations including a maximum of four exams sessions (2 sessions per day) and will manage up to 40 RNs.
What is the OSCE Registration Fee?
The OSCE registration fee for each sitting is $4000 AUD. The fee must be paid to AHPRA through the guidelines provided on the IQNM dashboard before one can book the OSCE date of the test.
How can you book your OSCE examination after NCLEX-RN?
Upon IQNM exams team getting a notification of getting the pay, the RN must then select an examination date of their choice. Candidates are informed before the end of five days of getting payment.
The IQNM exams team will send RNs a Booking selection email. It encompasses information of the next available 1 or 2 exam dates. However, places for each cycle are reduced and the positions are bound to fill up quickly. Places are often given on a first come, first served approach. One risks lacking a slot at the next RN OSCE if they were slow in replying to the Booking selection email.
What are reasonable adjustments?
They refer to special arrangements for administering the test to offer persons with an impairment complete access to the examination. Adjustments are only made based on the means for nursing practice in Australia. They must not affect the integrity of the OSCE. The desired competence level is the similar for all RNs and cannot be altered at all.
Candidates wishing to request reasonable adjustments should send the requests to the IQNM exam team in writing within 14 days of making payments. The candidate should give the appropriate documentation supporting the need for adjustment. This should also include outcomes of appropriate diagnostic testing by an expert in the supposed area of disability.
For more information on reasonable adjustments, please contact the IQNM exams team via email: IQNMexams@ahpra.gov.au
How do I get confirmation of OSCE Exam booking?
An RN candidate is assured of doing exams only when the IQNM exams team gives the RN OSCE Candidate Confirmation communication. The information includes fundamentals such as the location RN OSCE will be done, and the specific date and time. The expectations of the RNs are also given in the information. Candidates must understand the specifics requirements before getting to the exam center in Adelaide.
A copy of the RN OSCE terms for all individuals doing exams and RN OSCE Video and Audio consent form will be attached for the individual’s reference.
The IQNM exams team will email RNs a reminder two weeks before the stipulated date for doing the test.
How can I Change my scheduled OSCE examination?
If one needs to alter one’s date of doing the test, then one must contact the IQNM exams team at IQNMexams@ahpra.gov.au or on 1300 419 495 at least 72 hours prior the commencement of the stipulated test. Australian National and State holidays be put to consideration.
NOTE: A message left on an answering machine does not establish providing the mandated notice for changing or cancelling your exam appointment.
What happens if I Miss an OSCE Exam date?
If one fails to get to their test appointment or does not give another schedule or cancel without providing the necessary notice, then one will forfeit their fee. The RN will have to submit another OSCE fee if the candidate wants to sit for the test later. The Exam Invigilator will note and communicate to the IQNM exams team failure to do the test.
Can I get Refunds for OSCE exam if I fail to attend ?
Refund of examination fee will not be provided if the individual: Fails to give an alternative date or cancel the test more than 72 hours before the confirmed examination date. Fails to appear for an exam appointment.
What happens when exam cycles at maximum capacity
If the selected exam cycle is at its maximum capacity when the IQNM exams team receive your response to the booking selection email, then they will be not be able to offer an individual a place for this cycle. The IQNM exams team will have to contact the candidate with the details of any alternative RN OSCE dates that are available at that time to book.
If future examination dates are yet to been confirmed with AHS, the IQNM exams team will contact the candidate immediately the new date becomes available.
How can I Prepare for OSCE? Is there any suggested courses or reading materials?
Nurse Assist International will be providing you with the resources and materials for you to get you skilled and competent to appear for your OSCE examination. The NMBA and AHPRA do not endorse any external OSCE preparation programs.
Where is the OSCE exam held?
The exam is held at the Adelaide Health Simulation, which is found within the University of Adelaide. AHS have two different regions where the tests can be administered. The email confirming the RN’s derails will give insight on the area where the exam will be done. The process of the examination will not be subjected to any changes even though the directions of buildings may vary.
How do you register on OSCE exam day?
The invigilator will guide the candidate when the individual arrives in the location to the registration desk. The RN will be further needed to give their photographic ID and later sign the candidate register. The candidate will also be mandated to sign the terms of agreement giving their consent even for video recording.
What are the Candidate Terms of Agreement?
The RN is obligated to sign a Terms of Agreement document to make sure the data within the OSCE stations is private. This contract will be observed by an AHPRA Invigilator on the testing day. Signing will thwart the person from sharing any data about the OSCE.
What are Video and Audio Consent form?
The candidate must sign a video and audio consent document. By using AHS facilities, the RN OSCE will include recording of video and audio useful for both education and research. Their uses include:
- Maintaining quality of the cases, examiners, and RNs,
- Examiners and simulation of patient education,
- Reporting during the clinical scenarios
Video and audio recording will be secured and will comply with the relevant legislation. Faces of RNs being tested will be blurred. Signing the consent documents makes RNs unable to obtain any recordings unless granted by the AHPRA regulations.
Do I need an ID card?
At registration the RN will be given the RN’s ID card. This card initiates the exam process at each phase, as one progresses through the examination. The information on the card has to be similar to that in the exam communications and the registration document signed. Any issues with the data provided in the card has to be brought up with the AHPRA Invigilator during registration.
When all RNs for the test are registered, or the close of registration time has elapsed; all RNs will be taken to the candidate waiting area. A short presentation on how the test process happens will be demonstrated.
What is the RN OSCE format?
The OSCE has ten stations, with each OSCE station running for ten minutes. They are grouped into two minutes for reading & eight minutes for performing.
What are examination station set up and patient types?
The OSCE will house different kinds of patients. Some are simulated and others are manikins Testing stations that warrant showing application skills, you may find both a simulated patient and a piece of equipment. In other stations, a simulated patient pretend to be the patient. The candidate should treat the acting patient as they would a real patient.
How many examiners are there?
An examiner will be found in all the stations. Their role is strict implying observing and marking RN’s performance. Unless directly stated in the exam instructions, examiners are not to offer prompts during the test. In some exam stations the instruction may need one to give their results to the examiner, I which should be done immediately.
An observer may appear in a station. This individual will be an audit examiner, whose role is establishing quality or benchmarking as an assessment strategy. The observer will not be explicitly mark the RN’s performance. The observer will not interfere in the exam at all.
What are the forms used in OSCE?
Examples of charts you may be required to be familiar with are as follows: NAI has included all these forms in the Moodle and in student hand book for your reference.
- National Medication Charts
- Rapid deterioration and response
- Adult observation chart (MR59A)
- Adult Observation Charts
- Long Stay
- GP e-version
- Paediatric Observation Chart
- Long Stay
- Neurological observation chart
- Blood glucose record chart
- Adult falls risk assessment chart
- Pressure care risk Assessment
- Mental health risk assessment chart
- Intravenous order chart
What is expected on the OSCE exam day in the Candidate Waiting Area?
In the waiting areas before the start of OSCE, all the candidate will be required to be collected from the candidate waiting room by one of the Invigilators and then escorted immediately to the examination room.
Therefore, the Invigilator escorting them, is required to put on a bright and colored tabard vest, to enable him or her to oversee your OSCE. The invigilator should ensure that all candidates get from one station to another. He or she should always be available to offer any assistance needed during the OSCE.
After the invigilator has picked all the candidates from the candidate waiting area, he or she is required to call your name in alphabetical order by starting with the surname. Through this order, one is expected or he or she is able to stay in, so as to process through the exam circuit. After that, the candidates will then be issued with clipboard together with a note paper attached. On the front of it, there will be a station number one will be in a position to start at
How is the OSCE exam conducted?
In the process of individuals being led onto the circuit, the invigilator will then start to call out the letters one by one, of each and every letters of each station as they pass. So, you are advised to remain at the station, as it is listed on the clipboard, because it will remain to be your starting station.
An announcement will be made to alert on the start of the exam. The candidates will hear a bell ring, and this will be the first a signal for them to start scanning the id on the black box which is next to the screen which will signal one to scan their ID card on the black box next to the screen. It’s here that one’s reading material will then be displayed or shown for the station.
After 2 minutes have elapse, then the reading time is finished and you will hear a second bell ring, which will notify you that you are about to enter the room and then procced with the station. There will be A short announcement which one has a minute of interaction time left for each station.
After the eight minutes interaction time have elapsed, there shall be a bell to be notify the candidates that time for the station has ended and it is now time to move to the next station. kindly make sure you do the same and ensure that all the notes written down during the station are left inside the room.
Upon exit, all the candidate is directed to progress directly to the next station, where an announcement will be made when one is supposed to scan onto the next screen for the next instructions to be set.
What happens if you are not able to finish your station during your OSCE exam?
If an individual is not able to finish the station within the allocated time given, he will not be able to be given an extra time He or she will have to stop what she or he is doing and move immediately to the next station.
In case the candidate is able to finish the station before the time allocated for completion, they will then be required to remain in the station room , and wait for the final announcement to be made for them to move. One will not be allowed to walk with anyone who might be in the room during this hour or time
What happens after the OSCE exam is finished?
After progressing through the ten stations and the exams are finished, you will now be asked to do the following:
- All the clipboards and Id cards should be left on the chair of the station you excited
- You should follow the invigilator as they lead you back to the candidate waiting room
- You should listen to the post examination candidate debrief for five minutes
- You should be in a position to be escorted from the exam center
- You should Follow your Invigilator as they escort you from the building.
In the process of you leaving the building, you can open your satchels and access your belongings As. Nevertheless, Kindly note that in this case, your confidence applies and no exam related information should be shared at all with any other person.
What is expected from a candidate during OSCE?
While at the stimulation Centre and during the OSCE all the candidates are advised to behave professionally. They are asked to adhere to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) professional standards, which defines the behaviors of nurses,
These standards include the Registered nurse standards for practice and Professional standards – Code of conduct for nurses and Code of ethics for nurses.
Most Candidates seems to be more familiar with these documents before attending the OSCE. To observe to this conduct and behavior in line with professional standards, it is likely to ensure both candidate and the patient’s safety during the OSCE.
Deviation in practice from the professional standards during the OSCE may force the examiner and/or chief examiner to discontinue what one is doing prior to completion of the OSCE. Any Conduct which is likely to result to the discontinuation of the OSCE includes but not limited to the following:
- Simulated patient feeling unsafe due to certain bad behaviour/actions, or
- The examiner deeming your behaviour to be not safe or non-professional.
In any case a candidate is asked to discontinue the OSCE due to his unprofessional conduct or behavior, he will then be stopped from recommencing the exam, and wait for the discussion with the OSCE chief examiners is done, which may and may result in him or her being removed from the exam.
Also, the simulated patient may on the other hand demand that one does not perform a certain task if they seem to feel unsafe. In any case it occurs, the station examiner will then give a specification if the candidate can be allowed go ahead and proceed with complete the station.
Moreover, the candidate is advised to adjust one’s practice so as to make sure that the simulated patient is no longer feeling insecure. If one does not adjust their practice, and the simulated patient continues to feel insecure or unsafe, you will be discontinued from the OSCE.
What happens if I am not feeling well during my OSCE examination?
If anyone is not feeling okay or in case she needs to go to the bathroom during the OSCE or is not able to continue the OSCE, he is always advised to remain at the door of station and make sure that his hand remain raised and he will be helped by an exam invigilator.
Also in case an individual is in a station room and is not able to attempt the station, he should immediately notify the examiner and he will be asked to remain calm until changeover time. He will wait until the announcement for the end of the station occurs, then he will exit the station, raise his hand and the exam invigilator will assist him.
What is the marking criteria for OSCE?
An evidence-based assessment criterion is used by the trained and qualified examiner in each OSCE station. This criteria, must always be mapped to the Registered nurse standards for practice and should be referenced against those listed in the recommended readings section.
The examiner is required to mark each candidate’s performance during and at the conclusion of the station.
How do I report an Incident, that prevented me from attending or complete my scheduled OSCE?
To report this incident , a Special consideration will be issued, whereby a candidate was not in a position to attend or complete their scheduled OSCE because of exceptional circumstances which are beyond their control. The candidates who will be given special consideration are those who will be to demonstrate that they have the reasons beyond their control. These circumstances include the following:
- Acute illness or injury (for example a serious illness.
- Loss or bereavement. for example, in case of a loss of a close member or your family.
- Hardship or trauma
- Unforeseen call-up for service for example military service or court appearance
- Work commitments and circumstances beyond their control (a letter on company/organization letterhead from an employer confirming this must be provided)
- Religious convictions (should include a letter from a pastor or any religious leader which must accompany the application
- Natural disaster, bomb threat or similar such event necessitating the evacuation of the exam centre
- All the Candidates will be asked to submit a special request for them to be considered in writing either before or within seven (7) calendar days following the scheduled OSCE. Also, a Relevant documentary evidence of the exceptional circumstances beyond their control, in this case, it must be included in the request made.
When will I get my results?
They will be released within the six weeks of the examination date taking place. They will also be able to receive an email communication which shall include a formal notification showing the result.
Please take note of the following: This communication will be sent to the email address given to AHPRA at the point of registering for the OSCE.
Can I get my results immediately?
For the results, you might not receive them immediately as expected , since they must be calculated and ratified by the RN OSCE Examination Committee before they are released to all the candidates.
What happens if I pass?
Kindly note that those Candidates who pass the RN OSCE exam will be given the opportunity to progress with their IQNM journey and may make an application to Aphra for registration with the NMBA. The candidate’s IQNM dashboard will update the individual to identify the next steps in relation to this process.
What happens if I fail?
In case you fail the RN-OSCE. You will be given a chance to retake the OSCE. But in any case, an individual will choose to retake the OSCE then, you will be asked to follow the steps as identified in the result communication. This will include paying and registering for another exam attempt.
What happens before the OSCE?
- A candidate is advised to familiarize himself or herself with the location of the OSCE
- He/she should familiarize themselves with the expectations for the day;
- He should make sure that he gets enough sleep the night before the OSCE;
- He should ensure that he reviews each section of this information module to grasp or have a better understanding of the requirements for the day, especially on what to bring and what to put on
- He or he should review the information provided about the format of the OSCE and how to conduct himself during the OSCE
What Resources should I review for my OSCE examination ?
- Should review the Registered nurse standards for practice
- Should review the Professional standards – Code of conduct for nurses and Code of ethics for nurses
- Should review the reference list and recommended readings
- Should review the list of examples of potential skills to be examined and utilise appropriate references to review skills as deemed necessary
What should I remember on the day of the OSCE Exam?
- Ensure that you follow the appropriate dress requirements
- Ensure that you come with an identification document with you;
- Ensure that you keep time
- Ensure that you allow enough time for travelling so thar in case there might be any unanticipated delays in traffic
- Ensure that you take your meals prior to arriving for your session
- Make sure you have notified the Ahpra Invigilator of any special considerations you may require during the OSCE (e.g. access to medications or food whilst in the OSCE area);
What should I remember before and during the OSCE examination?
- Keep in mind that you will be assessed against that expected of an entry level registered nurse;
- Make sure you utilize two minute reading time to go through the station instructions in the examination process be prepared to use of manikins, simulated patients and part-task trainers and ensure you treat them as you would real patients;
- Make sure that you are very keen to listen to the instructions provided .