The Frequently Asked Questions Section is divided into two topic areas: 1) Questions about the Study Guide and 2) Questions pertaining to accessing the Study Guide.

Section 1: Questions about the Study Guide

What is a Study Guide and how does it differ from other CRNE Preparation Resources?

There are many different types of CRNE preparation resources:

A Study Guide helps you to focus your studying. This is the first published CRNE Study Guide in Canada. It is to be used alongside Canadian Nursing textbooks for exam preparation.  It contains worksheets, study checklists, links to important regulatory documents, advice for repeat writers of the exam, and strategies for exam writing. It also identifies strategies for developing your knowledge and ways to increase your abilities to apply information and critically think. You have to do the work with a study guide, it will direct you to important content and provide you with concrete strategies for retaining information. It is an active learning tool meaning that it will not provide you with the answers and summaries of nursing content like a review guide will.

A Preparation Guide contains practice questions. You should have access to the following preparation guide published by the Canadian Nurses Association for the CRNE because it is the only preparation guide which contains previous CRNE questions:

Canadian Nurses Association (2010). The Canadian registered nurse exam prep guide (5th ed). Ottawa: Author.

There are other useful preparation guides on the market but keep in mind that they do not contain previous CRNE questions like the CNA (2010) preparation guide does.

A Review Guide contains a summary of some of the content covered in your nursing program. Sometimes these guides will also include some practice questions.  A popular Canadian Review Guide is:

Marshall-Henty, J., Sams, C., Bradshaw,J. (2009). Mosby’s comprehensive review for the Canadian RN exam. Toronto, ON: Mosby Elsevier.

While these types of review guides have a place in CRNE preparation they should not be used as your only tool.  The CRNE exam writing group lists the most frequently referenced nursing textbooks in The Canadian registered nurse exam prep guide (5th ed).   You need to access Canadian Nursing Textbooks during your exam preparation because the CNA uses these textbooks to write the exam questions.   Also review guides may encourage memorization rather than retention of information and they can only address a certain amount of content. You will need to find strategies to advance your understanding and application of nursing content for the exam. The current 2010-2015 CRNE blueprint tests primarily application and critical thinking questions, this means that you need to review your nursing content in detail so that you can apply multiple concepts within each exam question.  Remember if you are reading to memorize instead of studying to retain and apply information you will be challenged on this exam. Some candiates use a review guide alongside their nursing textbooks.

How will this guide actually help me study?

This study guide will give you direction and focus.  It has been designed within an educational framework that is supported by the CRNE competency areas.  By building on your knowledge of nursing content organized in the four competency areas outlined by the Canadian Nurses Association (2010): Professional Practice, Nurse-Client Partnership, Health and Wellness and Changes in Health you will learn to develop your knowledge, application and critical thinking skills in a different way than just learning to memorize content from your nursing program.  Many candidates do not access important national and provincial best practice guidelines or regulatory documents while they study. This is a common mistake made by candidates preparing for the CRNE because these documents are helpful in assisting you to understand why an answer is “correct” when you are using any of the CNA CRNE resources (such as the CNA CRNE 5th Edition Prep Guide or the LeaRN readiness test). .

I have left my studying to the last minute. Will this study guide help me?

It is never wise to leave your CRNE preparation to the last minute.  This study guide has been designed with a 12 week study plan in mind.  However, it is common that many candidates wait 1-2 months prior to the exam to prepare.  You need to think about the following questions when deciding if you have enough time to study for the CRNE:

  1. What were my study strategies in my nursing program? Am I able to find the time to study in a way that encourages retention of information and allows for time to complete practice questions? (This is not an exam that you can “cram” for).
  2. Did I struggle in any of my courses?  For example biology, pathophysiology, or adult health in particular?(these are common areas that repeat writers have difficulty with)
  3. What am I balancing with studying for this exam? Am I working or orientating to a new job?  Have I just finished my nursing program?
  4. Can I really finish the work set out in this study guide in time?  This study guide may not benefit you if you only complete parts of it.

If you are leaving your preparation a month or two prior to the exam you need to set aside a significant amount of time to prepare.  Think about your working hours, social commitments and the actual time you have during the day to study.

Each provincial/territorial regulatory body has different rules around when you can write the exam and if you are allowed to retain your graduate license if you are for some reason unsuccessful on the exam. It is important to be aware of these rules in the province/territory you are registered in.

My nursing program recommends other CRNE resources.  How can I tell which resource is the best one to use to prepare for the CRNE?

This study guide provides feedback regarding various CRNE preparation tools. There is not one set tool or resource that will fully prepare you for this exam.  You need to learn to combine various resources to better increase your chances for success. However, it is imperative that you have access to the CNA 5th Edition CRNE Prep Guide. This preparation guide will expose you to CRNE type questions. You can not guarentee this same framework with practice questions that are not published by the CNA.  This study guide helps to identify other relevant CRNE resources and provide strategies for their use.

Do I have to review all of the content listed in this study guide?

It is recommended that you review the content in the order presented within the study guide. Many candidates understudy important content for this exam thinking they are just “common sense” or “just from the first year of the nursing program”.  Many of the concepts that you learned during the first year of your nursing program play a large role in understanding how to address questions on the CRNE. I often receive feedback that the study guide is “too detailed”. To be direct, these are basic concepts covered in this guide. If it is too detailed for you it should serve as a warning that you may not be as familiar with important nursing content as you should be.


Why is it important to know the competency framework for the CRNE?

The CNA CRNE competency framework outlines the expected competencies for the exam. There are 148 competencies in total and in essence they provide a structure as to what is going to be addressed on the exam.  Nurse educators are often familiar with interpreting competency frameworks, this framework in particular identifies many pertinent areas of nursing that were addressed in your Canadian nursing program.  Working with repeat writers of the CRNE I have found that it is helpful to study in the order of the competencies.  This helps the candidate to develop critical thinking skills and to be able to apply a number of concepts to individual questions on the exam.

What if I don’t study in the order outlined in this review guide?

It is recommended to study in the order of the competencies listed in the study guide because this will help to develop your application and critical thinking skills for the exam.

Why are the answers not provided to the worksheets?

Real learning does not occur through memorization, it occurs through active engagement with content.  The worksheets are designed to help direct your studying towards particular content.  They are best utilized when you answer the review questions and download the linked documents.  It is up to you to make study notes within each of the worksheet areas in order to understand the key content addressed.  The goal in completing these worksheets is to increase your exposure to important concepts that are frequently understudied but central to the exam competency framework.

Can I print the guide?

No the guide cannot be printed only viewed online please take this into consideration prior to purchase.

What do I do if the links are broken in the study guide?

Links will break occasionally. If any of the links are broken in the study guide contact the system administrator via the email on this site. There will be a tab on the website for updated links. Also, as I come across new links or documents I will post them on the central webpage.

What are the copyright laws surrounding this study guide?

This study guide has been copyrighted and has an ISBN number, any replication, downloading or photocopying of this guide for distribution purposes will be followed by legal action.

Does this study guide guarantee that I will pass the CRNE?

No resource can truly guarantee that a candidate will pass the CRNE. This study guide has been designed as a tool for preparation.  It has been carefully constructed according to the CNA CRNE Competency framework.  It is meant to guide you in your studying and increase your level of knowledge.  However, how you retain this knowledge and apply it to the exam is contingent upon many outside factors that cannot be addressed by a single study guide.

I am an Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) is this study guide appropriate for my needs?

This study guide has been designed with Canadian Nursing program graduates in mind; however it can be used as a tool for IEN preparation for the CRNE.  It is important to keep in mind that this study guide does not often explain common Canadian contexts in detail and may not address the full learning needs of the IEN who has not previously worked within a Canadian context.  This study guide can be used to direct IENs to valuable resources and help to organize initial study strategies.  It is recommended however that IENs gain additional supports in preparing for the CRNE.  These supports may be available through Bridging programs or other IEN support groups/programs. Two excellent resources for IENs in Canada are:

In Alberta:
Directions for Immigrants
Suite 260, 700 – 4 Ave SW (McFarlane Tower)
Calgary, Alberta
T2P 3J4
Phone: 403-297-2555Toll Free: 1-877-297-2553
Fax: 403-297-3424
Email: directions@bowvalleycollege.ca

In Ontario:

Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses (CARE)
Email:  http://www.care4nurses.org

Section 2: Accessing the Study Guide

How do I access the study guide after I purchase it?

You will need to return to this website (crnestudyguide.com) to access the study guide. Your login information and password will be sent to you after your purchase has cleared through PayPal. Log in through the homepage and then click on the tool bar “The CRNE Study Guide” to access the document.

What do I do if I don’t recieve my password via email?

1. First ensure that your PayPal transaction cleared and that the email provided on your account is current. This is the email the password/login information comes to.

2. Make sure that your email provider (i.e. gmail or hotmail) did not filter our email with the password into your junk mail folder. Also make sure that your account is not full, if the email bounces back we will not know to send you another one.

3. Finally if you still haven’t received the email. Notify us right away (please don’t wait a long period of time) so we can re-send this information to you.

You mention on the homepage that the study guide can only be viewed on a PC or MAC for now. When will it be ready to view on an ipad or mobile device?

We are currently working to format the study guide for ipad/tablet use. When it is ready we will notify our users that they will now be able to view the document on both their PC/MAC as well as their ipad/tablet. The document will just transition over when it is ready to both formats and there will be no cost associated with this.