The NAPLEX - What Is It Exactly?
The North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination is the Naplex - in a nutshell.
Okay - let's try that in English, shall we??
The Naplex exam is an examination created by the NABP (National Association of Boards of Pharmacy) that tests just how good someone looking to get into a pharmacy career knows their stuff. It is a content driven exam, devised and run to test your ability and knowledge of Pharmacist issues as well as general pharmacy related medical issues.
Each Naplex is made up of 185 questions - 150 of which are questions that have been previously used and rated as admissible within the exam and 35 which are being trailed to test their effectiveness and suitability within the whole Naplex exam arena. (Yup - you get to guinea pig some of the future questions for candidates yet to come! That's both a touch cool as well as a touch weird!)
What this means is that although you'll be answering 185 questions, only 150 of those actually count towards your final naplex score - the others are just monitored from a statistical point of view only.
Each question is a multiple choice with 5 options and just 1 correct answer. Some of the questions presented will be done as part of a scenario or set situation - others will be simple questions requiring a straight answer unrelated to any external influence.
For example, a question may well set the scene of a patient who has a condition and requires treatment by drug. However, the description of the scenario may have shown that the patient has an allergy or intolerance to the more common drugs and you'd need to pick this up and choose an alternative from the list of 5 options.
Attention to detail therefore, is a must when sitting the exam.
Some of the questions may well have more than one correct answer at which point you'll need to assess and choose the answer that, in your opinion, would be the best answer for this specific scenario.
That makes the Naplex an adaptive exam - as it actually chooses the questions based on your progress through.
Importantly though, you will find that no question is linked in terms of answering. In other words - many are worried that if they get one question wrong then they'll subsequently get the next five questions wrong as well - it won't happen, don't worry!
Now - the test being adaptive and multiple choice - there are quite a few things you can do on top of learning your Pharmacy basics that will help you sail through the Naplex exam.
Have a look through the other articles and links on the site and you should find something to cover every aspect of taking and passing your own Naplex exam!