Board Vitals NCLEX Study Materials

Reviewed by:
On January 2, 2017
Last modified:December 22, 2018


Comparison of the best NCLEX review courses

Best NCLEX Review Book

Ranking Book Title
1 Saunders Comprehensive Review for NCLEX-RN
2 Kaplan NCLEX-RN Premier
3 Mosby Prioritization, Delegation, and Assignment
4 Lippincott Q&A Review for NCLEX-RN
5 Saunders Q&A Review for the NCLEX-RN
6 Pearson NCLEX-RN Exam Cram
7 NCLEX-RN Review: Keeping it Real! Simplified
8 Kaplan NCLEX-RN Content Review Guide
9 Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses
10 Mosby’s Pharmacology Memory NoteCards

Choosing the best NCLEX review course is the single most important decision you will make on your journey towards becoming a nurse.

You will be spending many hours studying, so it’s crucial to find the study guide that best fits your learning style and background.

So here’s the good news – we have researched and reviewed every major NCLEX prep course on the market so you don’t have to!  The comparison chart below will help you determine which course best fits your needs.

Best NCLEX Prep Courses of 2018

  1. Board Vitals NCLEX Study Materials
  2. ATI NCLEX Study Materials
  3. D&D NCLEX Study Materials

NCLEX Prep Course Comparisons & Discounts

NCLEX Review
 BoardVitals NCLEX







COMPANY BoardVitals ATI NCLEX Review D&D NCLEX Review
PRICE RN: $75-$275 RN: $289
PN: $289
RN: $299-$499
PN: $329-$399
RN: $79-$129
PN: $79-$129
RN: $399-$474
PN: $299-$449
DISCOUNTS Save 20% Save $57.80
Save $100
Save 10%
RN: 3,000+ RN: 4,500+
PN: 2,500+
RN: 3,000+
PN: 1,000+
RN: 3,100+
PN: 900+
500 3,500+
Email Support Online Forum, In-Class Email Support Email Support Coach Review
& Mentoring
Email Support
& Coach Review
1, 3, 6 Months 1 Year  3 Months 1, 3, 6 Months N/A 1-3+ Months
Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review

Brilliant Nurse NCLEX (Rank: #1)


Mobile Platform: To accommodate on-the-go students, this course now offers an unparalleled mobile platform to help with studying. This feature is full of amazing content that was previously available only on desktops and laptops. In the modern world, having a great mobile exam prep tool is a must, and Brilliant Nurse has outdone itself.
Extensive Lesson Library: This course has it all when it comes to review materials. With literally thousands of pinpoint practice questions and rationales, you’re not going to run out of study material. Simply try to find time to build your knowledge bank and this prep tool will deliver.
Adaptive Learning Tool: The Brilliant Nurse platform has a computer adaptive test engine – this tool helps to focus your studying on areas of weakness while simultaneously reinforcing your strengths. Don’t just throw studying hours at the wall and see what sticks! Use this great tool to make each minute of studying time as productive as possible.
Pass Guarantee: A recent addition to the Brilliant Nurse review course is a pass guarantee. This is a simply priced course that’s about as straightforward as it gets. And, if you’re unhappy with your exam prep and fail the test, you will get a free subscription and learning support until you pass!
Free Crash Course: Brilliant Nurse has a great free crash course with daily tips, topics, and strategies to help you pass the NCLEX.


GraduateX NCLEX (Rank: #2)


Value: The course is fairly priced and GraduateX provides students with a 30 day money back guarantee. This means that you’re not going to be paying a ton for the prep tool, and, if you don’t like the course, you can easily get your money back!
Year-Long Access: While other courses may have limited periods or require monthly payments, GraduateX gives you access to its course for a full year. This should allow enough time for any nursing candidates to pass the test. Also, thanks to the mobile application, you can take your studying on the road!
Community: Sometimes learning is done best when it occurs in a group setting. GraduateX allows this to happen without requiring an in-person attendance from nursing candidates. Also, with all of the questions pouring in from other students, it’s easy to connect the dots and see what you’re missing.
Simplicity: There’s nothing special about what’s available in this course. It’s based on the idea of communal learning, so there’s not a ton of support options. Also, don’t expect a busy dashboard with a ton of options, as it’s a simple setup without too many bells and whistles.

Kaplan NCLEX (Rank: #3)


Large Question Bank: Kaplan offers question banks with over 3,000 practice NCLEX-RN questions and over 1,000 NCLEX-PN questions for each course. The more practice questions you complete, the more prepared you will be for the actual exam. If you don’t want to buy a full course, you can opt for month-to-month access to the question bank or purchase the NCLEX-RN® Content Review Guide ebook separately.
Diagnostic Exams, Quizzes, and Practice Exams: There are many opportunities for students to test themselves on their knowledge. Kaplan’s Question Trainer, a bank of online practice tests, diagnostic tests, and readiness tests provide students with practice and targeted feedback on their ability and performance.
Mobile Friendly: Ready access to some of the NCLEX-RN questions from your iPhone or iPad is a great perk for busy nursing students. The mobile NCLEX-RN Mini Qbank includes 180 test-like questions, allows you to create practice exams, and includes detailed explanations for the correct answers.
Pass Guarantee: Kaplan offers a money back guarantee for both the NCLEX-RN and NCLEX-PN Review Courses. Qualified candidates will receive a 100% tuition refund or a free 3-month continuation of their prep course enrollment as long as they meet all eligibility criteria.

Board Vitals NCLEX (Rank: #4)

BoardVitals NCLEX


Customizable Practice Tests: Students can create their own customized practice tests by choosing the number, difficulty level, and the type of questions in various categories. This allows you to test yourself on exactly those questions you need to practice before you head into the NCLEX exam.
Extensive, Updated Question Bank: More than 3,100 RN questions and 900+ PN questions from medical publishers and NCLEX question writers simulate the 4 major areas covered on the NCLEX. Questions follow the format of the actual exam, including multiple choice questions and open-ended questions. The NCLEX RN question bank tends to have more difficult questions than the actual exam, so you will be ready!
Adaptive Learning Technology: Get individualized question recommendations based on your answers to practice questions. Board Vitals’ software identifies which areas need additional attention to help you focus your study. After taking a practice exam, you can also review the exam statistics to see how you are performing.
Free Trial and Pass Guarantee: Sign up for a free trial to get access to a selection of Board Vitals’ 3,100+ questions in the full RN course (or 900+ questions in their PN course). There are also several free practice questions on their Blog. Several prep options (the 3-month and 6-month courses) also come with a Pass Guarantee.


Virtual-ATI NCLEX (Rank: #5)


Personal Mentors: Virtual-ATI Review offers one-on-one coaching to all students. You’ll be assigned a personal mentor, who will interact with you on an individual basis, offer tips, study plans, and individual assessment and recommendations. Each coach is a Nurse Educator with a masters degree and at least 5 years of teaching experience.
2 Mobile Apps: Virtual-ATI offers two mobile apps that can be purchased separately. The MobileMentor RN-NCLEX app and the Active Stack Pharmacology Flash Cards app are compatible with iOS and Android devices. Study for the NCLEX on the go whenever you have a few minutes to spare.
Range of Study Materials: Virtual-ATI’s wide range of study materials, including an online bookshelf, audio Powerpoint lessons, 500+ practice questions with rationales for correct and incorrect answers, mobile apps, and over 250 online learning activities and printable resources will meet almost every type of learner’s needs, providing something for everyone.
Audio Lectures: There are no video lectures included in Virtual-ATI’s courses. Instead, ATI uses mostly audio Powerpoint lessons and lectures, making them seem somewhat outdated compared to the competition. This may also not be the most effective way for some students to learn.


D&D Nursing Educators NCLEX (Rank: #6)


Concise Course: Instead of a time-consuming course that covers everything that could possibly be related to nursing, D&D offers a more concise program that focuses on the critical information you need to know for the NCLEX exam. By taking out unnecessary information that is not tested frequently, DD helps you learn and memorize the material in a short amount of time and helps you study more effectively.
Individualized Support: D&D offers an instructor-driven study program with individual assessment and study plans based on your current strengths and weaknesses. Create a study plan based on what you need additional help with and turn your weaknesses into strengths. Personal coaching is available for a small fee for those students who want a custom study plan.
Comprehensive Online Study Program: D&D offers everything you need to pass the NCLEX-RN or PN exams right from your computer or tablet. With more than 160 video clips, 3,500 practice questions, a simplified course book, and email support, you’ll get a comprehensive learning and review course. Learn strategies to analyze and break down test questions to improve your critical thinking from wherever you are and at your own pace.
Extra Cost for Certain Features: If you prefer to study from a physical course book or with the help of a personal coach, you will have to pay an additional fee for those options. Although D&D’s prices for the entry level options are low, the fees will add up based on the additional features you choose. Students on a budget should add up the various features to see if the total cost of the course remains in their price range.


Hurst NCLEX Review(Rank: #6)


Straight-forward, Easy-to-Understand Course: Hurst takes a straightforward approach that breaks down what you need to know to pass the NCLEX. The courses introduce information in a logical, easy-to-remember pattern and focuses on the information that is most likely to be tested. Many students report success with Hurst by passing the NCLEX on their first try or after they have failed once before with another study program.
Several Practice Exams: Hurst’s courses include a number of practice exams to help prepare students for the actual NCLEX exams. These practice tests allow students to answer realistic NCLEX questions in a simulated test experience once they have covered the core content and testing strategies in the review. Hurst NCLEX-RN and NCLEX-PN students have access to 6 and 3 practice exams, respectively. All practice exams contain 125 questions and are timed at 188 minutes.
Helpful Strategies to Pass the Exam: Hurst teaches students various test strategies to prepare them to pass the NCLEX on the first try. The program is designed to teach core strategies that can be used to pass each part of the exam, and is accompanied by a set of questions to help students practice and refine their skills. This teaches students how to pass the exam instead of simply telling them what to study.
No Mobile App: Although Hurst offers both live in-person courses and self-paced on-demand review options, there is no mobile app to make studying more convenient for busy nursing students. If students want an app to help them prepare for the NCLEX, they will have to choose an app from another test prep company or developer.


Best NCLEX Review Courses

NCLEX Review Course Practice Questions Price
RN: 3,000+ RN: $75/month
GraduateX RN: 4,500+
PN: 2,500+
RN: $289
PN: $289
Kaplan NCLEX RN: 3,000+
PN: 1,000+
RN: $418-$499
PN: $249-$399
BoardVitals RN: 3,100+
PN: 900+
RN: $79-$129
PN: $79-$129
ATI NCLEX Review  500 RN: $399-$474
PN: $299-$449
D&D NCLEX Review 3,500+ $150
Hurst NCLEX Review RN: 750
PN: 375
RN: $300
PN: $250
NCLEX Review Courses
Written by: Bryce Welker
5 / 5 stars

Looking for the best test prep material for other clinical exams? Check out Crush The Boards for more reviews.

13 replies
  1. Jamie
    Jamie says:

    Thanks for the great review. Brilliant Nurse looks like a good course even though it seems like they are a new company. Any feedback on them?

    • Josh
      Josh says:


      Brilliant Nurse is a great option. Yes, they are a new company but we have had great feedback from people who used their material. They have financing options, a nice discount, and are ahead of the game on technological features. If you can handle new technological features we recommend them.

      -Team Crush The NCLEX

  2. Henry
    Henry says:

    I’m thinking about sticking with Kaplan although I don’t know much about Graduate X or Brilliant Nurse. Any suggestions?

    • Josh
      Josh says:

      Graduate X and Brilliant Nurse are both newer courses but they offer a lot of awesome features. We have had positive feedback from both. I would recommend doing a 30 day Graduate X trial to see if you like the course then if it isn’t for you there is always Kaplan. As most people know Kaplan has been a solid leader in test prep materials so you know what you are getting with them. Good luck!

      -Team Crush the NCLEX

  3. Krystal
    Krystal says:

    I used ATI throughout nursing school and it was very helpful. But I must say that I took the Hurst Review and jist recently took the NCLEX and passes on the first try; it was highly recommended and worth the time and money.

  4. Patty
    Patty says:

    What about Uworld? Need help for a 3 time failure rate on nuclex and a school with only a 43% pass rate. Afraid to try again/! All help appreciated thanks

    • Amy
      Amy says:

      UWorld is another reputable choice of prep course. Since they provide only practice questions, the course must build upon your previous schooling. And UWorld does not have as many practice questions as Brilliant Nurse or GraduateX. Also, practicing throughout your entire study process is really the best way to pass the NCLEX. It will allow you to see which topics need more study time as well as allowing you to know when your confidently understand certain concepts. Best of luck!

      -Team Crush The NCLEX

  5. Angela
    Angela says:

    Does it mean you would not recommend Uworld? I used Kaplan, never got any percentage higher than 65%. Took the NCLEX on November 2016, failed. I’m now using Nclex mastery, nurse proficiency and Saunder’s review. Lately, I read a good review about Rachel Allen review and consider doing the boot camp. Now I’m confused which one to concentrate on using.

    • Amy
      Amy says:

      I would recommend Brilliant Nurse or Graduate X over Uworld because they come with practice questions and other study aids. Rachel Allen’s boot camp is another option for those that want a intensive study plan. I usually don’t suggest signing up for a boot camp unless you have failed the NCLEX more than twice, but if you feel that you would succeed in a boot camp setting, then go for it! Best of luck!

      – Team Crush the NCLEX

      • Cory Care
        Cory Care says:

        I checked Rachel Allen’s boot camp….way too expensive, although I fall to all categories that should attend a boot camp.
        Any hope for me in sticking to the affordable ones?

        • Amy
          Amy says:

          Boot camps can be a bigger commitment than many can make, so you can always check out the more affordable courses such as Board Vitals or D & D. Also, my top ranked course, Brilliant Nurse, has a monthly payment plan. Hopefully those are more in your price range. Good luck!

          – Team Crush the NCLEX


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