LPN and RN Licensure by Examination

Information regarding the process to obtain a license by examination

The process to apply for licensure by examination is the same for LPNs and RNs.

Please review the below list of application requirements and additional information.

Complete the Application and Submit the Fee

    • Complete online application
    • Applications are valid for one year unless you are Unsuccessful on the NCLEX. If requirements are not met within one year, your application will expire and you will have to start the process over again.
    • If you are Unsuccessful on the NCLEX, your exam application will be voided and you will have to reapply. In addition, your provisional license is invalidated upon unsuccessful completion of NCLEX. In this event, the provisional licensee must immediately cease practicing in a licensed nursing position.
  • Pay application fee of $125 (All Fees are Non-Refundable)
  • You are encouraged to complete the online application; however, you may also request a paper application​. There is a $40 fee for the paper application in addition to the examination application fee of $125.
  • Special Accommodations - In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), KBN provides reasonable accommodations for candidates with disabilities that may interfere with their performance on the NCLEX to apply for special accommodations for the NCLEX. Please complete the ADA Accomodation Request Form and submit all required documentation to:
  • Kentucky Board of Nursing
  • Attn: Examination
  • 312 Whittington Pkwy Suite 300
  • ​Louisville, KY 40222

Pass the Jurisprudence Exam with a Score of 80% or Higher

Complete the state and federal criminal background check through IdentoGO®

Apply for and Pass the Pearson VUE NCLEX

  • Review the page regarding NCLEX, which contains information on the following topics:​​
    • How to register with Pearson VUE for the NCLEX exam, including the information you will need
    • The Authorization to Test (ATT) email
    • How to reschedule or cancel your NCLEX appointment
    • Accommodations for the NCLEX
    • What happens if you miss your appointment or forget to reschedule
  • For additional information regarding the NCLEX visit the NCSBN NCLEX Webpage
  • NCSBN does not recommend or endorse any review courses or study materials.​
  • Select this link for information on retaking the NCLEX

Verification of Completion of Program of Nursing

  • If you attend a Kentucky program of nursing the school will submit your name on a certified list.
  • If you attend an out of state program of nursing you will need to submit an official transcript to the KBN.
    • An official transcript is a transcript that is sent directly from the program of nursing, through a clearing house to the KBN, or a copy obtained by the applicant that is in the original, sealed, unopened envelope from the program of nursing.
    • Transcripts can be sent electronically via a clearinghouse such as Parchment or the program of nursing directly to KBN via the email address: kbn.credentials@ky.gov

Transcripts May Also be Mailed to

Kentucky Board of Nursing
ATTN: Examination
312 Whittington Pkwy., Suite 300
Louisville, Kentucky 40222

Reporting Criminal Convictions

If you have any criminal convictions, they will need to be reported on your application. The exception to this is traffic misdemeanors, other than DUIs. For information about what qualifies as a criminal conviction please review the ​ ​Mandatory Reporting of Criminal Convictions​.​ ​

Graduates of Kentucky programs of nursing have met the following requirements. All others must earn:

Review the information regarding provisional licenses.

If you are unsuccessful on the NCLEX, your exam application will be voided and you will have to reapply. In addition, your provisional license is invalidated upon unsuccessful completion of NCLEX. In this event, the provisional licensee must immediately cease practicing in a licensed nursing position.

Kentucky does not issue license cards. You will receive an email notification when the provisional license or license has been issued.



Applications and documents are reviewed within 14 days. However, if you respond "Yes" to the disciplinary or conviction questions it can take up to three months to process your application.