PSB Registered Nursing School Aptitude Exam

The Psychological Services Bureau (PSB) has been providing entry level exams since 1955 to help health occupations recognize which candidates are most likely to complete the program and help prevent those less capable from experiencing a sense of failure. You will have about 105 minutes to answer about 360 items. This exam is divided into five subtests: Academic Aptitude, Spelling, Reading Comprehension, Natural Sciences and Vocational Adjustment Index.

In Academic aptitude, there are three sections. Verbal, math and non-verbal. This section is specifically designed to evaluate ability to learn. There are about 30 vocabulary based questions. You will determine analogy questions, synonyms and antonyms. Statistics shows that this type of test is greatly related to succeeding in college. Math has 30 eight grade level questions. An additional 30 questions are in the non-verbal section which ask you to determine relationships and differences by developing mental pictures.

The second subtype, spelling, consists of 50 questions that give you three versions of the word. You must choose the one that is spelled correctly.

The Reading Comprehension subtype has 40 questions based on passages, typically topics related to health or science. As the name implies, it measures your reading comprehension. You will be scored on your ability to understand, interpret, determine the author’s intent, and pull out ideas and purposes.

Ninety questions from basic high-school science topics, including chemistry, physics, earth science and biology make up the Natural Sciences subtype.

And finally, the Vocational Adjustment Index has 90 personality based questions which help determine what kind of working environment in which you would perform best. You only have two options for answers: Agree or Disagree. There are no right or wrong answers. Nurses, both students and professionals are held to a certain degree of behavior. Some personality traits and characteristics are not acceptable for this profession. PSB provides several resources for preparing for its exams at

Written by

Kelli Wilson RN, BSN

Kelli has over 16 years experience as an RN. During that time she has had hands on clinical as well as management experience.