We’ve now launched the new Test of Competence 2021 for nursing associates on 31 January 2022.

This page has information on the leagcy test for nursing associates. This is only relevant for those applicants who have taken either the CBT or OSCE before 31 January 2022 .

About the test

The test is specific to nursing associates and measures candidates against our Standards of proficiency for nursing associates (2018).

It consists of two parts:

  • A multiple-choice computer based test known as the CBT.
  • A practical test known as the OSCE.

When can I take my CBT or OSCE?

You must wait until we tell you that you're eligible to take the Test of Competence before you book your CBT or OSCE.

You can sit your CBT or OSCE in any order, but you must successfully complete both parts to continue with your application for initial registration or readmission.


Our CBT provider is Pearson VUE. They have test centres in most countries around the world.

Changes to CBT booking dates

We’re making some changes to the CBT booking process ahead of the launch of the new test for nursing associates.

  • Bookings will close for the current CBT on Sunday 16 January 2022.
  • The last day for appointments to take the current CBT is Sunday 30 January 2022.
  • If you're eligible to take the current CBT after bookings close, contact the ToC team at ToC@nmc-uk.org who will be able to arrange this for you.

Nursing associate candidates who have taken either the Computer-Based Test (CBT) or Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) before 31 January 2022, will continue with the existing legacy ToC. They will have until August 2022 or when their CBT expires (if applicable), whichever date comes sooner, to take the second part of the test. Anyone starting the test of competence from 31 January 2022 will take the new ToC 2021.


Our nursing associate OSCE provider is the University of Northampton. Their OSCE test centre is in the UK.

The OSCE is made up of six stations. The time allocated for each station will vary and you will be advised of the length of each station on the day of your exam.

The candidate booklet and details for the nursing associate OSCE are available on the University of Northampton website.

Preparation materials