Why We Love CCRN Practice Questions (And You Should, Too!)

At Critical Care Academy, we LOVE CCRN practice questions, and we do everything we can to get you as many practice questions as possible to help you prepare for test day. From boosting your confidence to guiding you on what material you still need to learn, practice questions are hands down the best tool in your toolbox when it comes to studying for the CCRN exam. Here’s why you should take as many practice questions as possible in the lead-up to exam day.

Research Shows Practice Questions Are The Best Method For Preparing For A Test

CCRN practice questions

For several years now, educators and psychologists have become quite familiar with a theory known as the “testing effect.” This theory emerged from several research studies that aimed to see the best way students can memorize material. 

The research showed that students given practice questions on newly learned material could not only answer questions about the content correctly, but they had a better understanding of the material itself. Students gain this understanding when they not only answer the question and learn the right answer but when they take the time to comprehend why an answer is correct or incorrect.  

This revelation actually threw the study off because its immediate goal was to see how to improve memorization. However, what it found was that practice test questions increase a person’s understanding. 

For nurses looking to take the CCRN exam, it can feel like a race to memorize all that you can. However, you will be better served if you understand the “why” behind topics in critical care nursing, as opposed to just memorizing content. After all, knowing the “why” is how you will provide better care for your patients in real life.

Practice Questions Simulate Real Test Questions


Knowing what to expect on test day can take a considerable weight off your chest, and the best way to do that is through taking practice questions. 

The CCRN exam contains a variety of different styles of questions, so you must get a feel for figuring out what the question is really asking of you. Sure, having a solid understanding of the material is the bread and butter to successfully answering questions. However, the wording of questions can sometimes be unintentionally misleading if you do not fully comprehend what type of answer the question wants.

CCRN practice questions

CCRN Practice Questions Help You Grasp The Content Plan

The CCRN exam is broken down into several content areas that you will want to be especially familiar with throughout your study process. The AACN provides this content plan with weighted percentages so you know how much content you can expect to see in each area.

Here is a brief list of the content plan for the CCRN exam. For the complete list, please visit the AACN testing website for the CCRN Exam Handbook.

  • Clinical Judgement (80% of test questions)
    • Cardiovascular (17%)
    • Respiratory (15%)
    • Endocrine/Hematology/Gastrointestinal/Renal/Integumentary (20%)
    • Musculoskeletal/Neurological/Psychological (14%)
    • Multisystem (14%)
  • Professional Caring and Ethical Practice (20%)
    • Advocacy/Moral agency
    • Caring practices
    • Response to diversity
    • Facilitation of learning
    • Collaboration
    • Systems thinking
    • Clinical inquiry

In just briefly glancing at this list, you will know that you will want to focus the bulk of your study time on clinical judgment content. However, it is best to answer as many questions as possible in all content areas, so you have as much exposure as possible to different topics.

Taking Practice Questions Tells You What You Need To Focus On

CCRN practice questions

Practice questions are like a mirror: they reflect what concepts you have grasped and which areas still need work. At Critical Care Academy, we offer practice questions and quizzes throughout the course so that you may monitor your progress as you tackle each module. 

It is helpful to conclude the material you have been studying with a series of practice questions. However, it may be even more helpful to finish studying and come back to the questions at a later time to see how much information you have retained. Thus, one of the many benefits of the Critical Care Academy self-paced course is that you can revisit material whenever you want.

CCRN Practice Tests Help You Feel Confident on Test Day

Having access to a practice test is invaluable. The CCRN exam consists of 150 questions. Of these 150, 125 are scored, whereas the remaining 25 serve to gather statistical data on how the questions will perform on future tests. 

It can feel overwhelming with this many questions, especially when each question takes an incredible amount of focus and thought. That is why a practice test can help you gauge how you will feel as you move throughout the exam. You may find that you can save time on certain topics that you know really well, whereas you may need more time on more complicated and unfamiliar topics. 

The best way to take your practice exam is only to allow yourself the things you can have in the exam on test day: paper and pencil. Don’t rely on notes, avoid all distractions, and complete the test in one sitting. This exercise will be quite revealing on where you are currently at in the study process and where you need to continue focusing your energy. 

CCRN practice questions

It is best to take the practice exam at least a week or two before your actual test date, so you have ample time to brush up on topics that continue to challenge you.

How Can I Access CCRN Practice Questions

The best way to access numerous questions is to sign up for a CCRN review course. You can also purchase CCRN review books, but the explanations for answers in review books are not always as thorough as review courses. Furthermore, review books do not offer the opportunity to connect with experts who can further explain difficult material.  

If you are curious what sample CCRN test questions look like, test your critical care nursing knowledge with these 6 practice questions here.

When it comes to preparing for the CCRN exam, practice really does make perfect

Ready to gain access to hundreds of practice questions? Enroll in Critical Care Academy today.