If you fail, the first thing to do is to figure out why.
People fail the NREMT for a lot of reasons. An off-day. A reading issue. Anxiety. Waiting too long to test. Many people fail because they’ve never taken a test that had questions like the NREMT’s. And there’s always the possibility that they just don’t know the information they need to be an EMT, AEMT or paramedic.
Let’s take a closer look at some of these issues and how to fix them.
The Problem: It’s hard to apply your knowledge to NREMT scenarios.
If you say, “The NREMT is b%#$!” this probably applies to you.
The exam requires you to use multiple knowledge points to build a working diagnosis of a sick patient. If you struggle to do this, you won’t pass. You might have done really well in class because you know your stuff. But class exams don’t always mirror the Registry very well, so you might not have gotten enough practice using your knowledge in NREMT-type scenarios.
Practice! Do the questions at the end of each chapter in your book. You can also get started with some free NREMT practice from our Ultimate Free NREMT Prep Guide. Just make sure the questions you’re using to practice are written like the NREMT. Simple review questions won’t teach you much.
Most importantly, examine every single question (even the ones you get right) to understand why the correct answers are correct. Don’t just answer and move on. If you don’t understand why a particular answer is correct, go back to your textbook and review the topic to get a better understanding. If it’s still not clear, reach out to your instructor or reach out to us. Make sure you clear up any confusion before you go back to the testing center.
Our PASS apps are designed to train your brain to think for the NREMT. There are hundreds of questions, and they are tough – but if you do well in the app, you’ll do well on the exam.
The Problem: You don’t have the clinical knowledge.
Yikes. You don’t have the basic clinical knowledge to succeed on the test. Maybe you’ve been out of class for a while, your class exams were too easy, or your instructor wasn’t very good.
You need to build up a foundation of knowledge quickly. Identify the topics you need help with (even if it’s all of them!) and give yourself time to learn or relearn. At the end of each chapter in your textbook, there should be a section that outlines objectives or core concepts from the chapter. Review these concepts, along with any related vocabulary and practice exercises.
Our Review apps build your knowledge while training you for the NREMT. Study cards and question banks are organized by topic, letting you focus on your weakest areas. You’ll learn the information and get practice with NREMT-style questions at the same time.
- have been out of class for a while
- don’t feel like you got anything out of your class
- already failed the NREMT
…then we highly recommend the Limmer Remediation program (available for EMT and AEMT). This course contains 24 hours of recorded lessons (36 hours for AEMT) and diagnostic exams, which you can use at your own pace. It will sufficiently prepare you to take the NREMT. The course uses different tactics to teach you no matter what your learning style is, and makes complex topics easy to understand.
The Problem: You have a disability that affects reading or learning.
Some people are present and focused in class and put in all the work, but still struggle with grades. If this is you, you might have reading, attention, or retention issues – whether diagnosed or not. This isn’t going to affect your ability to be a good provider, but it does make testing more of a challenge.
If you don’t already have resources available to you, talk to your instructor, a school counselor and/or a doctor to see what help is available.
You can request accommodations from the National Registry too. Head over to the NREMT’s ADA page to learn more. You’ll have to fill out and email a questionnaire to the Registry. On the questionnaire, you can request the specific accommodations you need.
The Problem: You have test anxiety.
Do you second-guess your answer choices or rush through questions? Test anxiety makes it more likely you’ll miss questions you actually know the answer to.
We will offer all the usual good advice, but please take it to heart:
- Get a good night’s sleep.
- Don’t cram.
- Don’t overload on caffeine before the test (or drink alcohol).
- Take deep breaths before and during the test.
- Take your time on each question – there’s no reason to rush.
You have to learn to trust your instincts. If you study well and succeed on challenging practice exams, it will help give you the mojo you need to pass.
Did you pass the NREMT after failing at least once? Have you overcome any of these issues and want to share how? Tell us about it in the comments!