Whether you’re currently studying to be an Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) or just thinking about it, you may hear a lot about taking the National Registry (NREMT) exam when you finish. Here is an introduction to the NREMT exam, how to study for it, and where to find the best EMR practice tests available today.
- Please note: if you’re serious about passing the NREMT exam, you can find online EMT and Paramedic practice tests that will try to help you pass the examination on your first attempt.
Where are Emergency Medical Responders utilized?
Emergency Medical Responders, also sometimes known as first responders, are a wonderful resource in many communities. They are trained to help as the first people on the scene of different types of emergencies, and while their training isn’t as involved as that for EMTs and paramedics, EMRs save lives and make a big difference in emergency outcomes.
This is especially true when response time from fire/rescue is slow, and quick action is the difference between life and death. Emergency Medical Responders can come in handy anywhere there is a higher risk of serious accident or medical problem, such as:
- swimming pools and beaches
- ski areas
- public sports venues
- outdoor clubs, like those for mountaineering and boating
- physical education programs and health clubs
- summer camps and after school programs
- community recreation centers
- country clubs
- day care centers
- search and rescue missions/disaster relief teams
- construction and industrial workplaces
- remote residential communities without local fire/rescue
- police and other law enforcement departments
Having an EMR license can make you a more valuable employee in any of these areas, and it may even be required to be a lifeguard or volunteer ski patrol officer. Emergency responder services and EMT jobs, in general, are expected to undergo a large growth spurt through the year 2022, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Why should you take the NREMT EMR exam?
More than one-half of the states in the US require National Registry certification by passing the NREMT EMR exam for licensure. Holding National Registry status, even if it’s not required by your state or your organization, shows you are dedicated to your position and trained to top standards. These standards are developed for all emergency prehospital personnel by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the American Heart Association (AHA).
If you plan to move out of state and continue practicing as an emergency medical responder, having National Registry certification can greatly facilitate that. Furthermore, you will know you have been held to high standards, so when you respond to emergency calls, you can be confident in your ability to handle the situation. If you’re thinking you might like to continue your training and become an EMT or paramedic, the NREMT exam is one indicator of whether you’re suited for this type of work.
Who offers the best EMR practice tests for the NREMT exam?
If you make the wise decision to use a more comprehensive exam preparation system for the NREMT test, there are lots of services available online but only a few truly high quality ones. One site that scores highly with emergency personnel of all levels, from first responder to paramedic, is EMT National Training. This is a subscription-based service you can access from your computer or from your mobile device, and it works on Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android systems. A one-month subscription for EMRs is $39.95, and a three-month subscription is $49.95.
EMT National Training gives you the option of working off their system, so there’s nothing to install or download, unless you want the study guide ebook for an additional $10. They will help you review all the material from your EMR course, and then you can custom make quizzes of 10 to 50 questions to test your knowledge. You can create a random quiz, or you can select only those areas that you feel need the most attention, which echo the five divisions of the exam topics mentioned above. The system will also keep track of which areas are your forte and which need a little extra study.
When you feel ready to take a complete test, EMT National Training offers simulated exams, so you can see how you do with the complete EMR curriculum. You will be timed, just like with the real exam, and you can track your test progress over multiple takes with EMT National Training’s system. Every test answer comes with an explanation, so you understand the material better. If you’re still struggling with a question, there are EMS professionals working in customer service ready to help you via phone or email. You can take as many quizzes and exams as you like during your subscription period, and you’ll either get new questions or ones you’ve answered incorrectly in the past each time.
EMT National Training’s bank of over 3,000 test questions were developed by working EMTs and EMS instructors, and they are designed to closely resemble the questions you’ll see on the NREMT exam. New questions are added each week, and as responder protocols change, the questions are updated to reflect those changes.
One reason EMT National Training has earned an A+ Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating is that they offer a pass guarantee for the NREMT exam. If you don’t pass the test on your first try, they will extend your subscription at no additional cost until you do pass.
You could leave your NREMT exam up to chance and hope your coursework alone was enough of a preparation. But with so much riding on your results, why not give the test the attention it deserves? You’ll have the National Registry certification on your resume, and you’ll know that whenever you’re the first responder on the scene of an emergency, those patients are getting the best care possible.
For more on NREMT Practice Exams Online, be sure to check out EMT National Training.
How does the NREMT exam for first responders work?
The NREMT exam for first responders is very similar to the National Registry tests taken by EMTs and paramedics. The exam consists of two parts: a psychomotor exam, also known as the practical exam, and a cognitive exam, which used to be a traditional pencil-and-paper multiple choice test. In 2007, the National Registry changed all the cognitive exams to an online computer adaptive test (CAT) format. While it is still multiple choice, the test functions a little differently than conventional tests you may have taken before.
With a computer adaptive test, each question is based on the answer you gave to the previous one. In the case of the NREMT exam, if you get a CPR question wrong, for example, the exam will give you another one to see if your wrong answer was a fluke or if you are not really knowledgeable about resuscitation. If you answer correctly, the computer will either give you another, more difficult resuscitation question or move on to another topic. The exam reflects the five basic areas of EMR coursework:
- cardiology and resuscitation
- respiratory emergencies (airway, respiration, and ventilation)
- trauma and shock
- medical emergencies (including OB/GYN)
- EMS operations
About 85 percent of the exam pertains to adult victims and about 15 percent to children. You will answer anywhere from 80 to 110 questions over the course of one hour and forty-five minutes. If the exam cuts you off near 80 questions, don’t worry—you probably answered most of them correctly and therefore the NREMT computer system has the 95 percent certainty it requires to pass you. If you are given all 110 questions on the exam, you may still pass, but it indicates the system needed more questions to determine if you are really capable of handling an emergency as a first responder.
The psychomotor portion of the exam consists of various hands-on stations. At each station, an exam administrator puts you through a scenario where you need to demonstrate the proper first responder skills. The checklist used by the test givers is available to you online from the National Registry website, so you can prepare in advance for each station.
What’s the best way to study for the NREMT exam?
Some emergency medical responders feel it’s enough to go through their course notes to prepare for the NREMT exam. This is probably true if you already have some medical and/or emergency responder training. However, many other candidates for certification add more to their preparation to ensure passing the first time. The NREMT exam tests your ability to handle life and death situations, so it is particularly rigorous. About a third of the people who take the test fail it the first time. Other test preparation methods include:
- forming study groups with classmates (ideal to role play for the practical exam)
- buying study guide books with summaries and practice tests
- downloading mobile device apps with course recaps and quizzes
- subscribing to an NREMT exam prep website for study guides, quizzes, and simulation exams
Emergency medical responders who have successfully passed the NREMT exam repeatedly state that study methods that most closely mimic the test conditions are best.
Think about it this way: you wouldn’t train to play a soccer match by reading and talking about it, would you? More likely, you’d set up practice sessions that make you feel like you’re in a real game. In EMS, as in sports, you play the way you train.
Bookmark Paramedic Training Spot for more information regarding studying for the NREMT exam!
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