Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is ATI Pulse?

ATI Pulse was created to detect early indicators that a student’s NCLEX success might be at risk and provide ample opportunity for intervention well before they ever sit for the NCLEX. There are two predictions within the ATI Pulse report:

  • The Probability of Passing (PoP) – This is predicting the student’s likelihood of passing the ATI Comprehensive Predictor (CP). The CP is the ultimate prediction of NCLEX success.
  • Likelihood of Achieving Level 2 – Released in 2019, this prediction provides insight before a student takes a proctored assessment. We use a variety of inputs including practice assessment data and historical data to predict whether the student will achieve a Level 2 proficiency on the proctored assessment.

2. How can students increase their Probability of Passing score?

Students can increase their Probability of Passing through preparation and remediation for each Content Mastery Series (CMS) proctored assessment. Leading up to an assessment, check the Likelihood to Achieve Level 2 prediction in the Pulse report and use the Recommended Resources provided. After the assessment, use Focused Review to remediate the missed content.

3. What data is used to trigger a Pulse prediction?

The two Pulse predictions use similar, but not identical, inputs.

Probability of Passing prediction inputs:

  • CMS proctored assessment scores (first 3 attempts)
  • Historic CMS proctored assessment scores for the program

Likelihood of Achieving Level 2 prediction inputs:

  • CMS proctored assessments
  • CMS practice assessments
  • Historic proctored and practice assessments for the program

Historic assessment scores simply mean we use the scores from previous cohorts to inform the model. For example, if students from past cohorts have struggled with the Adult Medical Surgical assessment, we would factor that into the prediction for current students.

4. How often does the Pulse score calculate?

The Pulse algorithm provides updated predictions in near-real time after a new assessment has been completed.

5. An assessment was completed, why didn’t the Probability of Passing score update?

The algorithm will not trigger a prediction if the assessment score is below 30%, or if over 20% of questions were unanswered. This is to ensure that we are using reliable data to trigger a trustworthy prediction. Additionally, we only include the first 3 proctored attempts for each CMS content area in the PoP score.

6. Are retakes of proctored CMS assessments included in the Probability of Passing?

Yes, the first 3 attempts for a CMS proctored assessment will trigger an update to the Probability of Passing. Our data indicates that most students take each assessment 3 or less times, so we do not continue to update the Pulse prediction after the third attempt. Analysis supports that the first 3 attempts are a fair and accurate representation of a student’s performance.

7. How are tutorials recommended?

Recommended tutorials are a curated list of ATI tutorial and simulation modules. They are determined for a student using a data-science model to identify which modules have led to success for other students, prioritized by content that’s new to the student. Think of it like a friend who graduated nursing school that shares tips and tricks based on what helped them. The recommendations will recalculate each week based on the student’s activity. If the student has not interacted with any of the recommended tutorials, their recommendations will not change.

Note: Modules will not appear in the Recommended Tutorials section if they are not included in the institution purchase for the cohort, or if the modules are disabled in the product’s settings.

8. Why Pulse? Why not just use the Comprehensive Predictor score?

ATI Pulse was created in response to feedback that the Comprehensive Predictor (CP) is a great predictor of NCLEX success, but when students take the CP at the end of their nursing program, it’s too late to intervene if the student is at risk. Pulse allows educators to be ahead of the curve when preparing students to sit for the NCLEX.

9. Why should I discuss Pulse with students early in their program? They’re obviously not likely to pass the NCLEX yet.

The Probability of Passing score is not meant to say, “if you take NCLEX today, you will pass” – especially for students early in their nursing program. It is meant to indicate whether the student is on track for eventual NCLEX success. More specifically, if the student progresses on their current trajectory, they WILL be able to pass the NCLEX when the time comes.

We also recognize that key data points are not yet available at the beginning of a student’s nursing school journey. Therefore, we use imputation techniques to increase the reliability of our predictions in the absence of data. The central idea behind our imputation method is that a student who scores higher than average (on his or her available CMS assessments) would have likely scored higher than average even on his or her missing CMS assessments. We also use historical data from the program to understand how students typically perform on a certain assessment.

10. My students took a mid-term Comprehensive Predictor, why isn’t it included in my Pulse results?

The Comprehensive Predictor (CP) is the ultimate predictor of success on NCLEX. Pulse is not predicting NCLEX success directly. Rather, it is predicting the likelihood of success on the CP. Because of this relationship, the CP is not an input to the Pulse model. Once a student takes the CP, that score replaces the Pulse PoP score as the final predictor of NCLEX success.

Comprehensive Predictors will show as “N/A” if a Content Mastery Series proctored assessment is taken after the Comprehensive Predictor. However, Comprehensive Predictor results will still show on the transcript.

11. Why do students have predictions for assessments they haven’t taken yet?

There are two levels of prediction within the Pulse model. After each proctored assessment, we are predicting the student’s Probability of Passing (PoP) the ATI Comprehensive Predictor. We recognize that remediation is valuable early and often, so even before a student takes a proctored assessment, the Pulse model provides predictive insight. After each Practice assessment, we are predicting the probability that the student will achieve a Level 2 proficiency on the proctored assessment.

12. Are there different ATI Pulse models for students enrolled in a BSN vs. in an ADN or PN program?

Although the same methodology and analytical processes were used to create BSN, ADN and PN versions of the ATI Pulse model, separate predictive algorithms exist for students enrolled in each of these programs. The different predictive algorithms emphasize or deemphasize certain predictors of later NCLEX success as a function of how they perform analytically within these different student populations. Despite ATI Pulse’s program-specific weighting of predictors, comparable predictive accuracy is achieved for BSN, ADN and PN program types.

13. Can Diploma programs take advantage of Pulse?

Yes, however, there is not a separate Pulse model for Diploma programs due to insufficient data to create a reliable model. Data analysis shows that the assessment performance patterns of Diploma students are similar to ADN students. The ADN Pulse model is used for students in Diploma programs.

14. Does Pulse support a change in program type?

When a student switches from an PN to an RN program, their score will not follow them to their new program. The PN score will be deleted from the student profile and new PoP scores will be generated once the student takes proctored CMS assessments in their RN Program.

15. Does the ATI Pulse model include students’ GPA or course grades?

Although frequently found to be a predictor of later NCLEX performance, GPA and/or course grades are not part of ATI’s Pulse predictive model. The reason for not including these grade based metrics is two-fold. First, distribution of course grades (and therefore GPA) are likely to vary as a function of faculty grading difficulty. As a result, course grades highly predictive of NCLEX success at one institution may only be marginally predictive at another institution. The second reason for not including GPA or course grades is that ATI does not have broad access to students’ grades or overall GPA data. Combined, these analytical hurdles prevent GPA or course grades’ inclusion into the Pulse product.

16. What if my program does not use one or more of the assessments that are part of the ATI Pulse model?

The ATI Pulse model’s accuracy is negatively impacted by greater amounts of missing data; however, values for missing assessments can be estimated (i.e., imputed) and students are still provided with predicted probabilities of passing NCLEX. It is strongly recommended that ATI Pulse users strive to use all ATI products included within the predictive algorithm. Increased use of the designated ATI products will improve the predictive outcomes of ATI Pulse.

17. Does the ATI Pulse model require that proctored assessments be administered in a certain order?

Students and faculty can see the earliest ATI Pulse prediction data. ATI Pulse scores will appear when students are admitted to the nursing program and have entered their ATI CDN Product ID Codes on the ATI website. This prompts the ATI Pulse system to provide the earliest opportunity to create a student developmental/learning plan.

Ideally, all ATI Content Mastery Series proctored assessments should be administered prior to the ATI Comprehensive Predictor proctored assessment. This ensures that students and faculty have an opportunity to see all ATI Pulse predictions and that the prediction data is as accurate as possible. Administration of the ATI Comprehensive Predictor triggers ATI Pulse to stop providing predictions.

18. How is the cohort-level Probability of Passing (PoP) calculated?

The cohort PoP is calculated by taking the average of the student PoP scores.

19. May I get a copy of the ATI Pulse methodologies and formulae?

Thank you for your interest in our model and the exciting promise it offers! Unfortunately, the ATI Pulse model, its methodologies, and its underlying analytical techniques are proprietary and may not be distributed.

20. I am a faculty member. How do I view ATI Pulse for my classes?

In the Faculty Portal, you may access ATI Pulse data for your cohort by choosing “Explore” from the Pulse tile on your Customizable Home Page or from within Product Highlights.  You may also access ATI Pulse by choosing Analytics from the left navigation menu and clicking the ATI Pulse tile.

21. Can students see their ATI Pulse predictions?

Yes, your students can see their ATI Pulse predictions by inputting their cohort CDN Product ID code, which will trigger ATI Pulse to become active. Please note that a CDN code must be used for ATI Pulse to function properly. The utilization of individual Product ID codes that are not associated with the cohort CDN Product ID code could cause data gaps and errors in Pulse.

On the student portal, students can see a Pulse button on their home screen, or on their My Results page once they have taken their first eligible assessment. Their view is identical to the individual student Pulse report that faculty have access to.

22. My Pulse data looks incorrect, who can I contact?

Please contact ATI Client Care at 1-800-667-7531 or use the Live Chat option, found in the Support menu of the ATI portal. Explain your problem in as much detail as possible, and our team will research the issue. Pro tip: screenshots are always helpful.