Preparing For Your PALS Exam

Preparing For Your PALS Exam

Many people in the medical sector have a passion for working with children. You get to make
a meaningful impact in the lives of these children and bring a smile to their faces, even when
they are faced with the tragedies of disease. To ensure you are thoroughly prepared for
emergency cases in your job, you have decided to get a PALS certification. The Pediatric
Advanced Life Support certificate can be a great way to ensure you can step in when there
is a critical situation on hand, but you still need to pass the exam. Follow the tips we share in
this post to help you prepare and pass your exam.

Understanding The Passing Requirementsere

Cardiopulmonary arrest can happen in pediatric patients, and it is a life-threatening situation.
It is a relatively rare event in children, but due to the possibility, being prepared to respond to
these situations is critical. The Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification teaches
you how to respond in a diverse range of scenarios where a child’s life can be in danger.
Sudden cardiac arrest is estimated to affect more than 2,000 pediatric patients every year in
the United States alone, and is the cause of up to 5% of deaths recorded among these

This is why writing and passing the exam is so important – it ensures you have studied the
educational materials provided and understand what you need to do in different scenarios.

The first step to preparing for the exam is to ensure you know the passing requirements. The
specific procedure and design of the test depends on the provider. was
established by ER doctors, so the experts behind these courses understand that you are
already dealing with many of these things in your daily operations. Thus, the exams only
consist of 25 questions – to pass, however, you’ll need to get a score of 80% or higher. Of
course, this may not be the case with other providers, so always follow up to determine what
you need to pass the exam and get your PALS provider card.

Studying Case Scenarios In Pediatric Settings

Once you know what it takes to pass, it’s time to start preparing. You’ve gone through all of
the study materials by now, so it’s time to put your knowledge to the test. This is where case
scenarios can be a very helpful tool during your studies.

You can find a variety of free resources online to help you get familiar with different
scenarios that may require a medical staff member with a PALS certification. Alternatively,
get in touch with the course provider, as they may also have resources that you can use to
help you prepare by testing your knowledge in different virtual scenarios.

Memorizing Crucial PALS Algorithms

A particularly important part of the PALS exam is to ensure you know the various algorithms
that are used in cases where you need to use your skills on a pediatric patient. Note that the
American Heart Association makes changes and updates to the PALS algorithms on a
regular basis, so be sure to use data related to the latest information from the AHA.
Fortunately, the course materials that you get should contain the most updated data
surrounding these algorithms.

Latest reports explain that the 2020 American Heart Association guidelines focus on
providing details on PALS algorithms to be used in cases where the pediatric patient is
between one year of age and all the way up to puberty. In cases where the patient is
younger than one year, infant guidelines will apply.

Make sure you also understand the guidelines associated with the prevention of cardiac arrest, as well as assessment and resuscitation guidelines.

Complete Practice Exams

Apart from completing virtual scenarios, it’s also useful to get your hands on a couple of
practice exams. These are usually actual exams that people have completed in the past. It
gives you a closer look at how the PALS exam looks and what you should expect when you
complete it.

Practice exams can help you further test the knowledge you have accumulated as you are
following the PALS course. It’s a great way to know when you are truly ready to take on the
exam. If you complete one of these practice tests and find that you fall below the grade
needed to pass, it’s a sign that you need to go back to your studies. Focusing more on your
studies and ensuring you are able to pass multiple practice tests will ensure you get a better
outcome once you take the actual exam.

Set Aside Time To Take The Exam

Let’s face it – if you’re in the medical industry, you likely have little free time on your hands.
Apart from long hours at the hospital or clinical facility, you still have to come home and care
for your family too. This makes it difficult to always schedule time to study. When it comes to
taking the exam, distractions and constantly pausing the process can cause delays. Getting
back your focus after each distraction can also be difficult.

This is why we recommend you set aside enough time to take the exam. At, we understand how busy life can make things tough – which is why we
will not place any time limitations on the exam process. Instead, once you start the
examination, you can take your time to complete each of the questions. Patience is key to
ensuring you thoroughly understand each scenario you are presented and to pick the right

Setting aside time ensures you do not rush through everything. Ask your partner to watch
the kids for an hour or two, or perhaps drop them off at the grandparents. Tell your friends
that you are not free for this specific time. Turn off your phone and focus on the exam.
Planning things out ahead can help you feel more prepared when the time comes to take the
final test to get your PALS certification.


The process of performing life-saving techniques on patients in critical conditions is not the
same among adults and pediatrics. While there are similarities, you need a unique set of

skills to perform certain actions on children who experience cardiac arrest and other
complications that can result in mortality. The PALS certification gives you access to the
knowledge you need in these situations. Use our tips to ensure you are ready for the exam.


R.M. Vega, H. Kaur, et al. Cardiopulmonary Arrest in Children. StatPearls. Last Updated 1
February 2023.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

C. Brangan, K. Jean, et al. BLS, ACLS, and PALS. Lippincott. Published June 2021. https://


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