I've been Med-Surg certified through ANCC since 2000. I studied by using old NCLEX-RN material and two books I bought: One was "Pathophysiology Made Incredibly Easy" published by Springhouse and "Medical-Surgical Nursing" 2nd Edition, a book of tests. The test book helped me to discover what areas I needed the most review on (Endocrinology, ABG interpretation, etc.) I also went back to my nursing textbooks for certain areas I wasn't so sure of.
This is embarrassing to say, but I thought the exam was scheduled a week later
than I thought it was. I was talking to a co-worker who was also taking the exam, and she asked when I was working that week. When I said "Friday" (3-11) she replied, "Whoa! You're brave! Working the night before the exam." Well, I was floored.
I ended up calling out "sick" for that shift since I needed to be up by 5 a.m. to travel to the test-site. In the few days I had before the exam, I crammed like I'd never crammed before. I didn't want to be humiliated if I failed the exam, PLUS, my hospital was paying for the exam ONLY if I passed.
Well, I did fine, and I ended up knowing more than I realized, but I'm not planning on being re-certified in 2005. I didn't keep up with all the CEU's required because I'm too cheap. If the spirit moves me, I may sit for the exam once again, or try for the AAMSN certification which I know nothing about and would appreciate knowing more.