Nursing school exams vs. NCLEX

  1. I'm in the home stretch in my nursing program with only six weeks left to graduation. We've been told that we will have to complete an evaluation for the whole nursing program before we graduate. I want to put something down about how the questions for our nursing course exams don't even come close to matching the style and degree of difficulty of the NCLEX practice questions I am using nor do they resemble most of the HESI test questions I have taken. Frankly, I don't think they are preparing me for the NCLEX at all. Cannot nursing instructors sit for the NCLEX occasionally and see what the exam looks like so they will be able to write better questions? Or is it just up to the poor nursing student to suck it up and figure it out on their own? I'm getting ready to shift gears and get into the panic mode for preparing for the NCLEX and need some feedback. I just feel that because of these type exams I am not prepared for the "big" exam after graduation.
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   Janus Rising
    Quote from CAM281
    I'm in the home stretch in my nursing program with only six weeks left to graduation. We've been told that we will have to complete an evaluation for the whole nursing program before we graduate. I want to put something down about how the questions for our nursing course exams don't even come close to matching the style and degree of difficulty of the NCLEX practice questions I am using nor do they resemble most of the HESI test questions I have taken. Frankly, I don't think they are preparing me for the NCLEX at all. Cannot nursing instructors sit for the NCLEX occasionally and see what the exam looks like so they will be able to write better questions? Or is it just up to the poor nursing student to suck it up and figure it out on their own? I'm getting ready to shift gears and get into the panic mode for preparing for the NCLEX and need some feedback. I just feel that because of these type exams I am not prepared for the "big" exam after graduation.
    Our school uses questions taken out of various NCLEX review books... since we have a 99% pass rate on the NCLEX I guess it works! I'm sorry that your school isn't preparing you the right way. I know you probably have a TON on your plate, but you may have to just get some books and look at those... but one thing our instructors tell us is that as long as you are comfortable with the concepts of Nursing, the question format shouldn't matter.
  4. by   heygirl
    I have to take the HESI for my final in Psyc and in Fundamentals, what is the test like and how did you study for it.
  5. by   medchick
    One thing to remember is that NS is testing you more on content (comprehension) than on application like the NCLEX does. I just graduated in December and wondered about that as well. We took ATI's at the end of each semester and a comprehensive predictor at the end. None of the questions looked like NCLEX. The only time we had anything remote to NCLEX style questions was we had an instructor that had been choosen in the past to write actual questions for the test. I suggest that you get review books and understand the concepts behind the material for the NCLEX. Good luck to you.
  6. by   Scrubz
    The questions on our test don't really look like NCLEX questions. More or less they test us over the stuff we learn in class, but don't put it into NCLEX style. Then they make us take the ATI, and on average the class doesn't do too hot. So what I'm doing is buying a good NCLEX review book to study for the NCLEX on my own. Hopefully it'll help me out in school too, but when I graduate I don't want to be worrying about the NCLEX any more than I have to!!
  7. by   heygirl
    I went to Barns & Nobles today to find a good NCLEX review book, I acutally answered most of those questions correctly, but my test questions are of course different, so In fundamentals I've gotten an 74 on the first test and a 82 on the second. So my next test has to be pretty high if I want a cushion for the final.
  8. by   BoonersmomRN
    My school is the opposite..they actually say that their tests are "harder" than the NCLEX...and from what I have seen in the NCLEX study guides I own ( Saunders, Kaplan)..they are right...but we shall see when I actually take the NCLEX this December. Ex-grads have said the same thing so I guess there is truth to it. It drives me crazy b/c it's like they pride themselves in asking ridicuously hard questions.

    I can imagine the opposite being a royal pain as well. I'd definetely get a good NCLEX guide if I was you...and perhaps sign up for a NCLEX review.
  9. by   Medwynn
    Our tests are nclex style application questions with some comprehension. As our NS program comes to a close, the questions get harder as they mimic NCLEX style questions.

    Our instructors seem to be gearing us for the boards. which is good but kinda bad.
  10. by   dansamy
    The school I attended tested us using NCLEX-style questioning. Although the goal was to see if we had learned/retained the material, the questions were also application-type rather than simple knowledge regurgitation. I didn't leave the NCLEX thinking "Wow! That was the hardest test I've ever taken."
  11. by   SteveNNP
    The school I went to started using NCLEX-style ??s when we got to our senior year. That was the first year the new NCLEX questions came out, so our teachers drilled us over and over again using fill-in-the-blank questions, "hotspot", multiple-multiple choice, etc.... It REALLY helped on the actual NCLEX, as I got asked several of the new format questions. We had to attend a NCLEX review class 2x a week if we scored less than a certain number on our achievement test at the beginning of the semester. We used Saunders and learned a lot over 2 semesters of doing that. We also had a Kaplan instructor come for 4 days at the end of the last semester and teach us an intensive review course. It cost extra, but was AWESOME (and my hiring hospital reimbursed me for that, and my nclex fee anyway) We have had a 100% NCLEX pass rate for several years now. Good Luck!


    Stephen
  12. by   Sheri257
    I agree because I don't feel my nursing program tests prepared me much for the actual NCLEX. Of course, the content was important but I don't feel I was taught HOW to take the licensing exam while I was in school. The NCLEX is a whole different ball game, so to speak.

    My nursing school test questions were very similar to NCLEX guides like Saunders, etc. and while those guides helped me a lot with nursing school, I don't feel those guides helped much with the actual NCLEX exam.

    The first thing Kaplan tells you is to forget about every test you took in nursing school and, IMO, they were right. Of all the NCLEX guides I looked at Kaplan was the only one that closely resembled the actual NCLEX.

    I personally told the director of my nursing program that all of the teachers needed to take the Kaplan course and make the test questions more like Kaplan.

    :typing
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Mar 10, '07

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