Let me tell you, after all this time on allnurses (since March 2009, when I first decided to pursue nursing and started volunteering and then registered for my first prerequisite), I could not wait to post that I passed the NCLEX. It's like a proverbial finish line.
I took the NCLEX this morning, and I was nervous as manure! Well, long story short, I got to question #75 and literally hovered my mouse over the NEXT button for like 5 minutes after answering the question before finally clicking it and praying for the best. The famous blue screen appeared, and I believe I may have experienced heart block, lmao! Then came the exit survey and I was like O M G it's over!!
After leaving the testing site, I got to my car in the parking lot and the first thing I did was yank open the glove compartment where I had left my cell phone. Turning it on (off for the sake of saving battery while I was testing) was like an eternity! Finally got to the website and nervously logged in to do the famous trick. Got to the part where I enter graduation date and hesitated once again to press the NEXT button (lol!!), but finally pushed myself to press it and thus began the agonizing wait for the signal to come through (which was not really bad, but in the heat of that moment it felt like hours!).
Soon enough, there it was ...
The famous popup!! I broke down right then and there and cried! Like a marathoner just finishing his 26.2-mile race. I could not (and still cannot) believe this is OVER!! I took a screenshot of the popup on my phone for posterity here
Obviously won't have the official results for a few days, but doing this trick just takes a LOT of weight off my shoulders and considering the success of this trick, I feel like I can sleep tonight. I was so worried about this test because I just started a job last month and I am in the residency program, I did not want to jeopardize all that.
Oh by the way, for those of you that wish to know how I prepared
and how I was doing: I used NCLEX 4000 CD
and the yellow Saunders 5th edition
book for most of my studying. My practice tests very rarely scored 70% or higher, I think I only ever scored 73% at the highest. My most recent scores were in the 60-67% range. Also, about 5 weeks ago I signed up for NCSBN Learning Extension
and did most of the questions in the program. I started to read their outlines like a good student but it got to be overwhelming. I ended up just doing their questions. I was getting discouraged when I would score 50% on quizzes, never did I score the recommended 75% on the quizzes the first time around (of course, I would score 95-100% on the retakes, based mostly on remembering the right answers as opposed to what I felt was learning the material by reading rationales). In hindsight, I probably could have saved the $70 I spent for NCSBN but I will never know if it did indeed help. Those questions on NCBSN were pretty tough!
I did on average 75 questions a day, never more than 100. I am working full-time and just did not have the energy for anything more than that.
There are two other very good resources I used:
(1) The purple Saunders book called Strategies for Success
that provides some VERY good testing tips for NCLEX and for nursing school exams, I highly recommend it!
(2) The NCLEX outline on PDF
that is floating around on allnurses. Man, if I had not read this outline a few days ago, I know I would have never been able to answer at least 3 questions. The acronyms and the info in it is phenomenal!
Personally, did NOT use Kaplan, LaCharity, or any other resources out there other than what I bolded above.
Anyway, I hope my post was enough to inspire you to do well on this exam and help you gauge as to whether or not you are ready. I am still on a high from the PearsonVue Trick and just wanted to share my experience with those of you still waiting to test.
Keep practicing questions!! This will help you tremendously. Good luck!!