we had to do this as part of the entrance for my bsn program. we had both a written and a practical test. passing these two was crucial because the school awarded us a certain amount of credit hours that went on our transcripts. this was how they gave us credit for the previous nursing schoolwork--they didn't accept any nursing school class work in transfer!
as i recall, our test was written by the university nursing faculty and was very practical oriented. if you've been a practicing nurse i'm betting that you will be able to pass the exam without a problem unless you are a really bad nursing practitioner! you don't forget basics because you use them every day.
if you are worried, get a copy of a nclex review book. not one that has the nclex type questions, so much, in it. but, one that also has the content. these run about $40 and are much cheaper than buying a regular textbook. they also list things concisely. i have a copy of saunders comprehensive review for the nclex-rn examination
, 3rd edition, by linda anne silvestri (isbn 1-4160-3199-5). it is 1240 pages long. each section is presented in an outline form with listings of the major ideas and concepts that go with it. there are a few nclex type questions at the end of each section but it comes with a cd that has the majority of the questions on it. the major feature of the book is the actual information that is in it. i have this book for use as a reference only as i have been an rn for 30 years. want to know what the signs and symptoms of shock are? they are presented in a nice list on page 798 along with the nursing interventions. the content of this book is broken down into 20 units. unit iv in the book is about fundamental skills and covers things like safety, use of restraints, nosocomial infections, universal precautions, cpr and has a whole chapter on medication administration and ivs with drug calculations. the unit also covers basic surgical care and complications of surgery, principles of positioning the patient, and the various kinds of tubes and their care. there are other nclex review books out there as well. i have heard students rave about the kaplan nclex review book. the good thing is that after you get into the nursing school you can use a book like this in studying for class exam later on!!!!
go to a large bookstore chain and see if they have any of these kinds of review books in stock so you can browse through them to see if they might suit your need. a college bookstore will also have them (not in their textbook section). you can go to the bookstore of any college that has a nursing school to look at actual copies of these books if they have any of them in stock. or, you can see the prices and descriptions of these books on amazon
or barnes & noble websites. you can also view the table of contents in many cases on these websites.
good luck, kiddo. if you have to do any procedures for them, i recommend that you pull your policy and procedure manual at work and start reviewing! we had to demonstrate how to spike and hang an iv, how to do trach care (right up your alley!!!), how to insert a foley catheter, and turning and repositioning a patient into a side lying position in the bed. they were looking to see that we were observing the major principles of maintaining the sterile field, using good body mechanics or maintaining good body alignment with the patient.
after 4 years as an lpn i have a feeling you will do fine. what a great decision you are making to continue your education! good luck to you. you should also check out the nursing student forums on allnurses. here's a listing of them: http://allnurses.com/forums/f196/