Napa Valley nursing students draw crowd as they protest use of ATI exam - page 13

nvc nursing students draw crowd as they protest mandatory exam napa valley register - napa,ca,usa about 100 napa valley college nursing students filled the college board room thursday night in... Read More

  1. by   Gromit
    Quote from SillyLilly
    This is what its 90% about. My school calls me every month to see how I am doing-if I passed nclex, if I got a job, if I got a raise, etc etc etc to document as part of their success rates... Its all about their reputation.

    We took the HESI. I passed, and did fine on the NCLEX.

    Quite a few-more than the past years- students from my class did not pass. They got a second chance. Some did not even pass that.

    I am a good test taker-some people are not. Also, the HESI is in a DIFFERENT STYLE than the NCLEX. HESI is harder too-in my opinion.

    I know students from my class have talked about a Law suit over the HESI.

    If frustration with these tests continues, I see more of this happening across the country.
    The problem is that MOST tests (with very very few exceptions) test knowledge. If you pass your courses then it should stand to reason that you HAVE the knowledge. NCLEX tests your thought process, not your knowledge. Its a boards test unlike any other I've ever taken (Over the years, I've taken boards for EMT-A, EMT-P (paramedic), and the state firefighters' boards (for Florida). NCLEX makes all of 'em look simple by comparison. The tests we took in school (nursing) tested for knowledge -with the only goal being to see if you had learned your subject.
    Now, as for ATI and HESI I have no idea -because I didn't have to mess with them. When our courses were done, we spent a number of hours (I forget how many) testing with an NCLEX Prep test on a cd. The school encouraged you to go through Kaplans prep course. But in any case, once you passed your courses you were considdered 'ready' to sit for your boards. They didn't hand out passing grades unless you actually passed the material.
    TO ME, this was not a problem. If you did your work, studied and passed, you SHOULD be allowed to sit.
    Now, Florida DOES require some other tests but these have nothing to do with nursing itself, but to do with other college requirements.
    The thing that makes NCLEX so tricky is that it tests thought processes, and its an "adaptive" test -and while I can't speak for others, I've never run across an adaptive test until NCLEX -and THAT is something that only came about because of the computer age. The test adapts to your skill level, and if your ultimate skill level is not acceptable, you fail. Otherwise, you pass. This wasn't done in the days of pencil/paper tests. The upside is that it no longer takes several days to take the test (like it did in the days of many of the more experienced nurses).
  2. by   Sheri257
    Quote from nursemi
    Why would an LPN of 12 years, who bridged over to the RN program not pass one of these exams?
    I think you would have to look at overall LVN failure rates also. In my program about half of them flunk out or, they haven't been able to pass the challenge exams to get into the program. It's not just an issue with exit exams.

    Maybe it's because they've been working for a long time, and have difficulty getting back into academia where the test questions can be quite different than real world nursing .... I dunno. But the LVN failure rates in my program are very high.

    :typing
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Dec 12, '06
  3. by   Plagueis
    Quote from nursemi

    That is why I am a firm believer of "weeding out the weaker students" upon entering the nursing program.

    High standards should of been imposed from the get go.

    Why impose it at the end of the year, is truly the question. In other words, they believe in providing high standard education at the end, and not at the beginning or through out?

    No one argues the "purpose" of the exams. The colleges' punitive usage is the argument, and lack of proper documentation.

    Remember: How many exams have you taken in the first year of school?
    How about the second year? Then suddenly, one exam, tells you that you are not competent??? :angryfire
    You have some good points. I am not a nurse yet, but I do wonder about the value of one exam determining whether someone passes a program. I thought that the high standards that many nursing programs have (grades and test scores) for admission should supposedly ensure that only the best of the best get into nursing school. Why wait until right before graduation to say to potential nurses that, "You got great grades, and you made it this far, but if you don't pass this exam, you can't graduate."? Are they saying that despite the fact that nursing students made it through the rigorous nursing program, it isn't enough to prove their competence, and that this one test will "prove" they are worthy to take the NCLEX and graduate? I guess nursing schools wouldn't dare let students who passed the nursing program itself take the NCLEX without being required to take the exit exam as a condition to graduate, or else the students could "ruin" the reputation of the nursing program with a low score. However, I know many nurses who never took a conditional exit exam, and they passed the NCLEX, and are great at what they do.
  4. by   Gromit
    Tommy, I think you've hit the nail squarely on the head. This whole thing REEKS of a nursing program that has failed to achieve acceptable standards (numbers of GRADUATES not passing the NCLEX) and they are scraping any way they can to bump their numbers. I stand firm by my own statement -if you graduated, you SHOULD be allowed to sit. If you aren't allowed to sit, you shouldn't have been passing each semester or step (however this school counts progress in their nursing program).
  5. by   cardiacRN2006
    Quote from Gromit
    I stand firm by my own statement -if you graduated, you SHOULD be allowed to sit.
    If they can't pass the ATI (or HESI, whatever), then they didn't graduate.

    If the students graduate, then they ARE allowed to sit for NCLEX.

    The ATI/HESI is just another requirement that a student needs in order to graduate.
  6. by   weirdRN
    These students have maintained "B" averages while successfully completing the clinical and classroom portions of their academic program. The university happily took their tuition money, and the university's staff awarded academic grades that indicate satisfactory mastery of the curriculum.

    The only justification for the use of this "capstone" exam is to prevent students who the university believes are likely to fail NCLEX from being able to sit for the exam. They require this test not as a benefit to their students, but as a means of protecting their own pass rates. Which, if the university has done its job of weeding out unqualified students and properly educating the rest, should be well within the acceptable range regardless of student performance on any preliminary assessment test.
    So if the student has successfully completed the course work you advocate allowing them to sit for the NCLEX repeatedly until they get their license?:stone

    If they did so well in class and in clinic, I would like to know why they did not pass this exam. Seems to me if I knew this was coming, I would have prepped my behind off and made sure I passed it.

    Is this just a couple of students crying b/c they have one more test to pass before they can go on?
  7. by   cardiacRN2006
    Quote from WhimsieRN

    Is this just a couple of students crying b/c they have one more test to pass before they can go on?

    Basically.

    They are upset because they weren't specifically taught on how to take these tests. They weren't taken by the hand and shown how to answer the questions, and they weren't told in lecture that some of the stuff would be on these tests.


    I stand by my statement; If you learned what you needed to learn in nursing school, then you will be able to pass these tests.
  8. by   weirdRN
    It is my opinion that just because there is a pseudo shortage, and soon to be a horrendously HUGE real shortage, it is no reason to lower expectations or standards.

    To that end I say," Test away!"
  9. by   nursemi


    I think you guys who are against the lawsuit, are forgetting the true validity of the law suit.

    Remember: Their lawyer presented to them evidence that no where is their exam stated in the curriculum, syllabus, and school catolog. Most of all the admission criteria.

    These are legal documents.

    As nurses, you must understand the importance of documentation. Correct.

    As far as the students complaining or whining because they weren't taught how to take this style of test. Maybe, that too is a valid complaint. Why impose an exam that you can't teach? One of the purpose of these exams are

    "It gives data on your student and faculty's weakness to make curricullum changes based on patterns they will see."
    That is one of the reasons why this test was created, because NCLEX pass rates were decreasing, schools needed to use it to identify where their areas of weakness were. So now you are telling me, okay we now know where our faculty's areas of weaknesses are but we will punish the students instead of us? The scope of the exam was for both faculty & student.

    As far as comparison between the two:
    NCLEX RN examination is considered as the entry to practice exam, focusing on hospital nursing and BSN programs are the only ones that teach beyond that scope of practice. Therefore, accelerated ADN programs, would have trouble with this type of exam.

    Remember: You had some hand holding during your first year working as a nurse in the hospital. If you have been a nurse for less than five years, I gather someone still hand holds you once in a while. This field will always be "give a hand" field.

    Just remember where you came from. This is a field, is a field of advocacy, team work, teaching, and research.

    Last thing this field needs is selfishness, and I got mine now you get yours attitude.

    Professionalism, Advocacy, Teamwork, Teaching, Research and most of all Respect= Excellent Nurse :spin:

    Not just a license

    Stay humble You will have more true friends that way.
  10. by   cardiacRN2006
    Quote from nursemi


    As far as comparison between the two:
    NCLEX RN examination is considered as the entry to practice exam, focusing on hospital nursing and BSN programs are the only ones that teach beyond that scope of practice. Therefore, accelerated ADN programs, would have trouble with this type of exam.
    Huh? ADN nurses will have trouble with the NCLEX? Just the accelarated ones, or regular ADNs also???


    Quote from nursemi
    Remember: You had some hand holding during your first year working as a nurse in the hospital. If you have been a nurse for less than five years, I gather someone still hand holds you once in a while. This field will always be "give a hand" field.
    Uh, nope. No hand holding here. Once I was off orientation, I was thrown to the wolves. If I needed help I needed to ask for it. I got the hardest patients, and had to deal with them as best I could. I didn't have someone tell me how to do my job, or spell it out for me. Big difference between passing a simple test and working as a nurse. Big. And I'm sure after no one is getting their hand held at 4 and 5 years out.
  11. by   JPine
    Quote from Jolie

    ...The only justification for the use of this "capstone" exam is to prevent students who the university believes are likely to fail NCLEX from being able to sit for the exam. They require this test not as a benefit to their students, but as a means of protecting their own pass rates. Which, if the university has done its job of weeding out unqualified students and properly educating the rest, should be well within the acceptable range regardless of student performance on any preliminary assessment test.
    :yeahthat: You said it, sistah!
  12. by   nursemi
    Yes, CardiacRN

    Someone held your hands during orientation.
    If you needed help you had to ask for it. Did you get the help?????????

    Who taught you how to draw blood, ABGs', suction, chest tubes, and CBIs?

    Yourself?

    How many times did you have to do above procedures before you were comfortable with it.

    Once?

    These students need help, not punishment. As nurses we will always need help

    Never call patients wolves they are patients. I don't advocate the word client either, but I would rather use that, than wolves.
  13. by   suzyRN
    Our school also used the ATI although they tried to threaten us not graduating if we did not score in the top 50th percentile. So many people ended up failing they had to let them retake the exam. Personally I thought the ATI was a waste of time and money. We had no choice but to pay for it every quarter and although I passed all the exams I still felt the need to take the Kaplan test prep class to guarentee passing the NCLEX. I think the school is just trying to cover its butt so as not to have an astronomical fail rate on the boards. But anyways- like most of you had said- it needs to be a learning tool and not yet another test to scare the crap out of you!

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