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ADHD student passed NCLEX-RN first try at 75 questions

NCLEX   (7,098 Views | 7 Replies)

2,695 Profile Views; 26 Posts

You guys were all incredibly helpful while I was studying for NCLEX. So I thought I would pay back by sharing my experience.

I graduated in June and I was overseas because of my grandmother's death. Finally came back in August and grieved for a month. In September, I finally decided to pull myself out of depression because my grandma would want me to pass NCLEX asap.

OK now, I am totally ADHD. I can't handle reading long material. I do take prescribed Adderall, which helps a lot, but I have still only been able to focus at about maybe 75% capacity compared to my normal classmates with meds. I am neither an A student nor a diligent worker. Needless to say, I was freaking out about NCLEX from day one of studying.

Sooooo the first thing I did was purchasing HURST. I liked that I just had to watch videos and fill in the blanks. After completing maybe half a book, I realized I wasn't learning anything. So I went back, watched the videos again, and paused frequently to say the concepts out loud. For example, if the topic was on pancreatitis, I would pause the video and say what it is, what symptoms are, what treatment is, all out loud to my dogs. I didn't move on with any subjects until I could say it out loud decently.

Then I did the HURST question banks online. You can take it total 6 times. I was first getting 60's out of 125. After doing the "speak out loud" method as mentioned above, I was able to score 86/125. That was my best score on HURST online questions. I didn't know if that was good enough or what, but apparently my friend passed NCLEX when her best HURST review scores were in 70's. That was a relief.

Next, I did the LaCharity PDA book, thanks to all of your recommendations. What I liked about this book was that each chapter only had about 20-30 questions, which is perfect amount for my fidgety self. I actually used the code from the book and did the questions online because for some reason, I can concentrate better when I am clicking on stuff. I did every chapter and it significantly helped me A LOT to understand which patient to see first (I used to be horrible at this). I highly recommend this as well.

I also purchased the NCSBN 3 week subscription and only did the test banks at the end. The actual material is soooo long and I couldn't sit through all of that. So I just did the test bank. I did all of them.

I studied total about a month for maybe 4-5 hours each. I couldn't sit longer than that.

What did NOT work for me:

What did NOT help me were the study note that is going around on this forum. While I thank the students who put the information together and it can be undoubtedly useful for others, it did not help me. Random information in bullet points and acronyms do not make sense to me because I am the kind of person who has to see the whole picture to understand (which is why Hurst was so helpful to me). I read about five pages and gave up.

Another thing that did NOT help me was the $50 study guide from pass nclex Youtube. It's another study guide with bullet points and man, I could not focus reading that. I read the first page and gave up.

Test day (yesterday, 10/23):

As mentioned above, I take Adderall for my ADHD. It causes some vasoconstriction. You have to get your palms scanned at Pearson center for the testing. It was soooooooo difficult getting my palms scanned because my hands were cold. I had to rub my hands together for like five minutes straight to FINALLY get them read.

I got 20 SATA and 2 order. I was very worried about SATA when I was studying for NCLEX. But you know what, it's really not that bad. Pretty much all of them seemed straight forward after doing my study routine. Putting things in order is also not that bad. They were rather straightforward procedures.

Next day (today):

Today I called Virginia board of nursing automated service. It said my name and REGISTERED NURSE. Yay!

I feel that I was well prepared for NCLEX. Hurst review is awesome, but you really have to PAUSE and SAY CONCEPTS OUT LOUD. Don't just memorize it, actually understand why it is happening. Why are the symptoms the way they are? Which system is affected? You know, those kinds of questions.

OK, I hope I helped you guys as you helped me. I really wish you all pass and please, don't freak out so much. If you prepare yourself and understand concepts, it is surprisingly not that bad. And this is coming from a mediocre student.

Edited by ehlim412

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18 Posts; 985 Profile Views

Congrats!! & condolences on your grandma. I'm sure she as long as everyone else is very happy for you!! :up:

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368 Posts; 7,923 Profile Views

How many weeks did you study Hurst before taking the NCLEX?

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akulahawkRN has 5 years experience as a ADN, RN, EMT-P and specializes in Emergency Department.

2 Followers; 3,447 Posts; 28,089 Profile Views

Ehlim412 - You're an auditory learner and probably a kinesthetic learner. You need to hear it and do/teach it in order for you to really learn something concretely. Remember the technique you used when you have to learn job-related stuff... it will help you.

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1 Article; 32 Posts; 2,713 Profile Views

THANK YOU so much for sharing this!! You are such an inspiration!!

I also have ADHD -- undiagnosed until I was much older. The diagnosis really held me back from a lot of things, especially going back to school.

Your wonderful post just made my day -- I am almost done with school and now feel a lot more confident!

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2 Posts; 802 Profile Views

I too have ADHD and on top of that, test anxiety. I got extra time on my ACT during college because I am horrible at tests. I am a mother of three and went back to nursing school at age 30 and had a lot of trouble with my Hesi exams. I took my exit 4 times before passing. My doctor had to prescribe me single doses of xanax because I would have panic attacks. But for some reason I took boards yesterday and through the new Pearson vue trick, I passed first try! It is tough to have adhd, because our focus is so limited. Thank god for adderall though. Congrats!!! It is awesome to hear people with the same disorder succeed. :)

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26 Posts; 2,695 Profile Views

Hi, Andi777. Sorry for my late reply. I've been relaxing too much since I took the NCLEX. I was also diagnosed with ADHD when I started nursing school. Before nursing school, I got A's in everything and barely studied (I bet you were like this too.. people with ADHD are naturally smart I hear. At least I tell myself this to feel better, haha). But when I was in nursing school, I was really struggling because every assignment dealt with sooooo much reading and focus which I didn't have. Thank god I went to see a psychiatrist because I wouldn't have passed nursing school without meds to be honest. I've studied economics before at a prestigious institution and did well without Adderall. Now nursing, on the other hand, was killing me and made me depressed every day. Believe me, I did it and so can you!! I hope to hear good news from you. Please update me in the future! We gotta support each other!

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26 Posts; 2,695 Profile Views

Hi kbdancer30! Sorry for my late reply. I am very happy to hear another success story from someone like me! I felt so alone in nursing school because everyone seemed to be able to sit down and read 100 pages of boring textbook without any problem. I was sitting there staring at everyone and fidgeting the entire class. Congratulations and thank you for telling me!! It makes me happy to know I am not the only one with problems and it's great to hear that you succeeded!!!

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