Published Jul 12, 2009
I have not taken the NCLEX exam for 6 years and have decided now is as good of time as any. I am married and have 3 kids 3 and under. They are all good nappers and go to bed at a decent time. I know their are plenty of people out there with busier lives than me and they do so, so can I! I have read that many of you use KAPLAN to review, but I am confused. I went the the website and am not sure what package to purchase, it is all online or do I have to take a class? Also how long is it good for? Which package do you recommend? Thanks so much, I am ready to call myself an RN!!
I went to the actual class because I suck at taking online classes LOL!
The actual class I took was over 2 weekends, Sat and Sun for 8 hours each day. All day we spent going over question after question. On the first day of class we took a diagnostic test to show us where we were and what areas to focus on. Then on the last day of class, we took a readiness test to determine if we were ready for NCLEX.
You still get the online access to the Qbank and the QTrainers which I found extremely helpful.
I went to the actual class because I suck at taking online classes LOL!The actual class I took was over 2 weekends, Sat and Sun for 8 hours each day. All day we spent going over question after question. On the first day of class we took a diagnostic test to show us where we were and what areas to focus on. Then on the last day of class, we took a readiness test to determine if we were ready for NCLEX.You still get the online access to the Qbank and the QTrainers which I found extremely helpful.
When going to the KAPLAN site, which one did you buy?
JustEnuff2BDangerous, BSN, RN
Kaplan came to our school and did their presentation during lunch and we could sign up for a class at that time. You can either choose a "live" class (you go to a classroom with a live teacher) or you can choose an online class. The online class would probably be better for you and your life situation, because it is a go-at-your-own-pace type thing; whenever you have time you log on and basically watch lectures over streaming video. It is prerecorded, so the only down side is you do not have the opportunity to ask questions (from my understanding of it).
I chose the live class because I do not have the discipline to force myself to watch lectures on the internet. I knew going to a live class would force me to pay attention; however, if you are disciplined, the online class may be good for you. With the live class I got 3 months of unlimited online access to take all of the practice tests and questions Kaplan provides. My live class was Tuesday - Friday, 8 to 5. It was the NCLEX - RN Complete package.
Which one to purchase kind of depends on what kind of learner you are (and on your financial situation, since Kaplan is, well, EXPENSIVE). I purchased the online complete package because it was slightly cheaper. With it, you get streaming video presentations covering the same material that they teach in the face to face class. Both packages have the Qbank, Question Trainer, and video review of content.
So, if you feel more comfortable with a face to face instructor, and you are willing to pay the extra money the classroom based program may be the way to go. You will still have all the online resources with this option, but it will cost more $$$. Also, for me the nearest face to face class was quite a drive from me. So, that was another factor that I considered.
I feel as though I'm getting the same content with the complete online package that I'm doing, and it was slightly less expensive. With either option, though, there's a lot of online work to do with the Question Trainer and Qbank (and any content review that you feel that you need to do).
I'll say this...so far Kaplan has been worth its weight in gold! They focus on test strategies and how to "think your way through" higher level NCLEX questions. I take the NCLEX in about 3 weeks, and I am going to feel much more prepared for it having completed the Kaplan course. It's money well spent no matter which option you choose (in my opinion...). Good Luck!
How do you find the actual content review with Kaplan? I'm leaning towards the online complete program as well but I'm not at all concerned with the strategies. The qbank and trainers I have no doubt will be valuable to me, just wondering how strong the content review is since people don't really mention it much. Is that because the qbank and trainers are so great that people focus on that or because the content review isn't very good?
I think the content review is actually quite good. They really provide it in two ways...first, there are streaming videos broken down according to client need (i.e. "physiologic adaptation", "health promotion", etc.). It has a Kaplan instructor going over the most important information in each area. Apparently, Kaplan focuses on what is commonly tested on the NCLEX. They assume that you already have a good background in content from nursing school, and seem to view this as a "touch up". It's designed to be exactly what it says-a review. You will also get a review book that has the content review given in written form. I think both are pretty good. Kaplan makes no bones about the fact that they focus on test strategies, but they also tell you that they do provide content review if you need it. Anyway, it seems to be pretty good. I'm using the review book more than the streaming videos (more because I am a visual, reading type learner...and, honestly, because sometimes the streaming videos can be kind of mundane...useful information but still mundane. One can only listen to stuff about lifespan growth and development for so long...)
Hope that helps.
When going to the KAPLAN site, which one did you buy?
A Kaplan rep came to our school and offered both options. I opted for the actual class and I had to put down a deposit to save my spot. A month before the class starts, you get access online to the online tutor to complete content. By the time you go to the actual class, you only focus on test taking methods.
And I would like to add that I found Kaplan to be HARDER than NCLEX. It's a reason why this course review is really expensive. It's worth EVERY penny!
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