Do you really need a workshop to pass CPNE?

Nursing Students Excelsior


Specializes in wound care, sub-acute, community nursing.

I am hoping to take (or at least apply) for the CPNE this year, wondering if you really do need a workshop? I live in Massachusetts and there are none very close to me and I don't have a ton of $$ to be spending on that type of thing. I'm thinking of just doing one online or getting DVDs and submitting careplans to EC for correction. I am a visiting nurse so I am on my own a lot so I need to have really good assessment skills (and I think I have that) but I don't normally do certain things you do in a hospital setting often (like give meds) I don't think it will be too hard, but again it won't be second nature to me either because I have been in VNA for 3 years. I do, however, do a TON of wound care, teaching, careplanning, give IV/IM/SC meds so I'm not too worried about those things. I feel like I have a lot of confidence on the job but am hoping my nerves don't get the best of me at the testing site. I plan to test in NY (not sure where yet) any advice for how to study WITHOUT going to a workshop. and also would like to hear from anyone who has passed without using one.

Thanks so much!! Happy studying!! :)


I'm with you BostonNurse, I live in Kansas City, Mo. & there are none close to me. I've been a Paramedic for 27 years and have good assessment skills but none with wound dressing, etc. The CPNE is a critical test that costs over $2000 to take plus additional costs for airfare & lodging. If I fail the first time then I have to reapply and pay the fee again. The two workshops that I'm looking at will cost me @ $1000 with workshop fees, air fare & lodging but they claim > 95% pass rate on the first attempt so it's easy in my mind to justify the additional fees to pass the first time. I think I've decided to take Sheri Taylor's workshop in Atlanta in March. Hope this helps, good luck...

Specializes in Geriatrics, Psych.

No you do not need a workshop to pass the EC Clinical/ CPNE ™.... (as a side note I have one and am telling you this) There have been many students that have passed it without doing a workshop. It all depends on the individual, their study habits, how much the student uses the resourses available and the students dedication to passing. But even EC tells students the pass rate is higher for students that do take a workshop. Hope this helps :)

I went through that study guide over and over again. I broke it down by the important things that were needed and then I broke it down either further. I still referred back to the SG manytimes, because you would be surprised what you missed. As much as I didn't want to pay for EC's online careplan and documentation, I am so glad I did. It helped me sooo much. I took both classess 3 weeks before the CPNE. So I finished careplan the week before my CPNE. Everything was fresh in my head. I also got a copy of a used EC dvd. I got an older version, which someone gave to me free. I think it was the 16th. Anyway, that helped tremendously to. It makes you feel like you are really experiencing the CPNE as you watch it. Ask around and post on EC board looking for free items.. There are people out there that will give them to you.

I failed my first CPNE. I took a workshop that I personally do not think helped me. I waited a year and prepared as best as I could. A 1.5 weeks before the CPNE I was walking around my house just thinking I wish I already took this thing.. I was ready and I knew I was. Stay positive and focused. You can do it.

Christine I too live in Boston.

- Traci

A workshop is not needed. People passed the CPNE before anyone got enterprising and started charging money to coach people. People who do not attend workshops today manage to pass the CPNE, but that does not mean that a workshop might not be helpful.

Just wanted to let you know I took the cpne this past weekend at grady in atlanta. jan 6-8. i used a work shop the week before and with out it i probably wouldn't have passed. I passed with no repeats at all. the person i used was a former ca for the exam and she had me more than prepared. The skills are easy as long as you memorize the steps. the hardest part is doing the documentation the way they want it, and the study guide doesn't make it clear i read it 2 times cover to cover. She made it very easy. On my way to see her i was called and offered a cancelation date 7 days away so i took it. i was serious about my studying and the results payed off big time. with out her i dont think i would have passed the documentation parts. worth the money. all i did was read the study gide and do everything she told me to do. 3 out of 7 passed in my group. 2 of us used the same lady. 3 who used a former students work shop failed out on the 2nd day. this was my first time taking it.

Specializes in Tele/Neuro/Trauma.

I did an online workshop and I passed w/out repeats 1st try. Sheri Taylor's online workshop is awesome and well worth the money, and she's there for you from start to finish with support and answering questions. I think it's $147 a month. Used what I learned on there and practiced and studied my butt off, everyday I studied for atleast a few hours, and me and my study buddy would study for 5-8 hours a day atleast once a week, just writing out care plans, documenting, doing labs, assessments etc. Read the study guide from start to finish 4x. I also did the online documentation conference through EC and that was great,kinda expensive but worth it. Also used Rob's DVDs, got them passed down from another student--the material is outdated (I think he was prob a 14th or earlier edition tester) but as far as a general idea of what to expect and the flow of things, he's really got a good method and I tweaked his mneumonics to work for me, I used alot of his "script" too in my PCS's.

I think in total I spent a few hundred dollars on prep for the CPNE, but not having to take the thing ever again and passing on the first try, was priceless.

Good luck!!!! :-)

Specializes in LTC.

hi there! i took my cpne the weekend of 11/18/11 and passed, only repeating the iv push lab because i was so nervous :) i did not do any workshops, documentation, or careplanning courses. i didn't have the money to do any of that!! i just wanted you to know that it is possible to pass without all that fancy stuff :D

Congratulations clevelandmedic!!

Hi beachie, I'm doing fcca this month then registration/preparation for cpne! I would like to use sherrys online workshop too. What about the hands on lab part? What do you practice with? Were you able to watch online over and over again until you felt comfortable? Questions, questions! haha thanks

Specializes in Tele/Neuro/Trauma.

I work in a hospital and my study buddy was a paramedic so between the two of us we had enough supplies to keep us going the whole summer. I had gotten some stuff from a previous student like the wounds and the lab guide, vial adapters, syringes, etc, and whatever we didn't have we got from work. We had lab stations set up at both our houses, and we just got creative. For IV push just got an IV cath and cut a swim noodle and put an arm band on it and it worked good. For IM and SQ took a pair of my leggings and stuffed it with towels and grapefruits so it looked like a butt and made a belly button on the other side with a sharpie. The wound is a must, you have to get the EC wound, it's a goofy shape and it takes alot of practice to perfect. For the IVMB I got an IV pole off for like $25 and dripped it into a cup, flower pot, whatever we felt like watering that day LOL. The grading sheets are in the study guide, I laminated them, one for the "student" so you fill everything out just like at the CPNE, the other for the "examiner" and one of us would practice, the other would time it and check off the critical elements. By the time I took my CPNE, I had those freakin things down to where I could start over completely and still have time--and I did end up having to during the SQ station--and passed it :-)

Sheri's videos once you join you can watch 24/7 over and over, and the other great thing is that she sends you care plan homework and grades it, and also you can do evals and documentation too and she has videos going over that. I watched those videos for hours and even uploaded them into my phone so I could watch them until the very end.

Happy to help w/any questions, let me know if there's anything else I can help ya with. Check out the CPNE FB page and Sheri's workshop FB page... networking with other students is really easy on there, great support available.

Check out the CPNE FB page...

I have looked for a cpne fb page, but can't seem to find it. do you have the exact name or a link for it? thanks.

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