Failed NCLEX-RN, Had New Grad Position Lined Up... Please Help Me


Hi Everyone,

I feel so lost and scared, please help me. I am embarrassed to tell the facility that offered me the job, my family, and friends that I failed. I took my NCELX- RN today and got the "bad" pop up. I graduated from nursing school this past May, 2011 and had a New Grad position lined up in April at the facility where I did my preceptorship.

I drove to an adjacent state to take my NCLEX, as soon as I could (which was 4 weeks after I graduated), used the last of our savings money to make this trip happen.

I took the Hurst Review, used ATI, and studied using Saunders CD-Rom. I shut down my facebook account and dedicated my time to studying for the NCLEX. The first time I took the ATI predictor, it said I had a 65% chance of passing. The second time I took the ATI predictor, it said I had a 91% chance of passing. I took all of the Hurst QReview questions and was averaging around 63%. I wrote down rationales and reviewed and tried to learn what I did not already know. But obviously, I did something wrong.

I took 5 hours and 45 minutes and got to 265 questions. By the time I was done, I was drained, exhaused, and mortified. I just couldn't focus anymore.

I have read on the NCSBN that 91% of NCLEX-RN takers pass their first time ad only around 50% pass the second time around. This just kills me inside. I am so afraid of never getting my RN or having to take it 10x!!

My questions are:

1. How could I have failed?

2. How can I pass next time, and beat the statistics against me?

3. How am I going to tell my "employer" that I didn't pass? I am supposed to meet with the HR person on Monday morning at 9am to discuss scheduling, etc.

This has been the worst day ever. Please help give me some direction. I have no plan of what to do next.

Thank you so much.


38,333 Posts

I would certainly not tell the employer until you have something more concrete than a "pop up". When you get the official results immediately go in and talk to them. See if they will reconsider your position for when you have passed the test. If they can not work with you, then consider holding off on future job plans until you know that you have a valid license.


720 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg Nurse, Homecare, Visiting Nurse. Has 4 years experience.

I would suggest you start studying again. Maybe you just needed some more time to study. Take it as soon as you could again, try to remember the questions that you weren't sure about and go over them now....while it's still fresh. Like Calliotter3, I would wait to get official results. You'll have to tell your employer, if didn't pass and ask if they can hold the position for you until you do. I wish you the best, keep us informed.


185 Posts

I would have to agree with caliotter3.

You need the official results. You can't rely on a Pearson Vue Trick for your true NCLEX results. Did you know that the NCLEX is reviewed TWICE? So there's still a possibility that you may have passed. You don't know yet. So don't say anything yet. If they ask, say that you haven't received your results yet... it's true.


129 Posts

I had the exact same thing happen to me...even had the 265 questions my heart aches for you:( Just talk to your supervisor and see if you can work as a CNA until you pass your boards, which is what I will be doing. Did you know the content backwards and forwards??


517 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, Rehab.

I agree with the others about waiting til you have your official results before telling your new employer. Keldel has great advice about possibly working as a CNA until you can get your license. If you did actually fail, you'll get a report breaking down the areas you didn't do well on, and you can focus your studies on that. I've heard great things on these boards about the Kaplan Q-bank.

Don't beat yourself up too much or rely on the NCSBN's statistics. If you believe in yourself you can pass the second time. Keep your spirits up.


73 Posts

I didn't have a job lined up but I also just took the NCLEX-RN and had 265 questions and failed. I did ATI too and felt that their practice assessment questions were not as difficult as the ones on my NCLEX. I started a thread looking for help too and will follow this one as well. Best wishes!


10 Posts

thank you everyone for your posts,

i spoke with the facility that offered me the job and they have offered to secure my position for me when i pass this nclex-rn the second time. i am scheduled to retake it july 29th, it was the soonest i could sign up. i feel so blessed that they are offering to secure my spot. i feel like i owe it to them to pass with flying colors.

the more i think about why i failed, i really think it’s because i just took it too soon and didn't give myself an adequate amount of time to have all of the material completely understood. i was able to narrow most questions down to two answers, but at that point it was a 50/50 guess. i felt like my knowledge was strong in some areas, but weaker in others.

i bought the lacharity book because of the reviews many people gave it on this site. however, i'm still unsure about how to use these next 45 days to their full advantage. i am currently not working and i am looking forward to dedicating most of my time to preparing for this nclex. i have the option to do the hurst 45-day remediation course, which i think i'm going to take.

a lot of the nclex questions were room assignments and priority and delegation, i think in order to really understand how to delegate and prioritize, i need a better understanding of my core content.

i took someone's advice off of here and wrote down as many questions as i could think of from my test and i was able to remember about 40. i plan on finding the category those questions fall under and reviewing that content.

if anyone has any advice or ideas on how i can better prepare for this next nclex exam, please share your thoughts. i am willing to do whatever it takes learn this material and pass this exam!

thank you everyone, so much.


10 Posts


thank you for your reply, i know how hard this time is for you right now. getting all the way up to 265 questions and then learning you failed is very upsetting. i think this experience will make us stronger people and we will appreciate that rn behind our names so much.

a friend of mine told me that in order to really feel success, you have to feel failure. keep strong my friend, we will get through this.


517 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, Rehab.

A friend of mine told me that in order to really feel success, you have to feel failure. Keep strong my friend, we will get through this.

This is SO TRUE! I failed clinical in my second nursing course and at the time, it was the worst possible thing that could ever happen to me. But I learned so much from it, brought myself back up and was able to graduate with honors and actually get an award for clinical excellence. I appreciate where I am so much more now that I've felt failure. You will treasure those letters after your name when you pass in July. Good luck to you! :redbeathe


57 Posts

Specializes in med/surg & home health. Has 9 years experience.
Hi Everyone,

I feel so lost and scared, please help me. . .

I took 5 hours and 45 minutes and got to 265 questions. By the time I was done, I was drained, exhaused, and mortified. I just couldn't focus anymore . . .

My questions are:

1. How could I have failed?

2. How can I pass next time, and beat the statistics against me?

"You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them. Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud. Do not complain. Make every effort to change things you do not like. If you cannot make a change, change the way you have been thinking. You might find a new solution."

-Maya Angelou

I have a friend who is trying desperately to get into a nursing program and has repeatedly been turned down by several schools despite all the classes she's aced and all she has done. It doesn't seem fair, but you just keep on. You've already graduated and are so close to that RN title, and it's wonderful to have the support of your employer. Bravo!

1. I certainly feel for you. It does not seem "fair" to suffer through such a test! But you know, it could have been any of us. I just took the test Monday and by the grace of God I passed, but to tell the truth I didn't feel so great about it. It was DIFFICULT!!!! :eek: My thoughts are that you can't possibly know it all, and I could have studied for the next 5 years and still not have all those meds straight! But keep your head up HIGH! You'll get there! I'm convinced that good things come from obstacles such as this! So, look for the good to come!

2. Think about what you need to change about the way you studied and approached the test. I don't have personal experience with any of the resources you mentioned, but what I think really helped me was the Kaplan Strategy, Practice and Review book. It gave me a process for how to approach and think about each question. You can't rely on content to pass this test though of course you need it too. I re-read the beginning of that book the day before my exam.

I'll keep you in my prayers.:heartbeat


57 Posts

I know it's very expensive, but I HIGHLY recommend Kaplan. Even if you can just afford their Q bank and not the entire course. their question are very similar to NCLEX. Kaplan plus the infection control mnemonic that can be found on this site are the two biggest things I can attribute to my success on NCLEX. Also, work on feeling confident and take good care of yourself. You CAN do it!!!