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Failed NCLEX 1st time in 75 questions, passed on 3rd attempt with 265 questions

haners02 haners02 (New) New

Hello everyone! :)

Just wanted to share my story of this whirlwind of a life has been with this monster that is the nclex.

I'll try to keep this short and sweet but I bet that won't happen. I get word diarrhea when I tell a story ;) hope this helps anyone out there that is starting to lose hope or morale. The title says it all, I failed miserably the first time i took nclex with 75 questions, whats funny is that I thought I rocked it. (BTW: I had like 15 SATAS, 2 calculations, 2 cardiac strips, 3 Drag and drop, few pharm, few prioritizing and delegation so I thought I was doing good). Tried to the pearson vue trick=fail. But waited until I got my official results before freaking out.. 2nd time I failed with 81 questions, (again around 15 SATA, 1 cardiac strip, 0 calculations, lots of prioritization and delegation). I was just happy when the computer spat out more than 75 questions this time to give me a fighting chance. My 3rd attempt: I went the duration with 265 hundo questions (6 drag and drop, 2 cardiac strips, 2 calcualtions (1 with a fl oz intake so I thought I was digging myself a hole), about 44 SATAs (yes i kept tally), the most I got were 2 in a row consecutively, lol. no hot spots, no audio, about 10 pharm questions) Boy... Was it a workout! I took 2 breaks in between to go to the bathroom and remind myself "Im still in this!", I took around 5 hours and 30 minutes. no snacks......... :(

After the 1st time I took the nclex I stopped checking the pearson vue trick and just spent those days trying to relax as much as possible. But after a week of waiting for my results for the 3rd time, I mustered up some courage to check my DOH provider credential search, and when I typed my name there it was my name with an RN number and the words ACTIVE. I didn't believe it, so I tried to the pearson vue trick to solidify my confirmation a bit more. I still don't believe it to a degree :D but enough that I want to jump up and down and pinch myself that this isn't a dream. I still won't officially tell anyone I know until I get the physical evidence.

For anyone that was curious:

First time nclex: Used Saunders (completed and wrote notes for all chapters), and about 500 nclex 3500 questions, as well as the 30 page guide floating around allnurses.

Second time: Used PDA (la charity book) as well as reviewed my notes from saunders, and did about 100 questions a day until I reached about 3000 questions, as well as reviewed the 30 pg guide.

Third time: I purchased the 5wk NCSBN review course, got throough all the content, and wrote notes on all the chapters, but only got through about 200 of the q bank questions before my subscription ended. :( Also, I purchased that 97pg guide on youtube from passnclex2013, I only got through page 25, but it seemed helpful, it was 50 bucks... (Don't judge me I was getting desperate... lol) Also: watch the 8 essential concepts of nursing on youtube, the video is like an hr and i watched it twice and took notes on it, very helpful. :)

I hope this truly inspires or helps anyone in a similar situation, I found only a handful of forums with people failing at 75 questions, I felt really low after that but still took my test 2 months after for the 2nd and third time. I think its important to not dwell on it for so long, life truly goes on... You will pass... just don't give up and keep taking it. Pray like your life depends on it. On test day I called my boyfriend and he made me laugh, don't go in there freaking out (easier said than done I know), but on my third time, I really didn't expect to pass, let alone get all the questions. But if you get past the 100 mark, breathe, go to bathroom, have a sip of water and remind yourself your still in this. and if you fail again, try something different. For me I was really lacking content, everyone is different, they say to do 3000 questions but if you dont know the content I feel like your just memorizing an answer to the question.

Please message me if you want to know any other helpful tips or just need a buddy to talk to. I've been there and when you pass, you'll have a cool story to tell instead of those boring people that say they just passed the first time with 75 questions... ;) No hate, love for all!

Congrats! I have the 97 page study guide but was able to find it free on Facebook (yes I'm cheap) Do you feel NCSBN resembled NCLEX

Very inspiring!!!

So exciting!!

How many hours did you study in total?


Has 3 years experience.

Congrats!!! Your perseverance paid off!!! :up:

Congrats! I failed my first time at 205 (I took nclex pn) and retook my test last week and got 85 questions. So far, I've seen most of my classmates pass with the minimum amount of questions so I'm hoping this is a good sign for me. I'm so afraid to do the PV trick. I wanna do it but I'm so terrified :/

Nice! lol, yes I did NOT want to spend hundreds on Kaplan and other review courses, Yes I feel that the questions on NCSBN were similar to the nclex, I have even heard from others that some were some q's directly from the q bank, unfortunately I only got through about 200 of the questions, but it was very helpful :)

I probably should have studied more, honestly for the third time around 3 hours a day or so 5 days a week, I felt I didn't really forget what I had studied for the first and second time. Thank you all for the congratulatory messages :)

Congratulations...I'm so happy for you, hopefully someday I will be able to tell my happy story :) I failed the first time two months ago with 265 and my weakness was the physiological section (tubes and all that) I have been thinking of studying from NCSBN since I totally agree with you, doing questions is not enough, I did about 10000 of them and I realized they did not good I am definitively lacking content. Anyways, do you think that NCSBN covers enough material or at least the one needed to pass, such as tubes, procedures, etc? Thanks you and good luck, enjoy your success :)

CeceStar5, ADN, BSN, LPN, RN

Specializes in Home health, Med Surg, LTC. Has 10 years experience.

Congrats!!! I know that it feels good to get over the beast.

Junebug903, LPN

Specializes in LTC, SNF, Rehab, Hospice. Has 9 years experience.

That is a wonderful, inspiring story :) Great! Congrats!

I took boards July 2 and failed 260 questions. I did a live Kaplan review and followed a 5 week study plan completed all the questions and qbank. My school paid for us a 3 week subscription to ncsbn and I did the pretest and scored above passing level so I didn't have time to do the rest wish I did though. Not sure what my next step is I am still in the shock phase of failing boards.

@ TAS1987

Yes it is quite shocking to fail but you can do it! I suggest trying something new, that might not necessarily mean spend more money to try other things. If your a visual/auditory learner watching nclex videos were quite helpful especially the 8 essential concepts of nursing video. Some of it is luck too, you just never know what questions you will get. Don't give up keep trying, you can do it!

thank you for your post...this will be my third time and like a idoit i brought an entire library of study guides. I even purchased the 97 page study guide. but i'm going to take your advice and study with videos.....i'm debating shelling out more money just to get the Hurst videos....congrats btw and thanks for the motivation.

I have a Kaplan content book, hurst content book, and a nclex made easy 3500 question book my strategy will be used on the tools I have I don't feel the need to spend more money unless someone has a good reason why. There are so many people that review themselves and don't take a review course. We all learn different that is for sure and I do believe passing has a lot to do with what questions your get.

ArrowRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med Surg, Vascular, E.N.T. Has 3 years experience.

Congratulations and great motivation in not giving up. I am going to be graduating soon and taking the NCLEX for the first time. Thanks for sharing your experiences. I know I am weak in content and I do not think kaplan strategies is the way to go for me, now I am seriously considering NCSBN 15 week course.