Failed NCLEX 5 Times! Am I The Only One Who . . . - page 4

Am I the only one who is concerned about someone who has failed multiple times, finally passes and then wants to share their experience with everyone else? Am I the only one who is concerned about... Read More

  1. by   Rose_Queen
    I passed NCLEX on the first try with 75 questions. I do not feel like that was enough to evaluate my knowledge of nursing basics, let alone specifics. I would rather have taken the two-day marathon event, because I think that would have given the "graders" a much better feel for whether I would be safe taking care of patients over a computer that determined I had the minimum proficiency required. Minimum proficiency does not always equal good or safe nurse.

    As for a limit to taking NCLEX multiple times, I can see giving one the benefit of the doubt on the first failure. Maybe you psyched yourself out too much. Maybe you let anxiety run amok. However, after the second failure remediation should be required, something along the lines of the refresher courses. Three strikes and you're out. Nursing schools these days are simply teaching students to pass NCLEX, and not worrying about teaching them to be nurses. And I'm not so sure I want many of those who are graduating working with me.
  2. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from Ruby Vee
    Am I the only one who is concerned about someone who has failed multiple times, finally passes and then wants to share their experience with everyone else? Am I the only one who is concerned about working with nurses who finally pass on their eighth try? Granted, I'm so experienced that I took my licensing exam on paper eons ago when it was offered only twice a year, everyone answered all the questions over a two day period and it took six weeks to get the results. In those days, you only got two tries. That was it. So I could be someone biased and/or out of touch. I just wonder, though, about the knowledge base and learning capacity of a nurse that took the exam eight times to pass. Although perserverence is a virtue, and those folks obviously have plenty of that. Is nursing so different now that it's OK to take eight tries to get your license? Or is this a development of the "everyone gets a trophy" mentality? Keep trying and everyone gets a license?
    No, you're not. I mentioned it on another thread. (I think it was the "Older nurses..." thread you started.)

    What I posted was my feeling that after two failed attempts, the prospective nurse needs to complete a refresher course. If the student fails a third time, it's time to get another career. You shouldn't have unlimited bites at the apple.

    And no, the reason graduates fail NCLEX isn't because nursing is sooo much harder than it was in "the olden days," aka the time you and I took it. Some manage to squeak through school, but are winnowed out by the test. Some can't hack the pressure of the test. (And yet they think they'll handle life and death situations. Mmm'kay.) Some were poorly prepared by their nursing programs. The reasons are legion.

    All I know is, for as complex as nursing has supposedly gotten, it sure seems to have been dumbed down a lot. Look at how many people who post here are incapable of writing a coherent thought, with proper spelling. My instructors would have had their Clinics on my arse for writing poorly. My program could, and did, fail people on writing skills.

    I blame the internet, where everything can be answered in the bat of an eye. People don't research and exhaust all avenues of fact-finding anymore. They just come to sites like this one and say, "Write my care plan for me plz I need it by tomorrow morning!!!!!!!!!!" Then you're a "young-eater" if you suggest the student do his/her own work.
  3. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from bagladyrn
    I totally agree Ruby. There should be a limit at which you are required to retake some of the course or a remedial course of some sort. Of course, being one of those oldies who did the "two days at the convention center" testing I'm still baffled that anyone thinks 75 questions could cover the breadth of knowledge one needs to begin a nursing career
    But they've got algorithms and computer programs that prove it, so it must be true!
  4. by   Meriwhen
    I have no issue with how many times a person may need to take the test. I do think that after the 2nd failure, the applicant should be required to complete a mandatory review course at their own expense...and have to repeat this review course every time they continue to fail.
  5. by   Fiona59
    Here in Canada, we get three tries and it's done. Yes, three tries for CRNE or if you are a PN, three tries at CPNRE.

    In the last few years, in our forums, there has been a huge increase in the number of posters complaining that three tries aren't enough, that the wait for marks is too long. (we still do the paper and pencil and wait six weeks for results and can only be tested at three specific dates during the year). I don't know if it's because of the recent increase in IENs who claim to be USRNs or if it's an age thing.

    One demand that keeps popping up is "well, I've used all my CRNE attempts, can I try to be an PN?" Uhm, you've got a degree in nursing.

    Until recently I'd only ever met one locally trained PN who failed all three attempts and had to go back to school for remedial ed. One RN who failed once (and it was no big surprise to those that knew her, the failure made her smarten up her outlook on nursing quickly). Over the last few years we've had overseas hires who have failed CRNE x3 and then for some unknown reason been given permisson to write CPNRE x3 fail out totally. We've heard they've been escorted out of ORs and off units.

    I really don't think the public wants someone who has failed multiple times caring for them. They don't care about your test taking anxiety. They want qualified staff.
  6. by   Nursein2011
    I have a few thoughts on this topic. Yes, I think there should be a max put on the number of times one can take the NCLEX without having to take a class of some sort. But, with that being said, I know of some people who passed their first time that I wouldn't exactly want to care for me or my family members. Also, I don't like people lumping together all nursing education of today. My school held extremely high standards. Over half of our class failed out throughout the semesters for things like not demonstrating proficiency of skills on actual patients. So, no Kids, I did not only have to prove proficiency on dummies. My professors didn't hesitate for a minute to fail students for mistakes or lack of knowledge. So, again, please don't lump everyone together. My school's standards must have worked pretty well as 100% of our graduating class passed the NCLEX on the first try!
  7. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from NurseLoveJoy88
    I agree. I was reading a nlcex book from the 80's and the questions were pretty basic. Now days we have to listen to heart sounds, read ekgs, locate organs and things like the macula lens on diagrams. Its' a computer adaptive test, therefore not everyone passes with 75 questions. Some people should really do some research about the new nclex before passing judgement.
    OMG. In almost 27y, I never had to listen to heart/lung/bowel sounds, never had to know how to read an EKG. The heart...let me think..."smoke over fire," no wait, that's something else. Oh yeah! EKG! I just heard the other day there are lobes of lung tissue, and one side has more than the other. Awww, heck, why don't bodies come with maps? Can I google this stuff?
  8. by   Pepper The Cat
    I was going to post something similar Fiona - you beat me to it!

    I agree with those that say "test anxiety" is not a reason - by the time you have gone through elementary school, high school and then college or university, this is something you should know how to deal with.

    I have known a few people who failed the CRNE on the first attempt, but passed on the second. One person I know failed simply because somewhere along the line she missed a question, and put the answer to the next question in the previous question's spot. ie - answer to number 50 was put in slot 49. The CNO could tell her that they knew this is why she failed, but as there was no way to determin where she went wrong, she could have to re-write.

    I maintain that if you can't pass after 3 attempts there is something you are missing and you are in serious need of a refresher course!
  9. by   FlyingScot
    Quote from NurseLoveJoy88
    Now days we have to listen to heart sounds, read ekgs, locate organs and things like the macula lens on diagrams. .
    What are these organs you speak of? Are they important?
  10. by   Esme12
    Quote from Nurse LoveJoy 88
    I agree. I was reading a nclex book from the 80's and the questions were pretty basic. Now days we have to listen to heart sounds, read ekgs, locate organs and things like the macula lens on diagrams. Its' a computer adaptive test, therefore not everyone passes with 75 questions. Some people should really do some research about the new nclex before passing judgement.
    Just you think I didn't have to listen to heart sounds, read EKGs, locate organs when I went to school and took my boards? You are need to do some research before you pass judgement......and by the way I know how to use a computer.

    On your previous post you said the boards can be passed by someone who has never had a nursing you say they are so difficult and require extensive knowledge and knowledge that "older" experienced nurses don't have or don't have the mental capacity enough to operate the computer.

    That is unnecessary and unkind.

    I am concerned that the test can be repeated for any amount of times before a re-evaluation of the educational preparation is evaluated to re-seat for the exam. Is the test testing someone's ability to test well or does it test the knowledge required to begin to safely practice in the care of patients. At some point.....there has to be a stopping point to evaluate why the student can't and how far from graduation should it be before a refresher course is required to re-sit for the test.

    I don't necessarily want the nurse that took the test 5 times to pass......there is some sort of disconnect that prevented them form passing in a reasonable amount of time. I want the high scorer not the one who passed with the minimal amount of questions. I am not saying that someone who failed their boards the first time aren't great nurses as I have known many nurses that are great that failed once........MAYBE twice and have made stellar nurses and have gone on and achieved every sucess.

    There needs to be questions raised when you are repeating 4,5,6 times something needs to stop and be evaluated. Is it the tester, is it the test, is it the computer.....;whatever. There needs to be an end point when enough is enough and someone evaluates what the tester needs or is lacking instead of just taking their money.

    Taking it til you make it......goes right along with the mentality "Everybody wins" baloney and continuing to take money for these unfortunate few is robbery. I am not saying that everyone need to walk uphill both ways in a blizzard.......but there is something to say for having to take tests with 850-900 questions on 5 subjects and need to pass each with a minimal score that tested knowledge.

    Could I pass the boards again? I want to try ?.....NO!
    Last edit by Esme12 on Feb 9, '12
  11. by   MN-Nurse
    Quote from NurseLoveJoy88
    Ruby it is this mentality of you and others that really irk me. I don't care if a nurse had to take the NCLEX 20 times to pass....
    This is kinda what I meant.

    If someone failed the NCLEX 10 times, telling them to take it again is cataclysmically bad advice.
  12. by   c2brn7
    I'm Ms.Test Anxiety but I also have a bad attention span.I didn't think I would pass NCLEX but they gave me ear plugs and I discovered the desks had built in blinders! I passed the first time. It's not just 75 questions and you pass. I had 170 questions. I knew the material but I kept over thinking some questions. I know someone who had 75 questions and didn't pass. My classmates passed with 75-265 questions.
    I personally don't think a person should take this test so many times. I would give two tries and then it's time for remedial work. If you get the material, do the practice questions several times until you get a hang of how these questions work, you'll pass (and wear ear plugs). All the people I know who did not pass the first time, did not practice the questions like they should have.
    Just my thought on this subject.
  13. by   MN-Nurse
    Quote from leenak
    My husband (who went to law school) was telling me about a friend who finally passed the bar exam on the 3rd try.
    I know a guy who passed the bar exam on his third try.

    He is an idiot.