A question about questions.

  1. It's exactly how the title states. To briefly state my situation, I am starting to move forward into my nursing core classes and of course that entails taking NCLEX type tests. I seem to be struggling with that. It is not because I do not get the material, it is just trying to transition from one test taking technique(ones you find in general education courses) to another(NCLEX type questions).

    I usually read a question and look for the right answer right away, rather than look over the question, analyze it, look over the answers, and see what is the BEST answer. I also have trouble with SELECT ALL THAT APPLY questions.

    I am starting to step towards a solution by taking more NCLEX type questions at home and getting tutoring from my teachers, however, I just wanted to see what fellow nursing students and maybe even current new grads had done in order to start putting themselves into that type of mind set.

    Any help that could be offered would be great, thank you!
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    About Beautiful Mind RN, BSN

    Joined: Sep '12; Posts: 219; Likes: 379
    Training Specialist, RN; from US
    Specialty: Med/Surg, Oncology, Epic CT


  3. by   BloomNurseRN
    Buy an NCLEX study guide. Normally I don't just go around telling people to spend money but really, it's worth it. I highly recommend Kaplan NCLEX-RN 2012-2013 and Prioritization, Delegation, and Assignment: Practice Exercises for the NCLEX Examination. These give practice questions, as well as information on how to break down questions in the NCLEX style. I really do think every nursing student, from the time they start, should use books like these to learn this whole new language. Good luck!
  4. by   CC Wisconsin
    I 100% agree with you...the mindset you need for NCLEX-style questions is so different from other tests. All of the answers can be correct, but which is MOST correct? Ughhh. When I first started answering NCLEX-style questions in classes, I was terrible. I think it just comes with practice. I usually go through and read the question first and picture that situation in my head. "What would I do here?" Then I look at the answers and hopefully my answer is in there. If not, I go through each one and ask myself why it is or is not correct.

    Sorry, I'm still terrible at the "select all that apply" questions, so I have no advice for you there

    Does your school use ATI for practice tests? I'd use those as much as possible. At least how my school has it set up, you are able to see the rationale immediately after you submit each question.

    I'd do the NCLEX questions at the end of each chapter and if your textbook has a free site (usually with an activation code), use that...they have a lot of study resources and NCLEX questions on there.

    And yes, buy a NCLEX book Good luck!
  5. by   Beautiful Mind RN
    Thank you for the tips!
  6. by   Erindel RN
    Look at the select all that apply questions as true and false questions. Go down the options and ask yourself if the choice is true or not. Hopefully that'll help you answer it a little easier..
  7. by   springchick1
    I HATE SELECT ALL THAT APPLY!!!! I study with NCLEX study guides. You can also get class specific books like Fundamentals Success or Reviews and Rationales:Med Surge. They make all sorts of them! And they have been a tremendous help to me! I actually had a test where I got 5/7 of the select all that apply correct It just takes practice. Good luck to you
  8. by   Beautiful Mind RN
    Thank you. This is all helping me a lot.
  9. by   4boysmama
    I hate the select all ones...so I got nothing there (though I love the true/false suggestion, going to try that from now on!) On regular nclex-type questions, I cover the answers with my hand while reading the question, and then write next to it what I would do first/look for first/assess first (basically, I short answer the question) and then read the choices and see which fits best with my short answer.
  10. by   RubberDuckieLove
    Check out Davis's Q&A series! They have a book just about for every nursing module. A friend (who was in the program a semester ahead of me) recommended the Fundamentals one and it is a great additional resource to look at. Also, as stated before, if your school uses ATI, they should have gave you the ATI books that go along with your modules. They have practice questions in those as well.
  11. by   squidbillies
    Serious question- how in the world do you all have/make time to study additional books? Are these books quick reads that reinforce the material you've already studied from your required reading? I'm not sure how I could fit any more study material in, but if it's going to help, I'm willing to try.
  12. by   Stephalump
    Quote from squidbillies
    Serious question- how in the world do you all have/make time to study additional books? Are these books quick reads that reinforce the material you've already studied from your required reading? I'm not sure how I could fit any more study material in, but if it's going to help, I'm willing to try.
    I find the extra books to be pretty easy reads since I've already covered the material in lecture and my textbooks.

    If you don't understand a concept, you're going to have to devote more time to SOMETHING that will clarify. Tutoring, googling, etc. Sometimes all you need is to read the information as written by someone else. Far better idea than trying to re-read the same mumbo-jumbo over and over again.
  13. by   RubberDuckieLove
    Exactly what Stephalump said. The book I suggested is more like a question/answer/rational book. It gives you keywords to look for and definitions to understand but it's basically just practicing critical thinking on the material you are currently learning.
  14. by   nurseprnRN
    The reason that there are more and more SATAs ("select all that apply") is because the research into why new grads make errors in their first year of practice indicates that this is part of their problem: They can't look at the big picture. This is another way at testing your critical thinking skills. You can't memorize for it as you could for a lab value or a med side effect; as in real-life nursing you have to be able to put the pieces together to make good decisions.

    Word to the wise who are still in school-- work hard on that. This is why faculties are being pressed to emphasize integration of all info into your lectures and into your school exams, because NCLEX addresses actual practice. This is not something to be gamed or short-cutted; it's thinking like a nurse, a skill you absolutely must master to be a nurse.