Hurst Review vs. Kaplan


Hello. I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts/opinions on the Live Hurst Review, DVD review, or online review versus what Kaplan has to offer. I mean I could go online and read testimonials, but I'm sure companies arent willing to post negative feedback of their programs :p

A few friends of mine are loading up and going from TN to TX for a Live Hurst Review over spring break, and one of the advantages I've seen from it is if you pay the 350 for the live review, you can go to any other scheduled live review again for only 25 bucks. However, I've also heard that it's not the greatest, so I'm just getting insight and opinions. I've also heard Kaplan is great and that it helps for critical thinking skills, not just reinforcing information that you've learned.

Any thoughts/suggestions/insight/insults? :p

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, ER, Peds ER-CPEN. Has 15 years experience.

I did a Hurst review, we had a live 3 day reiew on campus (required, the school wouldn't submit us to the BON as graduates untill the afternoon of the last day), IMHO it wasn't worth the 350$ I used a NCLEX Exam Cram book and CD from pearson and I'm 100% sure that is what helped me pass, the question format was dead on to NCLEX which is a shorter no info type of question that is very different from the exams we had for 2 yrs, alot harder than the they made us use for a year, and made more sense than the Hurst questions, it was entertaining and I still hear Marlene Hurst in the back of my mind saying "that's not niiiiice" lmao But a good book and question bank CD and some serious time put into it will hit your wallet a little less.

Specializes in OR. Has 14 years experience.

oh my god... i noticed that too. I looked at a sample video on hurst review and i was excited about it until I heard the lady talk. Wow. I mean I'm from tennessee, but holy crap, thats southern. lol. She probably likes to drink sprite, not the normal sprite, but the sprite with 6 I's =(

Ya, we do, which never really coorelates to the material we learn in class or see on our test, lol. I mean its all the same concept, just a lot more detailed.

Thanks for the info on the Hurst review! I probably wont go because I've been hearing all about it and that it doesn't really focus on critical thinking as much as other things. Plus saving 350 is always a bonus =p I can go on a 2 day trip during spring break with my fiance instead! woohoo.

Anyone else have any suggestions? Mainly for the hesi coming up.


914 Posts

I did the Hurst Review, both live and online. I passed the first time with 75 questions in less than one hour and felt overly prepared. I literally left smiling. The Hurst practice tests were more difficult than anything I encountered on the NCLEX. Hurst emphasizes learning concepts, not memorization, so that you can deduce answers. Is it a little rough around the edges? Yes. Marlene's approach is entertaining. But if you study the way she tells you to, I think it's an effective review.

That said, there is absolutely no difference between the live review and the online review. The lectures are scripted in the same manner. If anything, I found the online review to be superior because Marlene delivers all of the lectures, and she is humorous. You can watch the online lectures as many times as you want, and the convenience of watching them whenever and wherever you want is terrific. The written materials are identical to what's handed out at the live review. I did have one question about a specific statement that Marlene made. I posted the question online, and it was answered the next day. (In fact, they keep a running bulletin board of students' questions.)

Marlene does review test strategies, but her greatest emphasis is on what she calls "core content," the topics you must understand completely in order to deduce answers. She stresses that you need to convert concepts to long-term memory. She talks about getting to the higher level questions that are not based on memorization. I knew I was doing well on the NCLEX when I had virtually no memorization questions, one math question, and one SATA.

I sat down last night -- four weeks after I stopped studying -- and tried another publisher's practice CD. I wanted to see what I'd retained. I scored 96 percent on 100 questions, and I felt it was easy. So I guess you could say I'm a satisfied Hurst customer.

Specializes in OR. Has 14 years experience.

Thank you for the input!


914 Posts

P.S. Once you've attended a live Hurst Review, you can attend as many others as you want at no charge. The $25 fee only applies if you want a fresh set of printed materials. You can also get unlimited access to the online review for $50 a month, well worth it.

I took the Hurst Review live before beginning my last semester, studied off and on that semster, then did the online review just before NCLEX for a refresher. It was really helpful. If I had it all to do again, I'd pay the $350 up front and take the live review before beginning my nursing courses, then repeat it each semester. Taking it in advance of some classes would have really helped. As it was, I took it in advance of pediatrics and felt it was enormously helpful.

Specializes in OR. Has 14 years experience.

do you think the hurst review would also help with the HESI?

I feel bad that I'm more worried about that at this point, but if I dont pass it, I can't even sit for the NCLEX, so I kind of have to have it as my priority concern at the moment.

I'm comparing pricing, and the Hurst is a LOT cheaper than any Kaplan I'd want to take.


914 Posts

I'm not familiar with the HESI. But I took the ATI exit exam after completing the Hurst live review, and it told me I had a 98 percent change of passing NCLEX the first time.

I differ with the opinion that Hurst does not emphasize critical thinking. I think that's what Hurst is all about. You're urged to master core content so that you can look at a particular question, understand what it's really asking, and answer questions based on scientific knowledge. I was surprised that Hurst did not emphasize pharmacology -- all tolled, I don't think there are more than 20 drugs mentioned in the review -- and yet when NCLEX rolled around, I was asked only about one common drug and one I'd never heard of. Hurst really narrows down what you need to know in order to study efficiently.

One other study aid that I found very helpful was LaCharity's book on delegation and prioritization. I picked up a used copy for $8 on It offers hundreds of practice questions based on body system.

Specializes in OR. Has 14 years experience.

me and a friend are considering the online hurst review. we would split the cost of 300.

would you advise against doing so? would we be able to login at different places at the same time?


914 Posts

Sorry, I don't know. I don't know what kind of security system they have.


1 Post

If you and a friend wanted to do it together you could log in at the same time in different places.. However I am not sure how legal that is


2 Posts

I am graduating in 2 weeks. Still going back and forth on Kaplan and Hurst. Can anyone who has taken them recently give me feedback on the strengths and weakness on both these? They are pricey and I want my money's worth :)

All feedback appreciated!!!

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