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My NCLEX Experience

andibee andibee (New) New

I am a recent graduate of Marquette University's College of Nursing, and I felt that I was super prepared for the NCLEX. We had a Kaplan representative come teach the four-day course of basic NCLEX strategies, all while answering questions. I made sure to do all of the Question Trainers, as well as complete the Qbank.

My test date was July 7th, and with the Kaplan strategies under my belt, I felt I was ready. I was making consistent progress on my Question Trainers and was ready for the entire experience to be over.

Unfortunately, my first time around, I did NOT pass. I got the full 265 questions, and I was devastated. I got the 'bad pop-up' and knew that it was a done deal. When I got the results in the mail, I was informed that I was at the "near-passing" score for all of the categories. I had to regrettably inform my professor that I did not pass, but she was very supportive and told me not to give up. She recommended using Suanders 6th edition as well as LaCharity 3rd edition to accommodate my second time around studying. After looking further into it, and seeing all of the positive reviews, I decided to go ahead and make the investment.

I scheduled my next NCLEX the first day I could get after 45 days. In the meantime, I took the Saunders pre-test to get my personal schedule. Following that, working through the LaCharity book, as well as using the online resources for both books, I gained the much needed content review, something that would've benefited me the first time taking the NCLEX. Additionally, I found the 35-page review on this website and reviewed it several times, taking in the most important tips.

Upon my second testing day, I felt even more nervous than before! But after just under two hours, and 75 questions later, I was done. I couldn't believe the screen went blue after 75. I wouldn't have to do another round of 265 questions (at least not this time around).

About half an hour later, I did the PVT and got the 'good pop-up'! A wave of relief came over me. I had done it!

Overall, I cannot recommend the Saunders book enough! It gave me the information and skills I needed to truly succeed.

Good luck and best wishes to all of those who are going to take their exam! :D

Congrats on your success! Personally, I loved my LaCharity and didn't really use Saunders but both are highly regarded.

Did you use the new pearson pop up? Congrats!

So happy for you! What pretest are you talking about with Saunders? And you got a schedule to study from?

I recently purchased LaCharity from someone, how did you study with it ? Just practicing the questions over and over ?

Msg88, just do all the questions and read the rationales, make sure you understand every question and then I went back through once or twice to reread all the questions, that's just how I did it and it worked for me

Hey Nicole,

I actually was able to use the original PVT, about two hours before the maintenance update.


Did you purchase a new Suanders book? If so, there should be a scratch-off code on the inside front cover that you can use to register online on the Evolve website. Once you set that up, you can launch the practice questions, and the first option is to take a 75 question "pre-test." Once you complete that, a personalized study schedule will be created for you based on your performance. It definitely helped me to focus on my weak areas (mostly pharm).

Hope that helps!!


I agree with e6m6m3, it is important to do as many questions as possible for you (or most, I did probably about 85% of the questions, and none of the case studies). However, the key is to read the rationales, especially the category classification of all of the questions, which in LaCharity, includes Prioritization, Delegation, and Assignment, as the book's title suggests. Which of the three of the categories are your weakest?

Prioritization is a huge component to the NCLEX, so most of the questions in that book are related to that category.

The online questions are all the same as in the book, so it would be helpful to bookmark the ones you got wrong/are unsure of so you can quickly look back on the rationales.