Am I an odd?

  1. I first took the NCLEX-RN in July after graduating nursing school in May and had the max 265 questions and took 4 hours. I didn't feel good coming out because of the number of questions I had and later heard that simply meant I was in it till the end. I failed the exam and when I received my results I scored 'Near the Passing Standard' in EVERY category. Unsure where to start I began reading Kaplin (the entire book) and did the CD questions. I studied areas I KNEW I was weak such as lab values and pharm. I reviewed and read about fluids and electrolytes (because that seems to be an area many things come down to in one way or another). I knew frame of mind was an important aspect of the test so refused to have negative thoughts and felt extremely confident going in. I told (and convinced) myself that I was ready this time. I knew my stuff, understood the question format and was going to pass this time. I believed every word and went back last Friday to retake the NCLEX.

    This time I had the only 75 questions and took an hour and half to test. I felt really good coming out and knew I passed. My husband and daughter said they knew it too because of the grin on my face (that I didn't even realize I had...). I felt the questions were covering a wide range of areas and didn't feel 'bombarded' by any certain category like I had the first time around. I did what I had swore I wouldn't and paid the $7.95 to see my 'unofficial' results from Pearsonvue last Sunday. I had failed.

    When I got my results in the mail is showed that I had taken a HUGE step backward and didn't pass a single category. In fact, I actually scored 'below the passing average' on three of them this time. I wasn't anxious or nervous during the test. I read every question and reworded. I used process of elimination on the one's I wasn't sure on. I did everything I was supposed to, except... answer the questions correctly.

    I am lost now. I retest in November and don't even know where to begin. I have no idea if it was my lack of knowledge, my inability to put USE my knowledge effectively, or if it was the format of the NCLEX itself that got to me. I think I should do a review course maybe. I have purchased the Saunders Review for NCLEX-RN Exam 5th edition and am currently waiting for it to come in the mail.

    Am I totally an original here? Am I the first person any of you have heard of that did this total flip flop when it came to taking the NCLEX? Does any one have any ideas for me? I am going to use the test plan I have read so much about on here from Susanne but should I also do an online review as well? Is there any certain thing or book that someone can suggest for my preparation to retest and/or study? I feel like a total failure here. I mean, for goodness sake, it isn't like I don't understand anything I learned in nursing school. I managed to maintain a 3.5 GPA and feel completely confident when I am (was) nursing. If I didn't know something I knew enough to look it up and was able to safely practice while I had my GN license. My fellow staff and manager seem to believe in my abilities, but what's going on????

    Okay... I'm done. This got kinda' long and seems to be repeating itself a bit. Sorry.
  2. Visit rags profile page

    About rags

    Joined: Sep '06; Posts: 280; Likes: 30
    Hospital Staff Nurse; from US
    Specialty: PEDS ~ PP ~ NNB & LII Nursery


  3. by   DolphinRN84
    I'm sorry you weren't able to pass the first couple of times. You are not the only one that has taken the exam more than once. There have been people on this forum that have taken it up to 6 times and they still managed to pass. Saunders is a really good book for reviewing content. You mentioned that you retest in November. I'm not sure when, but Suzanne, the moderator of this forum (Suzanne4), has a 6 week plan using only Saunders Comprehensive Book (3rd edition). Before following her plan, you have to follow the sticky that's on top of this forum that says "First tip of my new study guide." After you've finished that tip, you can PM Suzanne your email and she will send you her plan via email. The only downside is that you need 6 weeks...that's why I wasn't sure when exactly you were going to retest. Best of luck though!

    Oh almost forgot...Suzanne has a passing rate of 100%. Everyone who has used her plan (especially ones who needed to retake it multiple times) have passed using her plan. Good luck! Just a suggestion.
  4. by   hlfpnt
    I am using Suzanne's study plan & am liking it very well. She uses Saunders 3rd edition, which is a very good study book. It has all the content you need, it's easy to read & the rationales are very complete. It even gives an explanation for why an answer choice is wrong so you understand that, too. Since you don't test again til November, you have plenty of time to try it. It's very well put together & she doesn't charge for it. Check out the sticky at the top of this forum for details...all my best to you!

    Info not intentionally repeated..posted right behind Lena.
    Last edit by hlfpnt on Sep 28, '06
  5. by   rags
    Thank you Lena. I think that is the book I have purchased and am now waiting on. I know others have had to take the NCLEX more than once, but has anyone actually done worse the second time (expecially after so much preporation) like I did?

    My mind is completely boggled. I am still stuck in the denial stage of grieving I think...
  6. by   rags
    Thank you hlfpnt. I have the book coming so will definately use her study plan. Good luck on your exam and make sure you let us know how you do. It isn't scarry, just different.

    I also think the board of nursing needs to rethink how they do this thing. I received a GN license just for completing and graduating from nursing school. They felt at that point I could safely practice with certain bounderies, now... I can't even do that but I am supposed to learn and retake. I still have my nursing knowledge I got from school! I am still a graduate nurse with a degree in nursing!

    Okay... moving into the anger stage here...:angryfire
  7. by   hlfpnt
    You're welcome, thank you & I will keep you posted! :wink2:
  8. by   RNKay31
    I am so sorry that you failed, I have failed the first time to with 265, then when I retook I have passed with 75 questions, I have used saunders and kaplan, please if you need my help, pm me, all the best.
  9. by   rags
    Thank you so much Kay. I think just finding this site and have the words of encouragement has made me feel better. I understand that it is possible for me to still pass the NCLEX and that I just have to figure out a different stratagy to get there.

    See... I'm moving along quickly through this process... I've moved into acceptance now. This is an amazing feeling of rejuvination that I think I have been in desperate need of this week. Thanks to everyone!
  10. by   Paleobug
    Quite frankly, NCLEX is an SOB, not to mention the stress you go through in waiting for the results. It's meant to trip you up. I failed mine in July and I'm retaking it again in two weeks. I think what my problem was, test taking stress and forgeting some things that I learned in school. I've been doing Suzanne's plan also. If you take a few days to relax and recoup from your ordeal, you can begin studying again using her plan. Like other poster's have said, you can pm her for more details and read the top of the forum page for the first tip. She doesn't, however, recommend using other study sources because of their possible different rationale viewpoints.
  11. by   blessed1702
    I'm sorry to here your news! I failed twice (near passing the first time) (below in Pharm) the second time!!!??? Who knows! I've done NCSBN and Kaplan online reviews as well as the Kaplan book. I am doing Saunders with 70-100's on the quizzes but 60 & 66% on the exams. I also did the Mosby CAT and it said I have a 94% pass rate, I don't know how accurate that is though! I wanted to do suzannes plan but my test is next week (I'm almost through the Saunders book). I will pray for you and I! Please don't lose faith we can Pass this time!!!
  12. by   rags
    blessed1702 make sure to let me know how you do. Good luck! We CAN beat this thing, it's just a matter of figureing it out. Right? RIGHT! After all, we did manage to get through nursing school so we can definately get through this. :smiley_ab
  13. by   Lo225
    No, you are not odd at all. Believe me, those of us who have passed the NCLEX-RN felt the same way you do. I am not sure if I speak for others, but we sympathize with you and root for you. Although I passed the first time with 75 questions, I know that it was the grace of GOD who allowed me to answer the questions the way that I did. I left out of the room not knowing how I did. I can only remember sitting in the car and going over information to see whether or not I got the ones in question correct or wrong. Either way, I drove myself crazy.
    Remember God allows us to go through things to see where our faith is and what we do when we doubt ourselves and even him. Go to this website: which was created by the NCSBN. The saunders is great, but remember when answering the questions take the test as if you were really taking a test and just don't click to get the answer and then say, yeah that is what I was thinking. I found myself doing that and realized I was getting no where. If you get to a terminology or disease that you do not know, really try to learn it so that you can apply it. Look it up and try to compare them to similar diseases. Because the ones that you look over will be the ones on the test. And remember the questions or diseases that seem to come up more often than others really "mean" something.
    And remember to pray in the morning, night and in front of the computer screen and tell God that he is in control and only he can help you through this. Say it outloud so that he may give you the strength to get through each question. He is in control.
    You are in my prayers, you will do this the next time.
  14. by   echota
    Hello rags,

    I'm probably the first one to tell you that what happened to you is the same exact thing that happened to me. My first test of 265, all were "near passing"...second test of 261 which I ran out of time were "near passing"...and my third test last Aug. 22 of 75 questions were "below passing"... It seemed like I have gotten worse. I paid for kaplan twice on my first 2 tests. My 3rd one however, I just reviewed my book and practiced the trainer cd over and over again. I still failed.

    Same as you, I was lost on how to study differently this time. I'm currently doing suzanne's plan. I have to be honest, it's a very good place to start studying. You should try her plan and hopefully it will work for you

    Pull yourself up again and keep going. The battle is not over yet. I also had a 3.5 gpa when I graduated but that really doesn't matter now for what matters is if we pass or not. It will only take a matter of time that we'll do this so keep going!