Taking the NCLEX...When is the timing right?!

  1. Thankfully, I am almost finished with nursing school. December here I come! :spin: I am debating when is best to take the NCLEX. I have heard different things so wanted to get some more opinions. At this point, I would like to take it pretty much the day after graduation if possible. I figure the information will be fresh in my mind, I will have been studying non-stop up until that point and I can't afford as a new wife and graduate nurse with lots of student loans to pay off to sit around for months studying. I'm pretty much thinking if I do not know it by the time I graduate then I may just not know it ever.... I have heard it is best to take it while the info is fresh and more importantly before you work too long and see how things are really done rather than how the NCLEX tells you they are done. Did anyone take the NCLEX right out of school that might shed some light on the situation? Thanks!
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    Joined: Apr '07; Posts: 1

    8 Comments

  3. by   Halinja
    Studies have shown the sooner after graduation the better. Percentages of those passing drop steadily the further away from graduation.
  4. by   suzanne4
    If you have a choice, always before you begin your first job as a nurse.

    But remember that it will be up to your BON as to how soon that you can test. Some are not very fast on processing applications, and then it depends on how fast that your school gets your transcripts to them.

    So, if you graduate in December; more than likely it will be after the holidays before you can test. BONs have holiday time the last two weeks of December in many cases, they may be open but not at full staffing.
  5. by   krisjazzer13
    I too wanted to take the NCLEX right after graduation (graduated Dec 06), but by the time my ATT came w/the holidays and everything, I had been out of school for over a month already! Once you get the ATT, it also depends on where you take the test and if there are any openings available immediately. I had to wait an additional two weeks after receiving my ATT before an appointment was available at my testing center....so I graduated Dec 16, 2006 and couldn't sit for the test until Feb 5, 2007...so just take the extra time and study, you will feel more prepared. Good luck to you!
  6. by   Hoping LVN2BSN
    I suggest taking it as soon as you can. I graduated 2/19 got my ATT in April, took the test a couple days after I got my ATT. I studied for an hour a day everyday except a few from December until I tested April 10. I think a major mistake people make is they never started preparing, or they stop after graduating which makes absolutely no sense to me. There are people in my class who get their ATT and said I have to start studying!! What!!!??!! Or they jump waist deep into 20 credits in preparation for an RN program and now they don't have time to study and study six hours a day on Saturday's. Pretty sad. Whatever you do, maintain a study schedule starting now and continuing until after you graduate, not 6 hours a day one day a week!
  7. by   breech
    yes, i would agree that right after the graduation, take NCLEX immediately..
  8. by   JoniL&DRN
    Our school has been studying pass rates for the past several years as they relate to 1) grades pre nursing school 2) grades during nursing school 3) scores on the ATI 4) length of time between graduation and NCLEX.

    It appears that one who takes the exam 4-6 weeks after graduation has the best pass rate (along with those who have 3.5-4.0 GPA andwho score greater than 80% on the ATI but that really insn't a surprise). This may be because the rest took it much later. I don't know how many took it earlier than that though. Most of those who took it at 4-6 were using that time to prepare by taking a review so that probably helps. Also I don't know if this is a consideration for states besides CA, but here, since we don't participate in the early notification (you wait for the BRN), if you test too soon it seems like your results are actually delayed due to the fact that the BRN hasn't yet received/processed transcripts. Last semester we had a gal who took it ~2 weeks after grad and a gal who took it ~5 weeks. The gal who took it at 5 weeks had her result before the gal who took it at 2. This wasn't confirmed as an issue by the BRN but it has happened a few times so people have started to add it up as a glitch... for whatever it's worth.
  9. by   smrfett76
    Hey, I officially graduated in the beginning of January and took NCLEX in April and passed with 75 questions. I wanted to take some time off and study so I quit my job and concentrated on my family and boards, I did do about 2500 questions before the test. (about 4 weeks studying) I do believe that in my situation it was better to wait and relax for a bit. Most of my friends took it within 6 weeks of graduation, but I wanted to wait. I definitely wanted to get my license before I started an internship and I am glad I will not have to worry about that. Good luck in your decision. Do what is best for you.
  10. by   pagandeva2000
    As Suzanne said, there are things that are out of your control to wait for...the time the school sends off their things, the availablity of the test site and how backed up they can be. Also, life has a way of throwing a few things in your way, too. I sent my things off the day the school told me to, in fact, I bad both money orders ready. I completed my course and review class by the end of March, and arranged to test in the last week of May, 2006, then, a week before, my father in law died and I had to travel to the funeral with NCLEX books in hand. I arranged to take the test a week after I was due to return. It was not the day I wanted, but, took what I could. All in all, it was 2 months and one week after class was finished. My brain was rattled, I was carsick from the train ride, but, I passed.

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