NCLEX - It must be all a myth.

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Hello. I am a recent BSN graduate who also took the NCLEX-RN last week. I currently have an EMT job working for peanuts doing 50-60 hours a week trying to find time for studying and the family. I was incredibly anxious waiting to take the NCLEX as I knew two people who both did five hours with 265 questions. One passed and the other failed.

I longingly waited for my ATT and had been studying from about 20 minutes a day to three hours a day depending upon my work schedule. I used Hesi, made flash cards, wrote notes, did the NCLEX RN mastery app, and a friend gave me their log in to Kaplan as I didn't have the money for it.

I began studying hard since graduation in May and where as several of my comrades received their ATT, tested, passed, and started work as early as June and July, I was still waiting for the ATT. I was anxious knowing that the longer you wait the worse your chances at passing are. I even researched what higher level and lower level questions were and the myth of "if your last NCLEX question isn't higher level then you failed" and also "if you get a lot of SATA questions you're doing good".

I finally got my ATT the second week of August and figured the only way I knew I was going to be ready was to just take it. Maybe it was a smart idea, maybe not. I had plateaued my practice test scores in the mid-fifties and felt I couldn't do any better. How am I going to know everything? I felt if I had a good grasp of strategy then I would be okay.

Test day came. I went in and after #75, #76 came up. And it just kept coming. #100, then #150, then #200, then #250, then #265, then blue screen. I had maybe 25 SATA and maybe 40 priority questions. I had a lot of scenario/outcome and a lot of general knowledge/recall questions.

I was devastated. My last question was a general knowledge/recall question. I knew I failed. I also had a lot of repeat/reworded contact precaution questions. I felt I didn't know a damn thing on that test and I did a lot of guessing. I was sure I failed. I knew it in my heart. I prepared for looking for another job, putting in as many hours as I could for my current and how was I going to pay rent let alone pay for the NCLEX again?

I found out I passed. Don't know how I did it, but I passed. I guess what I'm trying to say is is that maybe all the NCLEX myths are just myths. Study the best you can, do your best and you will succeed. If you do not, don't give up. Keep going.

scottaprn

292 Posts

Congratulations and you are correct. Almost all the stories about the Nclex are myths. But they are harder to kill than almost any horror movie ghoul

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

Congratulations! I'm not sure about anything except that having it stop at minimum number in which I believe indicates a relatively high pass rate.

In general I'm an excellent test taker, doesn't mean I'm all that intelligent just that I test good. On both my LPN and RN I got the minimum number of questions and by that alone felt confident that I had passed. Nothing fancy I simply figured there was no way I did so horribly that it wouldn't have given me a few more chances to answer correctly. Thankfully it did cut off at the minimum because if it hadn't I would have had a CVA and been unable to finish. I admire those of you with the internal fortitude to sit there for hours answering those annoying questions.

RNsRWe, ASN, RN

4 Articles; 10,428 Posts

Well......obviously ALL myths are, by definition, myths, so.....yes, all the NCLEX myths are myths. Truths, however, are always truths ;)

There are plentiful rumors, myths, and outright crap posted regarding the NCLEX, and there are several of us who frequent this message board who do our best to correct those misconceptions. Sometimes people hold onto them dearly (why? who knows). Sometimes they learn. We keep on swimmin'!

Congrats on passing, and good luck to you in your future endeavors ?

JustBeachyNurse, RN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 13 years experience.
Jules A said:
Congratulations! I'm not sure about anything except that having it stop at minimum number in which I believe indicates a relatively high pass rate.

In general I'm an excellent test taker, doesn't mean I'm all that intelligent just that I test good. On both my LPN and RN I got the minimum number of questions and by that alone felt confident that I had passed. Nothing fancy I simply figured there was no way I did so horribly that it wouldn't have given me a few more chances to answer correctly. Thankfully it did cut off at the minimum because if it hadn't I would have had a CVA and been unable to finish. I admire those of you with the internal fortitude to sit there for hours answering those annoying questions.

Minimum number means did really really well or really really bad to a statistical significance that determined pass or fail. Nothing more nothing less.

Sad is that most of these urban legends/rumors are fully dispelled on the NCSBN website.

RNsRWe, ASN, RN

4 Articles; 10,428 Posts

JustBeachyNurse said:

Sad is that most of these urban legends/rumors are fully dispelled on the NCSBN website.

I also find that there are those who will state "I've done lots of research" and then add to the Myth Pile. Research that doesn't include going to the SOURCE for the information.

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.
JustBeachyNurse said:
Minimum number means did really really well or really really bad to a statistical significance that determined pass or fail. Nothing more nothing less.

Yup and like I said since I got the minimum I was fairly certain I passed.

If the data is available I would bet more people pass who got the minimum passed then failed. There was a survey here, not anything earth shatteringly scientific of course, but a majority of responders with the minimum score passed. In real time I know many who got the minimum but never met anyone who reported failing at the minimum. I do know some who failed with different middle numbers, and 1 who got the max and passed, 1 who got the max and failed.

RNsRWe, ASN, RN

4 Articles; 10,428 Posts

Jules A said:
Yup and like I said since I got the minimum I was fairly certain I passed.

If the data is available I would bet more people pass who got the minimum passed then failed. There was a survey here, not anything earth shatteringly scientific of course, but a majority of responders with the minimum score passed. In real time I know many who got the minimum but never met anyone who reported failing at the minimum. I do know some who failed with different middle numbers, and 1 who got the max and passed, 1 who got the max and failed.

Purely speculation, but it seems to me that since greater than 85% of first-time candidates pass.....it would make sense that the great majority of those who finish the exam in 75 (or 85 PN) questions would pass. After all, if the majority of those whose exams stopped at the minimum FAILED....wouldn't that indicate that the majority of the testing population ALSO would have failed?

Not conclusive, and of course I'm sure someone could drive a truck through this, LOL, but....it just makes sense to me ?

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

This are stats on PN NCLEX

  • Percent of test takers that receive the minimum number of questions: 57.2%
  • Percent of test takers that receive the maximum number of questions: 13.5%
  • NCLEX-PN Exam | PracticalNursing.org

RNsRWe, ASN, RN

4 Articles; 10,428 Posts

Jules A said:
This are stats on PN NCLEX
  • Percent of test takers that receive the minimum number of questions: 57.2%
  • Percent of test takers that receive the maximum number of questions: 13.5%

Well there ya go ?

If more than half (way more than half) get only 75 questions, and somewhere between 80-85% (PN stats) pass the first time.....it's clear the majority of them--big majority--are passing at that number ?

JustBeachyNurse, RN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 13 years experience.
Jules A said:
This are stats on PN NCLEX
  • Percent of test takers that receive the minimum number of questions: 57.2%
  • Percent of test takers that receive the maximum number of questions: 13.5%

But what is the percentage of that 57% that pass? I believe there are up to date statistics from the source, ncsbn.

The current passing level through 2q15 is down to 79% for 1st time US educated applicants for NCLEX-PN and the exam didn't even change. Around 50% for Philippines candidates

JustBeachyNurse, RN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 13 years experience.

Current numbers for NCLEX-PN through December 2014 is 54% get minimum number (does not differentiate whether pass or fail just 54.3% of first time US educated candidates get minimum number) , 116 questions is average for candidate passing, 1.6% use the maximum time allotted (5 hrs), 17% of all first time candidates get maximum 205 questions. Average eat time is 2hrs 6 minutes.

RN stats included in source :

https://www.ncsbn.org/15_2014_NCLEXExamStats_vol64.pdf

I'm probably the only nerd that found this so interesting.