nclex passed 2nd time... my take on it


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6 Posts

I have a question for the think that the ATI books messed you up and you would have been better off not studying them at all and just sticking with other review materials?

Graduates of our program (we use ATI) have complained that the ATI material was horrible and to "not even look at it" and stick with Saunders/Kaplan, etc

What is your take on that?

yes, this is a great question!... my fiance and i have talked about this a lot actually. i feel that my school probably wanted to do the right thing for us and provide us something for the nclex. i would of NEVER taken the nclex exam had I actually taken a proper nclex practice exam (for example, a pretest nclex with kaplan) that gave me a low probability of passing. i felt that this was what my ATI exam probably was telling me -- but the fact that I was sooo close to their goal the second time around, and i continued to study after it made me feel ready to take it. yet, when i took the real thing i had never seen those type of questions before in my life!! i felt sort changed and given little skill in actually taking nclex style questions. the ATI exam felt like half easy questions with half hard questions. that's not an adequate exam to tell someone they are ready to take a computer adaptive exam that relies on you passing above the standard consistently.

it is true that 80% of first time takers pass... but the explanation for why the other 20% pass must be more than just, "not competent."

my feelings about the nclex is i learned a lot studying for them the second time around. things that i had not committed to memory in school, i was forced to when studying for this. does this make me a better nurse? yes and no.

sorry, this reply is sorta choppy and probably doesn't make too much sense.

to answer your question:

I believe Saunder's end of the chapter questions decieved me in thinking those questions were questions I would have to pass on the exam. (true, they might be the lower level questions... but you have to answer correctly the hard level questions to pass, not easy level questions).

I believed my ATI predictor exam gave me a false reassurance about my confidence and need to study more.

I do not believe studying several material types messed me up exactly. All the REVIEW material is good with Saunders and ATI... but again, they treat everything with equal importance. They give tuberculosis the same importance as a section on bladder infections, when tuberculosis is tested on all the time!! Kaplan instead took the material and said... HEY, KNOW TUBERCULOSIS and... here's a few tid bits on bladder infections just in case. That is what separates the material apart. Study smart for a huge exam like this.


23 Posts

Thanks for the inspiring noting. It does feel good to have the RN behind your name. I think that's the most coolest thing. Oh and passing this horrible exam and overcoming it is probably the greatest feeling ever!


21 Posts

wow! this is inspiring.. i just failed my 1st take on nclex and im now considering kaplan.. i used saunders as my review material.. unfortunately it didn't quite cut it.. its not that its bad material or anyting.. i actually learned a lot from saunders! yup! read and studied the whole book, used the cd.. great content! but when i sat for my nclex, i was getting these questions that i felt that i didnt know how to answer and confused me alot.. i think this is one of the main reason on why i failed.. i think i need to work on my test taking strategies and on how to answer smart.. and from what i have read from the threads here, kaplan is really good at diong just that..!


16 Posts

congrats and thanks for all the useful info!!


205 Posts

Specializes in LTC. Has 3 years experience.



46 Posts

Has 5 years experience.

When you say the questions confused you, what do you mean? Were they select all that apply, prioritize? I am studying the Saunders book, and I was just wondering what is different on the NCLEX that is the most confusing?

Specializes in CICU-Cardiology/Open Heart. Has 1 years experience.

Fabulous advice deliteful! well written; great overview ~ helpful to MORE than one soul. You should broadcast it to all the schools of nursing on the last week in class. I too found as I studied Kaplan that the answer lies in teaching yourself how to "think like a nurse" and the instructors at Kaplan online do it so well. Mentoring and modeling is what this career is about and Kaplan certainly teaches you how to do that! Now we'll see if it worked for me today ~! My NCLEX shut off at 79. Going into it I felt weak on the content, just ok with my memorized lab values, and stronger on the critical thinking (ala Kaplan). I really focused down on the Readiness exam - a quick review of the content in the book itself, Trainer questions 1-7, and I re-watched the test taking strategy videos over and over again using that decision tree ad nauseum. It IS about how to answer more of the critical thinking/application questions. Touche and Congratulations Girlfriend~!!


93 Posts

i wish kaplan has program thas videos and lecture for PN.... :(

i've just called them and they just q-bank for PN... :(


21 Posts

When you say the questions confused you, what do you mean? Were they select all that apply, prioritize? I am studying the Saunders book, and I was just wondering what is different on the NCLEX that is the most confusing?

i was confused a lot with the prioritization questions.. i had tons of them when i sat for my nclex.. like 60% are prioritization.. failed at 265..:cry: i think one factor is i lacked on test taking strategies.. i was ok on content.. cause i read, studied, answered all the questions on the saunders book (including cd).. and saunders has really good content.. but in order to slay the beast, u'll need content + strategy..


21 Posts

(this is long!... sorry, but it has been a long process)

Become a pro at prioritization. Seriously, these are freebe questions too once you get good at them. Kaplan makes this easy to figure out. Soon you'll be like... DUH, when you see the answer.

i failed my 1st take at 265.. i had like 60ish% prioritization questions.. i wish i knew how to answer them better.. then my whole take on the nclex will be more like a "freebie"...:sniff::sniff::sniff:


63 Posts

I have to agree with delitful, I took Kaplan inclass and failed 2 times. The third time i requested online class, the thing i liked most is videos and question review by ladies of kaplan they teach u strategies to answer. I remember 2 days before my exam i did the readiness test got 67% and i reviwed the test listening to the ladies of kaplan on how to tackle the question. This exam tests your critical thinking alot, I also used prioritization book by lacharity. Third time was easy!! i knew all along even if i ended up doing 265 I was sure I will pass but luckily i did not take 265 questions. I will recomend kaplan worked for me

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