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NCLEX- tips on retaining/applying content

Hi everyone,

This is my first post on here. I’ve been reading a lot of the nclex threads throughout nursing school and now I’m glad I can say that I’ve graduated nursing school too!

So currently I’m preparing for NCLEX. I’m using Kaplan (my school uses it) and have done QT 1-3, the live class, and a few Qbanks so far. A problem I’ve come across when preparing for nclex is when i take a practice test, I do write down the rationales and write down/review the content related to the question.... I also notice/write down the mistakes i tend to make when practicing i.e. in my heart I know the answer is right and want to choose it but then i second guess myself and choose the incorrect option.

HOWEVER, for some reason I’m starting to think this process isn’t helping me as much as it used to. Whenever I take a *new* exam I still find topics/medications/concepts that I’m not AS familiar with and as a result I end up getting tripped up. Even with disease processes I have heard of before, new questions tend to be presented in a different way. The decision tree is ok sometimes but other times it either leads me down the wrong path OR I end up evaluating anyways. Any advice, words of encouragement, or tough love would be appreciated.

Thank you.

NCLEX questions come in categories. There are certain frameworks that always help me pick the right answer. For example, knowing ABC's helps with "what should you do first."

Sometimes intervention is necessary before assessment (for example, if a chest tube comes out what should you do? Answer: put sterile dressing over and tape 3 sides). Though, assessment is usually first if it is not an airway/breathing emergency. Maslow's hierarchy of needs comes in handy answering q's too. For example, the nurse should pay attention to physiological deteriorations first vs. a patient who has anxiety.

I really think practicing A LOT of questions will help your brain understand which answer to pick. It takes a lot of repetition to truly understand the way the NCLEX thinks. The NCLEX is what you would do in a perfect world. Sometimes picking the answer one would do in real life is not the actual answer.

idk if any of that made sense...lol practicing questions is what helped me pass. I used UWorld and nothing else. Kaplan is utterly useless in my opinion-the questions are too easy (i tried using one that was available in my library)

I am using Uworld and reading the rationales really helps in retaining info because some questions do get repetitive in terms of topic.

Also suggest taking notes and if something stands out as a topic that you keep struggling on, I would take some time to watch some videos/read up on it further 🙂


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