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what to do to pass NCLEX RN test

Posted

Has 5 years experience.

NCLEX RN preparation is not easy specially in my case I graduated my bachelor's degree 9 years ago way back 2005 in my home country Philippines, in the same year I got my license with less stress, its because all the theories I learned in school was still fresh, so every student who needs to take board exam, take it as soon as you get out of your course for everything is fresh all you need is a little reading and your good to go.

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So how I prepared for this exam? First I used Saunders vol.5 and an audio lecture I got online, but I never finish reading it not even half of it im not a bookie I hate reading, Saunders has many practice test questions I do good on them so I thought im good to go I don't need to study more lol, the audio lectures helped too I learned a lot from it. 2 months before my exam I went to Philippines for vacation and enjoyed life, thinking and hoping I will make it and I flanked I was very devastated and then I realized I need a professional help if I want to pass, so the next day I paid Kaplan for an online class.

As I was listening to the introduction of the review I realized what's lacking the first time i took the test.... I don't fully understand the mechanics of the exam, and everything we do we should fully understand what we are doing for the result will depend on that.though i flank it took 245 questions for the computer to fully decide that i didnt make it, that i dont have enough passing level points, after 150 items its like that i gave up and i just rushed it, trying to cope with the time,with out realizing that finishing the entire test will give you lower probability of passing if i remember it right you need to get the last 60 question right or else you fail, and thats tough. So for the second time around i avoid to do it, i just focus on every questions if i dont know the topic and i cant figure it out, it seems i cant use decision tree,i did my best to picked an answer and moved on

So in taking the test you should:

Focus to the topic of the question and always remember not everything in the question are relevant some of them are just there to confuse you and pull you away from the correct answer.

timing don't take too much time in one question if you don't know the topic, you can't figure out the answer, just picked your best choice and move on fully ( don't go back and think the question again, you already picked your answer and you can't do nothing about it anymore)

Use critical thinking:

Use ABC (airway, breathing & circulation) to prioritized you answer.

Use Maslow's ( and choose physical/ Psychosocial)

Use therapeutic communication

Decision tree (know if the answer choice are Assessment/implementation , is it physical/psychosocial, is there is an assessment does it makes sense if it is, that must be the correct answer, if not go on with the implementation answer choice )

Remember always assess first before implementing

Remember that NCLEX is a perfect hospital and not overwhelmed

Always with what the book says, not what the real world do.

You always have the Dr. order

All the answer choice can be correct , u need to choose the best one by using decision tree/critical thinking

Use elimination process( ABC,stable/unstable, actual/potential, expected/unexpected, physical/psychological)

In pharmacology, its hard to memorize the whole drug book so to make it easier know them by the category and family name.

Generic names usually ends the same ( ranitidine, famodine for H2 inhibitors)

what are the materials that i used:

1. Kaplan class everywhere, this reviewer helped me a lot for many reason:

The question trainer test, Q banks test & practice test are above passing level,so you will be train to use critical thinking, you will be use of difficult & above passing question.

i followed the kaplans study guide to track the progress of my study

The prioritization technique they always say don't try to guess, walk tru it by using critical thinking. and that's what I did during my exam, choose the most stable pt and eliminate it until you only have your most unstable patient.

They also integrated the SATA ( select all that applies) questions and they are tough too.

the hot spot question.

as a student they will give you free Ebook too and i never finish reading that too haiiizzzz... ( i only read 50% of the book)

but i finished all the Question trainers 1-7, Qbanks, and sample test) more or less 2000 questions, Q banks alone are almost 1300. and i have good scores, the target scores for question trainer 1-4 is 65 for it is a combination of below & above passing question, and the rest are above passing level, for Qbanks my over all score was 71%

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Since I had the subscription for Kaplan I printed a monthly calendar so that I can track what I been doing, I need to give my best this time, I need to work hard for it and all my hardship paid off.

as you can see i worked hard for may the online class, the Q banks test, the video lecture stressful,i dont do nothing much in april though haiiiizzzz lazy ass„lol , for june i had a 4 days vacation so its rest days but after the vacation its review time again, a day before the exam i planned not to study but time to time i sneaked out and reviews some lab values.

Kaplan has a great video lectures too, it's like a short cut of the Kaplan's E.Book

The online class is great I took it 2x because I started my subscription December last year and I have only 3mos access on it, I went vacation again so I was not able to study plus I waited until I came back from Philippines before I reapply so I took time again, when I got my ATT I decided to contact Kaplan and inquire, and they give me another 3 months access that's too nice of them, well that really helps, different online instructor, so she gave another tips.

2.Saunders, for me its little bit showy, the book is so thick , I need thinner review book than that, it's a good material for those who needs to refresh their knowledge, like me whose been out of nursing school for 9 years buy im not a bookie, though I worked always remember NCLEX is a perfect hospital & not the real world hospital as the instructor emphasized that over and over.

i love the Saunders audi lecture for pharma & IVF i will try to down load it from the CD if i can

Saunders has a lot of practice test but i guess its more on below passing level its not as hard as kaplan , but the real exam is too way hard from kaplan ( most of the questions are), but it will be a good start to practice.

3. i also downloaded audio , a Feuer Nursing Review Lecture. i dont know how old is this lecture is but come to think of it its book base and thats NLEX RN is base on books. I tried to copy the link but its broken but thats supposed to be the link though.

http://narzing.blogspot.com/2011/02/feuer-nursing-review-lecture-audio-free.html

4. Express learning, just a practice test book for 25$ 2 sets are written and 1 set online. the questions are combination are more easy than kaplan, theyre pointing out to build confidence while preparing for an exam, yea i believe that if you have self confidence you will likely pass the exam, they also said that if you are not sure unleash your best guesser skills.

i love taking down notes while studying or even reviewing the question & answer i learned fast from that, know your learning capacity & style are you a visual person, you learned more if you see it, or you like the audio better me, im kinda both because i hate reading

for lab values i wrote them form the lowest to the highest so if ever i got confuse or i forget the correct values somehow i have the idea that this has a lower value or it has a higher value and if ever i will guess i will use that as a guideline, i also put together the lab with the same values or some how near because nclex knows that each school uses different materials so the values varies too but it doesn't go way too high or way too low.

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oh if you have a hard time for the ABG i somehow come up with this idea for me not to forget it

PH 7.35- 7.45

Pco2 35-45

Hco3 22-28

Ph D aci = PH decrease is acidosis and remember that ph & Hco3 is the same pattern and Pco2 is the opposite so its a nice to start with that right as long as you the values you can figure that out. if Ph is normal its compasated, if Ph is not with in the normal range its uncompensated.

from feuer i learned this tricked too pertaining to ABG

if its from the ass = acidosis because your losing the base ( hydrogen Ions)

vomiting/ colostomy = alkalosis because your losing acid

keep studying, believe in your self , keep your faith, good luck you can make it.

during my preparation i always recite this prayer (prayer for St Joseph of Cupertino) i read my bible, i pray the rosary & chaplet of divine mercy because i believe passing the exam is not all about knowledge, but its not all about divine intervention as well it should be a combination of both, do your part and God will do the rest.

Kathrene,RN

Specializes in OR Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

When did u took your exam? :)

Thanks for the tips kabayan!Will be sitting for NCLEX soon and I'm using Saunders 6th ed.I have Hurst and here's to hoping I make it too.If It's not too much here's my email Maymay_r10@yahoo.com.ph,I wanna ask some details regarding your NCLEX journey.Same case grad 2006 and trying out after what,8 years?:eek:

Thank you in advance.

Kathrene,RN

Specializes in OR Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

Thanks for the tips kabayan!Will be sitting for NCLEX soon and I'm using Saunders 6th ed.I have Hurst and here's to hoping I make it too.If It's not too much here's my email Maymay_r10@yahoo.com.ph,I wanna ask some details regarding your NCLEX journey.Same case grad 2006 and trying out after what,8 years?:eek:

Thank you in advance.

Are you from the Philippines too? Same here hehe :)

Hi miss Kathrene,RN!Yes!;)

Glad to know I have kababayans here!

How's your Nclex journey?I think I've read a thread here with your name and that you're already done with it?☺️

Kathrene,RN

Specializes in OR Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

Hi miss Kathrene,RN!Yes!;)

Glad to know I have kababayans here!

How's your Nclex journey?I think I've read a thread here with your name and that you're already done with it?☺️

Just saw your reply. Actually my exam will be on oct 3. Hehe Pretty near.. I feel soo anxious because I do think I still have tons of stuff to study. I do have 1year old daughter which makes it more difficult for me to focus. Hope for the best.