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Passed NCLEX 2nd time!

by ady20 ady20 (New) New

I apologize if this post is too long. I just wanted to share my story for all of you preparing to take the NCLEX, especially to those who have to take the exam again.

Monday I found out that I passed my NCLEX on my second try! I took my exam last Thursday and finally had the courage to pay for the quick results. When I saw the words "PASS" I was overwhelmed with so much joy. After failing the NCLEX back in July, I knew I had to do things differently and give it my 110% this time around. The first time, I really didnt respect the test. Since i graduated nursing school, I was certain that I would be able to pass the NCLEX. I had plenty of friends and classmates who took the exam before me and passed with flying colors, so I thought things would also go in my favor. The resources that I used for the first time was Hurst. I think it did a good job in simplifiying content, however there were quite a few topics that they did not cover. I know some people who passed NCLEX the first time only using Hurst, however I think it is more suitable for those who were on top of their stuff throughout nursing school. I, on the other hand have to work extra hard to be equivalent to my naturally brilliant classmates. ( we all know some people like that in nursing school lol) So I definitly needed extra books and resources to help me prepare. Aside from Hurst, I also bought the Kaplan 1 month q bank with 1300 questions. However, I was silly to purchase it 5 days before my exam and only completed 700 questions. The first time I took the exam, I finished in less than 2 hours with 79 questions. I came out of the test hysterically crying knewing that i couldn't have done that well for the test to shut off so early. The outcome of that day was a big fat FAIL. After crying for a couple days I decided to pick myself up and try again.

For the second time around, I decided to purchase the Kaplan in person review. I had to drive an hour and half from home, but it was worth the sacrifice. It also included question trainers and a q bank. The farther along you are in the question trainers, the harder they become. Kaplan questions are harder than NCLEX and getting a score about 60% is considered good. For question trainers 1-4, my scores were low to mid 60s. For question trainers 5-7. I scored in the 50s, however i read every rationale. Don't be discouraged if your score is low. Just make sure you read and understand why its the correct answer. I also completed the entire 1300 q bank questions this time. Kaplan also included content videos. I only watched the Pharmacology content video. However, i did watch ALL the question review videos, which were extremely beneficial. They go over very challenging questions while using their decision tree on how to answer them. I also bought the purple Saunders NCLEX comphrehension book. I read that front to back and answered ALL of the questions. I also purchased the LaCharity Priorization, Delegation book. That really helped me answer the priority questions on NCLEX. The questions in the LaCharity book are also very hard, which is a good thing. When my ATT finally came, I picked a test date that was 10 days before my exam .By then, I had already completed finishing all the Kaplan questions, Saunders and LaCharity book. During the 10 days, I just read over my notes that I had written when I was answering questions and reading the study books. I had filled up two 5 subject notebooks. ( yes i know lol) I only wrote down information that I wasnt fully knowledgable about. The night before my NCLEX i looked over lab values and a medication chart in the Saunders text book that classified antibiotics and the nursing considerations.

Test day finally came. This time around, I was a lot more calm because I knew I did everything I could to prepare. For over two months, I studied every single day, sometimes up to 12 hours a day. As crazy as that sounds, I just didnt want to take this test again. After 3 and half hours and 150 questions, the computer shut off. The only alternative format question I recieved aside from select all that apply, was one math question. I dont even think I had 20 select all that applies. My test was mostly simple multiple choice. No drag and drop, no audio, no hot spot. So I wasn't fully sure whether I passed this time around because my questions seemed so basic. I did have quite a few priority questions and ones that were questioning medication orders. Since I prepared with Kaplan and their questions are harder, it probably trained my brain to think at a higher level. So i definitely advise using a question bank that it much more challenging like Kaplan. That way you become use to answering difficult questions. After my exam, I waited the whole weekend to look at my results because I was just so nervous. During that time, all I did was pray, but I knew in my heart that I did my best. I told myself that no matter what happens, it still wasnt gonna stop my dream of becoming a nurse. On Monday, I found out I was officially a nurse! I was so happy.

I was just want to let you guys know that despite what you have been told, every queston on the NCLEX counts. Most of us have been told that alternative format questions weigh more and that its a sign that you are doing well during the exam, but that is false. During my test, I started to get discouraged a little bit because most of them were very basic multiple choice. I thought I was way below the passing line. But I kept encouraging myself and treated every single question as if it was the first. So dont give up! Especially to those who have to take the NCLEX again like I did. In the end, I realized that taking it a second time was probably for the better. Im much smarter now and I was able to solidy my knowledge in areas that I was weak in. Just remember that you graduated from nursing school for a reason . You can do it! If your study technique didnt work the first time, try something completly different. I had to go to a classroom setting just so that I could stay focused during my study times. Always do your best and God will take care of the rest. If you know in your heart that you did the best you could, God will honor that. So thats my story. Just wanted to share this to help encourage you guys. To God be the glory!

Silverdragon102, BSN

Specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC. Has 33 years experience.

Moved to the NCLEX forum