Passed NCLEX-RN in 75 Questions (LPN to RN)

by sturtleRN sturtleRN (New) New

Hey everyone! I had went back and forth when deciding on writing about my experience with NCLEX. I decided that maybe my story will help calm some nerves and prepare for NCLEX-RN.

I had been an LPN for 4.5 years prior to completing my ADN at Tennessee State University this past Spring. Before, I say anything else, I live in the greater Nashville area and had heard HORRIBLE things about TSU. From being accepted into the college to the instructors, nothing I heard was good. With this being said, I was an LPN and their program was the only one that fit around my schedule. I work full-time Monday through Friday at a Nashville hospital so their night/weekend program was the perfect fit. I, along with 47 other LPN's were admitted to this program for 3 semesters.

The program was hectic, unorganized, and awful at times. We received a new set of instructors our last semester that added more stress to our lives. The best thing that came from the program was that we were required to use Kaplan. We used integrated tests, our entrance and exit exams were from Kaplan as well as quizzes throughout the semesters. The program also provided us, free of charge, the Sylvia Rayfield review and PassPoint (The Point).

After graduation our instructors provided us with a "success coach" and schedule to complete before taking NCLEX. It was all optional but I took it to heart and completed all of the trainers on Kaplan and PassPoint exams. The exams on PassPoint ranged from 75-265 questions and we were told to do a 75 random questions exam every other day. While this was time consuming it was helpful.

After completing the program, I did not feel confident that I learned everything I needed to from the University. I bought the Saunders Comprehensive review and reviewed almost the whole book.

My grades on Kaplan ranged from 55-60% and PassPoint was a Mastery of 5.8-8.0. The night before the exam I had told myself that I wasn't going to study anymore. I am not one of those people. I completed Kaplan trainer 5 the night before and reviewed questions until about 10 pm that night and from 9 to about an hour before my exam at 2 pm the next day. (That's my personal preference. I felt like reviewing questions and rationale helped me the day off to put me in the testing mode. I did the same thing with my exit exam in school)

I got to the testing center at 12:30 pm and asked if I could test early. They said yes and I began around 12:45. Before the exam I looked at the computer, took a deep breath, prayed for peace and started. I hid the clock on the test because I did not want to see how long it was taking me. At question 75 I had no idea what the answer was, picked which one I thought was best, clicked next and it turned blue. I thought I was going to vomit. I had so many things running through my head. I thought surely that wasn't it. Relief washed over me for a few seconds that I had just completed the biggest test of my life and the testing lady escorted me out, I got my things and left.

I'm not going to lie and say that I didn't worry. I worried a lot. I felt sick at times. What kept me positive was, I worked so hard for this. I studied everyday for a few hours a day. I sacrificed so much over the past year to do this. Either I completely bombed this test (which as much as I studied and reviewed, that wasn't possible) or I passed in 75 questions and got a lot of them right.

I did the pop-up that night and got the "good one". I am not sure how reliable that is and I didn't go by it at all after reading some articles on here. I waited until the 48 hours was over, paid the 7.95 and received PASS!!

What I learned from my experience:

1. Use KAPLAN. As much as you can. It is set up the same way. I literally felt like I was at home do the Qbank and trainers. This helped me feel more at ease.

2. Review course. If your school doesn't offer one I highly recommend taking any review course. I heard HURST was really good and Sylvia Rayfield was good as well.

3. Relax. You have made it through nursing school already. We shed blood, sweat, and tears to do that. Be confident that you are going into that testing center and you are going to pass.

4. Pick the safest answer! According to Kaplan, if you can do ONE thing before you leave the room, what would you do?

I hope this helps someone :) Good luck to all you future RN's!!!