I started generally studying for the exam in April, but didn't buckle down and get serious until May. So overall, about 2 to 2 1/2 months of study time. I didn't feel confident because in school I really didn't focus on studying too much (was juggling school, plus working full time and 16-hr clinicals per week, so I really was just trying to make it through the program and pass).
I Started with the Leik FNP Book
I read through the entire book. Completed the questions. I Purchased the book from amazon and was able to access the book and questions online through the app as well. Read the book again (this time just mainly focusing on areas I wasn't comfortable in) and went through the questions a second time (focusing on the questions I tested wrong on).
Next, I also Decided to Do the Hollier FHEA Review
I paid for the audio course, in which I listened to lectures and at the end, completed their questions. I also separately paid for two predictor exams from them in which I scored 70% the first time (took that two weeks before the exam), and 78% the second time (took that a week before the exam).
Board Vitals Questions
I did also purchase some board vitals questions for a month's access in the last month of studying. These were pretty good also but definitely not needed to pass the exam; very wide plethora of questions, however, some of the questions were just too much in detail. Nevertheless, if you just want more practice questions it is not a bad resource. I did this in my spare time when reading became too much.
FACT: Both LEIK and HOLLIER resources were excellent.
Pros: I would say that Leik had the most bang for your buck. All of the knowledge and information you need and then some. They covered almost everything you can potentially see on the exam. I loved the fact that I could do it on my phone on the go or at home. Also had great study questions I definitely don't think I would've been able to pass the test without this resource.
Cons: There were a few discrepancies in the text. However, not enough for me to vote this resource out of the game.
Pros: The Hollier review was also excellent but in a different way. I truly feel that I LEARNED with this resource and understood the why behind the things that were important. ( I do believe that when you understand why things are the way that they are, it is much easier to memorize it for the test) This helped to reinforce the things I had already brushed over from Leik. I have to say I learned more from her than possibly my schooling. Amelie was very entertaining which made it that much easier to listen to the lectures. She told you the things to focus on that she knew for sure would be on the exam. She also told you things that she had a strong feeling wouldn't be on the exam based on her experience (which was helpful, since our brains can only know so much information).
Cons: I think this is a great ADDITIONAL review. However, I don't think the audio course alone would be sufficient in passing the test. The topics that they covered (the most important stuff) was GREAT. Her way of memorizing heart murmurs was super easy to understand. But there were many other topics that were not covered. Also, at the end of each audio lecture, they say to focus on these topics to be successful in this area but however, some of those topics weren't covered in the lecture so you do need another study tool.
Overall, if you have some cash to spend and want to ensure passing and feeling prepared: Do both the Leik book and Hollier Review + Predictor Exams. YOU will definitely be successful in passing. (Around $400 total)
If you are low on cash, do just the Leik book and know the book inside and out and ALSO buy the Hollier Predictor Exams ($50 for two exams). Total Cost: $110
Wasn't bad. Took my exam at noon (don't do an 8 am exam trust me, not a good idea LOL) First 20 questions scared the crap out of me. ( I felt like what are they asking me?? I don't know any of this, oh no! ). If this happens, Just REMAIN CALM and if you don't know the answer make an educated guess, flag it for later, and move on. I revisited many of those questions later on and the answers became very clear to me (which just means it was my anxiety trying to fool me and that I did know the information). IF you truly have no idea the answer, make an educated guess. Odds are you are right. Don't change your answer unless you are sure. Out of 175 questions I "flagged" about 30 that I wasn't all too sure about.
These were my tips, Feel free to ask me any questions 🙂