hello. I wanted to thank everyone on here for the advice and tips they post. At times its a bit overwhelming to sift through everything. I have a previous bachelors, in my late 20s, and this is a career change for me. I took my NCLEX for the 2nd time yesterday and got 75 with a good pop up. It took me about 2.5 hours to do 75 questions. It seemed like it was all meds, priority, general sata, delegation, and infection control. Anyhow, the following is what helped ME:
1. Hurst Review- I needed some content review to reinforce what I knew and along the way learned more stuff and laughed alot. Marlene (video instructor) was fantastic at breaking down everything into simple and easy to understand bits. I would HIGHLY recommend Hurst over Kaplan for those that want/need content review. I was a "hit or miss", "B" on the verge of "C" student in my program. The first time I took the NCLEX, I did Kaplan. Some OPINION on Kaplan later...
2. Prioritization, Delegation, and Assignment by LaCharity - this book is a miracle. if you havent heard about this book, open up a new tab on your browser, search, and call your nearest bookstore to locate the nearest copy and get it. the sooner you get this book, the closer you get to passing the NCLEX. I just did the second section with all the questions. i was scoring anywhere between 55-70% on the chapters. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
3. Exam Cram: Nclex-RN. Installed the CD and I did chunks of 30 questions about 3-4 times a day. The software is really great. I focused on 2 areas at a time (as recommended)...i know other programs do that too, but the difference with this one is that theres a meter that lets you know how far you are in completing the section as a whole AND it doesnt repeat questions that you get right. The question style isnt similar to NCLEX (nothing is), but the content it covers and rationale provided WILL prepare you for NCLEX. It was really helpful. Ive dabbled with nclex 4000, 3000, Saunders, and NCSBN question banks/programs. This is the best and most efficient. Understanding why you chose your answer and why the other options are wrong really prepared me for NCLEX. Alot of times the wrong answers are related to another disease and when you are able to say that an option is wrong because its associated with something else then i think your doing something right...study-wise. In the chunks of 30, i would get about 55%-85% right. I would score 85% because it repeats the wrong ones and I would get them right this time because I would read, remember, and understand the rationale when I initially got it wrong. Exam Cram is good stuff.
4. My Chicken Hez TB, SPIDERMAN, MRS WEE, and VCHIPS, common lab values, and household to metric conversions and lbs to kg. This post really helped also...the pharma tips set me at ease. https://allnurses.com/nclex-discussion-forum/omg-i-passed-528887.html
First time I took NCLEX, I did Kaplan and felt it was a complete waste of money because they just go over 30-40 questions a session and "strategy." Its frustrating because you have to drive to class and listen to an instructor present questions out of her powerpoint package when you can watch the same exact video of someone else reading the exact same packet and doing the exact same questions on their online content portion. Its all soo packaged, dull, boring, and mechanical. And they push their "strategy" aka "Decision tree" alot during class. I would rather understand the core content hands down then use a "decision tree strategy" that you pull out whenever your unsure of an answer (which will be often if you dont know your sh*t). Your experience may vary because you could get a lively and fun instructor to liven things up and you might excel in structured classroom settings with strategy but that wasnt my case. I did their question bank and was scoring 50-60%. failed NCLEX miserably at 100ish questions. Kaplan . You can save money and time by doing just the EXAM CRAM and LaCharity above and you will get more out of it than Kaplan /*end rant. BTW there are TONS of people that take Kaplan and do well. I know a few and they were all "A students." I think if you passed with kaplan you prolly didnt need kaplan to begin with. The above was just my OPINION and experience.
Sorry for the long rant. Hope its helpful for someone out there like me. Study hard! Stand tall and be bold! Godspeed!