Tips From a Nurse: How to Pass the NCLEX Exam

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Guest Blogger: Len AKA the mommist

imageYou’re here because you want to pass the NCLEX-RN exam, right? If you don’t then you can continue Googling about One Direction or continue reading and pass the information to someone you know who’s itching to be RN-ized.

In line with my topic, allow me to brag just a tid bit. I passed the NCLEX-RN exam in one take. Some of you might think, “Oh, maybe she’s uber intelligent that’s why she passed the exam in one take”. I’m not. Well, on good days (not today and not tom. either), I can do the Fibonacci sequence. *flips hair back*

Here’s how I passed:

Goal

Why do you want to pass the NCLEX-RN exam? The obvious answer would be “because I have to”. But why? Is it for yourself, your parents, your boyfriend, for your annoying and jealous neighbor who keeps comparing you to her kids, for your dog, or to make the world a better place (whatever)? It doesn’t matter as long as you have a goal. Write that goal on a bond paper and tape it where you can easily see it. Mine was on my bathroom mirror. Very effective motivational tool, I tell you.

Exam

Whoa! Exam already? Yes! Buy a Q & A Review for NCLEX-RN. Any good one will do. The one that I used is great and helped me a lot!

Before you study for the exam proper, test yourself first. Once you’re done with your own NCLEX-RN exam, you’ll be able to assess which area or areas (or Biological System) you have to concentrate on. You’re a nurse; assessment should always come first!

I got more mistakes with the Musculoskeletal questions so I concentrated more on that. This saves time and you can do more important stuff like catching up on Jersey Shore or something. I answered the Q & A book for 2 weeks straight then read the NCLEX-RN reviewer for almost 2 months. Two days after I read the last page, I took the exam.

Be Faithful

Faithfulness (die K-Stew) is one virtue that pays well. I only used one book and stayed with that book in sickness and in health.

About 96.78% of my friends who took the exam and failed used a minimum of 3 books. Most of them enrolled in review classes. I didn’t because I preferred to study alone and at my own pace.

Here’s the thing – books jumble up words that have the same meaning. For example; a heart has only one definition that is presented in various contexts in different books. You’ll get confused if you use a lot. Master just one and you’ll do great.

Choose one that does not use metrical structure to get to a point; the simpler the better. If you had to read a sentence thrice before you understood it, get a simpler version. If the book is too difficult to understand, you will not retain any information.

Charting

This is a practice for when you get that much coveted license. Do your own charting and stick to it! Make a schedule of your review days. Example:

Hours

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

8am

Breakfast

Breakfast

Breakfast

Breakfast

Breakfast

Breakfast

Breakfast

9:30am

Work

Work

Work

Work

Work

Twitter

Facebook

5:50pm

Read Chap. 1

Integumentary

Read Chap. 1

Read Chap. 1

Read Chap. 2

Read Chap. 2

Read Chap. 3

Read Chap. 3

I highlighted the column once done. You can be creative and put a smiley sticker or something. We won’t judge, promise.

Do Not Memorize

Get into the bottom of things. Analyze, analyze, analyze. If you just memorize things, you’ll lose it immediately. Concentrate on the rationale. You can, however, memorize the formulas for the equations, units of measurement, and laboratory values. Analyze the rest.

Study Hard

I studied on average five hours a day and up to twelve hours on weekends. A day before the exam, I went to the spa. While I was getting an incredible massage, I prayed – “God, you saw how hard I studied, please let me pass the exam.” After 75 questions, the computer screen turned to black and had a mini heart-attack. After a couple of weeks, I got a letter that started with “Congratulations”.

Tips: The questions in the exam are things that you already know. Surprise! Don’t get all anxious and worried about the exam because you are being tested for something that you already know. Your first answer is usually the correct one; don’t change it. Don’t believe those who tell you what the content of the exam are; it changes. Don’t talk to anyone before the exam. Focus on what you know.

The NCLEX-RN exam is just like the Olympics. You train hard to get a medal. Make sure that medal is gold!

Allow me to be the first to congratulate you and welcome you to our noble profession. Onward and upward fellow RN!

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