NCLEX- RN examination measures the competencies needed to perform safely and effectively as a newly licensed, entry-level nurse in the United States. Every nurse who is educated in the United States and those educated from foreign countries should pass the NCLEX-RN exam in order to practice as Registered Nurse in America.
Before starting your preparation, I want you to understand what NCLEX-RN exam is and what are its requirements. Requirements varies according to the state, so the first step is to prepare all the documents and determine which state you are going to apply for. After that try to get familiar with the pattern of the question asked in the exam. Keep in mind that it is not similar type of exam which you succeeded in your Nursing school. However, do not get panicked, read thoroughly to understand the concept relating with your clinical practice. Do not try to memorize all the stuffs which you are reading because you will not be asked to explain. It will test your critical thinking skills to determine whether you will be able to successfully practice as a entry level nurse.
Preparing for the exam is always overwhelming if you do not plan your time appropriately. Planning the time is crucial for the success in the exam and significant step to achieve your goal. Make every day routine to divide your time fully in study. If you are going to appear in the exam after three months of preparation, see your book and calculate the time need to be given for each chapter and outline the daily routine accordingly. Always stick with your guns, no matter what the circumstances are. Daily planning is the core of short-term success that leads to long term accomplishment. Do not let personal commitments change your success in education, you are the only one who can supervise your own work, so stay focused and utilize your time in a productive way.
Learn to say ‘NO’
Learn to say no, especially when you are studying. I know it is hard to say no but think about your priorities and daily plans. Watkins and Corry (2010) compares monkey as the hindrances and responsibilities that all of us always carry on our backs. These monkeys, however, limit your success when others start passing their monkeys off to you and that will only slow down your success. Remember, research shows that those individual who take 2-3 months for NCLEX-RN preparation has higher passing rate in the first time than those of taking more than 3 months for the preparation.
It’s okay to be Nervous
Do not get intimidated by anticipating the exam questions and result. You can re-take the exam, it is not mandatory to pass at the first time. Nervousness is okay, you are not the only one who is afraid of it. I had already been through your situation, preparing for the exam needs more time and effort. Whenever, you feel restless and fatigued after continuous reading, just go for walk in the fresh air. Fresh air will provide oxygen to your mind and you will be able to concentrate more on your study. Instead of studying seven days a week take break at least once or twice a week, which can yield better preparation and result.
Practice, Practice and Practice!!!
Practicing more questions is the key for passing NCLEX-RN exam. There are various available resources in the internet and books to practice the questions. Personally, I practiced from Saunders and Kaplan. When you practice the questions, emphasize to find the rationale of the answers. Write down on your note for the rationale, so that you can recall and master on that topic. If you are facing difficulty in some area of study, then go back and study unless you are able to understand. Know your weak areas and give more effort on that area and practice more questions.