Study Aids for Nursing NCLEX: Tactics and Strategies for Passing

The NCLEX exam is one of the most infamous in the nursing industry. Passing it means you get your nursing license—RN or LPN—while failure means you don’t. The NCLEX exams are designed to test your knowledge of nursing competencies, test your critical thinking and memorization skills via computer-adaptive testing.

So how do you prepare for this all-important test?

Nursing schools are not in business to allow students to fail the NCLEX. The higher their success rates with students passed, the more selling power for their degree programs. Wouldn’t you prefer to go to a nursing school that nearly guaranteed you’d pass the NCLEX? In fact, most state boards of nursing keep NCLEX pass rates statistics on approved schools of nursing.

You’ll hear regularly about the NCLEX, requirements, references to skills and knowledge you can be sure will be covered on the exam. Leading up to the exam your school instructors may recommend you purchase particular study guides, pre-test your skills with various sample tests, or even enroll in a study course.

NCLEX Study Aids

All the biggie exams--GRE, MAT, GED-- have study guides and plenty of them. If you’re enrolled in nursing school and looking ahead to the NCLEX you, too have scads of study books available to you. Follow the lead of your nursing instructors should they recommend a particular NCLEX study guide. It may not be a requirement, but if getting your RN or LPN license is important to you, then you’ll do it anyway.

NCLEX exam guides will provide you with:

  • The idea of computer-adaptive testing and how it works with the NCLEX
  • Sample test questions and how to break them apart
  • Sample tests that let you field-test your smarts and test taking savvy

NCLEX Review Courses

Some nursing schools provide senior level students with cleverly targeted review courses that package skills and theory learned thus far. Here you’ll find instructors ready to prepare you for the NCLEX, various strategies for applying your skills and knowledge, review on critical skills and patient populations and regular tests all designed as a kind of bootcamp test prep.

Regional NCLEX Review and Test-Prep Workshops require you pay a sizeable tuition, but you get intensive strategy and review sessions packaged into weekend-sized courses that could solve last-minute or time-crunch test preparation issues.

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