NCLEX: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: Purpose of This Section

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

Repeat test-takers have somewhat different needs, different starting points, and a different time frame from those who are first-time NCLEX-RN® candidates: that is, figuring out why they did not pass, what the Candidate Performance Report (CPR) that they received means, and what to do next.

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: What is the Difference Between Taking This Examination for the First Time and Repeating It?

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

You are “ahead of the game”! You have already received feedback about your examination-related strengths and weaknesses. You know what the examination is really like and what areas to emphasize. You also know what study methods did not work for you. Look at the experience you had in taking the examination as a “dry run” for helping you to pass next time.

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: What are Some Risk Factors for Not Passing the First Time?

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

  • It can readily be what you used to study. Often, it is a matter of what review materials you used that were not as helpful as other resources could be. Remember, some study aids are better than others. For next time, get a fresh start. Use different review materials.
  • Using too many study aids, from too many different resources. You wind up finding that theory and questions in books contradict each other, and there is no one to “referee” as to which books have the right information when books disagree.
  • Reviewing only with questions and answers in books will not help you to systematically cover all the theory that you need to review.
  • Reviewing primarily with computer tests is too time-consuming. You can cover more questions in less time by using a book. In addition, when you get through the thousands of questions on the disk or computer test, you cannot be sure that you have reviewed all that you need to know in each subject area, because the material is both limited and fragmented (i.e., it is not organized by concepts or systems). Compare this with a book that has detailed explanations for wrong and correct answers, where so much more helpful information can be seen at a glance on each page.
  • Taking the examination when you are not ready, just because you set an examination date.
  • Going into the examination with little or no review because of life circumstances (e.g., illness, moving, vacations, marriage, baby, job).

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: It is Not a Matter of How Much You Study for the Test, but How You Use the Review Material

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

At this point in your examination prep, do not start with page 1 and go through page 800+. This is usually overwhelming and not confidence-building. You need a focused review, starting with your weakest area and leaving what you feel most comfortable with toward the end of your reviewing. Discern if you mostly need a review of theory, test-taking strategies, or both. This will determine where you start.

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: How Do You Know What You Need to Review?

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

This is based on knowing what the NCLEX-RN® Candidate Performance Report (CPR) means. Look at the client needs/sub needs listed in the CPR that came with your NCLEX® results. Look at the areas where the boldface print states that your performance was below the passing standard or near the passing standard (which indicates the amount of improvement you need).  If the computer stopped when you had taken only 75 to 100 questions, this probably means that you have significant deficiencies and gaps in certain areas of nursing content. If the computer stopped when you had taken more than 100 but less than 200 questions, this usually means that you have some identifiable areas where you need to review certain content, as well as to improve your test-taking skills.

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: What to Do to Pass Next Time

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

STEP 1: ASSESS yourself. In this section, take the two Pre-tests and two Final tests all at once.
STEP 2: Score yourself at the end. Determine the percentage of questions that were correct in each of these integrated tests.
STEP 3: In any of the tests where you scored less than 80% correct, tally the client need subcategories that your wrong answers represented. Each question is coded by various categories; you need to focus primarily on the client subneed category. The codes are found after the rationale paragraph for each question and test-taking tips in the answer section of each test.
STEP 4: Re-test yourself after reviewing the content areas in which you demonstrated a deficit. Score yourself. Try to achieve a correct score of at least 80%. You can do it!

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Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: How Will You Know That You are Well-Prepared and Ready to Retake the Examination?

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

When you are getting 80% correct in all of the questions in this book and on the accompanying disk, you are ready! Most of all, you are ready when you change the “tape recorder” in your mind that keeps saying “I have failed” to “I haven’t PASSED yet,” and from “I hope I pass” to “I WILL PASS!”

Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses: A Guide for Graduates of Nursing Schools Outside the United States

Focus topic: Guidelines and Tips for International Nurses

International nurses who are educated outside the United States can use this book to serve their special needs:

  • To check their experiences, skills, and knowledge for equivalency to those of nursing candidates from U.S. programs, in terms of their ability to deliver effective and safe health care as determined by U.S. standards of practice.
  • To identify cultural differences in perception of client needs and nursing responses and actions.
  • To learn about the structure and format of the examination.
  • To learn how to prepare for the examination.
  • To practice taking tests made up of multiple-choice and fill-in-the-blank questions.
  • To assess the level of language difficulty in reading the examination.
  • To become skilled in test-taking techniques (see following section).
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FURTHER READING/STUDY:

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