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Studying for the NCLEX requires practice questions... a lot of practice questions. Personally, I’ll be using the Saunders Q&A Review for the NCLEX-RN, 8th edition; because I learn best through testing and there are over 6,000 practice questions.
While having a 747-page book to go through seems daunting at first, the best way to utilize it is by having a structured study plan. I’ve created a 30-day plan that I’m personally using to study for the NCLEX and I urge you to follow along with me.
Before you begin, know your game plan. Put everything on a calendar so you can visualize exactly what you need to do. Make sure you set aside time at least 1-2 hours every day so you have enough time to get through the material. Find a study spot, get some highlighters, buy the fancy pens. Do whatever you need to do to get yourself pumped. [Insert Your Name], RN, BSN in the making!
I’ve made you a checklist that you can print out and cross off when you finish a day here:
This is an introduction to the book; there is information about the NCLEX itself, including what to expect, and the process of registering. This section gives you examples of the different types of questions, key phrases and concepts to look out for, and test-taking strategies to keep in the back of your mind when taking the exam. This is the foundation. Don’t skip it.
This the bulk of your studying, and it’s only approximately 50 questions a day. Set aside 1-2 hours every day to really make sure you have enough time to take notes and understand the rationales. Remember; It’s not about getting them right. It’s about knowing why the right answers are right and why the wrong answers are wrong.
Day 30: The Comprehensive Test.
This is it. This is the longest part of the study plan, but it’s also the last thing you have to do. Starting on page 639, there’s a full exam that’s 265 questions long. I’d recommend doing this all in one sitting, in a quiet room, with no distractions, just to see what it would be like to take the NCLEX if you were given the full set of questions.
Good luck! Keep me updated with your studying, and tag @elsevierstudentlife on Instagram if you’re using my checklist! You can do it! This is the last milestone, finish strong!
Future Nurse | Elsevier Student Ambassador