Passed, Terrible Kaplan Scores, out in 78

by Jasoki (New) New Student

I never thought I would be one of the people that got out before 145. I went in with the mindset of going up to 145 questions. To be honest, I probably wouldn't recommend the way I studied but I'll post it so you guys can see.

QBank - 1252/2100 completed

Question Trainer 1 - 48%

Question Trainer 2 - 60%

Question Trainer 3 - 61%

Question Trainer 4 - 53%

Question Trainer 5 - 44%

Question Trainer 6 - 51%

Question Trainer 7 - skipped

CAT 1 - Overall green, all yellow subjects

CAT 2 - Overall red, two red and rest yellow subjects

CAT 3 - Overall red, all yellow subjects

Sample Test 1 - 78%

Sample Test 2 - 42%

Sample Test 3 - 83% (Priority Questions)

Sample Test 4 - 22% (SATA Questions)

Readiness Test - 53%


I made a worksheet of all the lab values blank and made multiple copies of them, so I could practice them at least once a day. I wound up memorizing all the basics, but didn't get to ones such as Valproic Acid or Carbamazepine.

I listened to Simplenursing for medications, and wrote them on notecards. Heads up, I didn't really memorize a lot of them, but medications have always been a weakspot for me.

I listened to NCLEX High Yield podcasts and wrote those down. I do highly recommend them, a lot of the diseases he mentioned were on the exam for me. Also his METHOD, and ASKGRAPH are highly useful.

I listened to 3 of the 12? Mark K lectures. The electrolyte imbalance one (did help), and prioritzation one, and I think the third one was alcoholism (maybe had one question about it)

I enrolled in Kaplans NCLEX Question of the Day to read whenever.

I tried to do at least 40 QBank questions a day. That didn't happen. I have a 17 month old son and a 3 year old husky/german shepard mix dog and it's been hectic. I got lucky if I did 20 questions a day. But I MADE sure to review it afterwards. There's no point in doing the questions if you're not reviewing them.

The NCLEX emphasized priority questions for me, as well as select all that apply. I had 25 SATA, and it closed at 78 questions for me.

When you enter the NCLEX, you're going to have to go through the tutorial and check in process etc. My heart was beating on overdrive the entire time. I tried to calm down as much as possible, deep breaths, eyes closed. My hands didn't stop shaking the entire time, my heartrate calmed down to maybe 110 bpm LOL.

I utilized the white board a lot. I rewrote the questions, reread it. I took my time. Normally I'm a quick test taker but I swear I took at least 2 minutes per question. You take a look at the key points, is it a child or adult? Did they specify male or female? Age? Is it a physical problem or psychological problem? What is considered the priority here?

Honestly, I wasn't a big fan of the way Kaplan breaks down the question, so I ended up utilizing the NCLEX High Yield Method. Reworded the question into a few words for me (wrote it down), then started from option 3 and 4. Which one is a better choice? 4? Okay cross out 3. Now go to 4 and 2, rinse and repeat until you have one answer. I wrote down the rationale for why one is preferred over the other.

If I was stuck between 2, I just sat and debated, reread the question and debated again, until I picked one. Should I utilize ABC? Who knows.

Even with questions that I had absolutely no idea about (a lot of medication questions), I looked at the answers and just basically guessed which one would be the most dangerous/unstable. If it was a medication that I knew the root (like metoprolol or furosemide or whatever), It wouldn't be surprising to have an answer revolving around the kidney function or kidney damage, so more often than not, I chose those.

I never got up, though I had the mindset I was going to. Once I started however, I just ended up powering through. Any break I needed, I leaned back in my chair, closed my eyes, and took a few deep breaths, cracked my knuckles, etc.

I used 2 whiteboards total (but I was writing in font size 8 LOL) In all hindsight, you should probably study more than me, but this goes to show that it IS possible to pass even with bad scores. I was a C+ student in nursing school (we needed a 79 overall to pass the class), and you can see my Kaplan scores posted above. I will say however, that the Kaplan questions are indeed harder than the actual NCLEX questions, if that gives you any sort of comfort. Don't rely on that however! The more you know, the better off you'll be.

Side Note: Two of my friends took them last week, and tested up to 145 questions. They both passed! Remember that 145 questions just means that the computer needed a bit more to determine your line of competency. It's not a fail.


557 Posts

Congratulations to you.  You have no idea how much your post is going to mean to those who are prepping to take the NCLEX .  Not everybody comes out of practice questions with above 60% average scores.  Some score all over the place, some are in the mid-50's, etc..     Sure, it always pays off to make the time to study and keep improving your average scores, but you're proof it can be done, even if you aren't scoring those way above average scores.

Thanks for sharing and giving encouragement to those who need it.  

Much congratulations on your NCLEX success!!