9 Studying Tips to Pass the NCLEX
Studying for the NCLEX can be intimidating. Especially once you see how thick review books can be and knowing that not all content would appear in the exam. Don’t worry though, I got here 9 studying tips (same things I did before) that you can apply to pass the NCLEX.
1. Discover your study style
People have different study styles as our fingerprints differ from one another. Some people might need complete silence while others enjoy and more effectively digest information while listening to Taylor Swift. I know people who need a study buddy and I also know a lot of people who’re more inclined to study on their own. There are also people who study better in the morning than at night, and otherwise.
Before you plan on reviewing for the NCLEX, take a sweet time figuring out your study style. This will help you better gather and store information rather than just running your way through every topic you’ll study.
2. Segment your studies into sections
Cramming for exams? We’ve all been there – but it’s not for everyone!
Segmenting your studies into sections or taking it piece by piece will help you avoid procrastination. Aside from that, studies suggest that retention of information after an all-nighter is very low. This will also inhibit your mind from running in full capacity since you’ll be exhausted because you were up all night.
Having a study plan that breaks out sections into pieces will help you feel less overwhelmed. This will also help you get full control of what material you’ll be studying and will give you a better chance of passing the exam.
No test coming up? Great! You can schedule at least an hour a day to study. Since there isn’t a cloud hanging over your head pressuring you, you’ll be able to retain more information compared to cramming the day or night before.
3. Limit distractions
This, by far, is the most demanding study tip to follow. We’re at a point where anywhere we look, we see screens. We are all addicted to our gadgets!
When was the last time it took you an hour before looking at your phone to check if someone sent you a message? You can’t remember? If you ask me a question, I can’t remember either! Sometimes, you just look at it to check how much battery you’ve got left. You can’t focus on studying if you’re compelled to check your phone from time to time.
This small thing – our phones – is the new challenger when it comes to grabbing our attention. Do yourself a favor and leave it in the other room. Intentionally relocate anything that stops you from focusing on studying, and yes, that includes your cat.
4. Done with a chapter? Read it again!
When you go through a chapter for the first try, try not to highlight anything or don’t try to write down anything. Just skim through it. On your second read through, this is the time to write down notes, highlight important words, the time to focus on bolded words and phrases, words that are placed in boxes, and information that is drawn out or has a triangle next to it. (The triangle is an indication that this is important NCLEX information – do not forget about that.)
5. So, you’re really done with that chapter. Time for the practice questions!
As you go through the practice questions, remember to think and feel as if you’re actually taking the NCLEX. These practice questions aren’t just there to check how much knowledge about the questions you have so far, it can also serve as a simulation of the real thing!
Remember that training dummy from your CPR lessons? Yes. Pretend like it’s the real thing!
Read through the test questions carefully and narrow down your options using deductive reasoning to find the correct answer.
Do you think that the question you chose is logically correct? If your answer is yes, write down the reasons why you think it is and do not forget to note down key details as to why that answer is the right one.
6. Get a binder
You will use this to store EVERY handwritten notes you have so you can easily pull them out whenever you need to look back on any important information.
7. Incentivize yourself
Who doesn’t love a reward?
Passing the NCLEX is the one true gift for someone who’s reviewing for the NCLEX, but giving yourself small things throughout your review will definitely boost your motivation. You can try to tell yourself that once you’re done doing three chapters, you’ll take yourself out for some Boba. You perfected the practice questions on chapter six? You deserve to get those earrings you found on Etsy.
Remember though, these incentives do not have to cost anything, okay? As long as it can help you get motivated to continue studying, just go for it!
8. Effectively plan your breaks
Break plans (including times where you’ll want to get good sleep) will be something to look forward to and will also help you avoid the want to slack off. When you’re done with two chapters, or if you’ve managed to successfully manage to answer a set of practice questions, take a break. You can also schedule a break at a specific time.
Keep in mind that these breaks SHOULD NOT take longer than 15 minutes since this will get you too far out of the zone.
You can also try moving around. Get outside and take a short walk. Getting your blood moving will help you keep your brain focused. Also, don’t forget to swing by the bathroom once you’re done. Studying without an empty bladder can be very distracting.
9. Do not be afraid to ask for help
Asking for help is something the hardest thing to do but take note, in studying, it is very important to ask for some.
There are a lot of places or people you can look for resources and ask for help that can help you succeed at the NCLEX.
You can ask a friend who is also an aspiring nurse, your roommate, or you can also enroll in tutoring lessons. Speaking of enrolling, FEUER nursing review offers a wide range of comprehensive review materials that can help you pass the NCLEX. Furthermore, you can ask someone else to read the practice questions for you or get someone that can help you understand a particular section you’re having a hard time understanding.
Aside from that, for foreign nurses, there are also specific NCLEX exam requirements that need to be completed so do not hesitate to ask for help to better understand those requirements.
Always keep in mind that we are all in this together!
That’s my 9 studying tips that also helped me pass the NCLEX. I hope it can do you good as it did for me!