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NCLEX-RN Prep Plus 2018: 2 Practice Tests + Proven Strategies + Online + Video

NCLEX-RN Prep Plus 2018: 2 Practice Tests + Proven Strategies + Online + Video PDF

Author: Kaplan Nursing

Publisher: Kaplan Publishing


Publish Date: February 6, 2018

ISBN-10: 1506233309

Pages: 528

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

The NCLEX-RN® exam is, among other things, an endurance test, like a marathon. If you don’t prepare properly, or approach it with confidence and rigor, you’ll quickly lose your composure. Here is a sample, testlike question:

A man had a permanent pacemaker implanted one year ago. He returns to the outpatient clinic because he thinks the pacemaker battery is malfunctioning. It is MOST important for the nurse to assess which of the following?

As you can see, the style and content of the NCLEX-RN® exam is unique. It’s not like any other exam you’ve ever taken, even in nursing school!

The content in this book was prepared by the experts on Kaplan’s Nursing team, the world’s largest provider of test prep courses for the NCLEX-RN® exam. By using Kaplan’s proven methods and strategies, you will be able to take control of the exam, just as you have taken control of your nursing education and other preparations for your career in this incredibly challenging and rewarding field. The first step is to learn everything you can about the exam.

Abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting1 . Wheezing on exertion, cyanosis, and orthopnea2 . Peripheral edema, shortness of breath, and dizziness3 . Chest pain radiating to the right arm, headache, and diaphoresis

What Is the NCLEX-RN® Exam?

NCLEX-RN® stands for National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse. The NCLEX-RN® examination is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN), whose members include the boards of nursing in each of the 50 states in the United States, the District of Columbia, and four U.S. territories: American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Virgin Islands. These boards have a mandate to protect the public from unsafe and ineffective nursing care, and each board has been given responsibility to regulate the practice of nursing in its respective state. In fact, the NCLEX-RN® exam is often referred to as “the Boards” or “State Boards.” The NCLEX-RN® exam has only one purpose: to determine if it is safe for you to begin practice as an entrylevel nurse.


The NCLEX-RN® exam is prepared by the NCSBN. Each state requires that you pass this exam to obtain a license to practice as a registered nurse. The designation registered nurse or RN indicates that you have proven to your state board of nursing or regulatory body that you can deliver safe and effective nursing care. The NCLEX-RN® exam is a test of minimum competency and is based on the knowledge and behaviors that are needed for the entry-level practice of nursing. This exam tests not only your knowledge, but also your ability to make competent nursing judgments.


In order to define entry-level practice of nursing, the National Council conducts a job analysis study every three years to determine what entry-level nurses do on the job. The kinds of questions they investigate include: In which clinical settings does the beginning nurse work? What types of care do beginning nurses provide to their clients? What are their primary duties and responsibilities? Based on the results of this study, the National Council adjusts the content and level of difficulty of the test to accurately reflect what is happening in the workplace.


is not a test of achievement or intelligence. It is not designed for nurses who have years of experience. The questions do not involve high-tech clinical nursing or equipment. It is not predictive of your eventual success in the career of nursing. You will not be tested on all the content that you were taught in nursing school.


CAT stands for Computer Adaptive Test. Each test is assembled interactively based on the accuracy of the candidate’s response to the questions. This ensures that the questions you are answering are not “too hard” or “too easy” for your skill level. Your first question will be relatively easy; that is, below the level of minimum competency. If you answer that question correctly, the computer selects a slightly more difficult question. If you answer the first question incorrectly, the computer selects a slightly easier question (Figure 1). By continuing to do this as you answer questions, the computer is able to calculate your level of competence.

In a CAT, the questions are adapted to your ability level. The computer selects questions that represent all areas of nursing, as defined by the NCLEX-RN® detailed test plan and by the level of item difficulty. Each question is self-contained, so that all of the information you need to answer a question is presented on the computer screen.


There is no time limit for each individual question. You have a maximum of six hours to complete the exam, but that includes the beginning tutorial, an optional 10-minute break after the first two hours of testing, and an optional break after an additional 90 minutes of testing. Everyone answers a minimum of 75 questions to a maximum of 265 questions. Regardless of the number of questions you answer, you are given 15 questions that are experimental. These questions, which are indistinguishable from the other questions on the test, are being tested for future use in NCLEX-RN® exams, and your answers do not count for or against you. Your test ends when one of the following occurs:

Figure 2
Try not to be concerned with the length of your test. In fact, you should plan on testing for six hours and seeing 265 questions. You are still in the game as long as the computer continues to give you test questions, so focus on answering them to the best of your ability.
Remember, every question counts. There is no warm-up time, so it is important for you to be ready to answer questions correctly from the very beginning. Concentration is also key. You need to give your best to each question because you do not know which one will put you over the top.

You have demonstrated minimum competency and answered the minimum number of questions (75) (Figure 2) You have demonstrated a lack of minimum competency and answered the minimum number of questions (75) (Figure 3) You have answered the maximum number of questions (265) You have used the maximum time allowed (six hours)

Content of the NCLEX-RN® Exam The NCLEX-RN® exam is not divided into separate content areas. It tests integrated nursing content. Many nursing programs are based on the medical model. Students take separate medical, surgical, pediatric, psychiatric, and obstetric classes. On the NCLEX-RN® exam, all content is integrated.

Look at the following question.

A woman with type 1 diabetes is returned to the recovery room one hour after an uneventful delivery of a 9 lb., 8 oz., baby boy. The nurse would expect the woman’s blood sugar to do which of the following?

Is this an obstetrical question or a medical/surgical question? In order to select the correct answer, (2), you must consider the pathophysiology of diabetes along with the principles of labor and delivery. This is an example of an integrated question.
Change from 220 to 180 mg/dL.1 . Change from 110 to 80 mg/dL.2 . Change from 90 to 120 mg/dL.3 . Change from 100 to 140 mg/dL.

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