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To Improve Your NCLEX Score

To Improve Your NCLEX Score



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Published by nanonurse
nclex help
nclex help

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Published by: nanonurse on Sep 21, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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To Improve Your NCLEX Score 1. Read Questions CarefullyScores on tests are greatly affected by reading ability. In answering a test item,youshould begin by carefully reading the stem and then asking yourself the followingquestions:• What is the question really asking?• Are there any key words?• What information relevant to answering this question is included in the stem?• How would I ask this question in my own words?• How would I answer this question in my own words?After you have answered these questions, carefully read the options and then askyourself the following questions:• Is there an option that is similar to my answer?• Is this option the best, most complete answer to the question?Deal with the question as it is stated, without reading anything into it, ormakingassumptions about it. Answer the question asked, not the one you would like toanswer.For simple recall items the self-questioning process usually will be completedquickly.For more complex items the self-questioning process may take longer, but it shouldassistyou in clarifying the item and selecting the best response. 2. Identify Key WordsCertain key words in the stem, the options, or both should alert you to the needforcaution in choosing your answer. Because few things are absolute withoutexception, avoid selecting answers that include words such as always, never, all,every, only, must,
no, except, and none. Answers containing these key word are rarely correct becausetheyplace special limitations and qualifications on potentially correct answers.For example:All of the following are services of the National Kidney Foundation except:1. Public education programs2. Research about kidney disease3. Fund-raising affairs for research activities4. Identification of potential transplant recipientsThis stem contains two key words: all and except. They limit the correct answerchoice tothe one option that does not represent a service of the National KidneyFoundation. Whenexcept, not, or a phrase such as all but one of the following appears in the stem,theinappropriate option is the correct answer—in this instance, option 4.If the options in an item do not seem to make sense because more than one optioniscorrect, reread the question; you may have missed one of the key words in thestem. Alsobe on guard when you see one of the key words in an option; it may limit thecontext inwhich such an option would be correct. 3. Pay Attention to Specific DetailsThe well-written multiple-choice question is precisely stated, providing you withonly theinformation needed to make the question or problem clear and specific. Carefulreadingof details in the stem can provide important clues to the correct option. Forexample:A male client is told that he will no longer be able to ingest alcohol if he wantstolive. To effect a change in his behavior while he is in the hospital, the nurse
shouldattempt to:1. Help the client set short-term dietary goals2. Discuss his hopes and dreams for the future3. Discuss the pathophysiology of the liver with him4. Withhold approval until he agrees to stop drinkingThe specific clause to effect a change in his behavior while he is in the hospitalis critical.Option 2 is not really related to his alcoholism. Option 3 may be part ofeducating thealcoholic, but you would not expect a behavioral change observable in the hospitaltoemerge from this discussion. Option 4 rejects the client as well as his behaviorinstead ofonly his behavior. Option 1, the correct answer, could result in an observablebehavioralchange while the client is hospitalized; for example, he could define ways toachieveshort-term goals relating to diet and alcohol while in the hospital. 4. Eliminate Clearly Wrong or Incorrect AnswersEliminate clearly incorrect, inappropriate, and unlikely answers to the questionasked inthe stem. By systematically eliminating distractors that are unlikely in thecontext of agiven question, you increase the probability of selecting the correct answer.Eliminatingobvious distractors also allows you more time to focus on the options that appearto bepotentially sound answers to the question. For example:The four levels of cognitive ability are:1. Assessing, analyzing, applying, evaluating2. Knowledge, analysis, assessing, comprehension3. Knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis

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