Becoming a Registered Nurse

December 18, 2008 by  
Filed under Registered Nurse (RN), Types of Nurses

There are more than one way to become a registered nurse (RN). One can either take a Diploma in Nursing course which is a degree usually awarded by hospital based schools or Associate of Science in Nursing which are usually awarded by community colleges or taking a four year nursing course to earn a Bachelors Degree in Nursing. If one has gone through any of those three nursing courses, one is eligible to take the NCLEX for RN.

NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) is an exam developed by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing in the United States to test the nursing skill of an examinee. Unless one passes this exam, one cannot obtain a license in order to work in the field of nursing. Questions asked during these exams are mainly topics regarding knowledge, analysis and application of nursing theories at entry level. Questions are usually in multiple choice but recently there are broad questions are asked that require more detailed answers.

If one passes the NCLEX and becomes a registered nurse, it doesn’t end there. One can go on to take advance courses for nursing specialization. Some of the fields in nursing specialization includes surgical nursing, forensic nursing or a nursing educator to name a few. The basic salary for registered nurses average around 30k to 50k a year but nurses who have specialization can receive up to 75k to 100k a year. Currently with the shortage of nurses, it isn’t really difficult to find a job in the nursing field.

The NCLEX RN Examination Study Guide

The National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse licensing examination is a Computer Adaptive Test that runs from 75 to 265 individual items, relaying on an individual’s performance on the exam. Following graduation from your respective nursing programs, triumphant conclusion of this test is a nurse’s doorway to his/her professional career as a nurse. The outline for this examination is revised and revisited every 3 years by the NSCBN depending on the results of a job scrutiny study of fresh graduate nurses rendering the practice of nursing within the initial 6 months following commencement. Every item on the exam is itemized as “Client Need Category” and an “Integrated Process”.

Client Need Categories
There will be four categories for client needs, and every test is going enclose a lowest and a highest questions available from each category.

• Effective Care Environment and Safety
1. Management of Care
2. Infection Control and safety
• Health Maintenance and Promotion
• Psychosocial Integrity
• Physiological Integrity
1. Comfort and Basic care
2. Parenteral and Pharmacological Therapies
3. Risk Potential reduction
4. Physiological Adaptation

Integrated Processes
The integrated processes acknowledged on the NCLEX for RNs exam plan are the following:

• Nursing process: a systematic problem-solving method utilized in the practice of nursing ;
Composed of the steps of the nursing process which are assessing, analyzing, planning, implementing, and evaluating
• Caring: nurse-client relations characterized by shared value and confidence and that are bound on the way to the achievement of preferred results.
• Documentation and communication: nonverbal and/or verbal contacts between nurse and the patient including family members and members of the health care team; a written or electronic documentation of actions or events that happen while the client is under the nurse’s care
• Teaching and Learning: helping the client gain knowledge, attitudes, and capabilities that direct to behavior modification.

Preparing for the NCLEX-RN Examination

Using a book (reviewer) can help make your review easier. To make maximize the time you will spend in studying, try these easy yet essential suggestions:

1. Make use of a weekly calendar to enable you to schedule your study sessions
• Outline the time frames for your daily agendas (work, school, engagements, church activities, etc.) on calendar for the week.
• Find the “loopholes” in your schedule– times in which you wish to study. Put study time to the calendar during times when you expect yourself to be mentally fit, and then do it.
2. Provide the most favorable study environment for yourself.
• Get rid of external sources of disturbance, such as telephone, radio, computer games, internet, etc.
• Do away with internal sources of disruption, such as sleepiness, hunger, thirst, or dwelling on items or problems that cannot be worked on at the moment.
• Have at least 10 minutes break after every hour of strenuous study as a prize and an incentive to keep studying.
3. Use skim reading techniques to enhance comprehension on a specific chapter.

• Skim through the headings of each chapter; it can help you identify the chapter’s substance.
• Do not fail to read the definition of keywords that can help you learn new vocabularies to understand the information in a chapter.
• As much as possible do not disregard graphic aids (figures, graphs, tables, boxes); they are used in explaining significant aspects of a topic.
4. Please read each chapter thoroughly however at a sensible rate.
• Understanding and retention are basically improved by not reading very unhurriedly.
• Take time to read again parts that are not clear to you.
5. Summarize the details that you learned and studied.
• Take practice tests to assessment your application of the chapter content
• Review areas that match to questions you answered inaccurately.