Nursing is a profession that requires those who practice it to know many different subjects. Some of these topics are high-risk, such as mental health and cardiac monitoring, while others are more practical, such as nutrition and infection control. 

Nursing certification exams determine whether someone has met the nurse’s competency standards and validate knowledge and skill endowment. The following guide will give nursing students strategies for preparing for examinations and earning a BLS certification.

Have a Study Plan

The secret to effectively studying for your nursing school exams is creating a realistic study schedule that enables you to cover all the material you need to review without feeling overwhelmed.

Because of this, nursing schools frequently advise segmenting your test preparation into manageable study sessions. 

Use the acronyms you have learned in class and make your own when you can. Acronyms can help you remember crucial knowledge more efficiently and enhance your capacity to recall it rapidly during testing.

Utilize the practice and pre-employment exams to your full advantage at all times. For instance, an NCLEX book, which has the same questions you’ll discover on your nursing school examinations and is an excellent study resource, is strongly advised. 

When using practice exams, think about answering a predetermined amount of questions and marking the ones you answered incorrectly. You can revisit those questions you got wrong the next day rather than immediately.

You can also look at course materials and nursing courses to maintain your study schedule as well-rounded as possible.

Consider Various Study Methods

Many students prefer studying with a group or a friend. When working together, you can compare notes from your nursing school study sessions to see if you have a similar understanding of the material. 

Taking nursing certification exam preparations with classmates will help you get accustomed to time limits and performing under stress. Additionally, you can review each other’s answers to fill in any areas where you are weak and need to improve.

Study textbooks and articles for current information on the subjects you are studying. Be sure to review the material before an exam, so it is still fresh in your mind when you take the nursing exam. 

The most effective way to start is to sort through your class notes and highlight the main points of the material. Make sure you annotate them to reflect your level of understanding and clarify any issues you feel aren’t clear enough.  

Online communities, such as Reddit and Facebook groups, offer free information and support to nursing students. They can help you stay updated on general nursing-related news as well as specialized nursing news that can help when you’re on the path to BLS certification. 

When joining an online community, make sure it is legitimate so that you can tap into the wealth of online resources freely available on the internet.

You can access other nursing students’ experiences, review materials posted by experts in the field, and connect with people who share your interest in the profession.

Pace Your Studying

While exams target testing your knowledge of the subject material, they shouldn’t affect your brain power. You must not wait until the night before the exam to study. In addition, you shouldn’t cram the night before to make up for not reviewing enough schoolwork during the week. 

Instead, space out your studying and take breaks when you have trouble concentrating or feel overwhelmed. For example, if you have a week before an exam, study for about an hour per day for six days and then review all your materials in one day. 

Pacing your studies will give you time to study without feeling stressed or overwhelmed. It will also give you more time to practice using acronyms and refresh on everything else from the class.

Take Time for Yourself on the Day Before the Exam

You will feel more refreshed and mentally prepared if you take the day to relax and review all that you have studied. Going to bed early the night before will allow you to wake up on the morning of your exam with no distractions. 

If you must study at night, consider breaking it into smaller sessions throughout the evening. Try studying in shifts while taking a 15-minute break while repeating this pattern. Consider yoga or meditation as part of your relaxation routine.

Be Confident on Exam Day

Arrive early at the testing center and ensure you are comfortable with the surroundings. During nursing school, you’ve learned about different testing formats and the phrasing of specific questions, but now it is time to put what you have learned into practice.

Pay close attention to the question stem when taking multiple-choice nursing exams because it should contain all the information required to answer the question accurately.

The stem could be a complete or fragmented sentence or a declarative statement that is either positive or negative. Additionally, it might contain a few essential phrases that will help you understand what the inquiry is asking.

Evaluate Each Question Wisely

You only need to recall the information you have memorized from your studies to answer knowledge questions. The questions typically have something to do with specific terminology or classifications.

Application questions require you to apply the knowledge you have gained in class to a particular event involving a patient.

You must study and interpret data to answer higher-level questions. These questions have many phases accompanied by a patient scenario that you must understand and analyze to make the correct decision regarding how to address the patient scenario.

You might scan the questions rapidly when nervous and select the first suitable response. Rather than using this approach, figure out what a question inquires you and how you might answer it with the help of your understanding of the many question types.

Final Thoughts

These tips on reviewing for nursing school exams will help you feel prepared and confident for your upcoming nursing certification exam. You’ll remember everything you’ve learned in school and feel ready to apply your knowledge in a practical setting to earn a BLS certification.

Author Bio

Kate Macmorn

Communications Director AMRI

Kate is the communications director for the American Medical Resource Institute, where they’ve trained over a million healthcare professionals to study for, earn and maintain life support certifications that allow them to better respond to cardiac emergencies. When not in the office, you can find Kate practicing her tennis skills. She also frequents live music venues and is always looking for her next creative hobby.