NCLEX RN | Key Concepts for an NCLEX-RN Nursing Cram Sheet

We think you’ll agree that the NCLEX-RN exam has a tendency to keep new grads up at night.

But with our NCLEX-RN cram sheet guide, you don’t have to worry! We’re going to help you ace the exam by not only teaching you why an NCLEX-RN nursing cram sheet is helpful, but also by also providing you with key tips and must-know concepts to include in your cram sheet.

You’ve spent years learning nursing concepts and studying lab values, so the thought of creating one sheet for so much information may seem daunting. Still, it can be done!

Here’s the deal:

While we’ve provided useful information for you, we encourage you to create your own NCLEX-RN cram sheet.

This will not only ensure that your cram sheet is tailored to your specific needs, but it will also help you reinforce concepts as you put it together.


An NCLEX-RN nursing cram sheet is not meant to teach you everything you need to know for the exam.

Instead, it should supplement your studying and help reinforce key points that will help you pass the NCLEX-RN in 75 questions.

So where should you start?

Take a practice test before you start studying to find out where you stand. This will help you personalize your studying so that you’re not reviewing concepts you’ve already mastered.

Create your NCLEX-RN cram sheet based on the areas of weakness indicated by your practice test.

Once you have the concepts down, keep working on practice questions to solidify them.

Use study groups to teach and learn from your peers.

About the NCLEX-RN Exam

Before you take any exam, you should know what’s in store for you. You’ll need to know about test length, scoring, and question types.

Here’s some key info about the NCLEX-RN:

You have six hours to answer a minimum of 75 questions and a maximum of 265 questions. The exam will automatically shut off when you’ve achieved a passing level.

Questions include multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, ordered response, and hot spot.

But here’s the kicker: The NCLEX-RN exam uses something called computerized adaptive testing (CAT). This means that as you answer questions correctly, the difficulty level will increase. If you get a question wrong, the next one will be easier. So, keep this in mind if you’re taking the exam and feeling like it’s outrageously hard!

During the Exam

Start by taking a deep breath. Repeat this when you get nervous throughout the exam. You’ve got this!

Look for clues or similarities among potential answers to help you eliminate options, such as the words always, never, except,

Don’t overthink a question.

Use the process of elimination.

Take your time. But if you don’t know an answer, don’t obsess over it. Move on.

Grammar matters! Whatever answer you choose, it should agree in number with the question and complete it in a grammatically correct way.

So, what now?

Below, we’ve listed concepts that every nursing student should memorize. These include vital signs, lab values, therapeutic drug levels, tricks for the dreaded pharmacology and maternity questions, and more.

Memorizing these concepts will help you deduce the correct answers for many of the NCLEX-RN test questions.


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