Monday, March 5, 2012

Resources For My Fellow Nursing CPNE Friends



Dear fellow Excelsior nursing friends from afar,

I have put together this info to help anyone going through this journey in hopes that something anything here may help someone out there. I was lucky to have the support and encouragement from previous students who paid it forward and I hope to offer the same to you. I had this "mommy" blog already so I figured why not add on a section for CPNE-ers try to share this info that I would've died to have myself while I felt so completely lonely and lost during this program.

My CPNE test date was 3-1-2013 at Meriter Hospital in Madison Wisconsin. I've adjusted dates here to make these posts more seamless for the blog. 

Below are various links to posts about anything from my careplans to my PCS's in depth. I will add to it as I can about my entire journey with Excelsior. Hope some of it helps, best of luck to all of you on this wild ride!
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The posts include information that worked for ME, these things may not apply to you or to the current version of the study guide. I tested under the 19th Edition. Please confirm any info you find with an advisor as I would feel awful in steering you the wrong direction with any advice I offer that worked for me specifically. ALWAYS confirm info you find anywhere with an advisor, preferably on email so you have a paper trail.

Where to start?? If you're new here, start with the Preparation post. If you want to know about what the weekend is actually like start with the various hospital days. If you're near your test date read up on all the documentation/careplan posts to help fine tune. It's a lot of info, so bookmark it and come visit again :)

NO I DO NOT GET PAID or compensated in any form of anything for this ha I wish! I don't get Google Ad money, traffic or per click money. I averaged 100+k page views a month prior to my cpne journey, so be sure that I have no hidden agenda, my blog sponsors deal with diapers, not nursing school so they don't care heh! Just here to help.

Some of the info and/or pictures included contains copyrighted content from Excelsior College which may be confidential in nature. No identifying patient data is included and this information is meant for demonstrative purposes. No replication of this information is permitted.
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A brief history of how I got here. Graduated as an LPN in 2007 tried to move right into the bridge program but long story short school was a mess lost accreditation, etc. Worked in pediatrics, started my own biz around the same time on a whim. Eventually quit my job, had both of my Dudes and intended to finish my degree at some point. Realized that my pre-req credits would be expiring soon (meaning re-taking 2 years worth of A&P, micro, and such) and said uh oh. Stayed away from a traditional nursing program since it’d cost $2000/mo just to put the Dudes in daycare and chose Excelsior instead. If I’d only known then what I know now…. Decided to finish the program as fast as humanely possible. Signed up for all 8 theory exams right away, bought some previous students study notes, not one textbook and passed all exams in just over 6 weeks. Enrolled in both sections of the FCCA immediately, got stuck with the full 8 week computer version. Passed those and submitted my CPNE app the next day. Got my date about 4 weeks later (beginning of December) for March 1. Signed up for Sheri Taylor’s workshop 2 weeks prior to my test date and attempted to study in the meantime. Finished reading the 500 page studyguide about a week before the workshop. Finally got my head around what I was doing at the workshop and came home to study for my final 2 weeks. Submitted careplans and practiced labs for my final week and jetted off to Wisconsin. Went 3 for 4 in labs, passed #4 the next day, went 3 for 3 on PCS’s, flew home and started writing this for all of you before I forgot details.
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Click away folks....

What is the CPNE?
All about what I call The Gauntlet.

CPNE Day 1 Labs & PCS 1
My lab advice, equipment differences, what to do/not do, and my first PCS that got things off with a bang.

CPNE Day 2 PCS
Another interesting patient experience with the bionic woman and dashing down the hall to hand in my paperwork with 2 minutes to spare in the end.

CPNE Day 3
My final PCS and what it feels like to walk out with that magical letter

Careplans
The careplans I used for my PCS’s and all of my AOC’s

Documentation Galore
My narrative notes and how to document using your mnemonics.

Evaluations & Rationales
My evaluations for all 3 PCS's and examples of rationale statements.

Mnemonics
How to remember all 23 areas of care, the mnemonics that I used.

The CPNE Weekend In Pictures
A photo montage of the weekend starting out with nearly getting arrested at the airport

Preparing for the CPNE
What I did to prepare, my notecards, the workshop, how I set up labs, etc

Workshops!
Why I chose Sheri Taylor over Excelsior to prepare for the CPNE and what the workshop was like.

NCLEX & Licensure
My crazy road to finally signing that RN after my name! Including getting all 265 questions.

WGU: Western Governors University
Life after the CPNE exists! My road to getting my BSN and MSN!

WGU: Single Terms Tricks & Tips
How to finish your BSN in a single term



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