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NCLEX preparation – 9 great tips!



We all delay studying even though we have delayed too long. Don’t feel guilty – it happens to all of us.  The intention to take the NCLEX-RN, the course and test scheduling can take a few weeks or several months depending on your frame of mind, your study habits, the State you want to register in and approval to sit the exam.  You have enough time from when you apply to the Board to when you decide to take the test to schedule your study time.  Our recommendation is that you do a ‘joint’ study program – first study from the printed material followed by an online course.   SNI recommends the following link to order this program.  This type of preparation will stop the ‘panicking’ when the test day approaches and you are hoping, that you will pass.

Remember the Boy Scout Motto – BE PREPARED and you will pass.

Hopefully the following helpful hints will assist you with your studies.

  1. When should I begin studying?

Only you know your study habits and what works for you.  Some nurses only need a few weeks and others a few months.  Plan a study program around what you can do.

Worldwide college students taking the NCLEX often start learning 5-6 months previous to their examination.  Again, plan a program that works for you. However, depending where you graduated from and your nursing background, plus your mastery of English will determine the amount of time you think, as an individual, you will need.

  1. What’s the best methodology for studying?

This is up to you – what works for you may not work for your friend or classmate. Everybody prepares differently.  There are some key issues to remember when starting to study for NCLEX:

  • Don’t reread all of your nursing college notes. You don’t need that.
  • The NCLEX is common information.
  • Order a combination of good study books and an online course.
  • The books will really help and the online course puts it all into perspective for you.
  • They all have questions relating to what you are studying.
  • Deal with key topics that you are having a problem with.
  • If you know medical-surgical nursing and work on a medical or surgical ward, you will probably be ok in that area and should devote more time to the discipline you are not familiar with. For example: OB/L&D, Pediatrics etc..
  • Different format questions are shown at the end of each segment of your study guides. Watch out for “choose all that apply” questions. They are a little more difficult.
  1. Do I need to master every part of my studies to pass?

The NCLEX is a computer based exam and covers all disciplines in nursing.  Answer the questions in your study books and the online course (that’s why SNI recommends you use both and we suggest the ICAN Publishing Company resources).

The exam is tougher than most anticipate so don’t assume that passing is automatic (or ‘a given’ as we say n America).

The questions are structured in such a way that a minimum number of questions asked can be fifty (75) or maximum at around two hundred and fifty (265). After you complete the exam you will walk out of the testing site with ‘no clue’ as to whether you passed or failed.  Don’t worry, this is normal. Nurses from all over the world have the same feeling.

  1. What’s the test structure like? How much time do I have for the test and are there breaks?

The NCLEX is a Computerized Adaptive Test – the same as in the UK

The questions are often random. See some helpful hints at the end.

  1. When and how do I register for boards? Can I reschedule?

Click on this link to view the candidate bulletin, it will give you all the knowledge you want:

REMEMBER – each Board has different requirements for registration, especially for the international nurse.  Once approved by the State Board you will receive the ATT (Authorization to Test).  At that time register with Pearson Vue to schedule your exam.  And yes, you can always reschedule if you must miss the original date and if you do fail the exam you can retake.  If you test better mornings, then schedule your exam for the morning session – same thing with the afternoon session.

  1. What are the test requirement and what am I allowed/not allowed to convey for the NCLEX?

The testing sites are strict and do not allow any private objects resembling cell telephones, luggage, purses, coats, hats, gum, drink, watches, and many others. See the candidate bulletin hyperlink above for extra info.

7. How early should I arrive on the day of the exam?

Get there 30-40 minutes early.  Don’t forget to take a ‘bathroom break’ before you go in! There will be others taking the exam at the same time.  Some testing sites only have a four-testing facility, depending on the country.

  1. How can I help myself prepare?

We suggest you prepare for your examination the day before by following these steps:

  • Get a good night’s sleep!
  • Eat a nutritious meal on the day of the exam.
  • Drink limited coffee or tea – a small amount of caffeine helps you stay awake and improves your concentration but stay away from large amounts
  • Keep away from too much sugar – Refined sugars are related to a spike in vitality, followed by a decline in cognitive capability.  If you are taking the test in the afternoon – try a Diet Coke or Pepsi to give you that ‘lift’. 
  • Once you have studied and feel you are ready – give yourself a break the evening or morning before you sit the exam.
  • Clear your mind on the day of the test.  If you feel you need some extra study – concentrate on the questions in your study material that you feel are your weakest areas.


SNI’s ‘tried and true’ advice.

  1. Most questions are based on the concept “Is this nurse safe to work in a hospital on a ward and take care of patients”?
  2. Look at the questions and ask yourself – What is safest for the patient and do you know what this is as it relates to each question.
  3. Really Study the question before you try and answer. For example: Is it a physiological question or psychosocial question.  Rule out the one it is not – then go on to the other answers in the same question.  Remember always Patient Safety.
  4. After you have completed your study and online course you will have a good idea of what the American NCLEX is looking for.
  5. This is the key – Focus on that thought as you read the questions.
  6. When you understand this concept, you will pass the exam.

How will I get my results and what happen if I fail?

You can get your “unofficial” result after 48 – 72 hours. Check on the Pearson Vue website at

SNI hopes the above information helps you with your studies and gives you confidence to take the exam.  If you decide you want to take the CGFNS exam first, it is like the NCLEX.  Even though you pass CGFNS you still  must pass NCLEX.



Total number of jobs: 337,863

Projected job growth, 2016-2026: 17.4%

Median annual salary: $93,294

Typical education: Bachelor’s degree

The increasing demand for medical services calls for more people to manage them. Health services managers may oversee the functions of an entire medical practice or facility—as a nursing home administrator, for example—or a specific department, as a clinical manager for, say, surgery or physical therapy. Health information managers work specifically on maintaining patient records and keeping them secure, an especially important task as everyone is shifting to digital.

A bachelor’s in health administration is the ticket to this profession, but a master’s in health services, long-term-care administration or public health is also common among these workers. You may need to be licensed to run certain types of facilities, such as a nursing home, for which all states require licensure, or an assisted-living facility. Check with your state’s department of health for details.

*** Contact SNI abut the Master’s in Health Care Program.  Can work 20-hours while studying.

Nurse practitioner


Total number of jobs: 145,331

Projected job growth, 2016-2026: 32.3%

Median annual salary: $98,288

Typical education: Master’s degree

Health care coverage in our country may be up for debate, but the increasing need for quality medical care is irrefutable. Advancing technology, greater focus on preventive care and an aging population will mean a growing number of patients requiring care in hospitals, doctors’ offices, long-term-care facilities and even private homes. Nurse practitioners (NPs) are highly sought after to meet that need. They’re able to provide much of the same care as full-fledged doctors, including performing routine checkups and writing prescriptions, and they can work independently. Exact guidelines vary by state.


Are also in high demand. The already robust workforce of 2.9 million is expected to grow 17.2% by 2026. And they enjoy a healthy pay rate, too: The median salary for RNs is $67,418 a year.

Becoming a nurse requires either a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) (another one of our best college majors), an associate’s degree in nursing or a diploma from an accredited nursing program (which usually takes two to three years). NPs must also get a master’s or doctoral degree. Both RNs and NPs need a license to practice, not to mention reserves of compassion, patience and emotional stability.

Know your rights!

US Immigration Law – Know your rights!

Do you know what your immigration rights are if you are stopped by a law enforcement officer for any reason in America?


Visit the link below to a downloadable pocket wallet card. This is a card that can be carried by individuals who would like to know what their rights are. Carry it with you always.

It can also serve as a way for you to tell a law enforcement agent that you would rather talk to your lawyer before you speak to a police officer or law-enforcement agent. You do not have to give them the name of the lawyer but if you are stopped and don’t have a lawyer, quote the information on the card and contact an immigration lawyer immediately.

This information is by the courtesy of David Nachman, Attorney-at-Law.

Download Here – In English

Download Here – En Espanol


Please share this information with family and friends – spread the word! 

Living and working in the USA – money


There are many things you need to know about living and working in America. SNI will post a practical, and hopefully, helpful, guide of things you need to know as you embark on your exciting journey to the USA!

The more you know before you leave your home country, the happier you will be and the easier it will be to adjust to your new surroundings. Each week we post a different section from our SNI Booklet. In this post, we are talking about your money.

Traveling Money

You are advised to bring at least $4,000 (US dollars) with you at the time you travel. You will need money to live on until you receive your first paycheck. Your first salary depends upon your first workday within the employer’s payroll system. Most employers pay on a biweekly basis. We suggest traveling with refundable travelers checks or use your ATM cash card once you get to America.

You will need some cash as you travel, preferably denominations of $1, $5, $10, and $20 bills. These are useful for baggage carts at the airport, tipping, taxis, fast food restaurants etc. Again-use your ATM upon arrival.

Travelers Checks

Travelers Checks are the recommended way to carry money. They are safe, protect you against loss or theft and they can be used as freely as cash when purchased in small denominations. If you do not want to purchase traveler’s checks use the ATM upon arrival!

Your national currency is difficult and expensive to change to US money. Airports and banks are the most likely places to exchange and exchange rates vary daily. There is always a fee for changing currency.

Bank Drafts

Allow at least 10 working days to clear.

Currency denominations

COINS: $.01 (penny), $.05 (nickel), $0.10 (dime), $0.25 (quarter), $.50 (half dollar).

CURRENCY: $1, $5, $10, $20, $50, $100, $1000. All ‘bills’ look alike. They are the same green color and size. The most commonly used are the $1, $5, $10, $20 and $50 bills. Check your change carefully!


It is customary in the US to tip in bars, restaurants, taxis, hair salons, etc. Generally, you are expected to tip 15 to 20 percent of your bill, depending on quality of the service you receive. No tip is required in cafeterias where you serve yourself. A minimum of $1-2 is acceptable per bag for porter, baggage handlers at airports and railroad stations. Waiters, waitresses, servers get minimum wage and make their living from their tips. If you feel the service warrants it, tip well. You will be thanked and get good service the next time!

Checking Accounts

Bring enough money with you to pay for your essentials before you get your first pay check and can open a checking account. You must have a social security number to open a checking account. Your hospital employer or agency will guide you in this process.

Credit Cards

Please take at least one credit card with you and an ATM card if you have one. It is essential for hotel services, car rentals, etc. Remember – when you use your credit cards in the US, bills will be sent to your home country address, payable in the currency of your country. You cannot transfer your account to be paid in the US. When you arrive, you must write to your credit card company and give them your new address.

Interest rates vary depending on accessibility of money. It is OK to negotiate a lower interest rate on your credit cards. The more credit available, the lower the interest rate you can negotiate.

HINTS: a) Open a store account (Sears, Penney’s etc.) as soon as you can as these are simple to open. b) Do not buy a car with cash. Get a loan even if it is for only six months. c) When/if you have a credit card, charge, and then make monthly payments even if only for a short while. This all helps establish credit and remember that the USA RUNS ON CREDIT! It is essential to have it.


Deposits are often required, either in cash up-front, or as part of your payment for various goods and services necessary for your daily living, such as telephone, electricity, accommodation

Deposits may also take the form of “down payments” when making major purchases such as a car or furniture. Major purchases usually require credit verification. Research the area where you work to locate a car dealership or furniture store that will extend credit based on your employment contract. Check at your place of employment for help.

Daily services such as electricity, telephone, gas, water etc. may or may not require a start-up deposit. Check locally.


Taxation has three levels: Federal, State and Municipal. Federal taxes are the same everywhere, while State taxes vary from State to State. This reflects significantly on the cost of living between various locations in the USA.

Federal and State income tax (if applicable) is deducted automatically from your pay check; the amount deducted varies depending upon your filing status. Your tax filing status is determined during the processing period with your new employer. You will be assisted with completing the necessary forms during the first days of your start date. Check with your recruiter, human resources or the personnel director at your place of employment. Your tax status and gross income will determine the amount of tax which is to be withheld. In addition to State and Federal tax, nominal amounts are deducted from gross earnings for State disability insurance, unemployment insurance and social security.

Almost everything you buy in the USA will be “plus sales tax”. This ranges from 4% to 8%. Expect this tax to be added to the marked price in shops and restaurants. Remember, this is sales tax and not a service charge.

You must file a statement of Federal and State earnings, showing income tax withheld, by April 15th annually. Your employer will provide you with a W-2 form by January 31st each year, which indicates the amount of earnings and taxes paid for the year. Consult a person who files taxes for a living.

Working in Australia or New Zealand


Agency RN placements let you join the staff with all the benefits that other hospital employees enjoy.  These are not travel nurse positions, but are hospital placements from 1 year to residency and citizenship.

Salary: Nurses may earn a package of $62-78,000Aud per year which is adequate to support a family.    This package may include shift differentials, salary packaging and relocation assistance. “Salary packaging”, offered by some facilities, may reduce taxation on living expenses. That is, your regular bills can be paid out before taxed salary is paid to you. Paid vacation time is up to 5 weeks per year with additional public holidays.

Relocation: Assistance with airfare and initial accommodation varies with each hospital contract. Shared accommodation is about $105-18/week.

Process for Licensure: We facilitate your application and guide you through the licensure and immigration requirements and study and work visas. You will be required to have a visa medical, and pay visa fees of $AUD450 for each visa.


English tests:  If you trained in a language other than English, or the official language of that country is not English, or if your nursing education program does not closely match the Australian or New Zealand nursing education program, then you may be directed by the NZ or Australian nursing authority to complete an 8-12 week Competency or Bridging course, during which, you are not permitted to work. The nurse is responsible for accommodation and airfares while completing the assessment course.  We can assist with accommodation in some locations.


New Zealand: The 8-10 week nursing bridging course in New Zealand is called Competency Assessment Program and costs NZD$6000 ($US4200) not including travel or living costs.  You will need to have completed a 3 year nursing course.  OET “B” pass, or: IELTS (Academic) 7.0 on every band within 12 months, in all attempts, is required.  Once completed, this course enables you to gain an Australian Nursing licence.


Australia: The cheapest Australian Bridging course is $Au11000 in Sydney. Nurses who have not completed a 3 year initial nursing course will have to register for a bridging course in Australia.   If you have a 2-year nursing program, (e.g. from a US community college), you may be directed to complete a year of study in a University, and this course allows you to work for up to 20 hours a week. Australia requires a pass rate of 7.0 in each Band of IELTS unless your Nursing studies were taught and assessed in English and you completed your secondary education in English.


English Language Study: If you have not reached the English levels, required above, we have 2 programs available.

IELTS on-line study course (contact

And: NZ English College where you can study English in NZ for 26 weeks and work up to 20 hours a week while completing the requirements for IELTS/OET and NZ registration. The cost is NZ$280 per week and the total amount must be paid up-front.  You may earn up to $200 per week as a nurse aid in aged care or any other occupation to assist with living expenses.  Email  for more information on this program.


Selection for our placement services:  We decide to work with you on the basis of your IELTS results, your resume, (indicating at least 3 years of acute nursing experience), and a phone interview.


Fees and costs: Our fees depend on which program you intend to pursue and vary from a refundable administration fee of $USD350 to non-refundable fee of $5-1500, depending on your need for reviewing documentation, assisting with education facility applications, liaising with the nursing board, and  arranging accommodation for courses.  This way we ensure that we spend our time giving individual attention to those nurses who are in our program.  This whole process may take up to 18 months before you finally get to start work. We support you through the various processes of the applications for RN licensure, (and, if required, pre-registration program with study visa), followed by job placement with working visa and travel arrangements).

We refund the administration fee once you have completed your 3 month probation period in your job.


Placement as an RN: When you are close to completing the RN nursing bridging course for Australia or NZ, we will submit your file for consideration by an Australian or NZ hospital to sponsor you for a Long-Term working visa.  The Long-Term visa covers your family members, is renewable for a further three years and after 6 months you may also apply for residency.  The other option is to apply for an independent visa.

Useful websites:

Please contact me again when you can provide the required length of acute nursing experience, passing IELTS score and can confirm your ability to pay for the pre-registration course.

Please note: we cannot submit you for any positions at hospitals where you have already applied directly.

Writing a good CV

Your curriculum vitae/resume will play a major part in your personal profile that we will submit to our client hospitals on your behalf.  Take this opportunity to tell the hospitals about your education, skills and experience.

Please note the following:

Start with your Title (Ms/Mr etc), full name and contact details.

Do not include your age, religion or personal interests.


  • Make sure you include all necessary dates. It is preferable to commence your employment history with your current or most recent employment first.  Remember to describe the size of the hospital, whether it is public or private, the number of beds and the specialities it covers.
  • Under “Additional Courses” please include any study days, staff nurse development days, or other courses you may think are relevant.
  • In “Duties”, please describe the type of patient diagnoses and your main responsibilities on the ward where you work or previously worked. Include any information on how often you took charge and whether you supervised any student nurses.
  • Under Personal Profile please write a short personal paragraph to include why you enjoy nursing and what aspects of nursing most appeals to you, your future aspirations and why you would like to work in the country where you are applying and what you think you will gain from the experience.

Here’s a template that you can use to  build you own CV:


NAME:                                                                      DATE OF BIRTH:


ADDRESS:                                                                NATIONALITY:











DATES:                                                                     POSITION HELD:              


TYPE OF UNIT/WARD:                                        NUMBER OF BEDS:












DATES:                                                                     POSITION HELD:              


TYPE OF UNIT/WARD:                                        NUMBER OF BEDS:










DATES:                                                                     POSITION HELD:              


TYPE OF UNIT/WARD:                                        NUMBER OF BEDS:








DATES:                                                                     POSITION HELD:              


TYPE OF UNIT/WARD:                                        NUMBER OF BEDS:







































REFEREES: (include phone and email contacts if possible)

Green Card Process for International RN’s

Green Card Process for International RN’s



  • Complete Agency application forms
  • Obtain study materials (Agency recommended complete package $200, includes audiotapes or CD’s, NCLEX review book, pharmacology review book and “nursing made insanely easy” review book.)
  • Apply to Nursing Board and/or  CGFNS       ($160-$275)    (3 months)
  • Study, study, study                                                                 (concurrent with above)
  • Complete CES application if required by board. ($275)        (concurrent with above)
  • Issued ATT (Authorisation To Test) by Board                      (2-3 months)
  • Book exam with Vue ($200)                                                   (2 months)
  • Sit NCLEX/CGFNS                           (travel costs)               (own schedule)
  • Provide result and documentation for visa to agency             (2-3 weeks)
  • Interview for position arranged by agency                             (1 month)
  • Green card application started by attorney                             (2 months)
  • INS issues receipt notice                                                        (4 months)
  • Complete visa screen documentation ($275)
  • Sit NCLEX if only have CGFNS                                           (2 months)
  • Complete packet 3 for Attorney/INS                                     (3-4 months)
  • Consulate application/fee (up to $250 per family member)   (2 months)
  • Consulate required medical per family member (costs vary) (1 month)
  • Interview at local consulate                                                    (3-4 months)
  • Arrange travel and accommodation!


  • Alternative option for CGFNS certificated nurses: sit NCLEX after arrival in US.


This is a lengthy process that each nurse can take at her own pace, step by step.

All costs are in US$$ and can be paid directly to the organizations concerned.

Heathrow Aviation Academy

Heathrow Aviation Academy in association with SNI presents

“Award in Air Cabin Crew” training Course delivered by British Airways at the London Heathrow Airport training facilities”

Enroll Now
Competitive Advantage:
• 15 Days intensive course covering a range of theory and practical sessions
• Course delivered by British Airways at the London Heathrow airport training facilities
• Taught by experienced instructors who train British Airways Cabin Crew staff
• State of the art training facilities set within London Heathrow Airport
• Gain Knowledge and skills needed to succeed as cabin crew
• Increase your exposure and employment prospects globally
• Customer service and employability skills training included
• Receive an “Award in Air Cabin Crew” produced by British Airways upon completion
• Apply to any airline worldwide and have a competitive advantage over others
• Visit the famous landmarks in the UK whilst studying
• IELTS 5.5 or B2 level English or equivalent testing to be carried out internally

Go to: for entry details and requirements.

COSTS: All fees are in GBP (British Pounds). Credit cards accepted.

  • Heathrow Aviation Academy application fee- £100
  • Heathrow Aviation Academy course fee- £1800.
  • Accommodation – Approx £350 per person for 14 nights with continental breakfast (based on twin room shared with one person)
  • Free shuttle bus daily from accommodation to BAAA.
  • Airport meet and greet.
  • Group pick up transportation cost £20-40 GBP per person each way
  • Lunch and Dinner available at the training facilities canteen.
  • Flights- student pays – SNI will help arrange.
  • Visa – student pays (approximately £60 for visitor/student visa)
  • SNI service fee- $250 (US) – Admissions processing, visa support, flights reservations support and general advice.

When you complete the course spend some time exploring London. Tours arranged!

For more information contact us and/or visit our website.: (USA) (USA)

Scan the QR Code




Dates to be determined

This review is by Podcast or USTREAM

 This NCLEX review is streamed live from America and will be sent to both the above locations. It is presented by ICAN Publishing and Sylvia Rayfield & Associates, with American Instructors.  The instructors will be teaching it live from America.

This review course will be streamed to a classroom venue in both Lagos and Nairobi (possibly Ghana). You get the same review, the same question and answer time, the same post follow-up with the instructors (120 days), the same books; 90 day IELTS study program and the same follow up with SNI. This is a chance to meet fellow nurses from your area.

All of the study guides will be sent to the location in one shipment to our representatives in Lagos, Nigeria and Nairobi, Kenya (and/or Ghana). To save you postage in Africa, we ask that you collect them from our representatives in the above locations. We MUST ship the study books (4) including pharmacology, at least 45-days prior to the start date of any training class to assist you in studying for the review course. Studying is essential to get good results.

  • $1,595 per nurse. This fee is inclusive of all SNI services – tuition, the study books (including Pharmacology; Medical Surgical Nursing; Nursing Made Insanely Easy; NCLEX-RN 10: How to Pass! Helpful hints, and Abbreviations used); classroom venue, shipment of the study books. Helpful Hints from SNI. We must have a minimum of 25 nurses between the locations – any combination will work. (We can accommodate up to 25 nurses in each location).
  • Payment can be made in two installments. $795 upon registration and $795 thirty days prior to the podcast.

If we cancel the review for ANY reason all tuition will be refunded except for $395 to cover all study materials which includes the above and the DHL shipment cost from America. All study material is yours to keep, use, and share.  If no books have been sent and you have paid tuition there is no deduction. A full  refund will be given minus bank charges of $50 if paid bank-to-bank.

Please complete the attached registration form and return ASAP. Do not send payment until further instructions. At the time of registration, information about the employer’s program will be sent to you.

This review course is the same one given to nurses in America, graduating from American Nursing Schools. It is interchangeable with the CGFNS study guide and exam.

Once we receive your registration we will add you to our data base and will reply to all emails within 24-48-hours.

Any local tax assessed by the government in Africa is paid by you.

A discount of $100 in the cost of tuition will be deducted for every referral you send that signs up for the course.

Download the application form here: NCLEX Africa application form

This includes 120-days ongoing access to the American educators for questions (please try and consolidate questions); a 90-day online IELTS study course and a complete five book study program, plus ongoing access throughout the process with SNI.   It also includes the Green Card information, SNI information and other helpful hints. Everything will be sent once we have your registration form and the initial payment. 

SNI will guide you with the complete process. It is a lot of work, a lot of expense but worth it. Each application for CGFNS, Visa Screen, and License is paid by you at the time of applying. The employer reimburses Visa Screen and license and/or CGFNS registration after arrival in America.

The local tax fee (if any) your country charges will be added to the tuition.

It takes lots of work, study and trust. We know you can do it!