Taking the NBRC Neonatal and Pediatric Exam... Try III
As I make the long, 4 hour drive from Key West to Miami to again sit for the NBRC's Neonatal and Pediatric exam, I tell myself that this time will be different. No matter what the outcome, I am done. I will not allow myself to throw good money after bad any longer. However, I also tell myself that THIS TIME, I am ready.
This is my third time up to bat with this NPS exam. Being a new grad coupled with working in a smaller hospital in Key West means I don't see a lot of high risk births. And the hospital doesn't have a NICU or PICU. In addition, as you all know, most respiratory therapy programs do not go too deeply into neonatal and pediatric issues. Nevertheless, I knew this was a weak point of mine and thus I knew the only way I was going to gain the education on it would be to take the bull by the horns and learn it from the Kettering Home Study.
A year ago this month I purchased the Kettering Home Study program. Since I had used the Kettering program to pass CRT and RRT exams, I knew that this would work for me. However, needless to say, I struck out a couple times by several points.
This past week I knew my time was up. Kettering has a great one year guarantee that gives you a refund if you don't pass. So, I again started on page one of the Kettering program and on CD one of the Kettering audio program. I spent a full 3 days,9 hours per day, doing every single section, every single workbook exercise, and I even went over twice the sections that I knew I had struggled with.
In addition, I paid the extra $40 and completed the NBRC's "self assessment" exam. (Which I failed by a couple of points.) Finally, the night before the actual exam, I completed the Kettering Mock Exam and passed it. I passed it with the EXACT number of questions I needed. Missing one more would have resulted in a failing grade.
I knew this was going to be close. Despite hours and hours of study and review, I think my mind has reached the "saturation" point of what it is possible to learn about neonatal and pediatric issues from a book. I think everything else I need to learn I will have to learn from experience. Thus, I know this test is going to be close. I am either going to barely pass or barely fail.
About three-quarters of the way through the test, I begin to get nauseated. I know it is not going well. I just seem to choke and feel like everything has left my mind. Is it possible to actually OVER-STUDY for an exam? I begin to over think issues. And finally, I run out of time. I don't get to read the last six questions on the test. All I had time to do was enter "B" next "B" next "B" next "B" next "B" next "B". This just underscores for me that there is no possible way that I passed this time.
I quickly go for the exit. I do not even want to stick around to get my results and head to the door. However, I find the front door locked. I then go back to the office and ask the proctor to unlock the door. He replies that he has my results. I inform him that: "Yea, I know, I didn't pass it again. For whatever reason, it just apparently isn't clicking in my mind."
He looked down at my results, then back at me.
Then he says: "Congratulations, you passed it by 2 questions."
Needless to say, that Hindu guy from India who owns the Miami H&R Block got the biggest southern hug that he has probably ever had in his life. I am sure his feet were dangling 6 feet above the ground. So, finally, I can stop worrying about this damn test. I can stop stressing over it.
In just a few short months, I also will be wrapping up my BSRT degree from the University of North Carolina. My goal is to obtain the ACCS and CPFT credentials before I graduate. So, up next..... a visit to the Kettering page to buy my next home study course. Well, that and turning in my test results to work so I can get a raise that comes with getting the NPS credential. THANK YOU, KETTERING!