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Care + Career

Resources, news and fun for NHA certification candidates and alumni.

This patient care tech passed 3 NHA exams – here’s how

 

Tiffany Schmidt-261101-edited.jpegWhen Tiffany Schmidt enrolled in an allied health training program she knew she was going to have to put in some extra work to achieve her goals. “I was beyond nervous knowing I had to take three NHA certification tests all within a few weeks of each other. I was struggling to remember the information provided during lecture and felt like I still wasn't 100% prepared to take these tests –phlebotomy, EKG, AND patient care tech.”

Despite her nerves and tight schedule, Tiffany walked out of the testing center three times with a ‘Pass’ mark on every single exam! In less than three months after passing her exams, Tiffany became a patient care technician at a local hospital where she performs STAT EKGs and blood draws daily.

So how did she do it?

We asked her to share the tips that made a difference for her.

Write everything down:

“Write and rewrite questions and answers as much as you can. Take as many notes as you can. The more you write the more it will become instilled in you.”

Tiffany used a technique in her exam preparation backed by research on studying. Evidence shows that using old-fashioned pen and paper helps you remember more information. So grab a notebook and write and rewrite your notes!

Consistency over cramming:

Tiffany didn't wait until the last minute to review everything. She made consistent studying part of her daily routine. “I studied for an hour every day,” she told NHA.

She even used little chunks of time in her day to mentally review material, “EKG was the hardest and that was my first one exam I took. I would study the lead placement every second I could in my mind I would go V1 is____ V2 is __ and so on and same with the order of draw.”

Memory tricks:

Tiffany used mnemonic devices to help her remember the details that she needed to know for her exams. She also made the most of her resources once she got into the testing room,

“They have a lot of good mnemonics for phlebotomy on YouTube and around the web. I was given scrap paper at the test, so as soon as I got my seat I wrote down the mnemonic I was using for EKG, all the lead placements, and what the location of the lead on the body.”

Instead of memorizing answers to questions, Tiffany focused on the concepts covered in the exam.

Study Materials from NHA:

“The practice assessments helped me study better because I found out what I did or did not understand based on these questions. Taking the practice assessments on a website designed to look and feel the same as the site that would be administering the tests was ideal. I am a horrible test taker and NHA had all the right material I needed to pass first hand.”

So what's next?

Tiffany’s confidence grew and guided her to another big career decision, “Passing these tests also gave me the ambition to do more with my career in the medical field and go back to school to become an LPN [licensed practical nurse]. Now I am using ATI to prep for the NCLEX PN!”

We’re wishing Tiffany luck on her next step – and wishing you luck taking your exam! Get more test prep tips and tricks on the Exam Candidate Tool Kit.

 

Topics: study tips, studying, study materials