CPNE Day 3- The Light at the end of a very long tunnel

Wake up call at 5:30 startled me! I had slept really good that night thankfully. Off to the hospital for my last shot…. I was SO ready to be done with this experience, I put on my name tag and watch and looked in the mirror thinking alright this is it, this one’s for all the dice…. keep your shit together, get in and get out, it’s time to finally move on with LIFE. ::::::Game time HOORAH:::::: This sounds completely ridiculous but it is literally how you feel, this experience is purely outta control, there’s no other way to explain it. You’ve spent all of this time engrossed in this nursing program, you’ve fought long and hard to get through those theory exams, you survived the disaster known as the FCCA somehow, you’ve made it to your CPNE weekend and soldiered through labs and have one final task before you with the keys to your degree and future just dangling in front of you… Continue reading “CPNE Day 3- The Light at the end of a very long tunnel”

CPNE Day 2- Patient Care Chaos

After the mandatory 20 minute break I tried to regroup my thoughts but this became very awkward and only got worse as the day and next day went on. I was excited to have passed one, still on edge, and then come down to wait for my next PCS and the other students are sitting there. You’re trying to gauge what happened by their expression, did you pass, did you fail?? Tears of joy or tears of sadness… awkward. I tried to encourage as best as I could to those who were wavering and tried to keep myself grounded and stay focused on ME. Continue reading “CPNE Day 2- Patient Care Chaos”

CPNE Careplans

Here are my careplans written verbatim (at least as best as I can remember) and my PCS Kardex info and AOC’s. I was able to use activity intolerance with all three patients and believe that this is highly likely for anyone’s weekend, so I’d remember to think of that one first every time and see if it can fit before trying to think up something else. Continue reading “CPNE Careplans”

CPNE Documentation and Narrative Notes

I have re-written all of my narrative notes and evaluations as best as I can remember. They may have flowed a bit less smoothly during the weekend, I’d add in a mnemonic that I forgot at the end sometimes and it didn’t sound perfect but it hit the important parts. I tended to overdocument a bit rather than just hit the required critical elements. I charted right from my mnemonics on the grid but worded things out of order occasionally so that they sounded better. I’ll be honest I didn’t write much down on my grids during implementation. Continue reading “CPNE Documentation and Narrative Notes”

CPNE Mnemonics

The only way in my mind to even come close to remembering all of your “critical elements” for each area of care assigned and THEN remember to document the appropriate elements is to use mnemonics. I have pretty much a photographic memory and even I wouldn’t have chanced the idea of forgetting one little thing either in implementation or documentation. You would want to rip your own head off if you got to the end and left off one tiny thing and failed the whole shabang…

There are 23 Areas of Care- 19 of which, in my opinion, you should have mnemonics for. Continue reading “CPNE Mnemonics”

CPNE Evaluations and Rationales

Moving on to the final part of documentation, your evaluation form with rationales. This is Sheri doing her thing and breaking down evals. Just thought I’d write out the ones that I used for my 3 PCS’s and then a couple of the ones I used for practice care plans for reference. The main thing I focused on in careplans was to ensure that my evaluation would be a piece of cake, I never picked a diagnostic label that would or could possibly set me up for a challenge at eval because I figured if you made it that far the last thing you want to do is mess up the eval!I made sure, as best as I could, that I’d be able to check that “effective” box when I selected my interventions, I wanted to avoid the ‘not effective’ and ‘unmet’ options like the plague. Continue reading “CPNE Evaluations and Rationales”

How to Prepare for the CPNE

The pictures & info below contain copyrighted content from Excelsior College, this information is meant for demonstrative purposes. No replication of this information is permitted.

The following is what I did to prepare for the CPNE. Some tips and tricks I learned along the way that may help. I’ve also included a timeline of how I prepared. Disclosure: I am a professional procrastinator, I did spend a lot more time preparing for this than I originally thought I would but it is probably no where near the amount of time that I’d advise someone else to take. I am lucky to have a photographic memory and an ability to retain a lot of information, it has served me well in school my entire life but I will warn anyone else attempting this, do NOT underestimate the amount of preparation needed. You know your own strengths/weaknesses by now, make sure you plan accordingly for this exam, it would be an EXPENSIVE mistake to show up unprepared… Continue reading “How to Prepare for the CPNE”

What Is the CPNE?

The CPNE has been called many things- The Beast, a nightmare, impossible… for me it was the gauntlet.

Gauntlet noun

  1. A form of punishment or torture in which people armed with sticks or other weapons arrange themselves in two lines facing each other and beat the person forced to run between them
  2. An onslaught or attack from all sides
    3. A severe trial; an ordeal. 

Yah…. that pretty much sums it up perfectly actually. Continue reading “What Is the CPNE?”

CPNE Resource Zone

Below are various links to posts about everything from my careplans to my PCS’s in depth. 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. 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. Continue reading “CPNE Resource Zone”

CPNE Clinical Performance In Nursing Examination


Dear fellow Excelsior nursing friends from afar,

I have put together these posts and information 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’ve added a section to my blog for CPNE-ers in an effort to try to share this info that I would’ve died to have myself while I felt so completely lonely and lost during this program. Continue reading “CPNE Clinical Performance In Nursing Examination”