What’s New?

September 2013

Hi everyone!

I hope you had a wonderful summer. I am working hard on Pass PCCN!, which we delayed a bit since a new blueprint was just recently released and we want the book to be current with that new blueprint. I have several reviews across the country this fall. They are all on the calendar and if you click on the date, a window will open showing you sponsor, contact name, phone, and email. Keep in mind that the sponsor establishes registration fee and process so you need to contact them if you are interested in attending a review.

I am still at Georgetown University teaching online in our online MSN program (Nursing@Georgetown) but still living in Lexington, KY. I am still doing some reviews when we can make it work with my schedule and I do love teaching reviews. Let me know if you would like to schedule something this coming spring.


March 2013

Hi everyone:

While the 4th edition of Pass CCRN! was released in January, the practice questions were delayed a bit. THEY ARE NOW UP on the Elsevier Evolve website. Thank you for your patience.  The reason that this occurred is that Elsevier was out of stock of the 3rd edition and rather than print more copies of that edition, they decided it would be better to print the newly completed 4th edition before the questions were through the editing process. I know this has created a lot of angst for many of you (I have heard you!) but it will be resolved soon. Though I was not involved in that decision-making, I apologize for this cause of frustration and dissatisfaction for those of you who purchased the book in the last couple of months.

I am frequently asked about a combination CCRN/PCCN review. I do NOT recommend PCCN candidates attend a review that was intended specifically for the CCRN exam. My experience has been that the PCCN candidates leave feeling frustrated and demoralized since they are not knowledgeable about and don’t need the information about invasive monitoring, titration of critical care drugs, and acute mechanical ventilation. I have designed a 3-day review with content that is common to both exams on days 1 and 2 and then CCRN-specific content on day 3. So PCCN candidates attend days 1 and 2 while CCRN candidates attend all 3 days. This also allows more time for practice questions and other active learning strategies throughout the 3 day period. I have used this configuration for about 8 reviews at this point and it works much better than presenting a CCRN review for a combined audience. You can find more information about this option on the CCRN/PCCN Review page.


January 2013

Hi everyone:

I admit that I am TERRIBLE at keeping this page up to date! I will try to post at least every quarter.

In August of 2011, I left the University of Cincinnati and took a position with 2GU, the online advanced practice MSN program at Georgetown University in Washington DC. I am still living close to Lexington, KY and only need to go to DC a few times a year. As with my first full-time faculty position at University of Cincinnati, my position at GU does limit my opportunities to do CCRN or PCCN review but I do have some time available so please contact me if you would like me to teach a review for your local chapter or your hospital. I love teaching these reviews and I learn so much from the nurses that attend and share.

The 4th edition of Pass CCRN! is now out. It is published by Elsevier (as always) and is available through my own personal Elsevier website with a 20% discount. You can also still buy the book through Amazon or Barnes & Noble but not with the 20% discount. Everyone always asks “what’s new?” The most significant addition to this edition is the new chapter on Behavioral/Psychosocial that was recently added to the CCRN blueprint. Also, I integrated pharmacology throughout the book rather than having a chapter (3rd edition) or an appendix (2nd edition). Another welcome change for all you Mac users is that the practice questions will now be available through the Elsevier website rather than a CD-ROM. Mac users could not use the CD-ROM with the last edition and, judging from the number of emails that I have received, it was quite frustrating for them. No worries now. There are approximately 1500 questions available online for those of you who purchase the book (there will be an access code). I receive so many emails telling me how similar these questions are to the CCRN exam. Are they difficult? Yes but so is the CCRN exam. If you are preparing for a certification exam, do view my presentation on preparing for and performing on the multiple-choice exams. It’s free and the link is on the homepage of this website.

Pass CEN! is available for those of you preparing for the CEN exam. I am starting work on Pass PCCN! now. Lori Catalano, a colleague from Cincinnati, is working with me on this major project. We were going to have it out in 2013 but a new blueprint is expected this year and we want to be sure it is current. So. . . expect Pass PCCN! in 2014.

I will be presenting at NTI in Boston in May. I am doing the same presentation as last year  on active learning strategies. I am also presenting at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing MSN Conference in Buena Vista, FL in February. My topic there is use of grading rubrics. Planning a conference? I’d love to present on a clinical or education topic or on evidence-based practice.

I’ll post another newsy letter in the spring.