Who is Joan Palmeri?

That’s me. I teach the problem-solving skills the National Board says are needed to pass NCLEX.

It is my personal mission to end the cycle of repeat testing by training NCLEX testers in the required problem-solving skills the National Board says are needed to PASS.

I’ve designed happyNCLEX for repeat test takers and those who do not wish to repeat.

My approach to NCLEX is concept-based problem solving. 



Joan Palmeri, NCLEX Whisperer

I’m affectionately referred to as The NCLEX Whisperer by the many repeat testers I’ve coached to successfully PASS the NCLEX-RN & NCLEX-PN.


Whisperer, perhaps because I teach testers to first quiet the mind to be able to think.

And help repeat testers to let go of the baggage of past failures.

The greatest problems are solved when we aren’t trying so hard, when we are fully present and simply allow the process of problem solving.

When I ask myself the question, “Who is Joan Palmeri?” I understand I’m presenting one mental construct of my self.

I am not simply the writer of these words, the woman who practices NCLEX.

I am not my thoughts. I am the witness to my thoughts. I can witness my thinking process. 

I find the ability to witness myself think so fascinating that the focus of my life-long study and research is how we learn, how we know what we know. 

It was a very different Joan Palmeri who began coaching NCLEX more than 12 years ago.

My first experience with NCLEX was in 2006, in New York City. I was recruited to consult on a curriculum to transition immigrant and refugee nurses into the workforce. The Program for International Nurses was a pilot program in partnership with the NYC Department of Labor, launched at Phillips Beth Israel School of Nursing.

I quickly realized these men and women- nurses and physicians in their home countries- knew their stuff. They had way more than a base of knowledge, but simply could not figure out what the questions were asking. 

I had a juicy problem to solve! 

And I love it still. Every day. 

I love the challenges and I love seeing repeat testers break through the barriers and succeed.

So, what’s this all about?

The National Board explains that NCLEX questions are designed to test problem-solving skills using Bloom’s Taxonomy.

happyNCLEX training is designed to take you through this process (whether or not you’re even aware of it!)

I use the “Think-Aloud Protocol / Cognitive Theory” in this training program.

As you follow my demonstrations, you will easily move through these stages of critical thinking:

Knowledge/Remembering: access facts, terminology, and classification.

Comprehension/Understanding: meaningfully interpret facts.

Application/ Applying: use newly learned material in new ways.

Analysis/Analyzing: recognize relationships among content parts.

Evaluation/Evaluating: increase uncertainty tolerance.

Synthesis/Creating: understand plans for operation and abstract relationships.


You will learn to do this, learn to think, and you will be free.


You’ll learn to see a patient in every NCLEX question, to identify the issue and make an educated guess to problem solve with the limited information given in any situation.

It will feel like common sense.

happyNCLEX training gets you focused, helps you to manage test anxiety and unleash your critical-thinking skills- all necessary skills to pass the NCLEX and also needed for employment testing, continuing education, and certification exams.

You’ll train through demonstration and deliberate practice. NCLEX-question demonstration is delivered by interactive webinars. The training is self-guided. We troubleshoot your home practice. You will actually enjoy the experience. 

The most important on-the-job nursing skill is problem solving.

You can easily learn to solve problems by demonstration and guided individual practice.

We’ll often make mistakes. This is how we learn best.

Forget textbooks, lectures, and note taking.  I demonstrate problem-solving skills by form before content. In other words, I identify the question format first so I know the direction I have to take to solve the problem. This way, knowledge naturally comes forward. We don’t stress what we don’t know.

You’ll make mistakes but you’ll also become aware of why you’re making mistakes. Error correction gets you to refresh your memory and learn new content every day.

The average time needed to learn and practice problem-solving skills for NCLEX is 8 weeks. You’ll need 2-4 hours a day, 3-4 days a week. If you have less time because of work and family responsibilities, we’ll adjust your schedule as needed.

Start whenever you have a couple of quiet hours to get the basics of problem solving before we begin coaching. 

You’ll get instructions to get started when you register.

Questions? [email protected]


39 replies
  1. Rose
    Rose says:

    While taking your program, will I need to use any other additional resources to like Qbanks, like Saunders or UWorld?

  2. Grace Ola
    Grace Ola says:

    Hi Joan. I’m a new nclex taker, my friend told me about you and I think I’m going to need your help

    • Joan Palmeri
      Joan Palmeri says:

      I’m happy to help, Grace. Review training details and the FAQ here on the website and call the office if you have questions. Leave a message if you get voicemail. You’ll get a call back. We’re all working from home. Joan

  3. Stephanie Pierre
    Stephanie Pierre says:

    Hi Joan
    i just got introduce to your review on facebook from NCLEX 2020 group. I completed the PN program since February 2012. I have taken the exams over 20 times. I’m unable to develop a study method that works for me.I feel like i need to nursing school over and i’m not sure how to restart with mastering the content information. I have done Uworld, Hurst, Kaplan, Ready to Pass, Feur,NSCBN, Remar and i’m currently studying Mark Klimek. i honeslty don’t know how to study or began to study. Please help me.

    • Joan Palmeri
      Joan Palmeri says:

      hi Stephanie! The problem is that you can’t “study” for NCLEX because it’s not an academic exam. NCLEX tests critical judgment.
      Please review NCLEX training details, the FAQ, and nurses’s stories in Reviews here on the website. You’ll see how common this problem is.
      Call the office weekdays if you have questions or email me directly: [email protected]
      I’m happy to help you. -JP

  4. Ifeoma
    Ifeoma says:

    This is the 4th time of taking nclex ,How can I joined this group so that I can pass it .I need to know the detail of this course

  5. gerarda
    gerarda says:

    Hi Ms Palmeri ,

    I was referred to you by a good friend . I am a international nurse and a repeat test taker in dire need of help with the Nclex RN . I would appreciate any help you can give .

      • Lindsey
        Lindsey says:

        Hi, Ms. Palmeri
        This is my 4th time taking NCLEX RN I really want to pass this test I know I know the material I just get really bad test anxiety and I think I freeze up and lose my thought and I just need help with strategies and critical thinking. I have until May 2020 to pass, we only have 3 years after you graduate I believe in TN. I would appreciate the help and I really want to pass the next time I want to take it soon! Thank you

  6. Monica Carroll
    Monica Carroll says:

    I have taken my NCLEX exam eight times. Can you help me? If I don’t pass it this year my time is up! I just knew I had it this time and I got my results today…

  7. Paula
    Paula says:

    I am i ternational nurse .
    Graduated in 1997.
    I am from Argentina .
    Firts language spanish.
    How are you working for your students ??
    Do you get any evaluation in order to know what is the level of the content ??

  8. Kim
    Kim says:

    I have a question – I am currently a student and will graduate in December with my BSN. I am currently an LPN and passed the PN NCLEX in 2015 in 75 questions. I am not as confident going in to this exam and was wondering if this program would be helpful to me for not only the NCLEX but my last semester of nursing school as well. I am a non-traditional student (in my 50’s) and am looking for something to help with test anxiety and test taking strategies. My school uses NCLEX style questions on exams and I do struggle with them. Please let me know your thoughts. Thanks in advance.

  9. Michaela Westover
    Michaela Westover says:

    So my life is super hi stress….6mnth old baby and helping run a small business…as well as attempting to pass boards!! Ive been out of school for 1 yrs now….and I feel like Im forgetting lots!!! Is it possible for me to pass this stupid exam??? IM SO OVERWHELMED!!!!

    • Joan Palmeri
      Joan Palmeri says:

      Yes, it’s possible. Look at the skills you already have: raising a child and running a business. You need to learn to be objective about your prep. Schedule in two quiet hours a day three days a week to learn and practice problem-solving skills. You can do this. -Joan Palmeri

  10. Maryam Youhanna
    Maryam Youhanna says:

    Hi Joan,
    I graduated in Canada in year 2003 as RN. Now I want to take NCLEX to Lord willing work in California. I tried 5 years ago, but didn’t get anywhere as info overloaded in my brain. I spend over $600 and just gave up due to pressure and responsibility of life. So I have searched different web sites to see which one can help me pass my NCLEX. One was NRSNG, Simplenursing, NCLEX75 and Uworld, and last but not least I found you. So please tell me if I am qualified to take this training as I have never taken NCLEX before and hav been out of hospital quite sometimes and been working solely in Oral Surgery just performing IV and sedation under Oral Surgeon. Many thanks.

  11. arletty ojeda
    arletty ojeda says:


    • happyNCLEX
      happyNCLEX says:

      You will learn to visualize- part of problem solving. No books, no notes. You learn to think through the questions. No dvds but I record everything live and you’ll access video recordings.

    • happyNCLEX
      happyNCLEX says:

      I’m not a nurse. I’m a specialist in critical-thinking. The NCLEX is designed for someone with two years of college. That’s the base of knowledge needed. The rest is problem solving. I have been working with NCLEX and nurse educators for more than 10 years. I train nurse educators to improve teaching skills. If you’ve been to nursing school, I’m sure you had some very knowledgable instructors who delivered content yet neglected to teach you how to apply the knowledge delivered. Have you taken the NCLEX?

  12. Toya
    Toya says:

    Hello, I’m a repeat test taker I graduated in Midsummer 2013 didn’t took a review class in 2016 test first time December 2016 and then again in May 2017…. I’m so frustrated about this I’m tired and I’m 48 yrs old with a School Degree and No license… I’m scared that I wasted all that money, time and effort and have nothing to show for it…Please if you can help me to found out what my weak spots are so I can improve on them…If it contents or test taking strategy I believe I need it all…I did notice on the NCLEX-RN the questions and answer choice was very vague..

    • happyNCLEX
      happyNCLEX says:

      You will always get content you don’t know because it’s impossible to know everything. Focus on skills and learn to make an educated guess based on the limited info given in a question.

  13. nurse2017
    nurse2017 says:

    I am very inspired by your dedication, and passion that you have for our future goals in passing the NCLEX!
    you have your heart in this.Thank you,

  14. Kamesha Mosley
    Kamesha Mosley says:

    Does it matter what state that I reside in for your program to work for me. I am a repeat test taker in Alabama. Considering in joining your program to help with my anxiety and test taking skill so I can pass this exam. The last exam was a lot of who does the nurse see first and I tell you, I really got in panic mode with those types of questions.


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