Meet the Kaplan Experts: Ryan Goble, MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, Curriculum Specialist

by Ryan Goble, MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, Curriculum Specialist | February 28, 2020

The Kaplan Team is often cited as why schools stay with Kaplan, year after year. At Kaplan, there’s an expert at the heart of everything we do, whether it’s leading a class or developing innovative tools to help your students achieve their career goals. We stand behind our motto of, “For nurses, by nurses.” With our “Meet the Kaplan Experts” blog series, we introduce you to Kaplan’s extensive network of faculty, nursing, and educational experts and delve into their diverse areas of expertise so that you can learn even more about your Kaplan team. This week, we're pleased to introduce you to Ryan Goble, MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, Curriculum Specialist.


I am a lifelong Kentuckian who was born and raised in eastern Kentucky. Admittedly, I am not one of those people who “always knew I wanted to be a nurse.” In high school, I initially thought about a career in pharmacy or dentistry, but that would have required me to move hours away from home. So, I thought, “Let’s see what the community college has to offer.” In health sciences, I had the following options: dental hygiene, respiratory therapy, or nursing. Because I had heard that nursing was a very diverse field, my 19-year-old self dove in head first, and I am glad I did! Unlike many professions, nursing is a very diverse field that allows me to personally and professionally grow in a wide range of areas.

Fresh out of nursing school, I began working night shift in a busy, high-acuity emergency department. Talk about a learning curve! After five years of bedside nursing under my belt, I completed a BSN degree in 2012 from Indiana Wesleyan University and an MSN degree in 2013 from Western Governors University. Currently, I am enrolled in a DNP program with an expected graduation date of 2021. Throughout my nursing career, I have been able to positively impact patients’ lives, save lives, and feel like what I am doing is important. I am also extremely proud to be a member of the “most trusted profession.”

What is your particular area of expertise?

NCLEX prep (RN & PN), item writing/content development, emergency department nursing, and “The Andy Griffith Show” trivia. (Yes, the show from the 1960s. I grew up watching the show with my parents and grandparents, and watching the show now brings back great childhood memories.)

What is the most important thing that your colleagues should know about you?

The most important thing that you should know about me is that I am an animal lover. My animals—Hank, Cooper, and Kaylee—provide me with unconditional love, always brighten my day, and help reassure me that everything will be OK. 


In your opinion, how can institutions best support students preparing for their exams?

Content is important, as it is the foundation for NCLEX success. However, knowing only content does not guarantee a nursing license. In addition to content, institutions must provide learning opportunities that stimulate critical thinking. In part, this can be achieved by integrating case studies into the curriculum. As our population ages, new graduate nurses must be prepared to provide care for clients who have complex medical conditions and multiple comorbidities. 

Additionally, mastering the Test Day experience is crucial and its importance cannot be underestimated. Whenever possible, students need to emulate the Test Day experience (e.g., no multitasking, no food, no drinks, no internet browsing when taking exams). Preparing in this fashion will make the actual Test Day feel less intimidating.

Which current or future education/test prep innovations do you wish you’d had access to when you were in university?

I wish I had access to virtual simulations when I was in nursing school. My first exposure to virtual simulations came when I was recertifying for Advanced Cardiac Life Support. For me, it was a much better, much more effective learning experience because I got to see the outcomes of my actions in real-time. (Oops, shouldn’t have given that medication! Oops, didn’t resume CPR quickly enough!) 

How long have you worked for Kaplan Test Prep and what drew you to your current role?

Before the ink had even dried on my MSN degree, I applied to teach Kaplan’s NCLEX review course. Why? Because I know Kaplan’s products work. How did I know this? Because, I was unsuccessful at my first NCLEX attempt. I took all 265 questions—yes, all 265! After my unsuccessful attempt, I enrolled in Kaplan, did what the Kaplan experts told me to do, re-tested 3 months later, and passed after answering 75 questions!

In 2013, I began teaching the NCLEX review course, and in 2015, I auditioned to start writing NCLEX-style questions for Kaplan. Since 2018, I have worked full time for Kaplan as a curriculum specialist. My current role allows me to review content for clinical accuracy, develop new products, and collaborate with and learn from our talented nursing faculty.

In your opinion, what is the number one thing that sets Kaplan apart in the industry?

There are many things that set Kaplan apart from our competitors, but the number one thing is our teachers. In addition to our robust program that contains thousands of practice questions, Kaplan has top-notch, qualified, dedicated nursing instructors. Even after the review course is over, students still have access to Kaplan instructors via Kaplan’s NCLEX Expert Chat and Kaplan’s Nursing Channel, which hosts 50-minute live reviews on a variety of topics that range from pharmacology to cardiology to preparing for Test Day.


If you could offer one piece of advice for students preparing for their board exams, it would be:

If I could offer one piece of advice for students who are preparing for NCLEX, it would be to be good to yourself. Praise yourself for what you know and what you do right. The NCLEX will feel hard for both higher-ability and lower-ability candidates, so set realistic expectations and do not belittle yourself or talk down to yourself. Doing so is self-destructive and will slowly infect your career and personal life. Remember, preparing for the NCLEX is a marathon, not a sprint.

And finally, is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers?

This is powerful advice that I live by:

“You will learn more from your failures than your successes - so embrace those mistakes, as difficult as that sounds, and grow from them. When a project is successful, you're never really sure why, because so many elements come into play. However, when you fail, you always know why. That is how you learn and grow.”

- Lynda Resnick

NCLEX® is a registered trademark of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Inc. Test names are the property of the respective trademark holders, none of whom endorse or are affiliated with Kaplan.

As a curriculum specialist and content manager, Ryan strives to ensure Kaplan’s content remains up to date and relevant for entry-level nurses. Ryan also collaborates with other Kaplan nurse educators and the broader Kaplan team at large (e.g., user experience designers, user interface designers, technology specialists) to ensure products meet the needs of Kaplan students and institutional partners. Ryan has years of clinical experience as a staff nurse, charge nurse, and nurse coordinator in the emergency department. He also has years of experience in helping RN and PN students be successful on the NCLEX®. His areas of interest include item writing, NCLEX® success, and professional development.

See more posts by Ryan Goble, MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, Curriculum Specialist