National University- class/program requirements

  1. 0
    I'm currently a nursing student at National University and I'd like to share my thoughts regarding the nursing program.

    The environment in this program is currently at the negative end. There is a big disconnect between the students and the nursing staff and questions regarding the ethics of the recent changes that were implemented has been raised. We have had to resort to sending a letter signed by the majority of the nursing students to the president of the university because all other attempts with people running the program have been ignored.

    Our dissatisfaction with the program is due to the following changes and affects all current and incoming nursing students:
    -The passing grade of C was raised from 73% to 76% for each class.
    -Aside from passing each class, a test from an outside company, ATI, must also be passed with a level II or greater. Basically, this means that you can pass your class with 100%, but if you fail the ATI test for that particular class, you fail the class. ATI does not teach in the classrooms or clinical sites. A third party company deciding whether or not students pass their courses does not seem ethical.
    -Retaking a class over again will result in falling months behind graduation schedule in order to find room in a new cohort. NU nursing programs start every three months, so you will have to wait a few months in order to join the cohort behind you (if they have room).
    -Retaking the class is not covered by financial aid, which means: $3500 out of pocket.
    -Anytime your grade falls behind 80%, you are required to attend remediation on campus for 8 hours a week.
    -If you pass the class and the ATI exam but receive less than 80%, you are required to attend remediation for your next class.
    -Before you can sit for the NCLEX, you must pass a comprehensive ATI predictor test with a Level II or greater. You will not be able to sit for the NCLEX unless this is passed.

    Why did the University implement all these changes? To increase the NCLEX pass rates of their students taking the test for the first time. The higher the score, the better their advertisements will look.


    Whatís disheartening about this situation is that while the school has made it so much more difficult for students to continue on with the program, there is no investment on their part to help their students. Also, changes were made without considering how far current students are already in the program. This is not what we signed up for when we applied; these were not the requirements that that were explained to us that we needed to fulfill during our orientation.

    Other cons are:
    -The school does not provide its students with nu.edu email address. In fact, you will be instructed to use Gmail.
    -One year ago we brought up the issue of how our online skills check is not functioning. Itís still not functioning.
    -Total program cost will be around $45,000. Very, very expensive when compared to other programs.
    -No externship programs. In fact, your professors will tell you to see if a community college will let you join their externship program.
    -Just for fun: You will pay $1500 for orientation and they will serve you sandwich and chips.

    Anywho, I hope this helps during your application process.

    Best of luck!
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  3. 15 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Hi there,
    I've already applied and was just accepted to the Nursing Program at National. Have they attempted to resolve your concerns? Any advice to incoming students?
  5. 0
    At this point staff is not receptive to students concerns. All it matters is NCLEX passing rate. Additionally, National dose not attract a quality teachers (there are few exception). You are pretty much on your own. I should also add that student may pass the class with ďAĒ, but if the student donít pass ATI it must repeat a class and pay out of packet $3900. Moreover, student is allowed to repeat class only once, 2nd time student is out of school. If I had knew what I know now a year ago, I would have look for a different school.
  6. 1
    Don't do it. In my research I found that area hospitals are shying away from hiring National University graduates. Why? Maybe it's because their NCLEX passing rates are so low? Maybe because they do not have quality teachers? Maybe because they have implemented new rules in the middle of a program this year realizing that they are not so good and are scared to lose their accreditation. School implementations were made in breach of a contract that current students have signed. Nursing students work very hard and sacrifice much to meet their goal, but this school does not support their students. The problem is that their program is so expensive, in the end after repeating classes and waiting forever to retake a class, you will not graduate on your goal date and you will be in deep debt....that is if you're not kicked out of the program. There are several options other than this school which are less expensive and more gratifying. This school is in it for the business, not for the education.

    Don't do it!
    futureRnwaiting likes this.
  7. 0
    Orientation for my cohort (San Diego - 29) is November 30. What campus do you guys attend? What questions do you wish you had asked at orientation? Are you guys dissatisfied because they intentionally lied or mislead you OR is it because of the drastic changes they implemented during your program?

    I'm just trying to get to the bottom of this whole thing. I'm sorry you guys are going through this...
  8. 9
    I too am a current student at National University. Although the high standards seem frustrating as they have been integrated after many have started the program, the good thing it is doing is weeding out those who would otherwise just try to breeze their way through nursing school. Nursing school isn't about passing classes; it's about learning how to pass the NCLEX. How can anyone start to believe they can simply "breeze" their way through? This is an accelerated program. Many people start to get burnt out of this fast paced way of learning and regress back to their old partying ways, and *surprise*, they are no longer passing quizzes and are the ones being admitted to remediation. I can honestly say that those who are suffering are doing it to themselves; the buck can't be passed onto professors or ATI. Each individual is responsible for his or her own actions. Plus, each course ATI test really is not that hard, as long as you study (big surpirse there!). Besides, when it all comes down to it, who would you want saving your life: someone who barely passed their classes while maintaining their "social life" status, or someone who dedicated their nights to studying even moreso to meet these rigorous course requirements? The most complaints I hear are just coming from those whose pictures are all over facebook, drinks in hand by night and snoozing/facebooking in class by day. Come on people, grow up! This is college. We are adults. We are studying to save lives. If certain people can't sacrafice a measily 22 months of their own lives in order to save others' lives, then maybe this program isn't for them. I am not the smartest and I may not make all A's, but I expect nothing but the best from myself, and I push myself so that whenever I take a test, I can look back and say, "I have no regrets. I did everything I could to learn the material." Meaning, I said no to drink nights, no to hanging out with friends, no to vacations. Isn't that what we expected from the very beginning before these ATI/remediation requirements were instilled, anyway? I'd say this is a small sacrafice to pay for being able to feel confident to take the NCLEX in a couple of months.

    National University's nursing requirements aren't difficult as long as you S.T.U.D.Y. In fact, I think that applies to any area of study at any school. It seems like the more people try to fight the system, the worse off they are. Let's just bite the bullet, stop complaining, and hit the books! Nothing BAD could result from even MORE studying, right?

    Plus, in every rotation, I have met NEW National University grads at the hospitals (Kaiser, Palomar, Scripps, Sharp, & Children's) who were hired right off the bat from nursing school: from Med Surg, to OB, to Peds. Their fellow co-workers said they were extremely impressed with new grads from National. When it all comes down to it, ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING. Pass the NCLEX, and demonstrate a desire to do your very best, and getting hired will not be a problem.

    If anyone reading this is in the program, keep pressing on to the goal. You will succeed as long as you make it a priority. It's easy to find something to complain about in regards to this program, not to mention anything else in life. However, being a nurse requires selflessness, perseverance, dedication, and sacrafice. If you can't demonstrate that in nursing school, then good luck on getting a job as a nurse!!!

    If anyone reading this is thinking about joining the program, the choice is yours. I personally believe, "It IS what you make of it." No matter where you go, or what you choose in life, your ATTITUDE determines your ALTITUDE. National is a great school, because I'm choosing to make it a great experience.
    tashachamps, Dequis, BeesMama, and 6 others like this.
  9. 1
    Sounds like you have a personal vendetta towards National University Jamster. By your multiple complaints regarding the minimum passing grade for classes and your misleading thread title "class/program requirements" to attract traffic from prospective students I think its safe to say that your a student who has failed the required ATI for one of your classes and now your held back. As a result, instead of looking at your own study habits and where you can find room for improvement you decided to come onto a nursing forum and blame the program for your own shortcomings.

    I'm a student at National University, and although I find the fact that we are using a company like ATI to assess our "preparedness" to pass the NCLEX a bit stressful, I don't find it completely unfair. The point of it honestly is to filter out students who will fail as you mentioned in your post. This is not to simply "make their advertisements look better" but its so that they don't lose their license, moreover with a higher pass rate, graduating students have a better job outlook.

    As for the costs that you deem to be ridiculous I do agree with you on the orientation fee. But when you consider that National is a non-profit school and our tuition (around 40k) still comes out to less than private schools such as Mt. Saint Mary's, I don't mind paying for the 2000 dollar sandwiches and chips.

    I won't even bother commenting on the lack of "school provided e-mail" addresses and your issues with the school website...

    Not sure about other schools but at least from our campus some of our graduating students were able to land jobs at UCLA hospital after graduating.

    For prospective students: National University is an accelerated program. When they tell you that you have about 13 hours of free time during the week at orientation its not just to intimidate you... you really don't have much free time. If you want to work a part-time job or still keep your social life then this program probably isn't for you. I'm not saying that this program is impossible or harder than others, its just time consuming. As with any other nursing program you decide to go with; it is what you make it and the time you put in will dictate whether you succeed or fail.
    Dequis likes this.
  10. 1
    I couldn't disagree more about this statement. I'm a National grad and while the school definitely had some problems, the students in my class were outstanding. Hospitals do not shy away from National students and in fact like them because most are older and more serious about school and their careers. I could say some negative things about other schools in the area and the attitudes they bring to clinicals where I work. I think the new standards are good for nursing and for National's reputation. Would you want a nurse to care for you if he/she only passed a class with a 73% and had to take the NCLEX multiple times??? I think not. Sadly, there aren't too many other options in San Diego for a BSN which seems to be a requirement for a lot of area hospitals nowadays. Nursing is not for the faint of heart and the good thing about National is you can focus on one class at a time, so yes, studying several hours a night is a requirement.
    idolized. likes this.
  11. 0
    I am currently a student at National University in San Diego and am planning to take the TEAS next month and apply in April for the October 2012 cohort. Everything I am reading is seriously scaring me. I am getting straight A's and I have to say, I work my tush off for those, sometimes studying 9 hours a day and I have cut back from working full time to less than part time to make this work academically, volunteering at Kaiser too. How often do you have to take the ATI course test?

    I do agree with weeding out the poor students and in a sense this is a good thing to know RN's are hard working and competent, but what about the students that are strong, work and study hard, but may not do good on 1 test??

    I am still planning to attend this Nursing program, and I have taken all of the required courses for it and frankly, I am too far into this and have invested too much time into the NU Nursing Program to go elseware. But is this really what I should expect, or will any hardworking dedicated student be just fine? I work hard and get solid grades, but I am not the best test taker....yikes!

    I guess I will just see. If anyone else has any positive feedback about the program, I would love to hear it! =)

    Quote from Jamster
    I'm currently a nursing student at National University and I'd like to share my thoughts regarding the nursing program.

    The environment in this program is currently at the negative end. There is a big disconnect between the students and the nursing staff and questions regarding the ethics of the recent changes that were implemented has been raised. We have had to resort to sending a letter signed by the majority of the nursing students to the president of the university because all other attempts with people running the program have been ignored.

    Our dissatisfaction with the program is due to the following changes and affects all current and incoming nursing students:
    -The passing grade of C was raised from 73% to 76% for each class.
    -Aside from passing each class, a test from an outside company, ATI, must also be passed with a level II or greater. Basically, this means that you can pass your class with 100%, but if you fail the ATI test for that particular class, you fail the class. ATI does not teach in the classrooms or clinical sites. A third party company deciding whether or not students pass their courses does not seem ethical.
    -Retaking a class over again will result in falling months behind graduation schedule in order to find room in a new cohort. NU nursing programs start every three months, so you will have to wait a few months in order to join the cohort behind you (if they have room).
    -Retaking the class is not covered by financial aid, which means: $3500 out of pocket.
    -Anytime your grade falls behind 80%, you are required to attend remediation on campus for 8 hours a week.
    -If you pass the class and the ATI exam but receive less than 80%, you are required to attend remediation for your next class.
    -Before you can sit for the NCLEX, you must pass a comprehensive ATI predictor test with a Level II or greater. You will not be able to sit for the NCLEX unless this is passed.

    Why did the University implement all these changes? To increase the NCLEX pass rates of their students taking the test for the first time. The higher the score, the better their advertisements will look.


    Whatís disheartening about this situation is that while the school has made it so much more difficult for students to continue on with the program, there is no investment on their part to help their students. Also, changes were made without considering how far current students are already in the program. This is not what we signed up for when we applied; these were not the requirements that that were explained to us that we needed to fulfill during our orientation.

    Other cons are:
    -The school does not provide its students with nu.edu email address. In fact, you will be instructed to use Gmail.
    -One year ago we brought up the issue of how our online skills check is not functioning. Itís still not functioning.
    -Total program cost will be around $45,000. Very, very expensive when compared to other programs.
    -No externship programs. In fact, your professors will tell you to see if a community college will let you join their externship program.
    -Just for fun: You will pay $1500 for orientation and they will serve you sandwich and chips.

    Anywho, I hope this helps during your application process.

    Best of luck!
  12. 0
    One thing I can say about the program is to make sure you pass each class. I didn't pass one class by 1 point and had to re-take the class (yes at my expense). That was fine, however, it got me off my rotation in the program. Now it has been almost a year and they haven't found an opening for me to get back into the next class, thus I now have to re-apply for the program. Still don't know how long it will be before I can get back in after re-applying.


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