# How much math is needed to be an RN?

- 0Dec 10, '08 by jen122Hi

I have a BA in English and am looking to pursue my nursing degree. I stink at math. I mean I can do basic math and measurements but get into algebra, geometry, calc...any of that and my brain freezes and shutters, lol.

I have looked at requirements and it doesn't appear there is a ton of math but I wonder if I will struggle so if anyone can share how much you need in school and also how much u need when you actually become an RN, that would be appreciated. Thank you so much.

Jen - 1Dec 10, '08 by RN4NICUyou aren't going to need geometry, calculus or trig to be an RN, you might need statistics at some point, depending on your program, but you do need to have a firm grasp on basic algebra - dosage calculation is algebra. Very basic level, though. Nothing to worry about.jen122 likes this.
- 1Dec 10, '08 by Andrew, RNI wouldn't let mathematics be a roadblock for you pursuing this career.

Most of it is basic addition and subtraction on a day-to-day basis.

Depending on where you work, the pharmacy will have dosing written out on the bag of whatever you're giving and now many IV pumps are "smart" and can do calculations.

A lot of nursing is just common sense. I'm not a mathematician.jen122 likes this. - 1Dec 10, '08 by DeeAngelIt should not be a problem. When you get to the part where you need to do math calculation and be tested just prepare by doing the reading and working all the practice questions. There are tons of online sources. It is pretty much division, fractions, percentages, ratios, nothing terribly complicated or esoteric.

If you are still freaked about it get the book "Calculate With Confidence" by

Deborah Grey Morris. It will teach you everything you need to know.jen122 likes this. - 1Dec 10, '08 by
*donsterRN*, BSN, RNDon't let the math discourage you. I'm a huge math-phobe, took Algebra and got an A. Believe me... if I can do it, you can do it. Like anything else, the more you do it, the better you are at it. Promise!

Much good luck and success to you!jen122 likes this. - 2Dec 11, '08 by
*Daytonite*let me ask you this. . .how badly did you want to learn to ride a bike or drive a car? what were you willing to do? would you just get behind the wheel of a car and chance running someone over and injuring or killing them if you were worried because you thought you wouldn't be able to turn the steering wheel, watch the speedometer and press the gas pedal at the same time? a lot of kids worry about that before they go driving. how did you finally resolve those issues?

math is only one obstacle that you will face in nursing. there are a handful of others that you don't even know about yet.

what i am getting at is your character. how dohandle challenges in your life? in the steam of things, this is merely a hurdle that you have to get over like learning to drive a car, tie your shoes, ride a bike, learn how to calculate a drug dosage, and there will be many more to come. what counts is that you roll up your sleeves, pitch in and__you__**do something about it**. it involves initiative, flexibility and learning capacity. you are just as intelligent as anyone of us that has already gone to nursing school. there is no reason, other than your own motivation, that you can't open a book or take a refresher course in basic math and get started on your way toward a better mastery of math. no reason at all.

rns are leaders, problem solvers and role models. what better way to prove to yourself that you are all three than to take the bull by the horns and solve your own problems with math so you can go on into a nursing career? what a story of hope you will have to tell others!

- http://allnurses.com/forums/f50/nurs...ad-264395.html - see post #3
- http://www.ulc.psu.edu/studyskills/test_taking.html - test taking and anxiety
- i probably had to do a calculation once a day as a working nurse. what is needed is the ability to do simple ratios, find
**x**in a simple equation and perhaps work with simple multiplication or division of fractions. this is pre-algebra level math.

- 0Dec 11, '08 by DionyonceQuote from daytonitewow this isnt even my post.. and u have inspired me..thank u...people like you are needed in everyones life.let me ask you this. . .how badly did you want to learn to ride a bike or drive a car? what were you willing to do? would you just get behind the wheel of a car and chance running someone over and injuring or killing them if you were worried because you thought you wouldn't be able to turn the steering wheel, watch the speedometer and press the gas pedal at the same time? a lot of kids worry about that before they go driving. how did you finally resolve those issues?

math is only one obstacle that you will face in nursing. there are a handful of others that you don't even know about yet.

what i am getting at is your character. how dohandle challenges in your life? in the steam of things, this is merely a hurdle that you have to get over like learning to drive a car, tie your shoes, ride a bike, learn how to calculate a drug dosage, and there will be many more to come. what counts is that you roll up your sleeves, pitch in and__you__**do something about it**. it involves initiative, flexibility and learning capacity. you are just as intelligent as anyone of us that has already gone to nursing school. there is no reason, other than your own motivation, that you can't open a book or take a refresher course in basic math and get started on your way toward a better mastery of math. no reason at all.

rns are leaders, problem solvers and role models. what better way to prove to yourself that you are all three than to take the bull by the horns and solve your own problems with math so you can go on into a nursing career? what a story of hope you will have to tell others!

- http://allnurses.com/forums/f50/nurs...ad-264395.html - see post #3
- http://www.ulc.psu.edu/studyskills/test_taking.html - test taking and anxiety
- i probably had to do a calculation once a day as a working nurse. what is needed is the ability to do simple ratios, find
**x**in a simple equation and perhaps work with simple multiplication or division of fractions. this is pre-algebra level math.

- 0Dec 12, '08 by jen122Thank you so much for all the replies and support. I really do appreciate it and my lack of confident math skills hasn't deterred me but I did want to see what I was getting into. I do plan to study and prep so that I am not behind when it comes to those skills. Thank you so much.

Love this board!