I have a question for both practicing RNs and students alike:
It's come to my attention recently that some nursing schools
are on longer verifying that their students can do basic 4th grade math. By that I mean add, subtract, multiply, and divide without using a calculator
. They assume that calculators will always be available and that therefore, nurses don't need to know how to do basic calculations anymore and don't have anything in their curriculum that requires students to do those things. In fact, they are aware that some of their students definitely can NOT do those basic calculations when they involve fractions and/or decimals. Also, the TEAS test now allows applicants to use calculators: so they are not testing those skills, either.
To me, that seems like a safety issue. There might come a time when a calculator is not available.
1. What do you all think?
2. Students ... are you competent adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing fractions and decimals?
3. Practicing nurses ... are there any times you need to use basic calculation in your work (without a calculator)? Can you give me some examples?
4. Is anybody verifying those skills in orientation anymore? (med tests without calculators, etc.)