nursing school really FULL TIME???

  1. Can someone please tell me when they say nursing school is full time, what exactly do they mean. At my school here in Michigan, I know each school is different, but I'm sure the majority of the programs are the same, the counselor told me to keep 4 days of the week clear from 8-5. That 2 days were classroom and 2 days clinicals. I could understand the clinicals being 2 days 8hrs, but do you really sit in the classroom for 2 days, 8hrs. I am just so worried about the fact I need to work sometime in between, and take care of children, and do homework.
    Thanks!!!
    PS - This website has been so helpful,everyone seems so nice and encouraging!!!
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  2. 28 Comments

  3. by   NewEnglandRN
    Hi Brandy,

    Welcome

    I am in my 2nd semester of a full-time ADN program. For my upcoming semester, my schedule is:

    Monday
    A&P 2 8:30-1:00 (Lecture/Lab)
    Tuesday
    Nursing 2 8:30-12:30 (Lecture)
    Wednesday
    Nursing 2 8:30- 12 (Lecture)
    A&P 2 12-1:30 (Lecture)
    Nursing 2 1:30-4:00 (Lecture)
    Clinical prep 6pm-8pm (at clinical site
    Thursday Clinical 7:30 -4
    Friday varied Skills Lab, clinical pass-offs

    I wish I did not have to take A&P 2! Yes, if the school tells you it is full-time, listen to them! I found it to be a full-time commitment and cannot imagine working, too. But, many people do and I admire them greatly. Plus, you need study time and family time.

    Good luck with your plans!
  4. by   MarySunshine
    My classes weren't 8hours, they were 3 hours. A couple of semesters I've had 5 hours of class on some days. You could have a 3 hour class and a two hour lab that starts one hour after the class ends. Sucks up a lot of time. I estimate that between clinicals, classroom, and homework, nursing school is at least a 40hr/week endeavor. The homework time has some flexibility though, for exactly WHEN you do it. Clinicals and class don't.

    You will be a busy soul. Good luck with planning.
  5. by   goodknight
    My nursing classes are only 9 credit hours +AP2; but it's going to be four almost full day's a week. Counting my +2hr commute each day, It's going to be more time than I spent on 17hrs of prereqs.

    Monday - leave house at 8:30; class from 10am-3:15pm; home by 5
    Tuesday - leave @ 6; class from 7:30-3; home by 4:30
    Wednesday - leave at 11(SLEEP); class from 1-3:15; home by 5
    Thursday - same as monday

    so yeah, it's going to be full time, no doubt ; plus all the study
  6. by   PhoenixGirl
    my school is going to be full time starting in Feb. M-W 8-12, T/F 8-3.

    Then in May it starts going M-T 8-2:30. Once clinical starts one of those days will be clinicals and it will probably be a full 12 hr day, I'm not totally sure. I'm lucky in that I don't have to work, but both my kids will be in daycare (across the street from my school).

    I have done a lot of reading about nursing school (get that book "how to survive and maybe even love nursing school" or whatever that title is) and the better prepared you are for it the easier it will be to deal with. It's better than going into it blind, not knowing what to expect. Check out the location forums so people who live near you can tell you what the schools there may be like.

    Rebecca
  7. by   aegirl
    Here's my schedule for my lpn program

    MWF: Clinicals 7:30-2:30
    Tues: Lecture 9-12; Basic micro 1-2:30
    Thurs: Lecture 9-12

    The nursing director said there really is no way you can work 40 hours and do this program. We spoke to LPNs that just graduated and they said there really is no way to have a set schedule during the week...that it's basically impossible to work during the week because you don't know whats going to be do or when a test is, etc. There is a lot of extra work involved with clinicals plus you have to put in lab time to test off on skills. It seems that the people that do work do it on the weekends.
  8. by   begalli
    I remember our instructors telling us to plan for every hour of class time, we will have 2 hours of homework/studying/reading. This included clinical days.

    I think that was accurate. For me, I think it was more. That's the thing about going to nursing school. It is a full time job and when you leave work every day, you definately bring home your work with you!
  9. by   Roy Fokker
    Fall 2004. I had two days.

    Wednesdays and Thursday - Classroom 9am - 4:30 pm. (except on Thursday from 12 noon to 4:30 it was Lab). Otherwise it was all class.

    So yes, on somedays, the classes can be a "little" long

    This semester, I've been told to keep Wed and Thu free from 6 am till 10:30 pm. Sounds ridiculous but I ain't the one making up the schedules!
  10. by   11:11
    Quote from brandy119
    Can someone please tell me when they say nursing school is full time, what exactly do they mean
    A trip to the counseler's office, administration office, or program office would answer your question. Perhaps even a phone call would get the information you are asking for sent right to your door step.

    The best bet is to get the program schedule of each program you are considering, them compare them side by side to see which one fits you best.

    The bottom line is most if not all nursing programs are intense and difficult. Nursing school was by far just about hardest thing Ive done.

    If one does not have the willingness to take the initiative to obtain simple facts and information that is readily available, rather than have others provide it for them another career field is probably a wise choice-

    11
    Last edit by 11:11 on Jan 7, '05
  11. by   begalli
    Quote from 11:11
    If one does not have the willingness to take the initiative to obtain simple facts and information that is readily available, rather than have others provide it for them another career field is probably a wise choice-
    WHAT?!

    Support from other nurses or those going through what one may be going through or may be about to go through in nursing school is paramount. And that should carry over into the working world of nursing as well.

    I try to never squash a question from another nurse or nurse-to-be that I might be able to answer.

    This message board is one great place to get that support and I think that is what it's here for!

    OP - you might want to also check the student nursing forums here.
    Last edit by begalli on Jan 7, '05
  12. by   HappyNurse2005
    my full time ADN program, i am in 2nd year, but first year was :
    Mon: 9-11am lecture. clinical prep at clinical site and at home. this takes several hours.
    Tues/Wed: 7a-1p clinical one day, 2 hour lab other day. moves to 7a-1p clinicals both days second semester.
    Thurs/Fri:-9 to 11 am lecture.

    time at school isn't "full time" but all the prep and study and care plans etc at home certainly make it a full time commitment
  13. by   Nellie Nurse
    I graduated from an ADN program in May. I remember that when I first started the program, during orientation, our nursing instructors said that we should not work because the program would be a full time gig. I was very concerned about this because I had just gotten married and we were dirt poor so there was no way that I couldn't work.

    I found out quickly though that even though this may be good advice in a perfect world, the reality is that some people have to work and that is exactly what I did. I worked as an NA during my nursing program. I worked three 8 hour shifts a week. The second shift worked the best with my schedule because I could go to class in the morning and then work in the afternoon. I would study before I went to work and during my breaks at work. I also used flash cards like crazy. I kept them in my pockets at work, in my purse, in the glove compartment, everywhere.

    Every week I spent about 46 hours combined in school and work (Not including study time), which was alot but I really didn't feel overwhelmed. I don't know what your situation is but I have no children so that made it a little easier. However I worked with many other people in my situation who did have children and were succeeding in school. It also helped that I had a manager who was very flexible with my schedule. Every 5 weeks my clinical rotation changed and so if I couldn't work the second shift then I was allowed to come in on another shift. There were many nursing assistants that I worked with in the hospital who were also in nursing school. The managers were more than willing to adjust our schedules because they wanted us to succeed and become nurses and work for them in that capacity.

    It is not an impossible thing to work and go to school at the same time. It just takes some juggling of your schedule, good prioritization, and creativity about how to manage it all. Which in the end is good practice for when you become a nurse and have to manage 7-8 patients on your shift. Good luck. I wish you the best.
  14. by   Nightcrawler
    You may not be in class for 8 hours on class days, but there is always a paper, care plan, group project, test to study for, uniform to clean, meeting to attend, or mandatory volunteer work to complete. We generally carried 9-11 credits of pure nursing core classes per semester, but because clinicals were carried out outside of the school, we did not receive full credit for the time that we pulled in. Our faculty told us that we were in reality putting in far more than full time hours. They warned us that to work more than 12 hours per week was to risk our academic success. Some of us worked full time, plenty had kids and some did both, but these people were overwhelmed, stressed out, cantankerous, and often squeaking by grade-wise. I was in awe of them and still am. Nursing school is HARD.

    You also have to remember that all of the schools are competing for space at the hospitals, and you may not have the same schedule from semester to semester. Our program really expected us to be fully available from 6am-11pm, Monday thru Thursday, and the same for Saturday and Sunday. Our clinical groups, times and location changed at least twice a semester. If there was a true conflict you were occasionally allowed to switch groups with another student, but this was not always true, and plans, work schedules, weekends out of town be "doomed", you were expected to find a way to be there.

    Dont get me wrong, it was worth it and I would not exchange my experience for anything. I received an excellent education for which I am grateful. Please know that nursing school demands true dedication for the two years that you are in the program and both you and your family will have to make sacrifices. Your kids will have to deal with less of your attention and attendance at their events, your husband will have to deal with TV dinners, a dirtier house and an emotional strung out mess of a wife. You will experience tears, elation, pride, heartbreak, sleeplessness, hopelessness and accomplishment. You will definitely be broke. But when you emerge at the other end at the end of the program, blinking like a mole that has never seen the sunlight, you will be amazed at what you can accomplish.

    Good luck

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