Any Words of Wisdom- Starting 1st Sem.of Nursing School - page 2

hello all! i will be starting nursing school in august. i was wondering if i could get some words of wisdom as i step into this new journey of life!! thanks:rolleyes:... Read More

  1. by   susi_q
    Buy an NCLEX book soon. Use it to review questions for whatever you are being taught & tested on. You will have an advantage in understanding that format ... you will also be able to hone in on what is important.

    Agree with above posters ... this is going to be hard work, if you are taking it seriously, and we instructors know who is serious. We HATE failing someone, so would rather be approached about problems, questions, etc. It shows that you know what you don't know and are willing to do whatever it takes to figure it out. (Most of us are real people, and we are teaching because we want you to be our well-prepared colleages some day)

    Look for as many opportunities as you can find on clinical. Yes, it makes for a harder day ... but you will have help, and you will be so much more comfortable when you hit the floor--it will be well worth it.

    Learn medical terminology - wether it is required as a course, or not. If you know what all the little prefixes and suffixes mean, you will be miles ahead, and be able to figure out a lot just by breaking down words.

    Ditto the above: Learn physical assessment. Don't get too hung up on all the little tests we do (esp in neuro) - but be able to know at least the basics head to toe without cheat sheets. Know what is normal, and you will learn what is abnormal

    Act like a professional. If you have a problem with your instructor, talk to her, not behind her back. If you make a mistake, admit it - not hide it. Be on time, call if you will be absent, take responsibility.

    Finally ... have fun. We do serious stuff, but if it's not fun, it's not for you
  2. by   Jen2
    This is some really good advice and about sums it up. The one thing that I wanted to tell you is that if you get a low grade on an exam, don't ever give up. Keep plugging away and it will pay off. You have to put that test behind you and focus on the next exam. Good luck and congrats on being accepted!
  3. by   Stitchie
    All the above is great advice!

    I graduated a year ago, but I remember clashes with evil instructors. My advice to you is to develop an elephant hide.

    I had an instructor once tell me that I had to decide if I wanted to be a nurse or a mother -- when my husband and I were going thru infertility treatments. I will always remember her words but I can't remember her face. For my own sanity I had to brush it off and just get thru the rest of the semester.

    I did do and I graduated above a 3.5 -- that was my goal so that grad school would be within easier reach.

    Keep your eye on your goal; don't get involved with the other crap floating around you. You'll be great!!!
  4. by   Tree2144
    I am currently waiting for my letter to come so I can start school this fall. I ran into a friend of mine who is already in the LPN program and she gave me some advice so here it goes:

    As soon as you get your textbooks, START READING AT CHAPTER 1 AND KEEP GOING try to stay ahead of the class. Also she told me to get plenty of sleep.

    Hope this helps! And good luck to you! :hatparty:
  5. by   Havin' A Party!
    A special thanks to all the contributors!!!
  6. by   Mom2kids
    To all previous posters:

    Some great advice for us new students!!! Thanks for the support!

    Have a GREAT weekend!
  7. by   francine79
    When taking tests always remember, that if your patient is not breathing, NOTHING else matters. That one can help you answer several questions.

    Also, when learning about disease processes and interventions, don't just try to memorize it. Always ask yourself "Why?" It really helps you learn the information.
  8. by   RedSox33RN
    Great thread with great advice!

    I do worry about the study group thing, especially since I live so far away from everyone and the school. I'm hoping there will be someone or something close to me!
  9. by   RN-BamaStudent
    I found that using NCLEX cd's helped me learn how to take the nursing exams, plus, don't put off doing any med sheets or packet work, if you wait 'til close to the time it is due, you will be rushed, won't do as good of a job, and on top of that, the due dates usually correlate with other tests. You'll be working on that instead of studying, so, get it out of the way ASAP.
  10. by   ejpetey
    This all sounds like great advice! I'm currently on a waiting list for an accelerated BSN program in southern Maine... should find out any day now!! Hopefully I'll be able to use this advice come September!
  11. by   Tony35NYC
    I agree with everything everyone posted here. I would emphasize that you plan in advance to seriously cut back on your social life, and prepare to spend many more hours studying each week than you would normally study for non-nursing college courses. There's a lot of information that you'll be learning and there will never seem to be enough time to get it all done. If you can avoid working, don't. Find out ahead of time how your classes will run, budget your study time accordingly and stick to the plan. Allowing yourself to fall behind even a little is setting yourself up to fail. Above all else, thicken your skin. If you're like most of us you're going to come across some very b*tchy instructors who will really yank your chain.

    Get your nursing process textbook early and start reading during the summer. The chapters in the nursing process theory courses are very long so it would be to your advantage to get a head start on reading them. That way you won't be rushing to get through 8 chapters of complicated material in a week after school starts. Also, pay close attention to the chapters on fluids and electrolytes and oxygenation because these topics will keep coming back in every nursing course.

    There's a book that I found very helpful when I first started. Its called Test Success for Beginning Nursing Students, written by Nugent and Vitale and I highly recommend it. It contains NCLEX type questions and rationales but its not as expensive as many of the NCLEX books I've seen. Nugent and Vitale also have another good book out called Fundamentals Success that will really help you build up your critical thinking skills for the first two nursing theory courses.

    Good luck!
    Last edit by Tony35NYC on May 3, '04
  12. by   bluesky
    I would say chill out and roll with the punches. I never did too much textbook reading at all. If I had to do it all over again, I would shut up in class (nobody liked a girl who spoke up in class) and I would choose the toughest clinical instructor for Med/Surg.
  13. by   bluesky
    Oh yeah, and I would definitely, DEFINITELY work a Summer Internship or part-time job at some point during school.


    Just my .02.

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