I'm in my 2nd semester of nursing school and have med/surg and OB clinicals this semester. I have to say I'm a bit bummed out (as are my classmates) by our clinical experience so far. In our OB clinical, the nurses seem somewhat receptive to having a student under them, but at the same time nobody seems to go out of their way to actually try to teach us anything. One night, sitting up in the nursery waiting for babies to be born, there were 5 nurses that stood there the entire time ******** amongst themselves about how there's not enough coverage....for 3 hours. When I say stood there, I mean literally. The other hospital where we have our med/surg clinical, the nurses don't just seem like they don't want to be bothered, they're downright rude and nasty......to the point of one nurse waving her finger in some of my classmates faces and telling them to "go somewhere else"! I understand that everyone is busy, but why do you have to be miserable too? I'd rather the nurse tell my instructor they don't want a student then to not get anything useful from my clinical experience. It's not a very good feeling when you get home after a long day!
Last semester our clinicals were at a nursing home. Of course the atmosphere wasn't that great but all the nurses were very nice and took time to show us everything they could even though they had 20+ patients.
Just thought I'd get some opinions from those who have been in the field for a while!
Oct 6, '12
by TheCommuter, BSN, RN Senior Moderator
I enjoy having certain types of students, namely the ones who take accountability for their own learning.
Ideally, your instructor is the one who is supposed to go out of his/her way to teach the students new skills, processes, and so forth since the nurses on the floors and units might not always have the time. Furthermore, I love the assertive students who take the initiative to ask the unit nurses if they can jump in and try a new skill.
On the other hand, I dislike having to deal with the small number of students who stand around, lack any form of self-direction, and expect to be taken by the hand and automatically shown things, although I am cognizant that some clinical instructors do not want their students to do anything or touch anyone when they are not present.
If you want to be shown how to do something, do not be afraid to ask the unit nurses. Good luck with your future endeavors!
Last edit by TheCommuter on Oct 6, '12