do you have to read to make good grades?

  1. I was wondering, how important is reading the required material in passing exams? I have a lot of reading to do....which I am doing now but some people in my class say that they don't read and they still pass stuff. This is for my Med Surg class.......so while I am making my way through this big book......is it better to just skim or something? I am wondering what works for you guys.......personally I feel that reading is helpful since my instructors pull questions straight from the book......and sometimes I feel like reading makes me understand stuff better but I am so often pressed for time during the semester....of course I am trying to stay ahead(funny, I know), classes start tomorrow.........so please give me your personal opinion: is all the reading neccessary to make good grades on the exams? I really need A's and high B's, I want to graduate with honors! So please tell me what you think about this. I'm new here...I'm in year 3/4 of BSN program by the way...
    :chuckle
    •  
  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   SarasotaRN2b
    Personally, one of my biggest pet peeves are listening to those students that claim that they never pick up a book and they still pass...well, at one time they are going to find themselves really screwed. yes, I believe that reading is very important.

    I had asked a friend of mine who had just finished her first semester in an ADN program and she had stated that about 90% of the people that failed out, did so because they did not do the necessary reading prep. yes, there are some students that might be able to pick things up without reading, but I think that is more of an exception than a rule.

    In order to prepare for my first semester next fall, I decided to take a college reading techniques class along with purchasing the EyeQ which will I hope increase my reading speed. I'm a good reader, but I'll take any additional training and preparation that I can get.

    So stick with what you are doing and you'll feel so much better for it!

    Kris
  4. by   happynurse20
    Quote from Fern22
    I was wondering, how important is reading the required material in passing exams? I have a lot of reading to do....which I am doing now but some people in my class say that they don't read and they still pass stuff. This is for my Med Surg class.......so while I am making my way through this big book......is it better to just skim or something? I am wondering what works for you guys.......personally I feel that reading is helpful since my instructors pull questions straight from the book......and sometimes I feel like reading makes me understand stuff better but I am so often pressed for time during the semester....of course I am trying to stay ahead(funny, I know), classes start tomorrow.........so please give me your personal opinion: is all the reading neccessary to make good grades on the exams? I really need A's and high B's, I want to graduate with honors! So please tell me what you think about this. I'm new here...I'm in year 3/4 of BSN program by the way...
    :chuckle
    "personally I feel that reading is helpful since my instructors pull questions straight from the book" (lucky ... you know your instructors testing style ...)

    Personally speaking I don't know if there is any other way to be an honor student without reading, skimming is good but are you really reading?? I'm an honor student myself, I don't believe you can just skim and expect to make "A's". I feel better prepared for any exam when I read.

    My advise is to find what learning style works best for you!

    Good Luck!
    Last edit by happynurse20 on Jan 9, '05
  5. by   z's playa
    This is a trick question right? :chuckle

    Always read the material. Remember...many students who say they don't crack a book are full of it.

    I hate reading for school but find I ned to to catch anything not mentioned in calss lectures. Plus most of the finals are based on book material instead of prof's notes.

    Happy reading!
  6. by   LauraLou
    I am one of those people who doesn't read everything. I skim the material before class and then see which topics the instructor lectures on. I then go back to the book and read the sections on those topics. I have a 3.9 GPA, so it works for me, but I don't think it would be right for everyone.
  7. by   mitchsmom
    Quote from LauraLou
    I am one of those people who doesn't read everything. I skim the material before class and then see which topics the instructor lectures on. I then go back to the book and read the sections on those topics. I have a 3.9 GPA, so it works for me, but I don't think it would be right for everyone.
    I feel pretty much the same way, although for me it mainly depends on the instructor. I actually had one instructor tell us that "you don't actually read every word of the 7 assigned chapters... you skim over it, catch the highlights", etc. etc... kind of like what the other students here are describing.

    I have had teachers who never directly drew one single thing from the text... there was absolutely no need for the text (believe it or not, one of these was patho... he was an excellent teacher and everything we needed to know for his (difficult) exams was included in lecture). Then there are others that you do need to read alot for, it just depends.

    But I don't think I've ever literally read every bit that was assigned. I do what I need to do to get good grades- which is a lot of work, but in my case that hasn't included obscure things or things that are beyond our level that are sometimes in our books. We just don't have time to do everything, every rare disease, etc. in our books.

    Also, often if the way a topic is presented in one of my texts is boring and/or overly drawn out I look it up somewhere else, on the web or another book. So I'm still doing work, just maybe not exactly the way it was "prescribed".
    Last edit by mitchsmom on Jan 9, '05
  8. by   Fern22
    Quote from mitchsmom
    I feel pretty much the same way, although for me it mainly depends on the instructor. I actually had one instructor tell us that "you don't actually read every word of the 7 assigned chapters... you skim over it, catch the highlights", etc. etc... kind of like what the other students here are describing.

    I have had teachers who never directly drew one single thing from the text... there was absolutely no need for the text (believe it or not, one of these was patho... he was an excellent teacher and everything we needed to know for his (difficult) exams was included in lecture). Then there are others that you do need to read alot for, it just depends.

    But I don't think I've ever literally read every bit that was assigned. I do what I need to do to get good grades- which is a lot of work, but in my case that hasn't included obscure things or things that are beyond our level that are sometimes in our books. We just don't have time to do everything, every rare disease, etc. in our books.

    Also, often if the way a topic is presented in one of my texts is boring and/or overly drawn out I look it up somewhere else, on the web or another book. So I'm still doing work, just maybe not exactly the way it was "prescribed".

    Our instructors test us on those rare diseases and little things because they want to make sure we read........they say that as nurses, we have to know more than just the test material(which is true) so they test us on that stuff we ignore........and they say that they are preparing us for getting our master's (most of the class plans to) and that having a little understanding or being exposed to this stuff will help us then......I do agree with them, even though it's frustrating trying to study so much stuff. We have to pass the exams to even finish nursing school though........so it would be nice if they would not test us on little stuff but I do read more now.....I just wish I didnt have to because its so time consuming. I read it the first time just as if I were reading a book....just to get an idea of what the chapter is about....then I highlight what my instructor points out and lectures on...then I go back and read it again...and of course rewrite my notes and work lots of practice questions....this works for me but the reading is time consuming! But it works for me........so I guess I should stick with it, even if it is lengthy and boring and sleep inducing.........
  9. by   Tweety
    I did the reading because our lectures were based on the reading, and our tests were based on the lectures.

    I guess it's the individual program you're in whether you really need to read it all or not. I think in the end it will help with NCLEX, because who wants to pass nursing and fail NCLEX?

    At the very least I would skim and get the highlights. Sometimes the required amount of reading is totally unrealistic.

    Good luck!
  10. by   BocaBabeNot
    The people who pass all the time are the ones who read !!!! Here is the formula our school uses to pass.......for every class hour you should put in two hours of reading for every clinical hour one hour of reading.......so
    6 hours of classes per week 12 hours reading
    12 hours of clinicals 12 hours reading

    Total 24 hours per week (at a minimum)

    In addition to that we are also told that you need to hear/see/say something 7 times to committ it to long term memory. So read before the subject matter is presented in class, Attend the lecture, review the lecture either in your notes or with classmates. Study material, write flash cards etc (record the lecture and listen in car)........before you have to study for the test you are already more than half way to committing to long term memory. Good Luck
    DVB
  11. by   hypnotic_nurse
    I'm a skimmer, but when I get to something that's unfamiliar or I don't understand, I stop and read it all.

    One way to do that is to read the first sentence of every paragraph; IF the book is well written, that first sentence should tell you what's in the paragraph and then you will know if you need to read it or not. On long paragraphs, you should also look at the LAST sentence because ideally that should summarize or even set up the next paragraph.

    I'm also a speedreader (which I somehow learned on my own) and if you can master that it will really help you with the amount of reading you have. Kris, I have heard that EyeQ really works. Good luck with it!

    In nursing school, I made As one semester, Bs the rest, primarily because I was working full time and single mom of two tween kids (I had to make every second of my study time count -- there really wasn't much of it). I also couldn't afford many of the books which meant I had to read what I couldn't buy in the lab at school. And, since I'd worked in psych for 6 years at that time, I didn't read ANY of the psych book. My overall GPA though, is 3.6 (lots and lots of college credits) -- I do know lots about how to study, how to test, and how to write for a class.

    Having said all that, I also have to say that YOU know best what study methods will work for you. You probably already know whether or not you need to read it all or skim it...whether you need to make flashcards...whether you need to review your notes...whether you need to read your notes aloud and listen to them at every opportunity...everyone learns a little differently. And just because someone else does or doesn't do something doesn't mean it will work for you.
  12. by   not now
    I skim (rarely read the enitre thing) and I'm passing nursing school quite well thank you.

    It really does depend on the instructor and your own personal learning style. I'm not good with reading long, dry, chapters. I get bored and nothing really sticks. I do better when things are explained to me (as in a lecture), I write things down as I listen which forces me to focus and I remember it.
  13. by   shyne
    Like the other posters said, it depends on your learning style and instructors. I personally just skim though the areas that the instructor lectured on and go through my nclex books and still make A's and B's on every test as well as retaining all of the info. However, like I said this works for me and may not work for others. Just do whatever works for you :wink2:
    Good luck to you!
  14. by   LadyK82
    In my program, if you don't read, you don't pass. The majority of the material comes from the book and a lot of our courses are independent study so we have to depend on the text book for the test info. Our instructors are also very big on pop-quizzes and will give you a quiz over material we haven't had lecture on yet. So, I would encourage reading, but I guess it depends on the way you're specific program is set up & your personal study skills.

close