Quote from superV
I am terrible at math, I dread it and am terrified of it!! But, I am successful at dosage so far in NS by using ratio and proportion exclusively. All you need to know is that method and you are golden!! I really think if a math-a-phobe like me can master this, anyone can.
And what works the best is practice, practice, practice. I mean tons and tons of problems. My school gives out worksheets like mad, and the people that don't do a lot of problems are not successful, usually. We had a girl with a previous bachelor's degree, who had college calculus and she failed a dosage test and was out of the program!! This is a whole different animal.
I am also "math challenged," and I use the exact same method you use. I *always* use a ratio/proportion formula and I excelled on my dosage exam and never have a problem with calculations. My former Med-Surg I instructor taught us to do it this way.
I read the problem and ask myself, what do I need? What do I have? That allows me to toss out unneeded info that is placed in there to throw me off. So say I have a problem like this:
"Potassium chloride is available as 16 g per tablet. Potassium Chloride (K-Dur), 8 g, is ordered. How many tablets would the nurse administer
I ask myself what I have: 16 gram tablets. I ask myself what I need: 8 grams. So I set up the proportion like this (sorry, it's difficult to type a proportion on a computer screen and have it look right):
1 tab = ? tab
16 g = 8 g
Then cross multiply and divide to get the answer - 8 x 1 divided by 16 = 0.5 tablets.
It is also vital that the student knows conversions.