failed a check off...

  1. anyone else ever fail a check off? this is my first time to really screw something up. i have a chance to fix it, thankfully, but i am freaking out and dreaming up worse case scenarios.

    anyone want to lend some advice/encouragement?
    Last edit by allthingsbright on Sep 27, '07
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   landonsles
    I failed the Foley check off when I was in NS, and now I put in Foley's all the time..LOL
    Just practice, practice, practice, and you'll do fine on your redo!
    Last edit by landonsles on Sep 27, '07
  4. by   sddlnscp
    I actually don't know anybody in our class that hasn't failed at least one check-off somewhere the first try. Don't worry about it, take a deep breath, practice like mad every chance you get, and then go in and try it again. You can do it! Just practice like crazy and you'll get it. We have even been known to ask our lab instructors to watch us do a "practice run" and tell us what we are doing wrong, they have always been happy to do that for us and it helps so much! Sometimes they will even do a skill demonstration just for you if you ask and if you are a visual learner, that way you can see everything they are doing and then recreate their actions. That seems to work well for me!

    Best of luck! Let us know how it goes!
  5. by   DaFreak71
    Don't you worry, it's SOOOOO common to fail on a check off, that is why they give you a second (some programs give third) chances.

    I failed foley twice, NG once, and math once. It happens to everyone at some point or another. Let yourself be open to learning. Allow yourself to make mistakes in school, you're a student after all and you aren't expected to be perfect.

    I don't know how your program works, but if we fail a skill, we have comments written on our skill sheet that point out why we failed. If you have the rest under control, just concentrate and understand the rationale for doing it the right way.

    Sometimes we fail due to nerves. Especially if you are being checked off by an instructor who is standing there watching you. In nursing two we got to video tape our skills check off with the assistance of another student. We couldn't edit, but we could start over completely if we realized we made a mistake. We were alloted a certain amount of time to video tape it at school, so it's not like we could keep doing it until we perfected it. I think they let us video tape it because the instructors realized that many people that know what they are doing are prone to making mistakes because they are nervous about having their instructor standing right there. I thought it was a kind gesture on their part.

    Despite being allowed to video tape the skills, I still failed twice on foley check off, LOL.
  6. by   deeDawntee
    I believe it is a invaluable part of the process of becoming a nurse. Can you recover from your misses? As a practicing nurse, believe me, you will continue to "miss" skills for the rest of your career and will need to rely on your coworkers and resources to help out. Starting IV's is one of those skills for me, where for a period of time, I can get them in, no problem and then I'll have a streak where I'll miss no matter how hard I concentrate. In the same vein, (pun intended) you will be there to help other nurses out when they have a miss. Another one is placing Foleys in women. Some women have urethral openings that are almost impossible to find!

    My examples don't translate exactly to what you are talking about, because obviously they are looking at whether or not you know the proper sequence etc of the skill, but you get the idea. The important thing is that you can recover and not "feel like a failure".

    I always remember great hitters in baseball only hit the baseball 3 to 4 times out of every 10 times they are up to bat. Now that takes a lot of heart, to strike out twice as many times as you actually make it on base!!
  7. by   allthingsbright
    thanks for all the encouargement and wisdom. smooches!
  8. by   margom
    Be kind to yourself and realize that none of us are perfect. Some things take a while to learn hoe to do. Pretty soon it will be easier and easier and then you can encourage other newer nurses. We need to do that with each other. Good Karma
    Margo
  9. by   Daytonite
    here's the grand daddy of worst case scenarios for you. . .in order to get into the bsn completion program i applied to, the university would not accept any of our prior nursing school classes as transfer credits. in order to earn the how-ever-many lower division nursing credits, we had to pass (1) a written exam that tested our nursing knowledge, (2) a clinical demonstration of 4 nursing skills of their choice, and (3) be currently a licensed rn in the state. during the application process many of us we later learned were assured that this was pretty much a slam-dunk on all three accounts. right. i worried because i went to school here in california and had practiced for 10 years in california before moving to this eastern state and had found some things just a little different in the way they were practiced in the east. the written test, a test of their own making, however, turned out to be easy. the license, not a problem. the clinical skills testing was fine until we each were asked to reposition a mrs. chase doll in a hospital bed in a left or right side lying position and shown a pile of all kinds of pillows to help us accomplish the task. i was thinking, no problem. i worked on a stepdown unit with a vegetable patch of coma patients that we turned on a regular basis. this was going to be a snap. of the approximately 40 students that were tested, they failed 35 on this task, and i was one of them. we were failed for really bitty things like not aligning a foot parallel with the foot board or making the dummy's back exactly parallel with the edge of the bed and exactly turned at a 90 degree angle with the mattress (she measured with a yard stick). it meant i couldn't be admitted to the program. i drove home in shock and upset. thankfully, i received a follow up letter a few days later informing me that we could re-test on this. the second time 35 of us showed up. they used a real person and a different instructor did the evaluating. everyone was passed much to our relief. we found out later on during the program that the original instructor who had been doing the evaluating was considered a bit of wing nut and the word was she had gotten the dean of the nursing program ticked off when the dean learned what she had done. apparently, she was one of only 4 professors (we're talking phd's here) who had been available to supervise the clinical tests that day. she told the dean she was just trying to knock us all down a few pegs. say what? we were all working rns, most were supervisors and managers! we were colleagues! we had to deal with this wing nut for a couple of classes during the next couple of years in the program. she was a wacko, for sure, but the dean was aware of it and kept her in line. it's been years since i graduated, but not too long ago i happened to check the website and saw that this professor is still there and still holds a very high position in the nursing program. i hope to god she isn't teaching any classes. she was horrid around patients whenever i saw her interact in clinicals. this lady was all book learning and knew nothing about the practicalities of working with people. she was brusque and very unsympathetic with patients. it was very sad to watch.
  10. by   APBT mom
    Don't worry about failing a check off almost everyone fails at least one. When I did my check offs and would do something that wasn't right if I stopped what I was doing and explained what I did wrong and what I would do to correct it the instructors would let me keep going. They told me that that's what they wanted to see (our critical thinking skills) if you messed up how would you fix it without compromising the patient. We had two chances to do it right and I believe that only one person failed and that was our med pour because he didn't know where he messed up.
  11. by   Sun*shine
    can i just ask what a 'check off' is? is it where you're tested on your clinical skills and then signed off?
  12. by   allthingsbright
    Quote from daytonite
    here's the grand daddy of worst case scenarios for you. . .in order to get into the bsn completion program i applied to, the university would not accept any of our prior nursing school classes as transfer credits. in order to earn the how-ever-many lower division nursing credits, we had to pass (1) a written exam that tested our nursing knowledge, (2) a clinical demonstration of 4 nursing skills of their choice, and (3) be currently a licensed rn in the state. during the application process many of us we later learned were assured that this was pretty much a slam-dunk on all three accounts. right. i worried because i went to school here in california and had practiced for 10 years in california before moving to this eastern state and had found some things just a little different in the way they were practiced in the east. the written test, a test of their own making, however, turned out to be easy. the license, not a problem. the clinical skills testing was fine until we each were asked to reposition a mrs. chase doll in a hospital bed in a left or right side lying position and shown a pile of all kinds of pillows to help us accomplish the task. i was thinking, no problem. i worked on a stepdown unit with a vegetable patch of coma patients that we turned on a regular basis. this was going to be a snap. of the approximately 40 students that were tested, they failed 35 on this task, and i was one of them. we were failed for really bitty things like not aligning a foot parallel with the foot board or making the dummy's back exactly parallel with the edge of the bed and exactly turned at a 90 degree angle with the mattress (she measured with a yard stick). it meant i couldn't be admitted to the program. i drove home in shock and upset. thankfully, i received a follow up letter a few days later informing me that we could re-test on this. the second time 35 of us showed up. they used a real person and a different instructor did the evaluating. everyone was passed much to our relief. we found out later on during the program that the original instructor who had been doing the evaluating was considered a bit of wing nut and the word was she had gotten the dean of the nursing program ticked off when the dean learned what she had done. apparently, she was one of only 4 professors (we're talking phd's here) who had been available to supervise the clinical tests that day. she told the dean she was just trying to knock us all down a few pegs. say what? we were all working rns, most were supervisors and managers! we were colleagues! we had to deal with this wing nut for a couple of classes during the next couple of years in the program. she was a wacko, for sure, but the dean was aware of it and kept her in line. it's been years since i graduated, but not too long ago i happened to check the website and saw that this professor is still there and still holds a very high position in the nursing program. i hope to god she isn't teaching any classes. she was horrid around patients whenever i saw her interact in clinicals. this lady was all book learning and knew nothing about the practicalities of working with people. she was brusque and very unsympathetic with patients. it was very sad to watch.

    wow, daytonite--sounds similar to my situation. thanks for sharing...i hope i have as good of an outcome (they can fail me out of the program on this skill and i am supposed to grad in 2 mos--hopefully this will never happen, but i have to be careful cuz so much is at stake).
  13. by   APBT mom
    Quote from *minnie**mouse*
    can i just ask what a 'check off' is? is it where you're tested on your clinical skills and then signed off?
    That's what it is.
  14. by   Sun*shine
    in that case i've not passed all of mine first time! i think the one i didn't pass was my aseptic technique.

    Don't worry, its best to get it wrong now while you're a student under supervision! and the ones you do wrong are the ones that you'll really remeber and will stick by you, so getting it wrong to get it right is a good way to learn. as long as you learn from it and understand where you've gone a bit wrong.

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