"Hard Work Isn't Enough" a.k.a.: About to give up!

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    I am 21 days from the possibly completing my ASN, and I'm about ready to give up. I am doing well in all my classes, but one. I have only been hit-and-miss in passing my exams in my Critical Nursing class. I put in the hours of studying, answered hundreds of NCLEX-style questions with relative success and have even had professors tell me that I have a good handle on the material, only to bomb their exam. I have done test taking seminars, done test anxiety exercises and personality profiling all geared towards improving performance, but still do poorly.

    My mind keeps going back to one test-taking seminar where the leader told us that in nursing school "hard work isn't enough". How am I supposed to work with that notion? Is it really true that hard work and studying won't get you there? If not, what is the magic ingredient that it takes to at least get that magic 75%?

    I can still do this. My average is not so poor that its unrecoverable, but the hill is getting steeper and higher and I feel that I am slipping back. Has anyone else faced this challenge and overcame it?
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    You stumped me at first...what else is there besides hard work. Then I realized it could mean many things such as determination, attitude, passion, perseverance, etc. Deep down you have to find whatever is in you that started you on this path and don't forget about it towards the end. As they say if there is a will, there is a way and you need to find your way. Not sure if this was the advice you were looking for but good luck and I wish you the best.
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    hard work yes. Also comprehension and critical thinking; developing those mind muscles is what they mean by that. You've made it this far, don't give up!

    Easier said than done, but Don't Let that comment get you down. It is sidetracking what you really need to be concentrating on, which is interpreting that good grasp of the concepts, and applying them to the questions. "If I know this, how do I apply it"?" "I know this fact and this fact, what does it mean in this situation?"

    My rubicon came earlier in my nursing career, bombed badly in fundies, overcame it; 30+ years later am teaching. Yes, it is doable!
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    I had a nurse friend tell me recently that nursing school is, in fact, much harder than actually being a nurse. She was only partially joking -- being a nurse is serious business, but most of what you will learn will come after nursing school. You have come this far, you can do this!
    sea1gew likes this.
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    I have been exactly where you are when I was working on my BS psychology. Every class became harder and i would get more and more anxious with every test. I wanted to give up but i just kept pushing ahead. My advice is to keep your eye on the prize. Don't predict failure. i finally graduated with a 2.01 gpa. In the end the degree hangs on your wall, not your gpa! It seems like you are frustrated and having some anxiety about future exams. Relax! Easier said than done but its key! Focus on studying smarter not harder to avoid burnout. Make sure you explain to your professor that you feel you understand the concepts but that you are dissatisfied your grades. Your prof may be able to help you find a different way to prepare for exams. Also the professor will be more likely to spot you points bc they see you are sincerely trying. You can do it and it will be over before you know it!
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    work smarter, not nec. harder......as was mentioned, you know the material, take a deep breath and apply it. If you are allowed, go over the tests with your instructor and have he/she explain WHY your answer was wrong. Are you consistently selecting the "next best? answer, etc. Good luck.


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