How much hard science is actually in Nursing School?

  1. I am starting my second degree BSN program this fall. I have had all of the prereqs, A&P,micro, etc.

    I was wondering how much hard science is actually in nursing school. Of course I know that Pharm and Physio classes will be science based, but what about the theory classes for clinicals, what are they all about?
  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   gillytook
    All of nursing is based on science. Everything you do for a patient is based on a foundation of anatomy, physiology, microbiology and psychology. As a nurse you are going to assess, diagnose, plan, treat and reevaluate your patients response to their medical condition. You can only do this if you understand the science of why they are responding the way they are and how that response can be addressed.
  4. by   biblepoet
    I know at my classes they go system by system and discuss the diseases related to that system. I have finished all med/surg classes. They got progessively more complex with the diseases as we went the last med/surg dealt with lots of cancers and other complex diseases. The questions are supposed to be based on ones you will see on NCLEX. Not sure if they are because I have not taken NCLEX yet.
  5. by   hypocaffeinemia
    Not enough.
  6. by   llg
    It really depends on the individual program. Some are more oriented towards the physical and biological sciences and others are more oriented towards the social sciences and humanities.

    Because nurses deal with all aspects of human exisitence and health, it is generally agreed that all types of knowledge are necessary for great nursing -- but the emphasis can shift depend upon the individual person, school, and clinical environment. So, you may find yourself in a situation/environment in which more or less emphasis is placed on the type of knowledge or subject that you prefer. That's when it is necessary to be both open minded and patient -- open to learning the other knowledge that is not your favorite to enrich your practice -- and patient knowing that the subject matter that interests you most will also have it importance on another day and/or in another place.
  7. by   Daytonite
    I have no idea what you mean by hard science. Some of the stuff that you learned in your required pre-requisite science classes is likely to show up again during nursing school. That is why they were made pre-requisites. I think, as a RN of 30 years I can safely say you can stop worrying about this. There are going to be no surprises coming your way and the worst of your science nightmares is over. In nursing classes the focus turns to the treatment of the various diseases and why you (and the doctors) are doing those things.
  8. by   SnoopysAunt
    After reading some of the responses, I should clarify what I meant by hard science. I wasn't referring to difficulty of the classes.

    The term is often used colloquially to refer to a science class that is purely science based.... For example, A&P and Chem were hard science classes. On the other hand, Nutrition was more like a social science class for me. There was some science thrown in, but it was more like a social science class, like psych.

    In this post I was referring to the former... I wanted to know how many classes besides pathophys and pharm will be staight out science.

    I am probably most interested in hearing from BSN grads just because I think the structure of the ADN programs is a little different. Most of the programs in my area do not teach pathophys. My assumption is that it is integrated throughout the program.
    Last edit by SnoopysAunt on Jul 4, '09
  9. by   Daytonite
    well, i have a bsn. for nursing classes you need the a&p, chemistry and microbiology in order to understand the pathophysiology of the disease processes going on when they start to talk about the medical diseases. the pathophysiology in a lot of adn programs is incorporated into the nursing classes. however, the focus of my bsn program was communication and leadership. we had to take a good deal of psych and communication classes and then we were hit with group behavior and management in my upper division nursing classes. as far as how the science interacts with nursing, see my critical thinking flow sheet for nursing students. the advantage of having a bsn is that you will get into management and supervision positions. otherwise, the nursing that you learn is the same nursing that is taught in adn programs. keep in mind that each school develops the curriculum of its bachelor degree programs so it is unique. the nursing board of each state dictates the minimum that must be taught in nursing programs in order that all nursing school graduates can qualify to take the nclex. after that if there is any time left (that translates into credit hours for any degree), the school can use that to require the student to take whatever the school deems it wants. that is why you will get a lot of variation and why my school, in particular focused on communication and leadership. it is also why you should shop bachelor degree programs if you are going for a bsn because each will offer something a little different. you don't want to get into a bsn program and find out you are required to take a bunch of classes you don't like. other things bsn programs are known for is having students require taking research classes, community nursing and other subjects. i suggests that you go into the individual colleges online catalogues and look at the classes they require for a bsn degree.
  10. by   CuriousMe
    I just finished the first year of my BSN program. We took two terms of patho and two terms of Pharmacology. Additionally, 4 of our theory classes (Chronic Illness 1 & 2 and Acute Illness 1&2) utilize the concepts we learned in patho & pharm about the disease process, but also include the pyschosocial aspects as well.

    I hope that helps