Preparing for 1st Semester of Nursing School - page 4

I was hoping current nursing students, former nursing students, and future nursing students could all contribute to this thread. I wanted to have everyone write lists of the top 10 items you need for... Read More

  1. by   kpetit
    I agree great tips, I'm 42 and starting at the end of August also
  2. by   SilleLu
    Get the Saunder's NCLEX book. Maybe not so much for fundamentals, but for med/surg classes it is great! The cd that comes with it has tons of questions to help you study for tests.

    Organize and clean your house now, top to bottom.

    Make sure you know how much nursing classes cost. They likely will charge by the contact hour, not the credit hour. Sticker Shock if you aren't expecting it. and grants/loans may not cover it all.

    For clinicals: make yourself useful and valuable to staff nurses (answer their call lights!) and they will return the favor by letting you watch (or do) procedures with them and generally being helpful in your learning (you may only have one clinical instructor for every 10 students - do you want to learn stuff or stand around for 2 hours waiting to pass your meds?)
  3. by   hellosun
    Hello and congrats! I just started nursing school a little over a month ago (absn program) but we are in the full swing of things so I will try to give you the best possible advice based off of my experience.

    1) Printer supplies (ink and paper).
    - I have tried many different methods of note taking, but I've found that the most effective way to keep good notes is to print off the slides for lectures beforehand (provided your lecturers post them). Then you can follow along and write additional detailed notes from the lecture and also from coinciding readings. Although it's best to try to get the reading done beforehand.

    2) Different colored pens/highlighters.
    - I've found it helpful to take notes from lectures in one color on my slides and any additional notes from my readings in another color, so I can differentiate between them.

    3) the Kaplan NCLEX-RN drug flashcards. These things are AWESOME. Buy them now and go through a few a day, every day just so you can start making your brain think about pharm a little. It will help tremendously. Plus they are organized well and already made, saving you a ton of time.

    4) An easy to clean, easy to use water container. I like the ones with the circle through the lid so that you can put a straw through it. For some reason, I tend to drink more out of it, not sure why. But anyway it is REALLY important to stay hydrated in nursing school so that you're less tired, feel better and can concentrate better. drink a lot every day.

    5) Caffeine. Buy yourself dunkin donuts or starbucks giftcards, or ask for them for your birthday. Self-explanatory.

    6) This is really cheesy but a quote book. I have a book of inspirational quotes and I try to read a new one each day to keep me motivated. It's difficult to stay motivated sometimes, especially when you start and realize that it actually can be as difficult as everyone keeps telling you! Keeping an inspirational quote in your head all day helps.

    7) Binders & dividers

    8) This is more of a tip but make friends with people who are motivated and friendly, and steer clear of those who aren't. You will quickly become close with your classmates and will be relying on one another for academic and emotional support.

    9) Another tip. Save your money starting NOW. I'm assuming you will be working less once you start school and I promise you your money will go faster than you ever expected. A good tip is to spend like you have five dollars in your account.

    10) I will leave you with a final pep talk. Nursing school is challenging. You will be forced to learn in a different way than you have been learning your entire life. You will be shown a profession that somehow manages to find a balance between the scientific and the caring with a dash of goriness (it's a word, I checked). Prepare yourself now by practicing time management skills. Once you're in school, remind yourself every day why you wanted to be a nurse and that you CAN and WILL do so successfully. When you are so caught up in schoolwork and studying for exams that you start having a breakdown, take a step back and really think about what the profession is, as a whole - do some research if you have to. You will regain motivation once you remember how fulfilling your path is, I promise =).

    Good luck and don't hesitate to DM me for anything!
  4. by   vicky2200
    Obviously you will need to have everything your school requires. When I was in the LPN program, I found these items helpful (or would have found them helpful if I would have spent the money on them).

    1. Good shoes
    2. Clipboard for clinical
    3. Large calendar for fridge to keep everything straight
    4. Many pens (make sure you have at least 2 with you)
    5. Notebooks, big and small
    6. Cooler/lunchbox
    7. Containers to bring food
    8. A good sized bag, one on wheels would be beneficial.
    9. Healthy food
    10. Highlighters, note cards, paperclips, hole punch, stapler, printer (ink/paper)

    My shoes weren't good, I didn't have a clipboard (other people did and it looked like it was easier than holding a bunch of papers, I lost a lot of pens, my bad was too small, I never ate breakfast, and rarely ate lunch (which I bought at the clinical site).
    I didn't need the general office supplies (other than the printer) but I know a lot of people benefit from them.