What is the one thing you wish you were told before starting nursing school - page 2

I finished my orientation a few days ago, and I start my nursing classes in less than 2 months. During orientation, there was one question that popped in my head and I figured I would ask it here. ... Read More

  1. by   itssarayay
    One word:


    When I first started I had so much anxiety about doing well I was close to tears every day. It was a waste of energy that could have been put to better use. Now that I'm more relaxed, I'm making better grades and I'm actually having fun with school.

    You'll make it through. Yes, the first few tests will kick your booty but it will not be the end of the world. Study the tables and charts in your book, instructors love pulling questions from them. Things do get easier as you go along and get used to your instructor's testing style. It is a lot of work, but if you approach it as something that you want to do, instead of something you have to do, your life will be so much easier.
  2. by   Nurse_Diane
    Real world nursing is not consistent to what you are taught in school.

    As if we have time to write careplans, conduct psychosocial assessments, look up the best evidence based practice, etc.
    All while caring for 7-8 patients. I'd rather have time to pee and eat than do all of that

    It's good in theory, but not in the "real world", unfortunately.

    Diane, RN
  3. by   sparky99
    Cyber - veering a little off topic here - tell me what kinds of things were done and discussed in your orientation? We have 3 days worth of orientation next month. I'm so ready to get into the actual program I'm even excited about orientation
  4. by   scrublifenurse10
    Quote from twow
    -that the horror stories about terrible instructors and instruction are true.

    "Surely they are exaggerations," I thought.

    Nope, they are not.
    This is not always true. My instructors were absolutely WONDERFUL!!! And I felt the instruction was excellent as well.

    The best advice I can give you:
    1) STUDY STUDY STUDY: If you come to class prepared, then the lectures will make more sense, and you will retain more.
    2) I agree with previous posts that you don't want to appear as arrogant. If you know the answer, you can answer...but keep in mind that there may be other students just as prepared as you, and if you bluntly blurt out the answer EVERY TIME, and not giving them a chance to answer, then you will appear as a "know it all" and it will be hard to have anyone in your class support you or want to help you should you ever need it.
    3) TAKE ONE DAY AT A TIME! And remember, every day that you make it through gets you one day closer to graduation...NEVER give up!

    Best of luck!!!
  5. by   mybrowneyedgirl
    My advice is that patients usually like having a student nurse. If they look unhappy, tell them, you basically won the lottery. I'm here to help you and only you all day so please let me know if there's anything I can do to make your hospital stay more pleasant. Often, that would make the patient see things differently about my being there all day.

    Remember that patients are people just like you. If you have the time, ask about their home life, make small talk. Often, knowing more about them will help you relax around them.

    Don't have preconcieved ideas about them based on their reason for being at the hospital. I had a drug addict that had been shot. At first I was terrified. He was actually very nice and I'll bet I'm the only one that treated him so nicely. We got along great and I was no longer nervous. In fact, her bragged about me to my teacher.

    Also, yes it's hard, but it's also interesting. You're learning about actually nursing so you'll study hard and it will all be worth it in the end.

    Good luck!
  6. by   jadu1106
    I agree with some of the other posts, study study study! The more you come prepared to class, the more the information will "sink in" and make sense. If you can get in a study group, the more it will help. Also purchase a planner, you will need it to organize dates certain assignments are due etc. Also get a good pair of shoes, you will be on your feet alot, and your feet and back will thank you for the good pair of shoes! A good lightweight stethoscope is great too! You don't necessarily have to get a really expensive one, but one you can hear really good from that you can keep around your neck without it wearing you down. If you have questions and don't understand something, never hesitate to ask so you can get a better understanding of the subject. And last, if you can get a used or new NCLEX review book, get it and bring it with you to class. It is a great resource in addition to your textbook, and the questions will help too! Best of luck in nursing school!

  7. by   Nurse_Diane
    Quote from CrufflerJJ
    Try to be "one of the crowd." By this, try not to be a know-it-all in class, or the poor person at the bottom of the grade sheet. If either of these happen, you may get some unwanted attention from your profs or fellow classmates.!
    Seriously??? Sorry, that is a very high-schoolish type response.
  8. by   medgirlRN
    I bought all the resources they suggested, but still needed to buy more to help with my studies. It added up cost wise, but well worth the investment. I learned how to think critically using these resources.

    The one thing I wish someone taught me, and offered as a pre-req is Critical Thinking Skills!
  9. by   hpynurs2b
    Believe in yourself. Dont worry about fitting in, just focus on your studies. Not everyone has to like you and not everyone will like you but continue to keep your eyes on the prize.
  10. by   CyberVulpine
    Thank you everyone for the advice, I am sure that it will be helpful to remember.

    To Sparky99,
    My orientation first started with the introduction to the nursing program. Explained everything from uniform requirements, to books, to testing strategies. They also went over things that we had to have done before the first day of class (CPR class, proof of health insurance, etc...). The rest of the time we spent on team building exercises, and they kept telling us that the competition is over and we need to work as team from now on.

    Thanks again everyone,
  11. by   Meshell92183
    Yes, this post is really helpful! I too am starting nursing school in the fall and any advice on how to be best prepared is awesome! I'm really looking forward to the experiences nursing school will hold.
    Thank you!!!!!

  12. by   Quiskeya
    That the clinical sites were going to be not so great and that there were not going to be a lot of hands on, unles you were doing CNA work.
  13. by   CrufflerJJ
    Quote from Diane-RN in Michigan
    Originally Posted by CrufflerJJ
    Try to be "one of the crowd." By this, try not to be a know-it-all in class, or the poor person at the bottom of the grade sheet. If either of these happen, you may get some unwanted attention from your profs or fellow classmates.!
    Seriously??? Sorry, that is a very high-schoolish type response.
    Yes, seriously. We might need to "agree to disagree" if my response doesn't quite agree with your perception of reality. Oh well...

    Just so you know where I'm coming from, I'm far from a slacker, and am about 30 years post-high school. I am driven, aggressive in pursuing my goals while supporting my friends, and don't ever like giving "less than my best." In the last 10 or so years I've spent on this planet, however, I've had the time to reflect on how I've interacted with others, and how others have reacted to me during & after the course of those interactions.

    In my first undergrad degree in chemical engineering, I WAS a "slacker", just trying to pass my courses, not excel. My less-than-stellar GPA (2.59) reflected that immature attitude.

    In my paramedic & pre-nursing coursework (done 8-15 years after my first degree), I was definitely driven to excel. I pushed myself & busted my butt to earn a 4.0 GPA in those courses. I wasn't into back-stabbing or anything like that, but I was not at all shy about raising my hand with a correct answer. While I wasn't a know-it-all, my tendency to offer the correct answer when others in class were not able to apparently caused some hard feelings among my fellow classmates (oh well...such is life!) This behavior may have been a side-effect of the automotive supplier industry in which I was employed.

    In my nursing program, while I was near the top of the class (Sigma Theta Tau, 3.95 GPA, blahblahblah), I tried to be more conscious of how I was perceived. I worked hard to help my fellow classmates (& future cohorts), without being the person who would consistently raise his hand to answer questions.

    My written test & clinical performance showed the profs that I had my excrement together. I participated in lectures, without being a know-it-all. It was not all about me, but it was about being part of the group. I did very well, but remained a part of my group. This is what I meant by my comment about "try to be one of the crowd."