Who believes instructors can be out to get you? - page 5

I'm curious, what are your thoughts on this ? Do you think instructors can fail you from a class because of personality conflicts and nothing else?... Read More

  1. by   ylbourda
    I have to add my two cents to this subject. I am in my 4th semester of a 5 semester ADN program at a community college. We started out last year with 30 students and by the third semester we were down to 14 of the originals. We, of course, picked up students each semester (others who went out before). When we started we had three men, one in his early 20's, one in his early 40's, and one in his late 40's. The two older men were targeted in clinicals. They had some of the highest tests in the classwork and good care plans at clinical, however they had personality conflicts with clinical instructors. One of them was told the first day of rotation that he was not going to pass- and he didn't. The other was told although he was knowledgable, he lacked a good bedside manner- FAIL. We also had a few women who were targeted. I've seen it first hand and it isn't pretty, neither is it professional- it is a disgrace to everything that they are supposed to be teaching us. Unfortunately, when someone takes any of their problems to the head of our nursing department, it goes right back to the instructor word for word what was said and who said it, making an even bigger bullseye on their back. I am keeping my mouth shut and observing it all, but after I'm done with school, pass my boards, and get a job then I and a few of my fellow students are going to see just what we can do about it to help the future students coming into our program.
  2. by   SillyLilly
    I beleive it and I have seen it. They are people too!
  3. by   mystcnurse
    [quote=LittleCatB]I'm not in nursing school yet, but it seems to me that an instructor is there to instruct, not to weed anyone out or pass judgement... I assume the dynamics are different for nursing school than other college programs, but it still doesn't make sense to me. It should be more objective than that.

    Do nursing instructors really get close enough to their students to understand that student's personality? or close enough to know personal information about that student? (I'm not being sarcastic LOL)

    Bethany -

    The clinical setting becomes slightly intimate - not only amongst students, but also between the clinical instructor and the students. As an instructor, I do feel like I understand my students' personalities, their strengths, and weaknesses. I try to help them overcome their weaknesses, develop their strengths, and if they are going through something, that maybe made them late for clinical, or is keeping them from focusing on clinical, I encourage them to talk about it... to work it out... take time out, whatever is needed. BECAUSE -----> While in clinical, they are working under MY liscense. Therefore, I MUST pass judgement. I must judge whether or not the person/student is capable of independence, and to what degree... and honestly, if a student is somebody who I would not want to take care of my family member - at the end of the clinical rotation - then I can't pass that person.

    It's funny.... there have been students who were very weak clinically and academically... but whom I felt could probably overcome their weaknesses with encouragement and perseverance. Those students, I focused on especially, in order to HELP them pass. But those same students are the ones who thought that I was "out to get them". I guess sometimes it is simply a matter of perspective. Having said all that, I think that there are some isolated cases where instructors may actually have personality conflicts with certain students to the detriment of that student's success. I believe this is true, because it is a human condition, and bound to happen statistically. However, the instructors that I work with question each other... it is a checks and balances system. This makes such behavior unlikely, at least in the setting where I teach.

    MN
  4. by   alexillytom
    "It's funny.... there have been students who were very weak clinically and academically... but whom I felt could probably overcome their weaknesses with encouragement and perseverance. Those students, I focused on especially, in order to HELP them pass. But those same students are the ones who thought that I was "out to get them". I guess sometimes it is simply a matter of perspective. Having said all that, I think that there are some isolated cases where instructors may actually have personality conflicts with certain students to the detriment of that student's success. I believe this is true, because it is a human condition, and bound to happen statistically. However, the instructors that I work with question each other... it is a checks and balances system. This makes such behavior unlikely, at least in the setting where I teach.

    MN[/QUOTE]
    I wish our instructors had more interaction with each other. There are no checks and balances at my school. The instructors' behaviors generally go unchecked and some of them have a serious "God" complex.

    Last semester, I had a really CRAZY clinical instructor. From day one of our semester, she just targeted me. Everyone saw it. She was physical with me and suggested I seek another career. I really felt like I had no one to go to. After one particularly bad incident, I finally had had enough. I was ready to return some of the abuse she kept pouring on me. Luckily, my classmates saw the incident and were there to stop me from making a huge mistake that could have gotten me kicked out of school.

    At the end of that rotation, this crazy instructor gave me a wonderful performance appraisal. She had no choice, I knew my stuff. The nurses on the floor gave me a lot of compliments about my performance. I don't know what her goal was where I was concerned. I think she thought she could push me over the edge and either get me to quit, or get me kicked out. Whatever. One thing I do know is that sometimes, someone is out to get you. I'm sure it doesn't happen often but it did happen to me.
  5. by   moog8746
    Quote from LPN2Be2004
    I noticed that the ones in my class that said that the instructor is out to get them were also failing the class miserably, didn't take any notes, and didn't record any lectures. And asked for copies of other people's notes.

    To say that the instructor is out to get you is called paranoia.
    You know, i would have agreed with you a few months ago until it's happend to me recently. Even after It happend to me, I thought it must have been something that I had done until I spoke with the dean and she agreed with me! This particular instructor had a very very bad track record with students. Don't judge, because you'll feel very very silly when it happens to you.
  6. by   luv2shopp85
    I made the mistake of telling my instructor that I have ADD. Apparently she didn't understand add because she was constantly on my case about everything and did not think I was competent. She put me on probation for clinical after the semester was over with. She made my clinical care experience a living hell. She would use scare tactics to try and make me learn things, make me feel like i belonged back in kindergarten, and attack me for no apparent reason. It was obvious to everyone who she liked, and who she did not like. And unfortunately i was one of the ones she did not like. So in my case, yes i believe my instructor was out to get me and did not want to see me pass my rotation.
  7. by   Beowoulf
    Quote from hyperstudent
    I'm curious, what are your thoughts on this ? Do you think instructors can fail you from a class because of personality conflicts and nothing else?
    You better believe it happens, baby! I just graduated at 52 and was, at times, old enough to be my nurse preceptors' father. I refused to act like the traditional inferior "kid" student and it caused lots of problems. In one evaluation, the head nurse began the session with, "I just don't know how to read you...." It was downhill from there.

    You can BET that every instrcutctor and preceptor sizes you up in the first few days and decides whether or not you meet THEIR criteria of what a nurse should be. It's not CONSCIOUS, of course, but it happens. If you don't measure up, then all the positive concrete evidence you show in the following weeks is unlikely to sway that opinion. You are a "marked man" (or woman.)

    All I can say is that it is INCREDIBLE what happens when you become a nurse and join a floor or unit. Nothing changes except their opinion of you: You are now one of them .. and you are treated as a welcomed equal. What a difference from the "despised little nuisance" you were seen as just weeks earlier.... I marvel at the night and day difference in the way I am - and was - treated. Suddenly, I have a brain .. and my life experience is respected .. my advice and counsel is sought out .. and fellow nurses actually confide things to me. There were times in nursing school that I thought I was going crazy: I wasn't used to being treated as a dismissable "candy-striper." If it hadn't been for one professor - a PhD - who treated me like an equal human being for my last two years of school, I don't think I could have made it....

    There's a whole body of knowledge on in-group/out-group psychology and dynamics ... and the journey from nursing school to nurse could be a textbook example (as could med school, I would guess....)
  8. by   smk1
    I too remember this thead from a couple years ago, I think anything is possible, but I don't think this scenario is at all probable or that common. My experience has been that if a teacher is mean, she/he is that way to almost everyone. Not that it can't happen...
  9. by   msnica81
    There are a lot of teachers out there that are out to get you. For example, I have a teacher at my school that gives students clinical fails for stupid stuff like anxiety or having an attitude. There are bigger reasons out there to give someone a clinical fails such as not giving meds on time or if the student was just lazy. If you went to my school from the past to now, everybody knows about this one teacher. The students and faculty been working on trying to get her fired for the past year. The instructor happens to be good friends with the head person in charge, so that is why she still is working at the school.
  10. by   moog8746
    Quote from luv2shopp85
    I made the mistake of telling my instructor that I have ADD. Apparently she didn't understand add because she was constantly on my case about everything and did not think I was competent. She put me on probation for clinical after the semester was over with. She made my clinical care experience a living hell. She would use scare tactics to try and make me learn things, make me feel like i belonged back in kindergarten, and attack me for no apparent reason. It was obvious to everyone who she liked, and who she did not like. And unfortunately i was one of the ones she did not like. So in my case, yes i believe my instructor was out to get me and did not want to see me pass my rotation.
    OH MY GOD!!! The same thing happend to me, and I got kicked out of the program!
  11. by   DaFreak71
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    I noticed that the ones in my class that said that the instructor is out to get them were also failing the class miserably, didn't take any notes, and didn't record any lectures. And asked for copies of other people's notes.

    To say that the instructor is out to get you is called paranoia.
    Unless it happens to be true.

    The problem is that we each have a small sample size from which to make qualified judgements about whether or not instructors in general are "out to get" certain students. It just so happens that in Marie's case, the students who were claiming to be targeted also had poor grades.

    It just so happens in my case that I have always maintained straight A's and have always had really good relationships with my instructors. I'm usually invited to dinner, etc. Of course this was in my home state where people are encouraged to be progressive thinkers. At least more so than in the current state I live in.

    During my first semester of nursing school I had an awful time. I was threatened a few times that I would not pass the subjective portion of my evaluation. In addition to that threat, they also told me that a letter to the BON would be written about my lack of professionalism. Why?

    1. I chose not to attend a nursing convention and instead opted to do lab studies for two days. Along with about 15-20 other classmates.

    2. I was not able to attend an honor's banquet that our school had invited me to due to non-interest and a scheduling conflict.

    Both activities were voluntary

    Considering that I had A's in both lecture and clinical, the only possible way to fail me out was to not pass the subjective portion of the final evaluation. I was sweating bullets. I was in the process of withdrawing because I figured that it would be better for me to withdraw with an A than to fail the entire course. Luckily my advisor intervened and promised me that I would not be failed on the basis of the above incidents. But if I had believed the two instructors that were threatening me, I would have been a fool to not withdraw (to protect my GPA and to ensure that I could gain entry into another program without failing marks on my transcript).

    Based on my personal experience, instructors do try to fail students out if there is a personality conflict or a differing of opinions. This is merely anecdotal evidence and it is a small sample size that can hardly be considered scientific.

    Luckily for me, my instructors in nursing two are incredible. They are smart, fair, and supportive. The polar opposite of my nursing one instructors (not all of them were bad, but enough of them were).

    My rule of thumb is this: If enough people are saying the exact same thing about the exact same people, there just might be some validity to the claim. Doesn't automatically make it true, but it's worth a closer look.

    RWS: Sorry for any spelling errors.
    Last edit by DaFreak71 on Oct 8, '06
  12. by   fotografe
    Quote from hyperstudent
    I'm curious, what are your thoughts on this ? Do you think instructors can fail you from a class because of personality conflicts and nothing else?
    Yes Yes and Double Yes

    I am probably at the top of my class academically. I have had nothing but glowing evaluations on my clinical rotations. I had one clinical instructor who did not "take" to me and tried her best to give me an unsatisfactory evaluation. The head of the department had to make her change my eval (this happened even before I had my conference.)
  13. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from luv2shopp85
    I made the mistake of telling my instructor that I have ADD. Apparently she didn't understand add because she was constantly on my case about everything and did not think I was competent. She put me on probation for clinical after the semester was over with. She made my clinical care experience a living hell. She would use scare tactics to try and make me learn things, make me feel like i belonged back in kindergarten, and attack me for no apparent reason. It was obvious to everyone who she liked, and who she did not like. And unfortunately i was one of the ones she did not like. So in my case, yes i believe my instructor was out to get me and did not want to see me pass my rotation.
    You had a thread about why you were put on probation, and the reason given there wasn't about the ADD, it was about something else.

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