Marian University-Online Accelerated Program - page 4

If you're interested in pursuing this program, beware that you are going into a program that will leave you scratching your heads as to how unorganized it is. Course content in pathophysiology and... Read More

  1. by   forgop
    No idea how on campus differs from online, but I would advise against making plans for such a thing. You get a week for spring break and 3+ weeks off at Christmas. Other than that, you get holidays off, but there's virtually no downtime. It's 16 months to make the most of your real breaks. Just my 2 cents.
  2. by   yesterdayschild
    I had a feeling that's the way it would be. Thanks!
  3. by   kjj007
    I am currently in my third semester in the Marian Accelerated Online Program. It is a lot of work, but I am glad of my choice for the online program. The clinical experiences have been great. The people that are in the program come from a diverse background which makes the learning environment very unique. At first I was not sure if I liked the independent learning environment but now I really like it. I am glad I do not have to drive to campus everyday and spend the whole day there. I have a family so it helps to have some flexibility, although I will say that you still end up going to campus at least once or twice a week for testing that is scheduled. Also in your first semester you will spend a great deal of time at campus the second part of the semester for clinical labs. So far the first and third semesters are the hardest. The third semester contains so much paperwork from clinicals and on top of that a heavy didactic course load.
  4. by   yesterdayschild
    Thanks kjj007!

    Do you find that there are any opportunities to get together with other students for study groups etc? Is there some camaraderie between the students in your program?
    Anyone that's got experience with the online program feel free to answer!
  5. by   kjj007
    Yeah there are many that get together for study groups. I have gotten together with other students to study, but I study much better on my own and then bouncing off questions to the other students. Many of the cohorts of classes start their own facebook page where the students of that class can talk to each other. This is very helpful in working together to answer questions. At the end of the semester there are always a couple of groups of students that get together to go out. There are always going to be people that like and don't like the online format, but it really is what you put into it is what you get out of it.
  6. by   yesterdayschild
    Anybody apply for Marian Online BSN for the fall?? I did and I'm waiting to hear back..
  7. by   Sick & Tired
    My cohort (Dec. '12) has called it the most expensive correspondence course in the world. The clinicals run the gamut from fair to very good. I think the clinical instructors & opportunities are the best part of the program. Some of the clinical instructors are outstanding. But the "didactic" (substantive) part is pretty much DIY -- do it yourself. Very little teaching overall. And, from the student perspective, program management needs improvement and is not student-oriented. It seems like every time they have a problem, the students suffer.

    But I strongly disagree about the pathophysiology prof. Ours was awesome! The best teacher in the program, and probably other programs. Very responsive to questions. Clearly loves teaching and is very good at it. His lectures made very complex concepts easy to understand.

    My advice overall -- if there are other alternatives, explore them. The problem is that the demand for nurses is so great and the state schools have waiting lists -- so the alternatives are limited. Good luck.
    Last edit by Sick & Tired on Sep 10, '12 : Reason: balance message
  8. by   wanttoknow
    I'm currently in the progress of applying to Marian U, taking my pre-req's. I'm coming all the way from NYC and plan to take the online absn program. I will be moving to Indianapolis because the program is part online and you have to be there for clinical. How is the housing prices in Indianapolis around the college is it fair, do anyone knows the price range.. Is the campus accessible if you don't have a car?
  9. by   yesterdayschild
    hey there wanttoknow, if you're doing the online ABSN program at Marian you're campus is actually up on the north side right by the pyramids (86th st and michigan rd). Most or all of your clinicals will be at St. Vincent on 86th st, so you may want to take that into account when you look for housing. You will almost never be on campus at the main campus (on cold spring rd).

    for the online ABSN program you will definitely need a car to get to and from the purdue rd site and to clinicals.

    feel free to message me if you have more questions
  10. by   kt2nursing
    Hey Wanttoknow and yesterdayschild! Wanttoknow, did you start the program?

    I have so many questions and don't really know where to start but I was hoping both of you guys could answer some of them. I am trying to start in Aug but I am extremely nervous. I'm about to start taking the theology pre-rec course and was wondering how the lectures are formatted.Obviously I learn soo enought but do the teachers actually talk and explain the lecture slides or is it pretty much read the powerpoints and book by yourself and do the work? Which semester do you think is the hardest? Any study tips (besides study groups.... I know I'll need one)? How often do people go to the online "campus" location? And how many people would you say actually complete this program?

    Oh, and do you have any suggestions on where to live around there. I have never been to Indianapolis so I don't know the good parts verses the bad parts or the safest but cheapest locations in the area.

    Thanks for any and all help!!
  11. by   pinkbob4
    Hey kt2nursing, I'm a 4th-semester (4th-year?) student in the Marian online accelerated program. Finishing this May. Yay! Here are some longwinded answers to your questions that I wish I had when I was in your position:

    - About 70% of the online nursing and pre-req. courses (including theology) pretty much require that you teach yourself. This program takes a very self-motivated person. I happen to learn better this way, so it’s a good fit. Other people seem to really struggle. You’ll do a lot of reading. Professors do have audio powerpoints, and these vary in quality/depth. I found it easier and faster to simply teach myself from the books. As I said, 70% of the courses are this way. About 10% (including the wonderful pathophysiology) have such good professors that you’ll enjoy listening to their lectures. The final 20% are courses (leadership, community, nursing topics, informatics, professional roles, et al.) which deal with subject matter that is common sense and you’ll hardly have to do any preparatory work in order to pass the tests.
    A couple professors were truly awful in that they refused to educate paying students. Instead, they ignored emails or gave disparaging answers to honest questions. In 2nd semester I sent about 20 emails to a professor about a simple exam question and never got a response. That professor was recently fired. HOWEVER, most professors are at least good enough at their jobs if not outstanding.

    - 1st semester: usually considered the toughest because it’s science and skills heavy and it is the biggest semester credit hour-wise. More students dropped out from my cohort during this semester than any other. The first half you’ll almost never come to the testing/skills lab site at the pyramids on 86th street. The second half you’ll come a few days a week to learn basic nursing skills in preparation for your first hospital clinical (which caps the semester). I never thought I’d doubt my hand-washing and bed-making skills!

    - 2nd semester: super easy. I had it in the summer and it felt like a vacation.

    - 3rd semester: Some students felt this was actually the hardest. Indeed, it was paperwork heavy. But I really enjoyed our clinicals in labor/delivery and mental health – two specialties that deal with crazy women. I kid, I kid.

    - 4th semester: the busiest but probably the easiest semester. It has community health, which is hit-and-miss: some days you’ll gain a ton of experience working in low-income urban health clinics, and other days you’ll observe a home hospice nurse drive around in the country for 6 hours. Then there is leadership, which I think is a snoozer, but some people love it. You hang out with hospital managers for 72 hours, which includes sitting in on a lot of administrative meetings and watching people send emails/answer phones for hours at a time. However, leadership gives you great opportunities to network for future jobs at St. Vincent Health. There is also the critical care clinical, which places you in various ICUs for 12-hour shifts. This semester also has my favorite “extra-curricular” course: ethics. (I just find it fun thinking/writing about ethical case studies.)

    - Study tips: I don’t have many. I have done fine (mostly A’s, a few B’s) by just reading the assigned chapters and taking the tests. I find that over-studying always hurt me because I take the tests too seriously; meaning, I overthink simple questions. (In nursing school, the most obvious answer is usually the correct one, even if you say to yourself “there’s no way the answer is THAT simple!”) You will be taking course exams as well as Kaplan nursing exams throughout the program. Both are similar in that they will be training you how to be thinking for the NCLEX nursing boards test.
    I do know that students often form study groups, usually in person but sometimes online. I never did this. The newly redesigned pyramids site has ample space (couches, desks, etc.) for group activities.

    - Don’t be fooled by the “online” in the program’s title: you WILL BE on “campus” (the 86th street pyramids) or at the hospital or in the community at least one day of every week starting the second half of the 1st semester, if not multiple days a week. You’ll need to be on “campus” to take tests, quizzes, listen to guest speakers, have mandatory group meetings, be oriented for almost every class, learn nursing skills, and a dozen other reasons I’m forgetting. If you don’t live within two hours of Indy, this program would be torture. I started the program while living in Bloomington but eventually had to move because of the insane amount of gas and time spent commuting multiple times a week. One girl was living in Chicago! (About 3+ hours away). I don’t know if she’s still around.
    Sometimes you’ll go to the main Marian campus, which is an absolutely lovely place. They implemented a new teaching element at the Marian campus during my cohort which is called SIM lab. Once a semester you’ll be placed in simulated scenarios involving mock hospital rooms and state-of-the-art robotic patients (which always seem to be malfunctioning) or with paid actors (surrogate patients) who act out an illness for you. The results are usually embarrassing. They film you making an ass of yourself. Then everybody sits down and watches the film. Not exactly my cup of tea, but some people got a kick out of it.
    One last thing: be ready to have the official schedule change a lot and at late notice. I did this program without raising a family or holding a job, so fortunately this didn’t matter to me. But a lot of people really struggled and got ****** off with the program’s disorganization.

    - Dropout rate: roughly 15%. My cohort started with about 90 people and we lost about 13. People leave because nursing isn’t for them, or they get caught cheating, or they get caught misrepresenting Marian U in public (public intoxication in school scrubs), or they simply can’t do the work. Some dropout entirely. Some retake a semester.

    - Indianapolis: most neighborhoods north of 38th street are pretty good/safe bets, with varying degrees of affordability. South of 38th and it gets spotty depending if you’re east or west. Downtown living is expensive but very worth it. I live near downtown and love it for its culture, art, history, parks, and bar and food scene. The area around the “campus” on 86th is pretty ugly, with endless strip malls and traffic. Broad Ripple is a great community that’s near the school with cheap places available if you know where to look.

    - In summary: go into this program because you want a nursing degree, not because you want the world’s best nursing education. Don’t get me wrong, this IS a good education, just not the best. Yes, you’ll learn how to think and behave like a nurse, but at the same time, you’ll have a nagging feeling in the back of your mind that something’s amiss. It sometimes feels a little too hurried, a little too easy, or a little too sloppy.
    You’ll wonder why you’re paying SO SO SO SO MUCH money for what amounts to a mostly self-taught education. (Heck, I could have learned the same material for free at a library!) But you just have to remind yourself that you’re paying for a nursing license in the quickest way possible. A professional license in 16months – how cool is that!
    You’ll also have to put up with tons of schedule changes and inefficiencies and headaches. But you can think of yourself as a pioneer in this newish mode of online nurse training. In a few years, I predict this program will finally know how to run smoothly. Right now, they’re expanding their enterprise hugely (they’re about to open a branch in Nashville, TN), and they have growing pains.
    You can do this. You already earned at least one degree, and this one is probably going to be easier. Just accept that the program is far from perfect. And that’s okay, because who really deserves perfection!?!
  12. by   pinkbob4
    I just re-read my last post and felt like I painted Marian's program in a negative light. I apologize. To be certain, this is a great program. But like any education it has its difficulties. I simply meant to paint its realities in the truest light. Whomever undertakes the Marian online education has made a great choice and in the end will be satisfied.
  13. by   EyeheartNursing_RN
    Great post pinkbob4! You gave the details I have been looking for. I will be starting with the first Nashville cohort in May. I'm super excited. As you indicated I am expecting some growing pains for the program. I hope that the professors are up to par because i refuse to pay over 50k and get a lousy education. Another thing that'll be interesting is the lack of an actual campus. I would have loved this for printing and meeting.