Nursing students who do not understand what nursing is about - page 2

Yesterday, in post conference a students asked me when are they going to learn "real" nursing. Each student had done med pass on one or two patients that day. When I asked the student what he meant... Read More

  1. by   KUNursingStudent
    Umm, no disrespect to OP but that's part of your responsibility to education, teach, foster these students into a learning environment where you educated and correct the student's perception and, if needed, basically say to them, this is the real deal, this what you will be doing; no easy way out. And if you don't like it, there's the door, other students are waiting to be where you are.

    I'm a student and I've seen many educators who are just there to do the do - doesn't help me nor the professor.

  2. by   linearthinker
    I agree w/ Elk and OCN. I too used to teach in a (ADN) RN program. I left b/c, frankly, the students were dumb as a sack of hair for the most part, entitled and uncooperative. I wanted to fail at least half of them, but the school wouldn't let me. I was told to remediate to success (no doubt so they could keep collecting tuition). Most of them didn't have what it takes, but the school is going to push them through, they will pass the NCLEX b/c it is written to the lowest common denominator, and voila, new nurses that will make all us look ignorant and lazy. If I couldn't work with students I could be proud of, I couldn't do it. I blame the schools, they just have set the bar too low. And don't tell me I ought to read the OPs other posts. I don't have the time or enough interest to try to profile and psychoanalyze other posters. Dissecting and teasing out secret motives is for people with more time on their hands than I have. I take each person, and each post, at face value.

    OP, I feel for you, I really do. All I can suggest is that you play it straight and tell him (and others like him) that he has made a grave mistake if he thinks the role of the nurse is to "make decisions about the patient care." Assure him that you will do your best to teach him the role of the nurse and how to meet the role expectations, but he doesn't get to define it for you, or for himself. If all else fails, refer him to your state's practice act and the Essentials of Baccalaureate Nursing Education document for further clarification. If it isn't what he thought it was, he should cut his losses and not waste anymore of anyone's time.

    Good luck.
  3. by   hiddencatRN
    Quote from DNS on the go
    When I asked the student what he meant he stated that nursing is not about vital signs and passing pills, hanging IV's, etc.

    He wanted to learn "real" nursing.

    I explained to the group that the responsibilities of the nursing include medication administration, patient assessment and documentation. He then stated that those were jobs of the aide or the LPN and that he wanted to make decisions about the patient care.
    Quote from onaclearday
    OP, if you cannot bring it, you better get out. As a second career nurse with over 20+ years of total success in my previous career, I challenge those who teach me to be more knowledgeable than I, on every single medical topic covered in my nursing edu. I have no problem with a simple, "let me get back to ya on that one point". Making excuses for your lack of ability is not acceptable. Most people paying for a second degree don't intend to waste one single buck. We are not doe-eyed babies. We mean business. We also follow up on evaluations and recs to administration/state naturally as that level of business is where our comfort level is... so, advice to you OP, is to step it up. I am flexible to a point. Then it's over.
    I feel like we're not all reading the same post. I read this and what sticks out to me is that this student doesn't think some pretty key responsibilities are going to be his responsibility as a nurse and that basic patient care is for the "grunt" staff.

    The OP also said that previous classes of the second degree students seemed more on the ball too, so I didn't take it as a slam on second degree students in general (and I was a second degree student who didn't really have a first career to speak of).
  4. by   boogalina
    The solution to many of the problems noted by the OP and others would be to require licensure of a prospective nursing student as a CNA before allowing him/her into a nursing education program. After all, it's not like "House" where doctors perform intensive bedside care, leaving RN's free to gad about in the background!
  5. by   canoehead
    I'm with the OP. Second year students are still learning assessment skills, and the hierarchy of the hospital. You have to learn to walk before you can run. Nursing is about advocacy and working within the team, but you can't do either if you don't have your background knowledge down cold.
  6. by   Baubo516
    To the OP - I am sorry that you are having a negative experience with this crop of students. I am currently a MS teacher, and isn't it interesting how each new group that comes through has its own personality/feeling?

    I am also a pre-nursing student, currently taking a CNA certification course and looking forward to starting pre-reqs in the fall. I am not leaving my current profession due to lack of success - I think most of the parents of my current students will be surprised and disappointed when I resign - but because I am feeling burnt out and feeling called to explore a different field where I can use my strengths in a different way. I was valedictorian of my HS class, graduated college with something like a 3.5 GPA, and I feel that I have pretty good writing skills. I guess what I am trying to say is that not all nursing students are this clueless and unprepared.

    If we ARE clueless, please just take the time to clue us in. I have been TRYING to research what nursing is REALLY like, but have not been able to shadow a nurse yet due to my work schedule. I am hoping that CNA clinicals will give me a realistic perspective. I am not afraid to do the "grunt" work, and I think the student you mentioned needs to be repeatedly reminded that these things are part of actual nursing. I am heading toward nursing with a servant's heart, and I hope that you will find some students who have this type of attitude, as well, rather than the "entitled" attitude that you seem to be describing.

    I guess I am rambling but I wanted to respond! Not all pre-nursing students are entitled jerks or poor writers! I hope it gets better for you.
  7. by   oramar
    I have to say that my favorite nursing educator left teaching because she felt the quality of the students was declining. Can I point out that was in 1982? I have heard all these complaints before.
  8. by   RescueNinja
    Quote from SweetOldWorld
    It's not?
    Stole the words right outta my mouth!

    I lead and make decisions that are crucial to the care my patients and residents receive every single shift. Some are life and death and some are not, but they are still important choices that I have to make.
  9. by   SugarNSass
    I honestly believe you cannot teach reality to people that are stubbornly unrealistic (and entitled) in any field. Folks have to have their own awakening experience. I will be a second degree student, and in pursuing my first degree my class was filled with unrealistic journalism students. Everyone was going to be rich. Everyone was going to be famous. Everyone was going to be splattered across every radio station and television screen. No one was going to need to know how to write well though. Further, those successes would imply that everyone would be immediately employed upon graduation at the very least, and that simply has not been the case. Pardon my shock.

    I would ask that you not get so frustrated with the clearly clueless that you are unable to spend some time and consideration teaching and nurturing the students who do want to learn everything there is to know about being a "real nurse." Those students are there and they need the information and experience you bring.
    Last edit by SugarNSass on Apr 3, '11
  10. by   roser13
    I look at this situation the way I viewed childrearing when my kids were young:

    Either I could teach them the rules and realities of the world, or they could learn it from someone else in less-than-loving, much harsher manner.

    The students who feel that it is beneath them to do any type of routine nursing task, whatever it is, need to to have a Come To Jesus moment. They must understand (and the clinical context is perfect) what will certainly be expected of them. To do any less is to do them a disservice as their instructor. You are the perfect person to help them understand their unrealistic expectations of their chosen 2nd profession.

    You sound like a very realistic and concerned instructor. I'm having a little difficulty (OK, alot of difficulty) understanding some of the responses that you have received. I think that some folks hang around here simply to dream of negative ways to respond.
    Last edit by roser13 on Apr 3, '11
  11. by   ktwlpn
    I've seen the same kind of attitude in the second degree RN's I've come into contact with at the LTC and in acute care. They seem to consider any kind of direct care a "blue collar "skill. That includes anything from assistance with adl's to medication administration,treatments and all of the other fun stuff we do in ltc (routine tube changes) And it's all beneath them.
    Last edit by ktwlpn on Apr 3, '11 : Reason: oops
  12. by   busydude
    I can see the OP's frustration. I think that it is frustating in any field to have a student or trainee think they are above what they are really supose to be doing. On the other hand I do feel that this is a great oppurtunity for the OP to do thier job as an educator. Nursing instructors are hired to teach, to educate, to enlighten students as to what the world of nursing is all about. This is a great oppurtunity to change the enviroment of entitled students, let them know how to perform the basics and let them know that its not the just the job of a CNA or LVN. If the teachers and veteran nurses are unwilling to teach and just throw in the towell at these type of students and these attitudes then the nursing profession is in a sorry state of affairs. Fortunatley this is the minority because I work with a lot of great nurses and teachers that are willing to help change ignorant attitudes and to help student and new grad nurses be the best nurses they can be.
  13. by   JusBeinANur
    I have seen these type of "students" in the field and you are not doing anyone favors by passing them through.....