Group study or not??

  1. I was having a conversation today with some girls with whom I'll be starting nursing school. One of them has 'lots of friends' in nursing school who have stated they would have been 'dead' if they have not group studied because of the sheer volume of reading that was required. There was 'no way they would have passed' if they had not gotten together in groups.

    I've always been a solitary learner and never had a problem during pre-reqs getting good grades. I do understand this success does not automatically translate to the same sort of success during clinicals and theory. However, I don't understand how someone else interpreting something I have to know for a test will make me a better student, either.

    My question: can a nursing student be successful on her own, independently studying, without being part of a group? I've heard some groups divide the material evenly among its members, study and interpret the material, then hand out their shart of the interpretations to other members. Sort of like a cookie exchange, LOL.

    I'm not antisocial. I can't WAIT to get to know some of these wonderful women I've been meeting all week. But I trust my style of studying and work ethic. I'm not saying I'm not any smarter than ANY of them....I just know what works for me.

    Would I be missing out if I did not try to cultivate a group for study purposes? Will I be OK on my own?
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   MySimplePlan
    Whoops! I posted this in the wrong thread....sorry.
  4. by   ibmaryann
    A quote from my nursing instructor today was " A study group is no more than 4, more than that is a party." I studied with one other person and we were very successful because we both had different takes of things and we shared that. We would also get something different when the material was presented that was helpful to the other. I am sure you can be successful on your own. It just helps to have someone who understands and you can discuss things with besides just husband ( who is totally lost on the subject.)
    God Bless,
    Mary Ann
  5. by   Kim O'Therapy
    Great question. I was curious about this same question. I look forward to the answers.
  6. by   shellsgogreen
    to be honest, both have worked for me....i usually prefer to study on my own, as i can be easily distracted (chocolate, gossip, etc....) but there have also been tests here and there, like finals that i've gotten together with some buddies and we've hashed out the whole thing....no nonsense....

    personally, private study works for me until i feel i've really nailed it.
    but hey, it may work for you to study with others; my only suggestion is to try it and then test yourself shortly after ..:typing
  7. by   Daytonite
    you are going to be learning a lot of things in the coming months/years. it helps to have people to bounce these things off of and to discuss them with. it doesn't mean that you need to discount your own individualized study. however, with many of these subjects to come, it does help to have others to talk them over with and to hear their ideas about them. you can restrict your group activities to whatever will come to suit you. when i was in nursing school i belonged to a study group of 5 people. yes, we divided out the content and came together once a week where each of us was to be the "mini-expert" on one area of the content we had divided out among ourselves. however, we each also studied all the areas as well. there were times when we each failed to meet our "mini-expert" expectations and others in the group pulled us through the material. the group also help fill holes in our understanding and comprehension of any of the material. our group used to have a session before test brainstorming the kind of questions that we were likely to be asked. we had some sharp people who were were test savvy in my group that saved our butts more than once when it came to tests. that is the benefit of having a group. your group can work and do whatever you and your group members want it to do. you guys make the rules.

    part of the problem of getting into a study group is choosing people who are similar in their study habits and learning to you. it takes some time to evaluate other students to find this information out. so, don't be too quick to jump into a study group of people you don't know. you may find some people desperate from the first day of classes looking for study partners. you have to ask yourself why they are doing that? so, keep your options loose and free. i wouldn't be too quick to commit myself to a group right off the bat until, perhaps, after the first big test to see where people start to fall with their grades.

    i had a number of friends that were in medical school. they were all in study groups and did things a similar way. because of the massive amounts of knowledge they were responsible to learn they had to be more organized. they actually taped lectures and hired a secretarial service to transcribe the lectures and xerox copies of them for each of their members. now, you have to remember that these guys were a bit crazy about what they were doing and had the financial means to do this. and, it was not unusual that medical school study groups did this, i am told. how they do it today, i do not know. i can tell you, however, that it is tremendously hard to get through medical school without belonging to a study group.

    professional educators will tell you that when you are learning new concepts it helps to be able to be exposed to it in many different ways. talking about it (as in groups), devising games and memory techniques as well as plain, outright reading of the material help you to comprehend the major ideas behind the words. and, this is the important goal of study. this is all important when it comes to critical thinking during tests when you are presented with those application questions that i'm sure you have read about on other posts, particularly the nclex style questions where you can know the knowledge, but if you fail in the critical thinking part of the question, the knowledge means nothing.
  8. by   llg
    If you're not a "study group type of person," don't worry about it. I never found study groups very helpful for most classes either. Be friendly, etc. but don't get drawn into making a big committment of your time and energy to a group who might be more of a drain than a help.

    On the other hand ... it can be helpful to talk about some of the issues that you encounter in nursing school and the interpretation of some of the material. I have always enjoyed that and benefited by hearing the perspectives of others.

    So, in the end, I always covered all the material myself and relied on myself to learn it. However, I participated in discussions of the material (with other people who had ALSO covered the material themselves) to enrich my understanding of it.

    See the difference? If you can find a person or group that wants to discuss the material after you have both (all) covered it, then I would recommend that as long as it is not too time consuming. However, I would be leery of relying on someone else to cover the material for you -- and I would be hesitant to have other people rely on me to cover material for them.

    llg
  9. by   Spidey's mom
    Good advice here.

    I too am a solitary learner and never did use a study group and did fine.

    If you do use one, as others have said, be wary about the dynamics of the group. It can degenerate into a gossip session.

    One of the things I did was become a proctor in Anatomy. That was very helpful for me as I got to review anatomy when setting up the tests and was available for students who had questions, plus hanging with the professor was a great way to bounce questions off an expert.

    One guy in school who was in a study group and was a proctor with me was a blowhard who told the students wrong information - be careful of blowhards too.

    steph
  10. by   SA2BDOCTOR
    It all boils down to what is most comfortable for you knowing the volume of work that has and need to be done.

    If you think you can handle then go for!! A group will always be there if needed
    Last edit by SA2BDOCTOR on Aug 17, '06 : Reason: Posted in wrong spot
  11. by   SA2BDOCTOR
    I apologize. I posted this in the wrong area. This is my first time on here
  12. by   SA2BDOCTOR
    I have to agree with the other person, if you maintain your study and use a study group to refine and broaden your understanding then that will help also.
  13. by   bdgriff
    Speaking from my OWN personal past experiences in the last 2 years of PreReqs, I find studying on my own was best FOR ME...I was in a college algebra group last fall and what started as a nice, calm group ended with a few of "us" upset at others due such things as: too much talking/gossipping, others not "getting it" and having to go back several chapts to help them "get it", and wasting time traveling to other libraries or meeting places to accomodate everyone. Just was a PITA. Now I am a Loner..
  14. by   Bala Shark
    When I was in school, what helped me was notes from other classmates..I did not take good notes and I asked my classmates for them..I had this classmate who sat in front of me who took excellent notes..She let me copy them..Also we had to pass a math test with 90% or above in order to graduate.. I sometimes did ask for assitance from my other classmates about the math..You can say, that help from others did make me graduate from nursing school..Could I have done it alone? Maybe but I really needed assistance from my classmates at that particular time..Choose the peopele who help you wisely in terms of intelligence level and friendliness..The classmates who assisted me were considered my friendly associates who I somewhat trusted in terms of knowledge capabilities

    You should always have like a study buddy or something like that..Maybe, a second brain who is your classmate..That is how I look at it, lol...It does not have to be a group..It could be one or two people you ask assistance from..
    Last edit by Bala Shark on Aug 23, '06

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