I need help to succeed in nursing school

  1. 0
    Hi All,
    I need some advice. I made it through my freshaman year in Nursing School at Gwynedd Mercy College. Iam now entering into my sophmore year. I need help. The freshaman year was very hard and so demanding it was times where i didnt think that I could make it, but I never and will never give no matter how hard it is. It's just a little frustrating that I was only able to pass with C's. I have no problems with C's becuase i'am able to pass and move on but i would like to get better grades becuase C's are also very close to making you and breaking in nursing school. It is also frsustrating where it seems like you study so hard like you should be getting A's and B's but I still only to manage to stay in the high 70's and sometimes i might get and 80 but an 80 is still a C. I study so hard and read everything in sight, I even read things six or seven times, i also make flash cards and do tons of nclex questions but I still can not get out of the C range. I'am very nervous for sophmore year which is even more demanding than the first and I'am also worried about passing hesi exit exam and nclex. I dont know if it is the style of questions or what I'm just trying to aim a little higher this year if i can. Does anyone have any pointers!
    Thanks
  2. Get the Hottest Nursing Topics Straight to Your Inbox!

  3. 5,121 Visits
    Find Similar Topics
  4. 17 Comments so far...

  5. 1
    Hi Cindy 17!
    I too am now a second(and final) year student! It is tough! It sounds like you are on the right track with your studying habits. I've noticed that the questions that they give us for tests are similar to nclex, yet they make them confusing by using horrible wording. Not sure if that's the same for you or not. Never over analyze a question. I've been using saunders nclex review books, questions in the textbook and on the cd-rom that come with them. We use the Elsevier Evolve system and they have online question banks also. Another thing is to ask your instructor what you could do to improve, or what there strategy is for exams. lol If they'll tell you! Always watch for what they emphasize in lecture. I hope this helps. Good Luck to you!
    slimlvn likes this.
  6. 11
    Hi there,
    I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. I have gone through a very tough LVN school, where I was only 1 of 4 (of a class of 36) that graduated on time. I had a lot of people come to me for help during school, because I learned how to study.

    I should tell you too, that I didn't always know how: I failed Chemistry and Anatomy over and over about 10 years ago. So when I returned to try nursing school again, I had to reevaluate my learning methods. What changed for me is my age and determination: I would do everything it takes to pass. I don't know if you are young, but when I was 18-20 I sure didn't know how to study. Kudos to you for trying to find help!

    My biggest thing was realizing how I learn. Some people are visual, some audio, whatever. I learn by WRITING EVERY SINGLE THING DOWN. If I don't write it down, IT DOESN'T STICK. I can read something 20 times, but unless I see it in my own handwriting, I won't remember it. I outlined every single chapter, and then when it came time to study for the test, all I had to do was look at my notes and occasionally refer back to my book.

    It should be noted though, I take awesome notes. Notice the difference at taking notes on this sentence:

    Intravenous therapy or IV therapy is the giving of liquid substances directly into a vein. The word intravenous simply means "within a vein". Therapies administered intravenously are often called specialty pharmaceuticals. It is commonly referred to as a drip because many systems of administration employ a drip chamber, which prevents air entering the blood stream (air embolism) and allows an estimate of flow rate.

    You can write the whole damn thing out, or write this in your notes:

    IV: (within vein)
    ~liquid subst. in vein
    ~IV aka specialty pharm.
    ~drip chamber prevents embolism, allows flow rate

    This is just what works for me. I helped a lot of students learn how to take notes, so their hands don't fall off. If you are an audio learner, I would suggest finding a good partner that likes to "teach." Sometimes if you teach something to someone else you remember/understand it better. So it depends on your methods, find out you're absolute BEST way of learning, and do everything you can to stick to it.

    And by the way... if you plan on having a fun social life, you probably won't be pulling A's or B's. Stick to your priorities. Good luck!
    chelechele, slimlvn, Happified., and 8 others like this.
  7. 1
    rainingwoman,
    great advice! totally forgot that knowing how to study effectively for yourself is the key!lol if you're an audio learner, tape the lectures! i have several friends doing this! i've just learned to pay attention in class ( can be tough for me) and i agree take good notes! i'm writing it in red to remind my self lol!
    jazziphat likes this.
  8. 1
    Take lessons on test-taking...but in the end, if you are a C student....give yourself a break....sometimes it is what it is...
    slimlvn likes this.
  9. 0
    I taped my lectures and then moved them over onto my laptop for review. I also had the Saunders book but mainly used just the CD for questions. I liked the Incredibly Easy book series. I had the cardiac system and basic NCLEX review book from the series. They would break it all down to basic understanding.

    I also bought the Hurst Review a few weeks before graduation and that is what helped me do so well on my exit HESI. I passed the first time in the 95th percentile of all nursing students everywhere who took the test. I did the online Hurst Review. I didn't even finish all of the sections yet before the exit HESI. I think I still had 3 or 4 systems to complete still before my test. They have it all broken up into systems like GI, Peds, Maternity, Fluids & Electrolytes, Cardiac, etc. I wish I knew about it when I was in nursing school because it really helped me understand concepts that I never had time to fully grasp while in nursing school because they are always cramming so much information into us. I also bought the HESI NCLEX-RN book by Evolve (I think they make the exit HESI test) to also help me prepare for my exit HESI but I didn't read the book I just used the CD for questions. You might want to consider getting the HESI book now to help you study as you go so you are better prepared when it comes time to take the exit HESI. The book is good I just was doing the Hurst so I didn't have time to read that book too. I just recently took my NCLEX and passed with the minimal amount of questions. I also loved the LaCharity book on prioritization but that is something that will help you more as you prepare for your NCLEX. Good luck to you!
  10. 1
    Quote from rainingwoman
    Hi there,
    I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. I have gone through a very tough LVN school, where I was only 1 of 4 (of a class of 36) that graduated on time. I had a lot of people come to me for help during school, because I learned how to study.

    I should tell you too, that I didn't always know how: I failed Chemistry and Anatomy over and over about 10 years ago. So when I returned to try nursing school again, I had to reevaluate my learning methods. What changed for me is my age and determination: I would do everything it takes to pass. I don't know if you are young, but when I was 18-20 I sure didn't know how to study. Kudos to you for trying to find help!

    My biggest thing was realizing how I learn. Some people are visual, some audio, whatever. I learn by WRITING EVERY SINGLE THING DOWN. If I don't write it down, IT DOESN'T STICK. I can read something 20 times, but unless I see it in my own handwriting, I won't remember it. I outlined every single chapter, and then when it came time to study for the test, all I had to do was look at my notes and occasionally refer back to my book.

    It should be noted though, I take awesome notes. Notice the difference at taking notes on this sentence:

    Intravenous therapy or IV therapy is the giving of liquid substances directly into a vein. The word intravenous simply means "within a vein". Therapies administered intravenously are often called specialty pharmaceuticals. It is commonly referred to as a drip because many systems of administration employ a drip chamber, which prevents air entering the blood stream (air embolism) and allows an estimate of flow rate.

    You can write the whole damn thing out, or write this in your notes:

    IV: (within vein)
    ~liquid subst. in vein
    ~IV aka specialty pharm.
    ~drip chamber prevents embolism, allows flow rate

    This is just what works for me. I helped a lot of students learn how to take notes, so their hands don't fall off. If you are an audio learner, I would suggest finding a good partner that likes to "teach." Sometimes if you teach something to someone else you remember/understand it better. So it depends on your methods, find out you're absolute BEST way of learning, and do everything you can to stick to it.

    And by the way... if you plan on having a fun social life, you probably won't be pulling A's or B's. Stick to your priorities. Good luck!

    This is all very very good advice and so true! Everyone studies and remembers things differently. I also realized that I remember something better when I write it down. My boyfriend and I are both starting the nursing program next month. We have been taking our anatomy classes together the last few semesters and while he has to read the chapters and listen to recorded lectures, I tried to do that with him and it just didn't stick. I finally said, I need to just take notes as I read and listen and voila! It stuck like none other lol. I can read a paragraph over and over and not be able to tell you a word of what I just read...but if I write it down I guess it forces me to actually take in and interpret what I'm reading. Just try to figure out what works best for you and go with that! Try different methods!
    slimlvn likes this.
  11. 1
    I totally agree with the note taking. I also have to write everything down. It kinda sucks as I'm always in study groups and we break down the anticipated test areas and then write them all in word and then sent them to be compiled. Typing on the computer does nothing for me. I have to actually handwrite to remember it. As I write the note I also read it to myself. I also have learned how to speed note take as mentioned. That plus a book I read called "Test success for nursing students", and having no life outside of school is the reason for my success as well.
    slimlvn likes this.
  12. 2
    Quote from choc0late
    I totally agree with the note taking. I also have to write everything down. It kinda sucks as I'm always in study groups and we break down the anticipated test areas and then write them all in word and then sent them to be compiled. Typing on the computer does nothing for me. I have to actually handwrite to remember it. As I write the note I also read it to myself. I also have learned how to speed note take as mentioned. That plus a book I read called "Test success for nursing students", and having no life outside of school is the reason for my success as well.
    I don't start the program until August, but I have this book. It teaches you how to be successful in nursing school. It has chapters that are designed to prepare you to succeed. It has a chapter on time management, study techniques (which is what youre asking about), how to answer different types of questions (MC, fill in the blank, critical thinking, etc). Its definitely worth looking at!
    slimlvn and Ihavealotofquestions like this.
  13. 3
    Hi
    Nursing school is tough, no matter what. But, you can find ways to make the best of it. But it takes pretty much all of your time, as I'm sure you know.

    I just graduated in May, with a 3.8 GPA. (Yay!) I had people in school laugh and actually get mad at me for doing well. But I wasn't ashamed- I worked my butt off! I'm pretty sure I re-wrote the majority of my Med/Surg Book! lol That was what helped me - I had a notebook for every class that was just for notes that I made from the book. First, I would read the chapter and highlight what I felt was important or seemed like something the teachers would ask. Then, I would go through again, and summarize the highlighted things in my notebook. After that, I mainly studied my notebook. I would bring it everywhere, and when I had a free moment, I would flip to a spot and read something random. I always had classmates asking me to ask them something out of "my notebook" lol. When I felt comfortable with something I had written, like I knew I knew it, I would highlight it. Then I would focus on everything not highlighted, until I could highlight almost everything. Time consuming? yep!

    I also did NCLEX 3500 and Incredibly Easy! questions for every test, which help too.

    Good luck to you, you can do it


Top