Research on nursing students attrition (drop out) from University - page 2

by Stanislav

2,518 Views | 15 Comments

Hello people, Could anyone share the idea about some experiences when nursing students dropped from the course. It is my Honours project. Will appreciate it... Read More


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    As a nursing instructor in an ADN program, I see attrition first hand. There are multiple reasons; some people lack the basic academic skills, others try to work too much and still go to "full-time" nursing school, others do not study enough or the right way for their learning style, and then there are those who expected to be spoon fed the material. I have a ton of empathy for those students who struggle emotionally, financially, and academically. But I do not for the lazy, unmotivated and entitled students.
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    I sure wish I had been in a program like that. Our program was definitely brutal. I would have preferred a BSN program, but I didn't do the right research. I have a bachelor's in a non-nursing area and could have done well, had I found the right program. Our instructors bully their students. I found that difficult to tolerate. I am bitter and wish I had gone somewhere else. I am tired of school. I have tried many things. That's it. In addition, I found the hands-on aspect difficult. I am not a particularly dexterous person (even though I play three musical instruments). I can't figure out why. I was reprimanded for not learning how to put on and take off sterile gloves. It took me a while to learn how to put an ace bandage around a stump (amputated leg - phony - in nursing lab). I passed the med calculations test and my academic performance was quite good. If that were all that it took to be a nurse, I'd be doing fine. One day, I had had enough and could feel myself slipping emotionally. In the interest of self-preservation I just had to leave. I think that my situation is probably unique. Most students drop out because of academic deficiencies. That area was my strength. When I started nursing school, I considered it a journey that would probably change me for the better. I looked forward to that. But now I don't have that. I have this need to experience something life-changing (in a good way) like joining the army but I'm over the age limit for that. I am married with three children - two grown and the third in 11th grade. I was happy to have something potentially to fill the nest when it emptied. But again, I don't have that anymore. I feel a void. My motivation to find a job is nill. Thank God my husband's income suffices for the family. There is very little I'm interested in right now. I have decided to file for disability because it seems that I can't hold down a job (I have been fired many times) and I can't complete a post-graduate program. I feel like an emotional cripple. I am sensitive and have had problems with depression and anxiety with many hospitalizations. I even self-injured during a period of a few years. I don't do that anymore. Sorry for the candor, but I can be candid when no one knows my name. Verbalizing my situation seems to put it in perspective perhaps.

    Any comments are welcomed. Thanks.
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    I am sorry for all you have gone through. I am not a nurse yet but will be starting in January. You definitely sound depressed and I hope you can get some help for that for yourself and for the sake of your family. You made sacrifices to try a new career and it was not a good experience. Since you have had training and know the jargon, you could look into technical medical writing, editing medical writing, blogging and freelance heath articles, not to mention tutoring undergradutes and nursing students in the subjects you excel at academically. Your confidence is down right now, but who knows what the future may hold for you. Somehow you must pull yourself out of this valley so you can see the horizon again.
  4. 0
    Thank you for your nice response. I am feeling better by now. I have been brainstorming for alternate avenues. I know that I have strenghts and it only makes sense to capitalize on them. So, once again, I seek my niche. But it's ok. I have a lot of good things happening in my life despite this nursing thing failure. I do see a therapist and the advisors at the school have been very available to me. I have been trying to handle the situation intelligently and I think I"m heading that way.

    Best of luck in your nursing adventure! I hope you are young and single because it's a lot easier to negotiate then!
  5. 0
    Yes my work schedule is brutal, and no I'm not in a position to quit work or go part time as I do this nursing school thing, but that's not what has me contemplating walking.

    The lack of consistency between grading on practicals is ridiculous. I recall recording a sterile procedure for my friend and she recorded mine. I messed up way more than she did, yet the person that graded my video passed me and the person that graded hers failed her for an obscure "i think you may have crossed sterile field, but I don't know". She did not by the way and it did not matter that I vouched for her.

    The changing a test time after I've already been scheduled for work to accomodate the previous test time makes me want to throw something. If I don't make the test, even though THEY changed the time and I previously worked around it, I get an academic deficiency. If I leave work early to make the exam, I get written up at work. It's a lose lose situation.

    The inability to schedule myself is driving me insane. Do not tell me I have a research project due a week from now, oh and by the way, it's a group project. Seriously, it would have been tough doing a research project in a week anyway, now I have to coordinate with nine people? They are constantly throwing huge assignments at us with few days to complete them. I'm simply not used to school like this. I'm used to all expectations being outlined in the syllabus. I'm used to being able to schedule my life around study time. Instead I am constantly in limbo trying to figure out what the heck is due today because you never know when they are going to toss a random assignment at you.

    I feel like they intentionally set us up to fail at times. And I hate that their lectures are five to ten years outdated. I've had to inform them that medications they are telling us are common and that we will be tested on are no longer approved by the FDA or are hard to come by due to side effects now. I have asked questions about something, been told it wasn't a real thing, when I know it is. I'm an EMT and it's things that are directly part of our protocols. I find the information, present it and am told "thanks I never knew that", but seriously, I'm paying to be taught, not to be the teacher.

    Add that to issues with my children and their mental health, and I feel like "why am I killing myself for these people and letting my family go to pot?" There are many days I want to walk away from it all and be a stay at home mom again. I know that's not an option though.
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    I encountered the same situations at my former nursing program. Most of the time, the instructors can't pronounce terms of medications. I haven't heard one of them pluralize the word diagnosis correctly. (diagnoses - They keep saying diagnosises). Ubelievable, and these people have Master's degrees. They really do set us up to fail. There is no altruism. It strictly "dog-eat-dog". I have caught instructors giving us incorrect information too. As you say, I pay them to teach me, not for me to be the teacher. So now I can see that these phenomena are not specific to my nursing program but may be universal. My decision has now been made. I will not venture into another nursing program hoping that things will be different because they may not be. I felt my physical and mental well-being going, so I had to quit. I don't think finances or any other self-imposed restraints should keep one from leaving an unhealthy situation. The indivdiual is worth more than that. By the age that I am (over 40) I have finally learned that. I leave the field with nothing but acrimony.


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