I'm not sure of what all else is out there, but as far as clinical rotations go, they'll vary widely by what nursing school
program you're in and how they handle it. My clinicals were rigorous in terms of the preparation req'd the evening before...we'd go to the hospital and find out our assigned patient(s) (our instructor would leave a list for us). Then we had to get the patient's chart (when the docs/nurses didn't need it) and read everything we could. Had to copy down all meds the patients was on, and any procedures/tests scheduled for the next morning. We'd then go back to our room, and break out the drug-reference books to write up "drug cards" on each and every med. We had to memorize what the drug was for...it's "indications", as well as any "contraindications" given. Also the common side-effects, standard dosages, etc. Same thing for procedures and tests our patient was to experience. The instructor would grill us on these! She was there all day, throughout the shift, watching us, working with us. The staff nurse didn't need to interact with us too much.
Some of my clinical rotation experiences were very difficult, most were great learning adventures and went well, and some were absolutely comical! I actually wrote about it in my book, and it made for some fun reminiscing, especially about the very first clinical rotation I had...it was in OB, and I was absolutely terrified! I think my instructor that day took great delight in assigning the patient she gave to me... :chuckle Aah yes, you'll have great stories to tell, too!
As an RN, however, over the years I experienced some very different scenarios with the student nurses who would come to the hospital. With one of the nursing schools
, their instructors often showed up with them in the morning, gave them a patient assignment, brought them to the staff nurse assigned to the same patient to introduce us, and then LEFT for the entire shift, only to show up during the shift change to hear "report." Most staff nurses used these poor students as nurse's aids. I couldn't ever do it. There were times when I was so busy that I told the instructor that I would NOT take students that day. Not because I didn't enjoy the students...I did! But I refused to take a nursing student and assign her to vital signs, bedbaths, feedings, and bedpan duty for 8 hours. I loved to TEACH these students, and if I couldn't be of value to them, I just couldn't do it. It takes TIME to teach during your shift. Where these instructors went was always beyond me...and I was pretty disappointed by them. But the students I did work with seemed to appreciate what we did together. I hope your experience will be a good one!
As for the other topics you mentioned, I've written about some of these also, but I'm not sure specifically what you're after...study habits? I'd say study HARD! Nursing school is rigorous. You already have a Bachelor's degree, your profile says, so you already have an idea of the college routine...you're not looking at another Bachelor's degree program for nursing, or are you?
I hope some of this has been helpful, feel free to email me if you're looking for something more specific?
Lori, RN BSN