Need help struggling in math will i ever get in?

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    Why is nursing school so hard to get into? why do 2 year programs end up taking 4 years with all the prerecs? dont we need more nurses? one school said they only let in like one in every 4 applicants? dont even medical schools let in 1 in every 2?
    last quarter i did really well got all As and bs this quarter i failed algebra and am struggling with a cplus in med term. I think some of it is the teachers i have this time. the med term one doesnt do much teaching we have almost no handouts and no assignments. the math guy was just way too fast for me.
    I am seriously afraid I cant do this maybe i should just settle and be a medical assistant?
    even if I get all good grades from here on out will my poor grades this quarter make it impossible for me to get in?
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  4. 7 Comments so far...

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    If nursing is what you really want to do. Do NOT settle for anything else. Nursing is so hard to get into because there are so many people that want to do it. There is no nursing shortage for new grads, it is the opposite. More people are becoming nurses now and certain areas are saturated with new grads. The competition to get into nursing school weeds out the people that may not make it through a intense nursing program. I am also a prereq student, but from what I have heard, the prereqs are nothing compared to how hard nursing school is.
    tigerlogic likes this.
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    You must sort yourself out and find a way to get good at algebra if you want to be a nurse. It's ok if you start off struggling, but med calculations and that type of math are important. Check out your schools student support services. Many offer free tutoring and those people are often better than the profs at explaining things.

    Get the help you need. If you aren't sure you are ready for how hard nursing school is, maybe being a med aide for a while will help you decide.

    And there are more new grads than new grad jobs these days, by far.
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    Oh hun.. please dont settle. I to have math issues and its ok if math is not our strong point. There are so many resources out there to utilize to learn it. Math is something that you will have to come to terms with. You dont have to be best friends with it, but you do want to get to know each other because yes in nursing and sciences there is a lot of math. Math is only a meany when you dont understand what's going on and then its pretty awesome... sorta like a puzzle almost. It's not my strong point, but let me tell ya... I love fractions.... Now decimals and I, we have some issues. And yes I have to repeat my math class this quarter as well. We are going to stumble along the way and it sucks but it's a temporary inconvenience compared to the whole picture. If you need support we are all here for you and working our butts off as well. Just hang in there.
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    The basic math that you need to know for dosage calcs is covered by a book such as a GED Math Review book. Quadratic equations and square and cube roots and all that stuff from algebra are not necessary, so just struggle through it and get it off your checklist. You need ratios, proportions, how to set up an equation and manipulate it to solve for the unknown. Knowing English and SI units and some basic conversion factors and how to convert between the English and SI system is useful, too, but it's covered in the pharma book you'll get for RN.

    Whatever you need to know for your algebra class is covered in your textbook. Maybe you are just not putting enough time and repetitions into med terminology (it's memorization, to me) and the algebera topics? It'd be best to use your algebra textbook, and just practice solving problems. It's the repetition that helps it become second nature.

    Good luck! :-)

    eta: Rio Salado online offers basic gen-ed classes of 8-week and 12-week duration, and they start a new term every Monday. That might be a way to get the algebra class done over the summer, if you are dedicated enough to sit down and work on it. Thumb through a GED Math book at your library or bookstore. See if the way it groups topics and all that is might be helpful to you.

    Some colleges offer a special nursing math course for the RN program that is select topics from algebra but not all the superfluous things that a pure math major would study. If you can find one of those courses locally or online, you might get your school to accept it. If you are just collecting pre-reqs now, to apply to several RN programs later, then definitely see if you can take a nursing math class somewhere.
    Last edit by TC3200 on Mar 4, '13
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    Finite Math
    • In place of algebra, many institutions require finite math. Finite math is a general term that includes all areas of mathematics before calculus. This course may potentially include, aspects of basic math, geometry, algebra, statistics or pre-calculus. While this class might not include problems directly relating to health care, the review of basic mathematics will come in handy when providing care such as calculating dosage of a medicine or calories consumed by the patient.
    ^ Something like that is what a lot of RN programs use, instead of college algebra.

    Rio Salado has med terminology, as two 4-week classes. This school is a bit pricy, but it's always available. http://www.riosalado.edu/schedule/Pa...search=medical.

    I took only Soc 101 from RS. Their 12-week class was very reasonably paced and not an overload of work.
  10. 0
    Hi, new here, but not new to nursing school. I am in the thick of it. I actually have a learning disability in math and algebra kicked my buttocks, however I passed with a B in the end and even completed Statistics with a C a year later (BSN requirements). How I got through Algebra? I spent a lot of time in the colleges learning center (tutoring center). I would come in early to go before class, after class and when I had problems grasping things. My biggest issue was setting up equations. So what can you do to help yourself get through the class with a passing grade and a little less stress?

    ASSESS your weakness in the subject. If you know where the problem is you can deal with it easier. Sometimes it is as simple as setting it up. Often there are EASIER ways to do the problem, tutors are great at giving you pointers on how to make it easier for you. Ask your instructor. Also sometimes it really is the instructor who is the problem, I had an instructor that new math and loved it, they were new to teaching and teaching was their weakness. I took a different instructor after failing and passed with much more ease.

    Make a PLAN. Plan your success. If tutoring helps you make it a part of your regular schedule. If you need to spend more time studying, plan for it, it will help come nursing school at any rate.

    IMPLEMENT it! What are you waiting for? Get to it and get it done, remember you are capable of passing the class. Use those tutors for all they are worth, pick their brains.

    EVALUATE: Did tutoring help you? Did studying at school versus say home help? It is good to know what works because if you get into nursing school you are going to want to keep these strategies in mind when you hit a rough spot, which you will.

    Now as to the ratios of students that apply to students accepted? I know my school has room for 60 new students each fall/spring semester. Now they base admission on a lot of things Support course work (courses that are not prerequisites but are required before you can move forward in nursing program, like you must take microbiology either during 2nd semester or prior to, if you don't take it and pass you can't go forward.) GPA is of course considered but find out what the program you will be apply to requires, how they rank students, ect... Or ask a nursing student, they are busy but most are pretty nice, and my school uses (most use) the HESIA2 assessment. Know your decimals and fractions and RATIOS! I never was very good at determining slope or Ax+By=Z but I can knock out those ratios pretty well. I also am able to do dosage calculations pretty well too. I always forget to bring a pencil to my tests so I have to do them in my head, but so far so good.

    So if 240 students applied to my program, then yes only 1:4 get in, but they have these caps because clinical sites allow only so many students per site and there are only so many instructors. Medical school is not the same as nursing school, very different in regards to how it is set up and so on, so it's not a really fair comparison.

    I wish you the best of luck with all your prerequisites. I think if you really want to be a nurse then you will find your way!
  11. 0
    Thank you! very inspiring...


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