Didn't pass one clinical rotation, don't know why

Nurses General Nursing


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613 Posts

Specializes in Psych, Informatics, Biostatistics.

I failed the first RN Med Surg Rn rotation too. I was an older student. The Dean told me now its time to take a piece of the humble pie. I did. I was happy I did.

why would the school care how old you are? All they sell is tuition. They cannot guaranatee a job to anyone, of any age.

My advice is to corner the Dean or the clinical instructor, or both, and see the documentation that led to this decision. I would (kindly) ask how to make it up without having to repeat it. You need to know what is your weak point (if one exists) so you can work on improving that area of practice. Have a copy of the course objectives with you, and have them explain how you did not meet the objectives. Good luck!


458 Posts

Ditto with asking why and insisting on written esplanation of that failure.

It's rare, but it does happen that the one testing just doesn't care for your style and they base their performance on the way they would have done it. Shouldn't be, but we are who we are and "stuff" that shouldn't happen does.

Todd SPN

319 Posts

I'm sorry this happened to you. Since you don't know for sure what happened, anything I say would just be a guess. But I do know that age CAN play into it. I experienced it along with my older classmates. One clinical instructor actually said that older students are harder to train. There was no use taking this comment up the line as we had learned earlier that our complaints were disregarded and no instructor would side against another.

Whether this was fair or unfair is not the issue at this point. Don't think of it as a measure of your worth. It is one persons opinion. Negativity won't help you. You have shown you have the want and tenacity to obtain your goal. Use this time to figure out how you can become more proficient at doing this clinical next time around. You'll make it.


613 Posts

Specializes in Psych, Informatics, Biostatistics.

Did that instructor ride you ? Someone can make you nervous enough so that you appear to be a putz.

Are your from a different ethnic, sexual, etc, background ? I had a female professor in nursing school go after me simply because she didn't like male nursing students. She didn't fail me, but she failed a friend of mine later.


2,719 Posts

Sounds like a case of severe performance anxiety. This kind of "stage fright" can be debilitating.

With that said, it is imperiative that you be able to perform no matter who is watching. An error in front of peers or superiors is still an error.

All though your nursing career you will have to perform infront of others including physicians.

I suggest you get some counseling.

Here are some tips.

Play a role inside your head. Pretend you are fully competent and confident and act the role accordingly.

Think about what the most confident nurse you know would do and do the same.

Or try pretending that you are the expert and you are teaching the people who are watching.

Learn to see other adults as peers (not as judges). They really are your peers.

It would concern me if you said that you can do it perfectly with no one looking. Perhaps you can. But how do I know that? Then the question comes up if you do then what is the problem that you do not perform up to par with someone watching?

It is really not justifiable that you can do it witout someone watching and can't with them watching. You are the ONLY one judging if you are performing well when they do not see it. And so far your judgement in that department is questionable based on what happens when they look.

I am erring on your side with this and assuming that the problem is not that you don't know the nursing process and are not able to perform. I am giving you the benefit of the doubt which I believe you definately deserve and assuming it is nerves (performance anxiety) Get counseling for this. You really must over come this. You will be doing this infront of these people and physicians for the rest of your career.

Here are some things that help me with perforamance anxiety. Practice, Practice Practice. And then when I am sick of it paractice some more . Nothing over comes performance anxiety like over rehearsal.

Be sure some of that practice is in front of someone who can correct mistakes before you practice them into being a habit.

Also practicing infront of someone will help you become comfortable dwith an audience.

Then parctice so that you can do it perfectly no matter what the situation. Rehearse it to death.

I know that sounds like a lot of work and time. but that I what works best for me.

leslie :-D

11,191 Posts

again i agree with agnus.

performance anxiety takes all shapes and forms and really is quite debilitating. it is while i was in nursing school that i started taking paxil for my anxieties. my mindset was such that my thought process was completely frozen during clinicals. what would seemingly appear simple was very complicated and threatening to me. i went to the labs after school and continued to practice. once i became registered and was away from school, my performance and confidence level took off and soared. furthermore in nursing school, many instructors will jab at your insecurities and weaknesses until they break you. show them what you're really made of. i know you can do it.


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