ESL student in need of help.


hi everyone,

i'm 2 quarters from graduating. this past quarter was especially tough; we lost many students.

the reason why i'm writing is because i'm in need of advice. i'm the class president and i've been asked to help a student who failed by 0.02%. her score was 74.4%; my nursing school rounds up or down. this student literally failed by one question.

the "unofficial" policy is that for every test, we're given 2 extra questions. the rationale for them doing this is in case they test on inaccurate information. i personally do not agree with this, but many of my classmates love it-- so i'm not going to challenge it. however, i feel that we need to be tested on accurate information 100% of the time.

"may" (the person who failed) is an exceptional student. she comes to class everyday. she has exceptional clinical abilities. she's also a refugee from sudan. she's an amazing person. there is not doubt in my mind that she would have aced this quarter if english were her primary language.

my college does not offer esl (english as a second language) services. i called the student resource department last week to get an explanation of why these services are not offered; their explaination was because there wasn't a need.

we're going to go in to review her tests this coming week. i'm hoping with every once of my body that there is a mistake on the scantron or somewhere in her dosage test. i really hate the "2 question" clause. it's unfair.

what if there isn't? i sincerely want to advocate for her in any way possible. i feel it's a shame that our nursing class is going to be 100% caucasion with 95% women.

what would you guys do? any advice?

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

Its very nice of you to help her. I also hope there is a question you can contest. There are so many that are "gray", imo, that it might not be hard if the faculty is interested in her success and you can find a source that disputes the answer. Other than that I don't know what else you can do and I personally wouldn't get myself so wrapped up as to cause my studies to suffer or ingratiate myself with the Professors. Keep in mind that communication issues can be dangerous when practicing. Good luck to her and please let us know how it goes. Jules


173 Posts

i agree with jules advice. good luck!

WDWpixieRN, RN

2,237 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg <1; Epic Certified <1.

That's a tough position to be in. Perhaps you'll find that extra point in her test when it's reviewed.

But if that doesn't work out, keep in mind that many native English speaking students miss passing by those few percentage points....and in that case, they have to repeat the semester in order to move on. Will she have that option or is she out if she doesn't pass? That would be the true shame.

Additionally, I agree with Jules, if she's got some language barriers, better to work through them while she's in school than after she's practicing on a floor.

Best wishes!!

Eirene, ASN, RN

499 Posts

thanks so much for your replies.

may speaks english, french, and somolian fluently. i hate to admit it, and it's definitely a flaw in my personality; but i was hoping that because of the college not offering esl services that she may have a chance in getting by with one point.

it's just so frustrating seeing people who have worked so hard fail. she can apply to the college again next year, but they're full until 2009.

argh. thanks for the words, i really appreciate it.


This topic is now closed to further replies.