Fundamentals instructor doesn't teach.

Nursing Students General Students


I am genuinely concerned about my fundamentals instructor. It's to the point where it could probably be borderline reported to the State Board of Nursing.

Here's what a typical class session looks like:

-Instructor reads from a PowerPoint she didn't create and doesn't explain things further or answer questions.

-Instructor has us "discuss" "mini-case studies". This is key-word for everyone socializes while the instructor goes around and socializes.

-Someone inevitably complains, and she gives us **** and tells us "just do your reading". In other words, we are required to teach all of the content to ourselves.

-We read the entire fundamentals book and our exams feature content we don't even have access to. When we complain, they throw the "these are NCLEX-style questions" blanket-excuse at us, even though the questions are so bad there have been times the answer was 100% unrelated to the question.

Let me put it this way: I am actually worried about anyone who has this instructor taking care of patients.

Concerns have been raised all the way to the program chair. The situation is still pending.

My question: if this avenue fails, is there a way to raise concerns with my state BoN?

Specializes in Trauma | Surgical ICU.

Learning is as much as the student's responsibility as the teacher's.

You should take control of your learning. If she reads through the powerpoint, maybe you could read further and ask her questions on things you do not understand. If you also come prepared in class, she won't be able to continue with her monotonous reading.

Fundamentals of nursing is sooo far from the finish line. The BoN will not be concern in what your instructor did on that stage of your education. Just in nursing, you have to think at things you can independently do as a nurse in order to achieve a goal. You are putting way too much control on your instructor in terms of your education. Complain to the administration again and again and again. That's what nurses do, if you are an advocate for your patient, you don't back away because one doctor says this is the way to do it... even though it's wrong.

Specializes in Critical Care, Education.

BONs do not address specific educational program issues. This is the job of the accreditation agency - and they only check when accreditation time comes along. Each school is required to have a formal process for student grievances (may be called something different). You need to follow this.

I'm not trying to make excuses for a poor instructor, but this can happen even with qualified and skilled instructors. Students are shocked and feel that tests do not seem to be related to material covered in the classroom like they were in previous courses. This is a frequent complaint because nursing courses are very different from pre-requisites. In pre-reqs, tests measure your ability to recall the 'factoids' that have been presented. If you can memorize and recall data, you will be successful on your tests. Nursing courses focus on concepts rather than data/facts. The test items require you to apply the facts/data and make a conclusion. Not an easy transition for many people.

Specializes in Gerontology RN-BC and FNP MSN student.

There is a puzzle that is being put get different pieces at different times...eventually it will all come together. Try to master what is being presented to you.

I agree that some instructors present info better than others, however it seems the worse the instructor the harder I have studied and still ended up with 4.0 grades.

Look at it like a challenge...which IT IS, and then challenge yourself to use the book the power points and your own critical thinking skills to bring it together. Take a look at why you miss test questions. ..write down your question and bring them to class.

Time goes pretty fast.. try to use it on strategic learning rather than fault finding. ?

Specializes in public health, women's health, reproductive health.

Welcome to nursing school. Sorry to say it, but get used to it and take control of your own learning. If I depended on the theory instructors to actually teach me, I'd have flunked out by now. There is way too much material for them to cover it all in lecture anyway, even if they were inclined to do so. I have to actively take charge of my learning and figure it out on my own by various means, including practice questions (like thousands of them), learning resource lab, internet resources, books (in addition to the text books), simulations and other teachers who have the heart and the time to help me. I basically use anything I can get my hands on and ask anyone who seems willing/able to help. It's often self-study. Not saying it's right or anything. Just telling you my own reality and the reality of many others in nursing school.

Specializes in Emergency.

Did you guys miss the part where OP said "doesn't answer questions"? This is exactly how my altered lifespan in the development teacher was. She had no clue of the information because she would redirect a question back to the students, "What do you think?". Being an advocate, I obviously complained to the chair. Teacher was dismissed from teaching undergraduates.

On the bright side... at least this is for Fundamentals & not a harder class such as Med Surg.

I know of students who cry wolf with all instructors. It occurs any time they get a bad grade. These students then lose their credibility with administration & get a reputation. So if you feel this Funds instructor is "bad" enough then take recorded lectures, emails or other evidence to prove your point.

I would recommend you use multiple sources to study. Patricia Nuget's Success book is helpful. Most Fundamentals courses are covering the same general topics, so you should not have an issue preparing for an exam.

Do they have class evaluations at the end of the semester? Voice your concerns there--I used to be worried about being "mean", but when I'm paying for a class and someone is really failing at an aspect of their job in a very fundamental manner, that affects me and my education. If it's valid, it should be brought up - just write an even handed review and try to keep the ranting to a minimum :)

Specializes in Emergency, Telemetry, Transplant.

Based on what you describe, this sounds like a very poor instructor. I think we have all had one. However, the BoN is not the place to take concerns on this issue. You already went to the program director. If nothing changes, go to the dean. If you have a chance to give an eval at the end of the course, be honest and blunt (without it sounding like you are attacking the instructor personally).

To piggyback on the comments of others--even if you have the greatest of instructors, you will still not be successful in school if you don't take control of your education. Even if the instructor is perfect, some nursing exam questions are going to seem like they came from left field.

Finally, try avoid hyperbole. She might be a really bad instructor, but "worried about anyone who has the instructor taking care of patients." That's a little much. As I said, the vast majority of us have had really bad instructions, yet we still provide safe, competent patient care.

For the book-learning part of nursing school, I am 100% self-taught because that's how our program was structured... it was "online" which really meant, "read the material and pass an online test" - which was open-book, of course, since we were doing it remotely... the proof in the pudding came at the end of each semester when we took a closed-book, proctored final with the ATI subject-matter tests.

Nursing isn't rocket science and the information is readily available in books.

Specializes in Addictions, Adult Psych.

does your school have a SIM lab? maybe try a study group? i think we have all had an instructor similar to this at some point in time during school. i agree with a previous poster who said that the more difficult the instructor was, the harder i studied... it may be most helpful to start a study group with students who aren't in your clinical group. good luck

Most are saying take your learning into your own hands. As true as it is that the student has some responsibility in learning, that is no excuse for **** poor "teaching." If we were expected to teach ourselves then why not just buy the damn book, read it, then do the questions by yourself. Why are we paying tuition to self-teach?

This is the exact situation I have at my school with a couple of the instructors. In one class we even had a student take over teaching the class. That is completely asinine, ridiculous, and inexcusable. This is first level people!

I think the problem is that most students use the same old lame excuse of "welcome to nursing school." Well, i'm sorry but the word school means that someone with knowledge and experience is supposed to actively TEACH you something. Has anyone thought that this is happening because no one has pushed the issue hard enough?

I thought the "this is how its always been done" attitude doesn't work in nursing school. Well, the same sentiment is being applied here, just with different wording.

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