I feel really, really stupid

  1. I am a 1st year ADN nursing student and with every test I feel more and more like an idiot. I'm averaging an 81 but I am not happy with that. We've just taken our third test and we have two more to go before finals. I am happy to be passing but I am just not satisfied with my grades. One small slip below a 77 average and I'm dunzo. It worries me. I've always been a great student but I guess I did more memorizing than critical thinking. Do grades really matter (as far as the GPA is concerned) or is it acceptable to be passing.
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    About shining_star28463

    Joined: Aug '06; Posts: 35; Likes: 4


  3. by   bargainhound
    As long as you are passing, try to ease up on yourself.
    No one will ever ask what your grades were.
    All employers want to know is whether or not you have
    the degree or RN license.
    You will be studying all your employed life........always
    learning. Just because your knowledge is not what you
    want it to be right now dose not mean you are a failure.
    You can and will study and learn more after you graduate.
    The lower grade areas just give you a clue as to what you
    need to learn more. They may be your best areas in your
  4. by   tvccrn
    Some of the best nurses I have ever worked with barely passed. Nursing is learned before you get out of school, but as the previous poster said, it also continues until you are no longer here.

    Do be so hard on yourself, you will have time enough for that once you are out in the world working on patients. There will be times when you second, third and fourth guess yourself. That happens because you are human, not becasue you don't know your stuff.

    Examine your weaknesses and apply yourself more in them. Don't make you sick with worry if you don't ace a test. Love the learning, if you don't it will run you over.

  5. by   daisey_may
    Just remember that

    C's get degrees!

    When you get your degree, it probably won't matter if you get an A or B or whatever. It will matter passing the NCLEX.

    Like what was said in the poster above me, examine your weaknesses if you want, but don't be too hard on yourself. Everything will click by the time you get out as a nurse.
  6. by   traumamomtx
    You got it already....this stuff is memorizable but if you can understand it and apply it you will be 3 steps ahead of the game. Nursing isn't about memorizing it's about understanding and applying the information. The body is one big machine that compensates and adapts for other parts and if you can apply one thing to another the light bulb will go on over and over again.
  7. by   KIAN
    Critical thinking is important for nursing. But, before you can critically think and apply that knowledge you have to memorize the facts. Like traumamom said the light bulb will go on and you will remember the day it does and you will say"Oh my Gosh I Understand!!!" It's a great moment. Once you pass your NCLEX no one will care what grades you got in school. They will know you are smart enough to be a nurse. Lighten up and .

  8. by   jo272wv
    Take it easy on yourself, I to was an over achiever in school. (just graduated last may). I always hoped to be in the top 10 of the grading scale but found out fast that trying to memorize everything got me lower grades. When I studied I made sure I associated the facts with how it will be used in pt care. I graduated with a 3.25 which was ok for me since in another year I will not remember that figure and knowone has ever asked me. The main question asked is " did you pass your boards?". Ease up on yourself and have fun gaining the knowledge and you will do just fine.
  9. by   Nurse`Chief~Chickie
    :icon_hug: i sympathize with you. i was an overachiever prior to nursing school. i couldn't believe that i would ever get anything less than a's. eventually, with support from my friends, i loosened up. stuff made sense and i could apply it in clinicals, so it was ok to be marginal. everyone here is correct, you'll never get asked about your grades. at the most, maybe the # of ?s on your nclex. you'll have the knowledge base we all start with and the learning never ends. don't be hard on yourself. you've got support here when you need it.:icon_hug:
  10. by   shining_star28463
    Thank you so much everyone for your comments and support. I guess, I'm so concerned about my test scores because it seems so competitive. The other students are always yapping about their high 90's and it makes me feel a little discouraged like I am an idiot for thanking God for my 80. I also wanted to know if the nursing instructors look at your test grade when they are making reccomendations to jobs for you or are they looking at your willingness and readiness to put yourself into a learnings situation in clinicals? I want to be a NICU nurse and I've heard that is a hard field to get into so I need as many reccomendations that I can get.
  11. by   TiffyRN
    I've heard having good grades in nursing school is important if you want to go for advanced practice nursing such as CRNA.

    Otherwise, passing is all you need. One of my fellow students was a straight C student, barely passing after any given test. Last I heard she was the DON of the nicest nursing home in our hometown. Our two straight A students have done well in their careers as well bashing the idea that straight A students can't cut it clinically.

    Just learn enough to pass the NCLEX. The real learning starts when you get hired as an RN.
  12. by   Tweety
    Don't give up. At this point concentrate on learning what you can, for the sake of NCLEX. Grades matter, but in the end if you pass and get to take the NCLEX and pass that, that's all that really matters.

    Good luck!
  13. by   JBudd
    My first nursing school exams were a shock to me, and depressing. A friend took me along with her to her study group, bouncing questions back and forth together really drove home the information instead of just reading. Try studying with other people, it really helped me. Grades went up after that.

  14. by   kellerpatty
    Hi: I can relate...I graduated in May and was extremely glad to do so! Prior to nursing school I was a straight A student (I'm in my 40's). When I started, I was completely taken aback to find my test grades just weren't what I was used to...meaning not always in the 90s. I was uptight, irritated, and confused as to why. Happily I discovered that when I gave up the idea that I always had to be "perfect" with "perfect" grades, my grades started to improve. Once I began to relax and realize that nursing school was a whole new game from what I was used to, my test grades started to improve and I graduated with highest honors. The secret I learned is that worrying about my test grades only took up space in my brain that was better used for other things. Studying intently and being willing to close my mouth and open my ears to any person that wanted to teach me something was (and is) the way to get what I needed to succeed. I'm now working in a Level I ICU, and no I don't always achieve "A" level success, but the lessons I learned about myself in nursing school have stayed with me and things are improving every day. Hang in there, and try to think less singularly about a "grade" and more well-roundedly (is that a word?) about what you're actually trying to achieve in nursing school and you'll do wonderfully! Best wishes for your continued SUCCESS!!! : )