Best and worst part of being a nursing student? - page 2

As an instructor, I am interested in means of reducing student stress and assisting with succes. Obviously, much of this is the student's responsibility (ex- things such as time management, diet and... Read More

  1. by   AOx1
    Thanks to all who have posted. These ideas are much appreciated. I am constantly studying educational theory and trying new things, but there's nothing like the student perspective. I try to make class a mix of straight lecture and other activities (discussion, debate, case studies, simulations, practice tests, etc) so it's never the same thing twice.

    Some of the students have really liked the practice group tests. Any other class activities you've found particularly helpful?
  2. by   madnurse2b
    Quote from LiveToLearn
    Thanks to all who have posted. These ideas are much appreciated. I am constantly studying educational theory and trying new things, but there's nothing like the student perspective. I try to make class a mix of straight lecture and other activities (discussion, debate, case studies, simulations, practice tests, etc) so it's never the same thing twice.

    Some of the students have really liked the practice group tests. Any other class activities you've found particularly helpful?
    We've had group projects for teaching patients - trying to get creative and with ways to teach patients. I've had instructors use group tests which don't count as much as other tests but are still entertaining. I do hesitate though and advise that you rotate, because people learn who do them best and want to be in those groups.

    Hope that helped.
  3. by   9livesRN
    I see it as:

    best part = what you are getting ready to become

    worse = what you are going through

    LOL

    nursing school is fun, and everyday it is interesting but it is also freaking draining!
  4. by   FLmomof5
    This is my first semester......mad:

    So here is my input:

    Record your class once in a while. We have one new prof who was simply handed the powerpoints and schedule just before the start of class. She has no idea what is on the tests or quizzes. She reads from the PP's most of the time and doesn't listen when we ask questions (we say this because her answers often are off topic leaving the class even more confused!)....but the worst part is her voice. She drones. Everyone dreads this class! We have our first test this coming monday on 18 chapters of pharmacology and there isn't ANYONE who feels like they have any idea of what to expect. [On the good side of this prof...two days ago, for the 2nd half of our 3 hr lecture she put up related NCLEX cards (question on one side, answer on back) and we that stayed were thrilled!)]

    If you teach a nights/we course, PLEASE be compassionate with them! Most of us in nights/we's work full-time jobs, have families AND do nursing school. Most of us are in late 30s early 40s. (me? I am 2nd oldest at 47) Understand that for these folks, if you email them at 9 PM for the next day's class, they won't see that email until lunch time at work and then it is usually too late to do anything about it! {We have one prof that emailed us @ 9:30 PM to bring extra text books the next day. When I get home from class ~9:30 PM, I am NOT going to check my school email. I always check during the work day. I work 5 min from the school, but live 40 min away! She was torqued that 50% of the class didn't have the extra books with us!}

    Don't do group projects that are graded. First, it can saddle a high acheiving student(s) with a low acheiving student(s)....and giving them the same grade isn't fair. We had one in our group that turned in their portion at the last minute and it was weak at best. To get a good grade, we had to essentially do this student's work for him. Working as a group, unless done in class time, is not going to teach you anything about 'working together'. (Or any other claims of benefit for this type project!) What you end up with is 4 folks that do 1/4th each and bundle it together - exchanging their portions via email.

    Speaking of tests....good lord! Our school has a nursing coordinator that generates the tests and creates a study guide. Unfortunately, some of those tests are not given to the teachers with sufficient time prior to the test and here is what happens: (1) The study guides had nothing to do with the test! Causing the students to study needless information! What a waste!! (2) The test had questions that had no correct answer...and/or more than one correct answer which would have matched the course and neither "the most correct". (3) The tests in no way reflected what the teacher emphasized as "important to know" in class. This scenario leaves students angry, frustrated and for those who got below 80, dejected. Work with your admin to ensure this doesn't happen to your students.

    For the most part, I *LOVE* our instructors! The are real. They are human (shared things that happened to them). They share and show that they really want us to pass and do well! They use obvious voice inflection changes to let us know that this "could" show up on a quiz or test...(hint, hint) In 3 hr lectures, they let us have breaks. (Did anyone ever teach some educators that the human attention span is 45 min!? The military learned this so there is a break every 45 min in all military courses!)

    Not sure if the following is doable in any nursing school, but.....if you can change this, someone like me would be a grateful student!......
    We have a REQUIREMENT for DOCUMENTED (ie: someone watched you go and recorded how long) lab practice outside of class hours. 15 hours worth! Also, we are required to have 4 hours community service. It there ANY surprise that the nights/we group has trouble meeting this requirement?!?! The community service IMHO is a ridiculous requirement. I understand the motivation behind the lab practice, but imagine working until 5 PM having to cross town (our night/we classes are on the southside, day nursing school/lab on the northside) to get to the other campus to do the practice? Hmmm let's see. Can't do it M-TH since that is when you are in class. Duh! Can't do it 8 - 3 on saturday because we are in class -> until the 27th when becomes clinical day. The labs aren't open on Sunday. Go figure So you have friday/saturday evenings only. Not to mention all the reading, projects, HW etc. My suggetion....offer it, don't require it.

    ***BIGGIE*** Go over the tests afterwards! So far only 1 teacher has done this on one test. Not sure how they think we are going to be prepared for the final when we didn't even know what we did wrong!?!? (Of course, some teachers offered for you to come to the office and go over it... hmmm, see paragraph above!) [No. We don't get the tests back!]

    One thing I think is a good idea...
    Our Assessment instructor has folks come up in front of the class (voluntary) and do a portion of an assessment (one of the sections we have learned) in front of the class. [IE: in week 4 we had 4 people volunteer to do one of the 4 parts of patient assessment we had learned so far. The next week, 5 did 5 parts. etc.] The more we do this, the more folks get comfortable with this being in front of the class...you see it over and over...you do it....and you *remember* it! I think this is a great way to be able to "do it in 20 min" for sim final!

    I think you must be an awesome instructor!
  5. by   Ayvah
    Great things are study sessions outside of class time where the instructor summarized the material in a different way than was done during class, and allowed questions. These were extremely helpful.

    One thing I wished was more about critical thinking and what to do in emergencies. For example, giving a scenario before class would be great, such as "your patient who has a history of XYZ and diabetes, and is here for a XYZ is found to be lethargic and shaking, saying that something is wrong with him. What do you suspect/what do you do? (blood sugar)", "you find your patient on the floor, what do you do?", common test prep, etc. There's a great video that was presented in my ACLS course which showed a baby with great difficulty breathing, and everyone was jumping to say give oxygen, etc. The solution was very simple - tilt the head back, and the baby's breathing was then fine. Get them to start thinking like a nurse and it will help a lot with the transition to real world nursing.

    Be prepared. We had one prof who lost one of our quizzes, and on another quiz she graded it with the wrong answer key, and other fun things like that.

    Its great that you are so motivated for your students. Instructors can make a huge difference in the type of nurse one becomes. Thank you for all you do!

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