Clinicals- Grading scale?

  1. I am in my first semester of nursing school, and the different clinical groups are starting to get their grades back from our first hospital clinicals. EVERY SINGLE PERSON in one clinical group (the first) failed (Our grading is 76-83 = C, 84-91= B, 92-100 = A). This worries me a little, especially because one of the clinical instructors said that there is no way any of us will get higher than an 80% (B) because they have to grade by a rubric, and it is the same grading rubric for all semesters of our Nursing School. She said that by the time we are in our last semester, we may be getting As, but as of now, since we have to have assistance for most things, the highest we can get is 80% and most people will get the next highest grade, 72% (FAILING) because we can't do everything right even with assistance. I don't get it...is this how all nursing schools are? One of the girls is even a CNA, and went and did all the CNA care on her own (which is basically all we know at this point) and still got a 72%.... I'm a little nervous.
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    About cjulian214

    Joined: May '06; Posts: 26; Likes: 6

    11 Comments

  3. by   HeartsOpenWide
    Our grading is like that too. 73% to pass, but that is lame that you can not get As since you need assistance...that is part of learning and if you do it right why should you deserve a good grade?:angryfire
  4. by   Lisa CCU RN
    Well, that's a new one on me because I thought all clinicals were pass/fail, and I think that's how it ought to be.

    How in the world can they tell you that you can't get an A just because you will need help doing things? If you didn't need help, then you'd be able to skip school and go straight to NCLEX.

    You should pass clinicals if you are prepared, know where to find answers, are safe, ask when you need help, and you don't kill anyone.
  5. by   lisabeth
    Seems brutal. I am already worried about clinicals and I am not even in the program yet. I think I need to stop reading these clinincal threads.
  6. by   Achoo!
    This semester we changed to the pass/fail, but we still accrue points for assignments, med passes etc.
  7. by   West_Coast_Ken
    Quote from cjulian214
    She said that by the time we are in our last semester, we may be getting As, but as of now, since we have to have assistance for most things, the highest we can get is 80% and most people will get the next highest grade, 72% (FAILING) because we can't do everything right even with assistance. I don't get it...is this how all nursing schools are?
    What kind of logic is that? ("since we have to have assistance") If an introductory class, say Math 101, attempted to grade like this they wouldn't last one semester, so why does a clinical nursing class grade like this? That is plain wrong. My clinicals are graded pass/fail and we receive a letter grade for lecture classes.
  8. by   Daytonite
    that's just sad. sounds like you're stuck with an educator that is seeing things from a negative point of view rather than a positive one. how can educators expect students to do better if they're hitting them when they're down?

    usually the biggest reason students have problems with their scores and grades with the written material in nursing programs is because of the critical thinking component. there are so many facts to consider and principles to apply to some of the questions that you get asked on tests that it's easy to get confused and choose wrong answers. nursing educators are honestly trying to prepare students for the working world of nursing, to learn to think critically and to ultimately pass the nclex exam and become licensed nurses. in addition, this is not like a history class where you've had this information before. most of the nursing material is new to you and you are being exposed to it for the first time. that gives you a limited foundation upon which to build.

    you have to do debriefing and active damage control after each assignment or test you receive a grade on. make sure you understand why you chose the wrong answer on a test and what the correct thinking to get the correct answer should have been. this will help you do better on subsequent tests.

    many students believe that using a nclex review book helps in studying for nursing tests. when i was in nursing school, we were constantly told to ask and answer "why" questions about everything to help us with this thinking process and rationalization. i don't know if these will help, but here are two websites where you may find some helpful information about studying for nursing school:

    http://go.dbcc.edu/hhps/nursing/study_skills.html - study skills for the nursing student from daytona beach community college nursing department with some good advice.
    http://go.dbcc.edu/hhps/nursing/test_taking_skills.html - test taking skills also from daytona beach community college nursing department. a couple of sample questions and how to chose the correct answer for these application type questions.

    http://www.efn.org/~nurses/ - this is a website maintained by the nursing students at lane community college in eugene, oregon. for study and learning tips specific to nursing students click on "tips for learning" at the left side of this home page.
  9. by   BoonersmomRN
    Our clinicals are pass/fail as well...except for papers which are graded the normal way. We get graded every clinical- but it's just satisfactory, needs assistance, or unsatisfactory. Our instructors have told us that YES each and every one of us " needs assistance" but thats not what it means to them. To them satisfactory is satisfactory for where we are.....not compared to actual nurses..... I got one N last semester for pulling a complete blank on what metaprolol is for ( which is truly sad because I TAKE metaprolol....but I just literally blanked out).

    In order to "fail" clinicals you will need to have 2 U's, 4 N's in any one category, or 3 N's in one day across the board + another N on another day. We are graded on 15 different criteria.

    Sounds weird but it works
  10. by   adnstudent2007
    Quote from BoonersMom
    Our clinicals are pass/fail as well...except for papers which are graded the normal way. We get graded every clinical- but it's just satisfactory, needs assistance, or unsatisfactory. Our instructors have told us that YES each and every one of us " needs assistance" but thats not what it means to them. To them satisfactory is satisfactory for where we are.....not compared to actual nurses..... I got one N last semester for pulling a complete blank on what metaprolol is for ( which is truly sad because I TAKE metaprolol....but I just literally blanked out).

    In order to "fail" clinicals you will need to have 2 U's, 4 N's in any one category, or 3 N's in one day across the board + another N on another day. We are graded on 15 different criteria.

    Sounds weird but it works
    My school is very similar to this (except we have one more "grade" for excellent so you get a little credit if you do something great). I prefer this way very much. I have found when I concentrate on grades I tend learn alot less, I would rather concentrate on learning new skills and taking care of my patients.
  11. by   locolorenzo22
    We are on a pass-fail basis only. We have aspects that we are graded on day to day, and last week I failed priority of care and medication admin. We have a diary we fill out every week at the end of clinical during post-conference. We seem to be expected to do a lot, without instruction and then we have no idea how the fail shows up. However, once we're told, we usually have an idea of what "not" to do.
    I can't imagine getting a letter grade during clinicals, I think i'd be getting below an 80%(which is failing point on our rubric.) We get 80-84=c, 85-89=B, 90+=A.
    Keep the faith.
  12. by   BeccaznRN
    My clinicals were also strictly pass/fail. I used to really hate it because we did so much work and preparation for clinicals (especially those dreaded care plans), and then at the end we received letter grades in the course from our lecture exams only. However, after reading this I'm kind of glad my school did it this way!
  13. by   cjulian214
    I have GREAT news! (For me) I got my clinical grades back today and I did just fine. I guess its just a couple of the clinical groups that are having difficulty because of 2-3 clinical instructors (of 6) that grade the way I was talking about in my first post

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