Dosage Calc - teaching ourselves ?? - page 2

This is my 3rd week of semester one. I thought I was staying afloat with all the reading, weekly assignments due, 2 major papers, portfolio, online quizzes, yada, yada, Had to take our first... Read More

  1. by   anrwagers
    thanks for the suggestions
  2. by   GrnHonu99
    Quote from kimber3ks
    This is my 3rd week of semester one. I thought I was staying afloat with all the reading, weekly assignments due, 2 major papers, portfolio, online quizzes, yada, yada,

    Had to take our first dosage calc competency on Monday and MUST get 100%. OK, granted, it was the basic math intro stuff of Roman numerals, decimals, fractions, etc. For the love of all that is good, I hope I passed, because I was so nervous that I was on the verge of blanking out!

    Our school is using an online program called MedsPub. Anyone heard of this? It has a tutorial to start and then different sections that you go into, go over main facts, practice questions/answers. Cool. Neat tool.

    BUT, I think that is all the "teaching" we are going to get? Is that possible? We were given 3 Dosage homework sheets with abbreviations, conversions between units of measurement, that are due next week. The website seems like a good supplemental tool, but isn't this something that needs a little more in depth teaching/learning interaction? Maybe I am daft, but it seems an extremely important part of nursing, actually a life and death issue, when administering meds, I absolutely WANT/NEED more than a website, am I wrong?

    Now, maybe the instructors are just planning to touch base this semester and get into it more perhaps next semester?

    Would love to hear how some of the others here are "learning" dosage calculations? This just CAN'T be it....can it????

    we had a class on it one day and that was about it. We had to pass our dosage calc test with 100% or else....thank goodness I didnt have to find out 'what else' was...we occasionally have questions on our med surg tests...not hard stuff....
  3. by   tiffanycmt
    After reading all these posts ya'll have me worried sick. I'm hoping to get in to lpn school in August I have 6 yrs exp in geriatrics as a cna/cmt so at least i have some exp im hoping that will help. Unfortunetly i am very poor in math a friend of mine went to lpn school last year and she gave me her dosage calculations book and i've been practiceing my buns off but i still dont seem to get it. Hearing 100% with no class time explanations scares me just a little. Does anyone know of any websites that i could do that would help me with my horrible math skills???
  4. by   *LadyJane*
    Last edit by *LadyJane* on Jun 12, '08
  5. by   MedicalNerd
    I would have to say that the Med Dosage class I took this spring was very easy... and I hate math!
    The book we used walks you through each chapter and gives you lots of problems to work on. I only went to class for the exams. The math that you will be doing is simple like pre-algebra. For me this type of math makes so much sense! Algebra 2 on the other hand was really frustrating (took both last semester together)
    My Dosage teacher asked me to tutor the 1st and 2nd semester RN program students if I was going to have time. I am starting my 1st semester in the RN program myself so I am not sure all of what I am going to be able to do yet.
    If drawing pictures works, then draw the bottles and the containers and make it apply to what you want. Re-constitution is a good one to try and draw out. When you get to drip rates just remember that the pumps are running per hour so you have to make sure you are keeping that part of the equation. If you made it through Chem with all the conversions in moles and stuff... you will do fine!
    Good luck!! I know you can do this!
  6. by   Katnip
    When I was a nursing student, we were given a book suggestion prior to the start of school. We were expected to pass at 100% within the first week of classes. There was no computer tutorial, no mention of calculations in class. We were on our own. Uphill, both ways, in three feet of snow.

    Seriously, that's how we were expected to learn, out of a book. I was lucky that it was a good, basic book.
  7. by   MB37
    Dosage calculation is extremely important, and you can't ever rush through it in real life or only do the math once. However, all it is is algebra. There aren't any new techniques or different kinds of problems - you just solve for x over and over again. If you did fine in whatever algebra class was a prereq for your program, or if you took it in junior high/high school, it's exactly the same. You just need to memorize a few new conversions. I don't think there's any reason to provide formal instruction on it within a nursing program, since we all should have taken it as a prereq. I think practice problems are a great idea, whether they're in a book or on a website, but you can't really waste the class time needed to teach algebra to someone who didn't already understand it.
  8. by   Asherah
    My 2-year BSN program begins in late August and we were told to purchase a textbook (Clinical Calculations by Kee & Marshall), given a PDF study guide with key abbreviations and metric/household/apothecary equivalencies and told to study over the summer.

    I believe our proficiency exam is in Week 1 or 2 of the first term and we have to achieve a 90% or higher. It's not too bad at all, just a lot of memorization, drills and sample dosage calc. problems. I'd rather learn it now while I have the time than when I have five courses to juggle.

    Good luck!
  9. by   Bortaz, RN
    Quote from MB37
    or if you took it in junior high/high school, it's exactly the same.

    The problem a lot of people have with that is that junior high or high school was 20-30 years ago. :P

    My program requires an "Intro to Nursing" class, before you're accepted into the program. I firmly believe they should spend the bulk of that class on med calcs, as it's one of the most important aspects of patient safety. It's certainly more important to me than Ms. Nightingale's history and all the other fluff.

    The reasoning for the "100% or fail" is, of course, that you have to get your meds right 100% of the time. You can't kill 10% of your patients.
    Last edit by Bortaz, RN on Jun 13, '08