How good does one need to be in math & science?

  1. Hi,

    I am going to start taking my pre-requisits this fall.

    The last time I was in college was ten years ago. Back then, I was pretty poor in math and science. Granted, I am 10 years older and wiser now. However, I do have my fear of being overwhelmed and not understanding chemistry, microbiology etc.

    How good a student does one need to be to pass these classes? Is it more about how well your your study habits are. Or does one need to be naturally good at these subjects?

  2. Visit JUSTYSMOM profile page


    Joined: Jun '02; Posts: 406; Likes: 58


  3. by   agent
    I highly suggest then that you talk to the teacher and maybe get someone in class or a tutor to go over the lessons with.

    You may want to try these videos I hear they are great.
  4. by   IowaKaren
    Hi Julie,

    Having graduated OVER 25 years ago from High School meant I needed algebra, chemisty, and biology as a pre-requisite to entering the nursing program. I was not an outstanding student in High School, just did enough to get by so was very nervous about going back to school. Having a very high work ethic though, made me treat college as a job (with lots of overtime :chuckle more than I ever imagined). These are courses I didn't take in High School also! Anyway, once I got through a few tests, I decided that I did the right thing and was honored with being on the Dean's list during pre-req.'s and support classes. Nursing is different though, am still do well enough but not the straight A's. That's okay though, it's the learning that counts.

    You will want to buckle down and study, study, study. Use all the resources offered through school (student learning centers, tutors if needed, etc.). Don't be afraid to ask questions in class. I figure if I have a question, there is a good chance someone else in class is wondering also. Do ALL your homework in algebra and take good notes in all classes. In most cases (but not all), the instructors will test on their lectures in class so don't miss class. I tape recorded my Anatomy and Physiology class and rewrote notes on the computer so I could actually read my notes and add the little pertinent items the instructor talked about while we were copying overhead outline and notes. That helped immensly to understand the notes and all. Spend extra time in labs to study also.

    The biggest thing is to not loose tract of why you are going to Nursing school. I've heard so many students complain of , "Why do we need to know this, why do we need to know that." In my experience, all the support classes had related information you will use in nursing, so having these classes triggers a memory of something you learned before and can build on during the nursing program. You won't remember everything but you may recall a lot.

    I still have one more year of the ADN program, but like to think of it as two more semesters. There is a light at the end of the tunnel!

    Good luck and remember, being older helps you in so many ways because you aren't a young kid just out of High School just learning what life's all about. Your life's experiences will help you in so many ways during classes.

  5. by   hobbes
    I'm not going to beat around the bush - you'll need to be good in the sciences in order to make you application to nursing school competitive. That said, if you are feeling a bit uneasy about chemistry, micro, biology, etc., take the bull by the horns and get some help before you have to take the class. That way, you'll have some confidence one class starts and you'll be ahead of the game. I can't emphasize this enough - if you have confidence in yourself and your abilities, you'll be able to succeed no matter how difficult the subject is. But the key is being prepared. Go out and buy a intro book or seek out someone that can tutor you. Don't feel shy about asking questions because that's how your going to learn. And by all means, use this board for support and encouragement when you need it. Good luck!!
  6. by   bigmona
    I think anything is possible. I failed chemistry the first time I took it in college and barely passed with a D the second time I repeated the course. I thought it was a hopeless case- until I took it again after I graduated and got an A.

    just stick with it, bug your teacher with lots of questions, make a friend in the class and stay focused on the bigger picture. good luck!
  7. by   EmeraldNYL
    You certainly don't need to be a math genius but you definitely need an understanding of basic algebra. As for science, I would say that biology (anatomy, physiology, and microbiology) is more important to understand than chemistry. You need to understand how chemistry and biology works in the human body. Anatomy is simple memorization, but physiology especially involves more synthesizing concepts and understanding how everything "fits together".
  8. by   debralynn
    I graduated H.S. back in 1977. I always thought I was a real dummy in math and science. And guess what? I wasn't near as dumb as I thought I was! For me the science was just memorization, and the math, well, I let pharm freak me out at first, but then I got it. So don't worry, you ARE SMARTER than you think! You can do it! Just remember to breathe!
  9. by   agent
    Originally posted by bigmona

    just stick with it, bug your teacher with lots of questions, make a friend in the class and stay focused on the bigger picture. good luck!
    best advice ever..
  10. by   caligirl
    I sucked at math and science in high school. I took HS chem 12 years ago and got a D in it. I think I only passed my math classes because I was a cheerleader and my teacher "let me" pass so I could remain eligible...

    However, I got A's in both Organic and Inorganic chem.. In fact...the only 2 B's I have gotten in my 5 semesters so far have been in A&P... It can be done!! I work hard. I always thought I couldn't "do" math but then I realized it was all in my head..

    Hope that helps!
  11. by   TeresaRN2b
    A friend of mine is starting her final semester of nursing school this year. I am quite proud of her. She had to take 2 or 3 (can't remember for sure) preparatory math classes before she could take college level math, but she stuck with it. Low and behold she is doing excellent and nursing school and about to graduate. You can do it. You might need to take an extra semester of prep classes, but I am sure you can do it.

  12. by   Nurse2bSandy
    I was a returnee and needed lots of math for my BSN program. I had never had chemistry and needed two courses. Add to that the mico, A &P, and all the other prereq's and it was a bunch of stuff to learn! The only class I really had a hard time in was Stats... I got a C. That was mainly because it was a distance ed course that I did over the TV and the instructor was so BORING! Every time I turned the TV on I fell asleep!
    Believe me I am not a math or science whiz, but I pulled all A and B's... and you can do it too.
    You are older and more mature and you will soon learn that you can confidently ask for help. I never got help my first time through college, wasn't in any study groups. No wonder I dropped after a semester! College doesn't have to be done alone... work with others and learn from them. They will want to study with you and you will benefit from the combined knowledge.
  13. by   Jen2
    Sciences were never a problem with me, I have always been fascinated at how things work. Math on the other hand, OMG. I got a D in my high school Algebra 1 class. Therefore, I had to take 3, yes 3 math courses before I was allowed to take Chemistry at my college. I got A's in all of them, but I had a tutor. I found that In HS, I had no one to help me. Parents did not understand it because they just took general courses.With the extra help and many questions asked, i did great. I'm sure you will be fine. Dedication is the key.
  14. by   Rapheal
    Advice from a former high school dummy- you can do it. I did much better in college because I was much more motivated and the stakes were much higher.