Why are nursing instructors mean? - page 3

I am not in nursing school yet, but am hearing horror stories from other students about the instructors. I've heard it from many students and they say that some (I realize NOT ALL), will pick apart... Read More

  1. by   cherrybreeze
    You lost me a bit there, Lex.

    Especially on the antidepressant part.

    I'm not sure what makes being on antidepressants makes someone unqualified to teach, or be a nurse, for that matter.

    I'm not an instructor, but I do precept more than average, because I love to teach...I'm also on an antidepressant. Should I be rethinking my career choice?
  2. by   firstyearstudent
    It is because they were abused when they were in nursing school and they think it is necessary to "weed out" the students who aren't "worthy." It's just this stupid fake boot camp thing. They can make you miserable, but, for the most part, they can't really fail you for nothing.
  3. by   Valerie Salva
    Quote from llg
    Of course there are some instructors who aren't very nice ... or very fair ... or very skilled at teaching ...etc. -- just as there are always a few "bad apples" in any profession.

    When you read those posts, you have to remind yourself that very few students who do poorly in a class and/or flunk out of school say, "Oh, that was my fault for not working hard enough." or "I realize that I did not follow the guidelines." or anything like that. The overwhelming majority of students who do poorly in school will blame the teacher. So ... a lot of the posters complaining about the teachers are really struggling students whose judgment about their teacher's performance is a bit biased.

    Nursing is a profession that involves taking responsibility for the health and safety of other people. The standards of performance are high and rarely allow the student much room for not meeting those standards. For many students, it is the first time in their lives in which "being nice" and "being average" is not enough. There may be less "extra credit" or "second chances" available for students who don't perform well the first time -- just as in practice, there is no second chance if you hurt a patient. As some students struggle with this reality, they blame their faculty. Sometimes, that blame is justified -- but many times, it is not.

    Good luck,
    Great reply.
  4. by   netglow
    Quote from llg
    Of course there are some instructors who aren't very nice ... or very fair ... or very skilled at teaching ...etc. -- just as there are always a few "bad apples" in any profession...llg
    This really is true... I need to carry this thought with me.

    Older second career students have a hard time because we do size people up. We can see all the problems with organization, and really can't stand it if an instructor is emotionally/technically incompetent. Right away we are thinking, "What the heck kind of hole did I just throw my money into" LOL! We have to remind ourselves that we don't have positions of power here to weed people out. We have to just DEAL... which takes a significant amount of effort!! Much more than I thought... it's much harder to play along when you are in your forties. I used to be able to K/U easily, even in my thirties just to get what's needed in the end. Something happens to you in your forties. LOL! If you resort to K/U, or if you see another older student K/U you feel like you gotta
  5. by   MB37
    I didn't have any "mean" instructors, personally. I was an excellent student, however, and worked very hard for my A's. I also followed all the rules, wasn't late (barring RARE emergencies), and didn't complain about the workload too loudly. I had several very tough instructors who taught me a lot. I had a few who seemed like they didn't have as much clinical experience, so they had a little less to teach me - and were often perceived as "nicer" than the first type. I also had one whose grading systems for our clinical paperwork was tough to figure out at first - but eventually I learned what she was looking for.

    Don't go into school with preset opinions of what it will be like. Behave professionally, and most likely that's how you will be treated. Ask for help early if you're struggling, don't wait until it's too late to bring up your grade. Be courteous and polite, and follow whatever rules they set out for you. Be on time. You may think it's idiotic to force a majority female student body to wear white pants regularly, I know that I did, but it's just easier to suck it up and follow the rules. Once your instructors get to know you as trustworthy, they'll be much more likely to believe you when you do have car trouble on the way to clinical, or whatever else happens once that you may need to make up. I know mine were much more likely to single out students who were habitually late, looked like they slept in their uniforms, took too many breaks, etc.

    Nursing school, in large part, is what you make of it. Also remember that many more people come online to complain about failure or perceived unfairness than log in to report their average day with a pleasant instructor.
  6. by   Valerie Salva
    Quote from showbizrn
    aren't you
    the lucky one
    because chiiiiiiild....

    some instructors were fair and competent
    but some of the others
    were the worst instructors
    i ever had
    in any college subject.

    so bad
    that the undergraduate nursing program
    was taken to court....

    chiiiiild...you don't want to know.

    i vowed
    to be like them.

    and according to my students,
    i am not.
    so there you go...
    chiiiild, did we go to the same nursing school?

    the director of my program was an mean & evil woman- she was charged with child endangerment shortly before i graduated.
    another instructor physically asaulted a student, but the student was afraid to press the matter and nothing was done.

    my program was a horrible ordeal, but i would not be an rn today had i not stuck it out.
  7. by   rngolfer53
    I think for many of the posters who complain about "mean" or "unfair" instructors, it is their first time encountering a teacher who holds them to standards.

    In nursing, you can't be late, take shortcuts, skip assignments, or just plain perform poorly, regardless of reason. Nor is there always time to sugar-coat valid criticism, or stroke damaged self-esteem.

    Many people have excuses made for them throughout earlier school levels and are only now finding out that the world doesn't always work that way.

    Doubtless some instructors are mean, or unfair, but they're going to get weeded out.

    And even if a few of the mean or unfair ones survive the process, view it as good training for dealing with the same traits in patients, families, doctors and other nurses.

    Not to say that you should be subjected to that, but it happens and always will, people being people. This is not a profession for the faint-hearted or easily bruised.
  8. by   Magsulfate
    Back when I was in nursing school,, there was one clinical instructor that was absolutely a witch! She would flunk a student,, and it was completely subjective. So,, needless to say we were all scared of her,, and no one wanted her as a teacher.

    Well... turns out she was my clinical instructor the very last semester (and the most stressful semester)... we were all freaking out.......

    We come back from christmas break and find out that she met a man... well.. this woman did a complete 180 and gave us all A's.. lol
  9. by   netglow
    ROFMAO, Magsulfate!

    I have noticed particularly with one instructor, a few of my male (a little older) classmates have figured it out that if they flirt with her, she really lets them do what ever they want. One was always late to clinical, she'd rush him around to be sure he got some skills in... another could nod off in class... make up careplans etc... This instructor would rip a female student apart for much less. The male students would joke and laugh about it, and would even push the limits with her to see how much they could get away with in competition with each other. I even had to laugh!!

    I can imagine how she must be when she's at work, LOL... look out all you young innocent boys... the cougars are on the prowl. I can imagine how it must be... the tables are turned these days... the young guys sitting in the car crying after work because of being constantly hit on.... makes me LMAO . Sorry, cannot help it! I still laugh whenever I see an erectile dysfunction Ad on TV too. I enjoy that those just trump all the tampon/pad commercials we women have had to endure the embarrassment of over the years!! It's all just a leveling of the playing field for me.
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I think many instructors play head games that are completely out of line, childish and unnecessary. I have talked to others who went to schools where this was not the norm. Now, this is just me but, I learn MUCH more effectively when I am treated fairly and like the ADULT learner I am. I wish I could say that was how it was at my school. I once had an instructor slap my hand when I went to start an IV on an elderly lady and was approaching it wrongly. I took her aside and said, "never embarass me like that again, especially in front of a patient and family. It undermines their trust in us and assumes I am a child in need of correction. Wrong assumptions on both parts". I was fuming. She did apologize, however, I have never forgotten how that made me feel. Oh, and the family refused to let me try after her little act. How on earth can anyone learn in an environment like that???!

    Mean? Maybe not, but wrong in my mind. The whole object of nursing school is to help people learn to be nurses, not demean, play games or detract from the learning experience I paid so much hard-earned money for.

    Ok enough from me. For those instructors who are earnest and treat students well, Bravo. I wish there were more like you.
  11. by   classicdame
    I guess instructors are mean for the same reason students are. People do not assume different personalities because of their job or aging. I know I get frustrated by students not being prepared, expecting their tale of woe to be different than everyone else's, texting during class, ----------
  12. by   CECE,RN
    You have to realize that everyone's nursing school experience is going to be different. Don't let someone else's experience decide your fate. When I was in nursing school, I also heard the horror stories and found out that all of them weren't true, even most of them weren't true. The most hated instructor in the program turned out to be someone I highly respect. She was tough in nursing school because there is a life at stake. DUH!

    For the few that are just plain mean, they probably got more problems going on in their lives than you. So just overlook them and kill with kindness and good grades. They can't hold a good nurse back!

    Also take a look at who your advice is coming from!
  13. by   Nancy N
    Ask yourself dear do you really want to be a nurse? their are some complete sweethearts in nursing and their are many critical, nasty back-stabbers. And unfortunately the second category controls the 1st. And the nasty ones never get mental help they just continue to victimize the sweet ones. If you really know deep in your heart that u are meant to be a nurse then read some books on assertiveness early on. But yeas if u are a serious student and take the profession seriously, you will do fine. Even with the crumpy teachers. work hard and they have nothing to say. And clinical only last a few months. Try to choose the sweet emotionally even teachers.