I was in a 3 year BSN program and we started clinicals in the 7th week of the first semester. For the first 7 weeks we had a skills lab with the mannequins (sp?) and hospital beds and stuff. We didn't actually get graded on each skill, but we did have to be signed off on the major skills (V/S, NG insertion, foleys, etc.). If we did it wrong, we were corrected, then allowed to do it right, THEN we were signed off on it. Bedmaking and bedbaths and hygiene weren't something we got signed off, I guess there's more than one way to do it (and still be correct) so they didn't bother. We practiced it, just didn't get SIGNED OFF.
As for curriculum, we tended to have tests every 6 weeks, with some of the professors only giving 2 tests (kinda scary actually). A few gave weekly quizzes along with the tests. There was AT LEAST one term paper every single semester (in perfect APA format, thank you), often more in most classes. We had oral presentations and group projects.
In OB class we did a follow-through paper where we interviewed and followed a woman/couple through their last weeks of pregnancy, delivery and first weeks postpartum. THAT paper was over 90 pages for me!! And I wasn't the only one!! Had a similar paper due in community health nursing where we assessed a community and its resources (THAT was a group project--caused a lot of hatred), IT was way over 100 pages. They made us attend 8 hours of AA, NA, al-anon, etc. meetings during psych. All on our own time of course--that's where all the hatred from doing those community health projects came from, we had to decide which class to do research for!
We did very few formal nursing care plans
(ewwww care plans), maybe 4 throughout the whole 6 semesters (and 4 was 4 too many for me). 2 of those were in the actual semester where we learned how to do them and 1 was with that nasty OB follow through paper.
Yes, my nursing school was way hard and involved. But OMG the feeling when you finally put on that cap and gown!! Look forward to it guys!!