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Help! Not understanding A&P

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Help! I am not understanding A&P. I felt confident about the first lecture over chapter 1 (just an overview of A&P) and part of chapter 2 (chemistry). But today he just dumped so much material I do not understandddd. Part of it was over the last half of the chemistry and we started on chapter 3 (cytology). A lot of the students in there seem to be getting it and have probably taken chem within the last couple of years or are fresh out of high school. We have only one more lecture before the first exam because of labor day. So next lecture we are going to continue lecture on chapter 3 and then start with chapter 4 (histology) and chapter 18 (cellular respiration). I record lectures in class and it has helped so far. But right now I am really not grasping half of this chem and the chapters over cells. Help! I really do not want to fail. Are there sites or books or any other tools that will help? I'm going to ask some friends too but I know many of them are busy with school as well. Are all of the systems going to be this difficult or will it only get tougher? Exam 2 will be over the integumentary, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular systems.

ButterflyRN90

Specializes in Renal and Telemetry. Has 5 years experience.

Help! I am not understanding A&P. I felt confident about the first lecture over chapter 1 (just an overview of A&P) and part of chapter 2 (chemistry). But today he just dumped so much material I do not understandddd. Part of it was over the last half of the chemistry and we started on chapter 3 (cytology). A lot of the students in there seem to be getting it and have probably taken chem within the last couple of years or are fresh out of high school. We have only one more lecture before the first exam because of labor day. So next lecture we are going to continue lecture on chapter 3 and then start with chapter 4 (histology) and chapter 18 (cellular respiration). I record lectures in class and it has helped so far. But right now I am really not grasping half of this chem and the chapters over cells. Help! I really do not want to fail. Are there sites or books or any other tools that will help? I'm going to ask some friends too but I know many of them are busy with school as well. Are all of the systems going to be this difficult or will it only get tougher? Exam 2 will be over the integumentary, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular systems.

Sorry to say, but it'll only get harder. Find a study buddy. Nursing school is tougher than this. :)

This course requires a lot of devoted time to studying and reading. Stay on top of your reading schedule and study everyday. Also, going over your notes the same day as you had lecture is also important. Do you use a voice recorder? Those help in making your notes more detailed.

I used the sites getbodysmart.com and innerbody.com. there's an anatomy app in the App Store that quizzes you on locations of many stuff. I think as time goes on the material builds up. As you can see exams cover multiple chapters. If you get lost somewhere contact your professor ASAP for help. Good luck:)

OneHappyRN

Has 1 years experience.

Nursing school isn't for the faint of heart, but look at all the nurses out there...it CAN be done! :) It just takes a lot of time.

I felt the SAME way when I sat in AP 1. It seemed like everyone knew what the Prof was talking about and my head was spinning and I was sooo lost! What helped me was to read the text before the Prof lectured on the material. This way, when things were said, it would click with what I read.

Good luck!!

Take a deep breath.......take it one chapter at a time. Take good notes, highlight things, and I agree with reading ahead and going back over your notes to make extra notations, highlight certain terms, etc. I also highly recommend finding someone to study with. It makes a world of difference. I am also a huge fan of flashcards. When I took A&P, I was overwhelmed at the beginning of the semester, too, but you will soon get into the groove of things. Think of your goals and work hard! You can do this! Good luck.

Find the best way you learn and study things that way. A & p was the first course that really overwhelmed me but I passed with an A...devote time to study, write and rewrite your notes, flash cards are the main way I learn. You can do old fashioned hand written cards, type up two columns (question/term and then answer in the other), or do them online. If you have a ton of terms, break them up in chunks by related material. Memorize one chunk a day while repeating the ones you've already learned. Main thing is to just keep studying!

Edited to add: I have yet to actually read material from ANY of the college books I've purchased :/ it's such a waste of time for me, personally, because I do not absorb things by reading them. Not only that, but there's a ton more info in the book that isn't necessary for the classes. So I take notes on what the instructor talks about, print the power points, draw pictures, make my flashcards and study what we went over in class. All my science classes have required keeping a journal which is basically a rewrite of your notes from each class period. If you aren't required to do so you may want to start because rewriting stuff can help.

I just started A&P 2 and I'm sorry to say, it'll get much worse. You seem to be using the same textbook as I use. The class average for our histology chapter test was a 68. After that, most figured out a groove. The biggest tip I can give is to make sure you understand the content and not just memorize it. Google topics you don't understand. Even YouTube animations are a great help. I got through with an A over the summer semester while taking it with Microbiology, It was tough but doable. Good luck and if you have any specific questions, just ask.

What textbook do you have? I bought mine new with a bundle that includes the online access and it has SO MUCH additional assistance, interactive animations, videos, flashcards, quizzes, games, etc. I have Marieb 10th edition. Also consider reading the chapter, or at least the chapter review or skim it BEFORE you get to class so you have an idea of what your professor is speaking of. Maybe find a study partner /group.

pmabraham, BSN, RN

Specializes in Hospice, Palliative Care. Has 3 years experience.

Good day, humboldt13:

I was told AP1/AP2 (especially AP1) was the make or break in terms of being able to handle nursing school (these are just prerequisites to nursing school). So yes, it only gets harder and harder; and I'm told that what one has to read in nursing school compared to any prerequisite is night and day (which means get used to it).

May I recommend the following:

* If your book has chapter quizzes / reviews, do them over and over and over until you get it.

* Learn your terms and definitions; flashcards are excellent for learning terms and definitions.

* https://allnurses.com/pre-nursing-student/p-help-my-334360.html

* See a tutor at your college

* Khan Academy

* Youtube.com videos for concepts you don't understand; try to focus on one area (Mr. Ford comes recommended)

* iTunes University - see if there are classes you find interesting that would supplement - I enjoyed https://itunes.apple.com/us/course/human-anatomy/id553400128 as well as https://itunes.apple.com/us/itunes-u/biol-121-anatomy-physiology-i/id424629511?mt=10

Also, if you don't do well on any quiz or exam, immediately schedule an appointment with your professor to go over the quiz/exam to see why you got it wrong, and how you can do better next time.

Thank you.

Ozzy84

Specializes in GI Surgery Step-down.

YouTube and khan academy ...period

A&P is generally the great 'weed and feed' for nursing school.

A lot of new nursing students go into A&P and nursing school expecting that they will receive all the information they need in textbook and lecture. You won't. And if you try to just memorize facts and rely on lecture (as so many busy students do), you are unlikely to pass, or perform at your best. Understanding the material is necessary, not only for student success, but to be a successful nurse.

I do not know your learning 'style', but I can share with you one effective way to learn difficult subject matter that works for a lot of people, and it worked for me all through school (I finished 2nd in my class of 120, earned an A+ in A&P, and I am no genius. It is hard work!):

Read the chapters. Don't spend a lot of time on this first pass, just read through so you have a beginning narrative circling in your brain.

Re-read the chapters. While on your second pass, use a highlighter to mark key words and items with which you are struggling.

Read the chapters a third time, stopping to make hand-written notes of the final items you don't understand, or on which you need additional clarification (like the definition or meaning of a word, or concept).

Take the hand-written notes and hit the internet/school research library portal, and review articles, youtube videos, and any resource you can find, to help explain what you don't understand. The information is out there.

Don't take information received in lecture as the only items on which you will be tested. Professors usually do not give you everything you will need to know for the test. They will often hold back information so they can gauge if you are studying and reading the textbook. Further, it is impossible to include everything you need to know if just a few hours of lecture. Use your outside resources.

Ask your professor for clarification in his/her 'open hours'. Most profs will be glad to help.

There are tons of free learning resources on the internet (google 'open education resources'), as well as tutoring services. You may even have a classmate, or someone at a more advanced portion of the nursing program, available to help you.

You CAN do this. But you must be willing to put in the time and effort, and be pro-active in seeking those other resources.

Best of luck to you!

Ozzy84

Specializes in GI Surgery Step-down.

Never try to memorize stuff ... Learn it. Watch videos and try to understand how mechanism works.

Anatomy seemed very overwhelming at first to most students, a lot of it stemmed from the stories we were told about the difficulty level. In anatomy you need to remember that there is just a lot of information but it is a basis of everything you need to know. I would suggest making a study schedule. Study Chapter One a Day or two, then Chapter three, then Chapter four. Don't forget to leave a few days before the test to study the material. If you find you are having to much trouble with that topic, find a study partner that knows the stuff or a lot of colleges have a tutoring center in their student buildings or library. Make use of them, they can really be helpful and you need to learn now to get help instead of just letting yourself fall behind. Also, the internet has many great resources. Khan Academy is free and amazing, google has more, your professor may have even more. Just make sure they are reliable.

If you truly apply yourself to it. You can do it. The first test is always the hardest because you don't know what its like. It does not get any easier though, once you start Anatomy 1...its all tougher from there. Hold your head high, take a deep breath, and just start studying. Practice and Repetition will be vital to learning this VERY important material.

Good Luck! xxxx

HouTx, BSN, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Critical Care, Education. Has 35 years experience.

Hi, educator here. I have found that visualization really helps understanding of complex concepts - whether it's atomic structures, cellular metabolism, cardiac function, blood circulation, etc. It provides a way to arrange things so that they make sense rather than simply trying to memorize a bunch of 'factoids'.

If you Google a bit, you can find a treasure trove of video resources. I really like blausen.com (medical illustration) because of the '3D-ish' appearance and attention to detail.

Natasha, CNA, LVN

Specializes in Psych. Has 1 years experience.

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Natasha, CNA, LVN

Specializes in Psych. Has 1 years experience.

Our Time to Learn | Early Childhood Educational Series

I will be starting Anatomy next week and I am a visual and hands-on learner. I have googled a few learning strategies that I hope will help. i keep reading about using ACTIVE LEARNING strategies. i did purchase a book called "Motivation and learning strategies for college success" and found some pretty good ways to write notes and get 90& of studying from in class lecures.

Play doo to make clay models

Create some delicious food models of human anatomy!

coloring in names and the bone/muscle ...labeling . get a blank structure model and label. *labeling games* purposegames.com

anatomy coloring books

Edited by E-commerce

Learn it like you mean it.

There has already been a lot of great advice thus far, but I'll add that Khan is fantastic for chemistry material.

Most importantly...learn your own learning style! How and where do you concentrate best? Where can you go and what can you do to make sure you can sit down for 10 hours at a time and crap your pants with excitement over how cool this stuff is?

Remember, A/P (especially physiology) is not simply rote memorization. As others have said, you need to be able to use deductive reasoning. What worked for me was first determining where I was going with the material: What is the end goal? What are they trying to tell me? I found that skimming the chapters and highlighting first, then going over and over it with a highlighter, then stopping to review the "why's behind the what's" worked very, very well to get started.This allowed me to ask questions as I went along. Asking those questions, is what made me think. And thinking is the difference between an A and a C.

When you read, read for understanding and not knowledge. Dedicate time, a lot of it, to sitting down and understanding. The more you practice understanding, the more your brain will be your friend when attacking future chapters.

You CAN do this!!!