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How much math is actually used in Nursing school and at the job site?

Pre-Nursing   (913 Views | 11 Replies)

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Math is one of my worst subjects in school and I am kind of worried about the amount of math that I will need to know and be doing at the job site

 

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262 Posts; 1,428 Profile Views

Have you taken your math pre reqs yet? 

I was horrible HORRIBLE at math, I'm talking Ds and CS in high school, but As in everything else, took a math class in college that wasnt even for credits and couldnt pass that! When I wanted to go back to school I taught myself math for a bout a month so I could take the ACCUPLACER and get into the math i needed and be done, and did AMAZING To now, I took Quantitative Reasoning IN THE SUMMER and got an A. 

It all changed because I learned what I needed to do to learn and retain information and I learned a different way to look at understanding math and now it's one of my favorite subjects. And it really helped me to get through other classes like chemistry. 

I was really worried like you, and I cant completely answer how much math you will need as a nurse but you will need math to GET there at the very least so the best thing you can do is figure out what's holding you back and jump over that hurtle. 

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NICU Guy has 5 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

1 Follower; 3,571 Posts; 32,567 Profile Views

I use math daily in my job. Pediatric med. dosages are weight based. Although pharmacy calculates the dosage, it is my responsibility to ensure that the calculated dosage is correct.

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13 Posts; 165 Profile Views

I’m awful at math too!! I am trying to test out of college algebra and go straight to statistics since I am somehow really good at stats but I cannot do even remedial algebra to save my life! I wish I could answer your question but I am in the same boat. I have asked my nurse friends how much math they use on the job and they said basically just medication dosages (which is super important!) but algebra and statistics were pretty much useless.

Edited by NeedASugarDaddyOrSomething
Autocorrect hates me.

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63 Posts; 542 Profile Views

Yes you will use math. Many things are automated now, but you still have to double check dosages set by devices or prefilled by pharmacies. 

Also when setting CADD pumps, feeding pumps etc, or titrating doses.

There will be times that your math and accuracy will literally be life and death. 

Of course it’s not like you can’t use the calculator on your phone. So you don’t need to be good at calculating, but you do need to understand the ‘why’ behind the formulas in order to plug them in to the calculator.

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JadedCPN has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU.

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On 5/11/2019 at 4:49 AM, NICU Guy said:

I use math daily in my job. Pediatric med. dosages are weight based. Although pharmacy calculates the dosage, it is my responsibility to ensure that the calculated dosage is correct.

^This. It blows my mind how many new peds nurses these days don't do the calculations themselves and just rely on pharmacy/the doctor to be right. 

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165 Posts; 1,524 Profile Views

I just started my last semester (thank goodness) and we have had math questions on almost every test. We also have to pass a math test the first day of clinicals to be able to pass meds. The passing score increases each semester and sometimes count towards our actual grade. If you can't pass the math test, you can't pass meds and you'd fail clinical. There are people in my cohort who describe themselves as HORRIBLE at math, but the teachers work with them. Haven't lost any yet but God only knows how they will do with calculations on the floor. 

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1 Follower; 130 Posts; 831 Profile Views

I just finished my first semester of RN school and we had a Math test during the semester, some math sprinkled into tests and finals, and math in our skills check offs. It's basic like multiplication, division, addition and subtraction. You will need so try watching youtube or figuring out what learning style works for you. Good luck!

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1 Follower; 130 Posts; 831 Profile Views

Just now, babysplash said:

I just finished my first semester of RN school and we had a Math test during the semester, some math sprinkled into tests and finals, and math in our skills check offs. It's basic like multiplication, division, addition and subtraction. You will need to be comfortable setting up your equations and doing the math so try watching youtube or figuring out what learning style works for you. Good luck!

 

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Blue_Moon has 18 years experience as a BSN, RN.

1 Article; 478 Posts; 5,231 Profile Views

I  use math every single day. I have to use algorithms to caculate how much insulin to give in the schools. You just plug the numbers in so it's not hard.

I was never great at math either but was strangely good with algebra thankfully because when I graduated the pharmacy would make us calculate our own med doseages. It was basically an algebra equation. Now most of the time that's figured out for you and if you have a question you can call pharmacy to check for you but there have been many times I double checked the pharmacy dose to make sure it was right.

There's probably an app now that can help you figure that out but I would practice med doseage calculations over and over until you get it down pat because I guarantee that will be on a test eventually if it hasn't already!

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FullGlass has 2 years experience as a BSN, MSN, NP and specializes in Adult and Geriatric Primary Care.

6 Followers; 2 Articles; 993 Posts; 9,221 Profile Views

You will need basic math and a little algebra to calculate medication dosages, that's all.  Your nursing school will provide instruction in dosage calculation.  

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1 Follower; 739 Posts; 4,219 Profile Views

Math is used daily to make sure things are right and the patient is safe. Pharmacy doesn't always send the exact dosage and it's up to you to know better. Also, pharmacy sometimes makes mistakes and you're the last line of defense to catch it. It doesn't happen often, but none of us are above mistakes.

Also, if you have children it will be highly useful when medicating them at home.

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