How much time does it take REALLY for nursing school?


Hey everyone... I have a question about the amount of time you spend during the year in nursing school. I have 3 quarters left of pre-req's and am trying to get an idea of how much time will be spent in school.

So.. my questions..

My school doesn't go summer quarter. Does this mean from the beginning of June until almost the end of September we do nothing? I mean, no reading, no clinicals, no nothing??!! What about the Christmas break? A whole month off? Are there clinicals on weekends, holidays, between quarters?

I have 8 kids who are all still at home, one who will be in kindergarten next year. I'm a little stressed about the time committment, but know this is probably the only time I'll be able to go to nursing school. I've ALWAYS wanted to be a nurse, I'm so dang excited!! BUT, I'd really like to give my husband and family a clear-cut idea of what they're getting into for the next 2 years.



NeoNurseTX, RN

1,803 Posts

Specializes in NICU Level III.

Did you do your prereqs yet? People don't factor those in to the time actual nursing school takes.

Mine was 4 semesters, no school activities during Christmas. Spring break and TG break were more like catchup time where we were assigned a TON of reading with a test upon our return.

My program didn't do summers, but I took online classes during the summers to lighten my load during the year. Some schools require you go during summer.


1,549 Posts

Specializes in Post Anesthesia. Has 30 years experience.

It's really hard to say specifically what the format of any indivigual school takes. At my school the nursing program followed the same hours and breaks as any other BS degree- four or so weeks off between fall and spring semester, 10 weeks off between spring and fall semester. You only took non-clinical courses in the summer session since it was much shorter than the fall and spring semester and they didn't want to short clinical hours. Other than that I'm not sure I can offer any better information. The diploma program in this area goes year round and gets one week off for Christmas and one week off in the summer-22 mos education in 24 mos time- (this I have heard-I didn't go there and we don't hire diploma nurses very often). As you can see, programs vary greatly even in the same area of the country. If the program you have started isn't a good fit for your life look around- there may be other programs that will lead to a licence with better fitting hours for your needs.

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

It does vary by program and the advice you've already gotten about taking courses toward your BSN etc. while on breaks is excellent. Studying wise will also vary, but for me, I spent between an hour to two each night on nursing stuff, sometimes more rarely less. Good luck!

Has 14 years experience.

Make sure when you talk to instructors or the chair of the department you ask how many hours a week you are going to be in class or clinical-not the number of credit you are taking. Many people don't realize that they are two seperate things. One semester I took 16 credit hours and I was in class/clinical for 25 in addition to 16 hours/every other weekend at my job.

This topic is now closed to further replies.