Brand new here. I need advice

  1. Hello everyone,
    This is my first post. I am 41 years old. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism (graduated in 1986). My grades weren't great when I was in college over 20 years ago. I was 17 years old when I started.

    For some weird, but good reason, my school just accepted all of the basic classes like English, Speech, Psychology, humanities, etc. They all count toward my prereqs for applying for the Nursing program. Here is the weird part, they do not count my grades from 20 years ago. They requested my high school and college transcript. All of my prereqs counted, but they do not affect my GPA. Only the classes I take at this college count toward my GPA.

    One of the prereqs to take the nursing exam is that you have to have had chemistry (high school or college) within the last 10 years with a C or better.

    I had chemistry in high school. I avoided as much science as I could with my first degree. I just finished my first semester. I took a remedial algebra course, sociology, and chemistry. I ended up dropping sociology because this chemistry class took over my life.

    I have never studied like that for a class in my life. I'm talking 30 hours a week out of class studying. I even ended up hiring a tutor. What irritates me is that most of the kids in my class have just graduated from high school. For some, this chemistry course was like a review.

    I ended up with a high B. I just pray the other classes won't be as hard. My math skills are weak. That is the main reason chemistry was so hard for me.

    I'm taking BIO 110, SOC 100, and intermediate algebra this semester. There were times during that chemistry class that I just was not going to be smart enough to make it through nursing school. Luckily, I have several friends that are nurses. They say that chemistry was the worst.

    After BIO 110, I can take microbiology. Taking microbiology in the summer will be rough though. I just wondered if most everyone had all of their science prereqs out of the way before taking the NLN exam?

    I'm already 41, and I really want to get started in the nursing program. Since all of my prereqs are met except for the sciences, I only have a class a semester. It will take forever to get into nursing school. All my school requires is that you have either completed microbiology or A&P before applying to the nursing program.

    I know nursing school will be difficult. I would love to have A&P completed before starting the program. It is just that I don't have any other classes to take other than sociology with my science classes. I hate taking useless classes just to keep a full-time load for my student loan.

    I'm also afraid I won't have enough time to devote to nursing school if I am taking A&P at the same time.

    Does anyone have any suggestions? Also, my school breaks A&P down to two semesters. You can take it in one, but everyone tells me that it will be too hard to take A&P in one semester. That is why they give you the option to break it down.

    Does nursing school take over your life? If it does, there is no way I would want to take A&P when I first start nursing school.

    Also, has anyone heard of this program? Test Preparation Secrets

    If anyone has taken it, is it worth the money? Sorry for all the questions, it's just that I need to get into the nursing program before I turn 80.

  2. Visit want2scuba profile page

    About want2scuba

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 11


  3. by   Tweety
    A&P is doable with nursing school at the same time, but will be tough.

    If you have time and the money, I would try to get it out of the way because it's the backbone of the nursing pathophys. courses. A&P is the normal function of the body and the nursing courses are what happens when that breaks down. It's going to be tough learning the normal and the patho at the same time, and there's no guarentee your nursing courses are going to match your A&P.

    But originally prior to waiting lists that is how students did it. So it can be done.
  4. by   want2scuba
    Thanks, I wished I could take A&P in one semester. I mean, it is offered. I just see all of these students sitting around pouring over, and grilling each other over A&P. Chemistry really was really tough for me. If A&P is as hard, there is no way I could handle that, and nursing school.

    They don't offer A&P I in the summer. Everyone tells me not to take microbiology in the summer. I just don't have any other classes to take in the summer.

    I guess I could check and see if my school offers a nurse's aid course in the summer. At least that way I could work part-time while going to school.

    If I follow the schedule, and have all of my prereqs completed I'll have:
    BIO 110 and SOC 100 in the spring 1997.
    Possibly the nurse's aid course in the summer of 1997.
    A&P I in the fall of 1997
    A&P II in the spring of 1998.

    Everyone says A&P II is easier than A&P I. I may be able to take A&P II and microbiology in the same semester.

    If I could do that, I could take the NLN exam in February 1998. February is the cut off date to take the NLN to see if you can get into the nursing school in the fall of 1998.

    If I do it that way, it will be fall 1998 before I could hope to get into nursing school. That means it would be May of 2010 before I would graduate as a RN. That just sounds like forever.

    My school does not offer any nursing classes in the summers. I guess what makes it so frustrating is because I finished a Bachelor's degree in 4 years. This is just an Associate of Science degree.
  5. by   Tweety
    Yes, it is frustrating.

    Good luck! Those definately are some hard courses.
  6. by   nurseangel47
    Welcome to the allnurses forums! good luck with your studies
  7. by   Daytonite
    hi, tammy! ,

    it was many years ago, but i took the second half of anatomy & physiology during my first semester of my adn nursing program and microbiology during my second semester of the adn nursing. i don't know why people would be telling you not to take microbiology during the summer. if it's your only class and you can devote all your time to it, then i would take it. to help prepare, i would get a copy of the syllabus (just drop in on the first day of micro class this semester and pick one up). i'm a big believer in using supplemental books, so if you can get your hands on used or cheap copies of other micro textbooks to use as extra sources to help you with your studying, go for it. there are also a number of microbiology weblinks that are posted on one of the student forum stickys. you can get a list of the nursing student forums here:

    there is also a practice that was done years ago in the large universities by aggressive and success-driven students (pre-med students!). they often sat in on class lectures even though they weren't officially registered in the classes. it was easy to do this in large lecture halls where there were a hundred students or more in a class. it's a little harder to carry this off for very much longer than a few weeks when class sizes are only 30 or 40 students. however, if you can, attend the first couple of lectures of a microbiology class. (1) you'll get a copy of the syllabus (2) you'll get an idea of what the instructor is like and (3) you get in introduction into what the material for the course is going to be like. one thing that increases success with any subject is the frequency that you are exposed to the material.

    i don't know that nursing school will take over your life. you will have to do a lot of studying though. nursing principles will be new information that you've never been exposed to before, so you will be learning it for the first time. in nursing school you will be expected to pull together elements from the core sciences, like a&p, and combining it with information on pathophysiology of specific diseases, nursing principles and the nursing process (another thing you learn in nursing school). all this information is used to determine priorities and judgments that you will need to make in caring for patients. i can't think of any other career that even closely models the way nursing is taught and learned. that makes it difficult to explain these things to those who want this career.

    if you haven't already checked out the nursing student forums on allnurses, you should. you will find many common concerns of students discussed in the various forums there. you will also find threads with "stickys" on them that contain helpful weblinks that have been compiled for students. most all of us that are now nurses went through many of the same problems, waiting, anxieties, fears and concerns that you are now going through. all i can say is that you just keep putting one foot in front of the other. slow and steady wins the race. turtles rule!

    welcome to allnurses!