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I've just been accepted to the nursing program and I'm nervous!

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I've just been accepted to the nursing program for this fall! I'm excited in one hand but completely nervous in the other hand! I've heard so many scary stories about the first semester! I've heard that there will be endless hours of homework(not complaining, I understand that you have to work hard at what you want in life), that the first semester weeds out students(nursing is not for everyone), and that exams are dreadful compaired to pre-nursing exams! I've been trying to keep my memory fresh when it come to anatomy and medical terminology, however; I'm affraid that I'll be a dunce and completely feel lost! Did anyone feel this way? Does anyone have any advise on how I can better perpare myself for my first semester? Any advise would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!

I'll be starting an ADN program in August and my friends in NS tell me to get a really good planner-there are some for nursing students that have handy extras. Organization is key.

I think NS is like pregnancy- everyone has a horror story to tell. Keep in mind that all the rest of the people will be nervous too. Just pay attention, ask questions, and love what you're doing.:heartbeat

In my experience, most everyone feels lost and scared and every other emotion you can think of! lol The hardest part of 1st semester to me was figuring out the best way for ME to get organized and study. Everybody learns differently so you have to figure out what works for you.

The tests are different in that it's not questions giving you a word and you have to pick the correct definition (for example) but they are more about critical thinking. Such as, they give you scenerios and ask you to pick the BEST intervention to do first. Therefore, you need to know which disease they are talking about and what you need to do for that situation. Sometimes there is more than 1 correct answer, but you have to decide which is MOST important to do FIRST. Like the other poster said, if you get an NCLEX study guide, you'll see what I'm talking about.

My advice for you right now though is to enjoy your time before starting!! Once you start, you will have to make sure you prioritze and you may have to make some sacrifices to succeed. Don't get me wrong.. I still spend time with my family and sometimes go out with friends, but there are also many times where I have to say "sorry, I can't go. I have to study." I've seen a few students that didn't ever say no and they are repeating that semester. ;) So enjoy your free time NOW!! and worry about school once it starts. :D

Karynica, RN

Specializes in Home Health, Geriatrics. Has 15 years experience.

just be prepared, have all your books, be ready for a huge pile of papers that you need to get in order. Get a binder for all the handouts. Read the syllabus for each class from front to back, memorize them.

sit where you feel comfortable, but where you can also hear everything and see everything. Highlight the important parts your instructor talks about. Make sure you pay attention to even the small details of the book, like parts of the page where there are special pictures, information, etc.

If the instructor writes something on the board, WRITE IT DOWN. She/he may get caught up in something (I do occasionally) and forget you are all NEW. If she/he goes too fast, ask questions. If your instructor starts lecturing on something that is not in the book, write it down. I had this happen many times..we would be leafing through our textbooks and the instructor would say "oh, it's not in the book, you need to write this down".

Read the chapters assigned to you thoroughly. Don't miss a thing. Read every single word on the page including anything with pictures, extra info. etc. Read it again if you have to. If your book has test questions at the end of the chapter, read them, study them, KNOW THEM. Know the key terms, the objectives and key abbreviations of each chapter. Pay special attention to words typed in bold letters.

I could go on and on. I hope I am not making matters worse. I have been through it, am teaching it now, and want you and all others new to nursing get a head start. Just read, read, and read more. Start a study group with some students if you feel you need to. It always helps.

Ask questions of your instructor...it shows you really do want to learn. I love it when my students approach me after class and talk to me. Makes me feel like they can trust me and I feel like I am doing my job. ;)

ann945n, RN

Specializes in Nursing Ed, Ob/GYN, AD, LTC, Rehab. Has 4 years experience.

My best advice is take it one day at a time. Nursing school can be so overwhelming when you look at the whole picture. Take a deep breath and think "what do I have to acomplish today to stay on track?" and just do that. Day by day and before you know it you are at your pinning ceremony thinking where did the time go? Oh and enjoy your freedom now while you still have it! For me nursing school was a 12 hour a day job

Best of luck!

If you can find out the reading assignments early, this would be helpful. Start reading and doing any other prep work as soon as possible.

It is very fast paced, that first semester...but not impossible. Remain confidant and don't get shaken. If you don't do as well as you are used to...just be sure you learn from whatever mistakes you make.

Best advice I can give you is to NEVER fall behind. It will be nearly impossible to play catch up.

All in all...it is difficult and at times overwhelming...but you can do it!

Do you know if I'll be using a mass majority of my pre-nursing class information? Because once again I've heard so many different answers...some say that I can pretty much forget everything but anatomy....and others say that I need to remember everything from all of my pre-nursing classes (which would be alot of info to go over in one summer!). I just want to make sure that I remember and know the most important details instead of worrying about the smaller details that won't be mentioned!

I don't know what pre-nursing classes you took, but I'd try to remember A&P as much as I could.. and of course English. :p But don't worry too much. I had a year between A&P and when I actually started nursing school and alot of it comes back as you're covering the diseases within certain systems.

amy0123, BSN, RN

Specializes in MedSurg Tele. Has 11 years experience.

stay on top of your to-do list.:typing

Do you know if I'll be using a mass majority of my pre-nursing class information? Because once again I've heard so many different answers...some say that I can pretty much forget everything but anatomy....and others say that I need to remember everything from all of my pre-nursing classes (which would be alot of info to go over in one summer!). I just want to make sure that I remember and know the most important details instead of worrying about the smaller details that won't be mentioned!

The concepts of all the prereq sciences will be necessary...but no one expects that you remember everything. A review of sorts could be helpful. You can also just pull up info online...say...google nervous system review for an overview of sympathetic, parasympathetic etc...this became and issue in pharmacology about the mechanism of actions with meds. Also a review of basic chemistry concepts is good for fluid and electrolyte units. Blood pH, stomach pH. A review of Maslow and Erickson from Psych will help a lot. Even just having available resources to refer to when these things come up will be helpful. If you have no medical terminology experience it would be nice to find something to begin some study. A book or there may be something online. A lot of times you can decipher many things from the terminology associated with a condition.

You know you are all right, I really just need to relax and enjoy my summer! I just need to make sure I stay on top on things!

Thank you everyone who responded with advice!:D

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