Are you in Basics at CSN? 2011

  1. hey, i'm getting lots of private messages from incoming students who will be starting basics in the fall 2011 asking me for tips. different things work for different students so i'm asking fellow csn students to help and share what helped you succeed in basics. we've all been there so lets try to give back.

    for me personally, in basics, i reviewed the notes prior to class so i knew what what coming. then i would go home and review each section, fill in the gaps using the text or from tegrity as needed, then do questions from "fundamentals of success." i also watched tegrity if i had time for sections with lots of questions. the recommended videos helped give me a visual as well. i did not do the evolve case studies in basics, but i hear they were helpful. i also did not study in groups, but it seems like that works for many students.

    also, try to study each day (cramming does not work) and make a schedule to map out your study time. try to get through everything (once or twice) by thursday before the test, then just review your notes and practice nclex style test questions fri, sat, and sun before the test.

    hope this helps.
  2. Visit su9032 profile page

    About su9032

    Joined: May '09; Posts: 129; Likes: 27
    from US


  3. by   StayingOnThePath
    how many hours each day of studying would you suggest?
  4. by   su9032
    That's very individual depending on how well you grasp the info, your background knowledge (A&P, medical terms, etc), your learning style, and test taking skills. Some students studied 3- 6 hours a day, had no kids & no job and still and failed. Others had children, a husband (or single moms) and/or a part-time job and passed.
    The key for most students is to map out a schedule & figure out when you have pockets of time to study (maybe 1 hour before class, 2 hours after lunch, or from 8pm - 9:30 pm at night, etc.)

    Another time saving option is to make your own recording of some of the more detailed (or less interesting) lectures. You can also download them from Tegrity onto your ipod. Then listen to them in the car to let it sink in.
  5. by   Fleurtygrl
    I wish more people who have been there would comment on this thread, after hearing the horror stories I am terrified to start next week. I am attempting this with children but I think it provides more motivation to learn
  6. by   JpoitierRN
    Okay, you have to remember that Nursing School is TOP priority........... Now having said that, you HAVE TO study a little EVERY day, maybe after you put the little ones to sleep and before you go to bed. I graduated back in December and I have to tell you my hardest semester was the third one Peds/OB/MH. I listened to tegrity every day and I also had a study group that we did at least twice a week. look at your powerpoints while you listen and if something was not clear, read the text. I also purchase the Fundamentals success book, and did lots of practice questions.
  7. by   Fleurtygrl
    are all of the recommended books really necessary? I have purchased the required books and the fundamentals success book
  8. by   brittemmons
    If I could give one piece of advice, it would be to NOT listen to all of the negative students that tell you that you are going to fail,only 15 people ever pass, etc. I was so worried about this and it wasn't the case at all!!! Yes, the tests are hard because they are a different way of thinking for most of us. It will take a test or two to figure out which method of studying works best for you. I really found that reading the book, looking up the terminology and listening to tegrity worked well for me. get the study packets offered before every test. Take your time and read every question, to really figure out what they are asking. Remember, you can do it!!!!!And please ignore the negativity! Keep your eye on the prize and your goals in sight and you will have no problem. Basics was extremely rewarding, challenging and exciting!!! Best wishes to all that are starting their journey!
  9. by   nishu09
    Hello, Im starting CSN in Jun. for the spring class. I was wondering which books I should buy so I don't waste my money? And also do the old students sell their books to the new ones so I know whether or not to wait to buy them beforehand? Any help is great. Thanks!!!!!!!!
  10. by   lagirl601

    I'll add to this post in hopes that you all will be successful at Charity.

    (nishu09, I received your PM but I'm unable to send them.)

    The best thing I can say is study, study, study, study. And like someone said previously, don't listen to the naysayers. There are plenty. Making an A is totally doable IF you put the time in. Many people do struggle with the tests at first because of the critical thinking/application type questions. That's why everyone suggests doing practice questions. Fundamentals of Success, chapter review questions, Evolve case studies, and any NCLEX review book will help. It is especially helpful if the sources have a rationale for each answer (most do). No need to stress about it now is a new way of learning/studying/test taking for most people. Nursing IS critical thinking; it is a skill and way of thinking you will learn as you progress in school.

    I am in NAC II right now but I know there will be a school-wide curriculum change soon, but not sure when. So these comments might not apply in the future. I actually thought Basics was pretty easy and similar to a regular college level course. Don't be fooled! It gets tougher for sure. In general, I bought all the required text books because reading the texts helps me learn. (actually, I never even cracked the mental health book). I found that the Basics, Med/surg, and Parent/Child texts were very helpful, and I still refer to all of them. YOu will definitely need a medical dictionary, and a med book. some type of care plan book and skills book may be helpful for some, but I think you can find a lot of that info online.

    Your experience will vary depending on your clinical instructor. I had some really good ones and some not so good ones. Some are sticklers for paperwork requiring you to manage your time wisely so that you have enough time to study. Others may be so carefree that you don't get very much hands-on experience during clinicals. For the most part, the instructors are extremely knowledgeable with a lot of experience and passion.

    HOpe this helps. Good luck & study hard! We have a great reputation to uphold!
  11. by   StayingOnThePath
    I hope to uphold the reputation... But this would be through hard work and dedication. Based on past courses, I would use multiple ways to study regardless of if it helps or not. Ultimately each method would build confidence because of the repetition of the "act" of studying. I know that what I just mentioned might sound strange. I figure using every method of studying cannot hurt.

    The instructors, who I cannot wait to meet and learn from, are also what I worry about most. Are there any pre-nursing school tips that you may have, that I can consider before getting my hands dirty this coming spring?

    I'm considering the vacation (or stay-cation) idea, because it is good to have a rested, stressless period before entering nsg school.
  12. by   lagirl601
    I think it's important to be rested and focus before school starts, but I would suggest leaving the week before (at least) to get your mind right and in "school mode" i.e. adjusting your sleep schedule, getting your books and study space ready, etc. Just as su9032 said, I also highly recommend doing the required readings prior to the start of school or at least be familiar with the material.

    The fact that y'all are already on this site and posing these questions tells me that you're all highly motivated students and eager to do well. Seek from your teachers, learn with your fellow students and lean on your family/friends. It's an intense but exciting ride!
  13. by   kubana87
    Nursing school is hard but its not impossible to pass either. I find that those who succeed in nursing school are those who dedicate their time to study and who are focus. Everyone has a different experience. The first test its mostly a shock for many people because they are not used to taking application exams. Its a different way of thinking that you just have to get used to. There are many people who have children and house to take care of that do way better than those who dont have that kind of responsibilities. Its all about motivation and actually doing something to achieve that goal not just hoping for it.
  14. by   davidnikkitylerskye
    I am currently a 3rd level at Charity and can tell you the only way you are going to pass is to STUDY!! I went through Basics and, after the shock of taking their tests, barely made a high C. I didn't really read the textbook. In NAC 1 I read every single chapter and studied 4-6 hours a day 5 or 6 days a week and breezed through it with a very high B while the majority of my class has to repeat. I can imagine that when PCN starts in January it will be even worst because 16 weeks of notes in NAC 1 was less than the 8 weeks of notes for PCN. If you ever have any questions feel free to message me. And I even met someone on here who was a semester behind and saved all my notes for him Let me know!! Charity is definitely the most difficult thing I've ever done, but also the most worthwhile. A Charity diploma really means something!!