All classroom, no lab???

  1. So far so good, I have straight As in the classroom. My instructors aren't the best but I'm learning their style. I will have them through the summer semester and get new ones in the fall. We start clinicals at the end of the term, for 5 days.

    The problem that I have is the lack of lab time. They show us a video to demonstrate how we are to perform certain tasks but then we never get lab time during the day. We are expected to stay after to practice with an instructor or do it on our own. We have checks offs pretty soon and have had very little direction.

    When I did my CNA, we had classwork the first few weeks and then we went to the lab for several weeks to practice with our instructor there. The instructor did the procedure while we watched then we were given several hours to practice with him there to ask questions. If we felt like we needed extra time, then we could practice in the labs on our own time. My CNA was at a different campus but same school.

    Are most LPN programs like this? Or do you get more hands-on experience with an instructor?
  2. Visit dee78 profile page

    About dee78

    Joined: Mar '08; Posts: 552; Likes: 204
    from US

    14 Comments

  3. by   Christine2009
    First off, you should take the inicative and stay after class to practice in the lab...I have found that most nursing programs whether LVN or RN are self taught...in other words we are also shown a video on a skill and it is up to the individual to practice the skill(s) on our time during open lab days...Once I started clinicals though all the stuff I learned began to make sense to me, but you really should take advantage of the lab times even if it is on your own time.

    Of course this is only my opinion. Anyone can have an A average on paper, but how do you preform outside the classroom is what really matters...The best nurse in the world could be a C student on paper...grades mean nothing when it comes to nursing...
  4. by   caliotter3
    We had little practice time in my BSN lab courses and many of the students acted bored and spent a good portion of the time going around and talking to each other instead of practicing when they had the chance. I would just make certain to use the time afterward to practice as best you can. At least that little bit of practice time is being offered.
  5. by   dee78
    I understand that you can get an A on paper and suck at being an actual nurse, I'm not even sure why you felt the need to even say that. I wasn't bragging about my grade, even though I am proud of it, I was just setting up the thread so that there wasn't any question about my committment to the program itself.

    I do practice in the lab on my own. We even came in during spring break to practice. I can't stay after with the instructor very often (she's available on Mon and Wed only) because I have to get my kids. We get together during lunch or after a test to practice. So I do get some practice time in, I just expected there to be lab time with an instructor during the day. I wasn't aware that it is typical to not have much lab instruction.
  6. by   caliotter3
    Yes, it is typical to be cut short with lab. Most schools can not afford to have someone available to open up the lab and be present. They told us that someone had to be present, they could not just open the room and let students be there unsupervised.
  7. by   nursel56
    We didn't have a lab. We did everything on real people.
  8. by   alexg524
    Quote from dee78
    I understand that you can get an A on paper and suck at being an actual nurse, I'm not even sure why you felt the need to even say that. I wasn't bragging about my grade, even though I am proud of it, I was just setting up the thread so that there wasn't any question about my committment to the program itself.

    I do practice in the lab on my own. We even came in during spring break to practice. I can't stay after with the instructor very often (she's available on Mon and Wed only) because I have to get my kids. We get together during lunch or after a test to practice. So I do get some practice time in, I just expected there to be lab time with an instructor during the day. I wasn't aware that it is typical to not have much lab instruction.
    Don't explain yourself to anyone, dear. Being an A student is something to be proud of and is indicative of a dedicated nurse. Some people are just negative and you have to ignore them. I honestly feel that if you don't have anything good/constructive to say then keep to yourself. After reading that post I didn't see how it was helpful. Some people have to say things like that to themselves because they probably skimmed through nursing school and did everything halfheartedly even though they were intelligent enough to give that A effort. That's the only explanation as to how a nurse could be successful without making the kind of grades that would reflect that... It all starts with dedication to your studies.

    I am in a similar situation. We're hit with so much theory up front, followed by limited time with the instructor. We have DVDs to help us practice at home though, and for that I am grateful. Just practice every chance you get. You're doing just fine so far, so take on the challenges one at a time and continue the hard work . Try looking up some video tutorials online. You might find some useful stuff!

    Alex
  9. by   itsmejuli
    Hmm, interesting and definitely another point to investigate for those who haven't started their schooling.

    At the school I attended for LPN we had excellent labs with a dedicated lab instructor. We had more than enough time to practice skills and extra time for practice when check offs were coming up.
  10. by   plaza
    when choosing schools, I was surprised that a couple offered very little in the way of lab or hands-on clinical (LTC/rehab/acute hospitals) hours. I was even more surprised to find that one of the schools had OB/GYN and peds rotations in a rehab facility.

    I chose the school that had contracts with real hospitals and LTC and guaranteed us almost 1,000 hr of pt care. the in-school lab facilities are minimal, we do all our work on real pts.

    definetely something to consider when choosing schools.

    hands-on w/pt is definetly different than working on classmates. and videos are great for introducing tx and procedures but, in MHO, not enough.

    good luck and carry on!
  11. by   latebloomer74
    My LPN program was pretty good about actual lab time. Though we were showed the videos, it was often followed up with instructors demonstrating which was more helpful then the videos. And then we got time to practice. It is still very different to do these skills on a classmate than on a actual patient!!! Sadly, we weren't given much learning curve when it came to doing skills on patients. The 1st time I drew up insulin in clinical, I was given a comment that I thought was no so nice, she asked me if it was the 1st time doing insulin and I said yes, she says it shows. Nice. That could have been a teachable moment but she chose not to. It was a shame really.
    Sorry about getting off on a tangent, lol.
  12. by   *Brianna*
    My lvn program didn't have alot of lab time. We had a total of 6 days of watching video and lab time. We would watch a video, read our book and check on the skill within a couple of hours. Some skills though, we had no lab time at all.. trach care (suctioning, trach change), shots etc. This was very scary because we would have to read the book real quick then do the procedure on a patient. Check offs are scary...but you will get through it
  13. by   dee78
    Thanks guys! Yeah, we have videos that come with our book. I have watched them a few times and will review them again before Friday. We have checkoffs on Friday. The teacher ran through the steps in the classroom today. My classmates and I are planning on going to the lab during lunch a few times this week just to make sure we have it.

    It just isn't what I expected and I was wondering about other's experiences. This is the only LPN program in this area so there wasn't much comparison shopping done before applying. It is what it is and you take it or leave it.
  14. by   Boog'sCRRN246
    My LPN program was 5 days a week. Two days were theory, three days were clinicals. In my experience, there simply wasn't enough time on theory days for us to go into the lab. Don't get me wrong, we had lab time - it's just that the instructors couldn't take time away from the theory portion in order to herd everyone over to lab for practice during class time. Now that I'm in a RN program, any lab practice is done on our own time. Our instructors demonstrate the skill and it's up to us whether we practice or not.

close