Getting into a nursing program with a L.D.

  1. Hello everyone,

    I have always had an interest in nursing, due to the fact that many of my immediate family are in the healthcare field. It is my dream to become a Nurse. I took the TEAS and was confident that I would pass. I done exactly as I predicted; well on everything but the math which has always been a problem for me. I have a 3.7 GPA and made A's in anatomy and Physiology (as well as several other classes that will go towards my Bachelors).

    The problem is that I never told anyone at my college about my learning disability that has haunted me since the third grade. But it has became apparent that I am going to need some help if I am going to succeed. Understand that it is counterintuitive to every instinct that I have to ask the college for any type of help. But it has came down to either my pride or following my dream and being able to support my family while doing somthing I would love. I literally forget that I will be getting paid for being a nurse when I daydream about working. I guess I though I would grow out of my Learning Disability.

    I truly feel ashamed for needing to ask for help and I feel that I will be treated as I always have; A burden. I know for a fact that I can perform as well as anyone in the classes and clinicals, all i'm asking for is the chance to do so.
  2. Visit hlr2752 profile page

    About hlr2752

    Joined: Mar '11; Posts: 29; Likes: 33


  3. by   Moogie
    First of all, you are NOT a burden and you have nothing for which you should be ashamed. People have differing abilities. Yes, nursing school is difficult, but please don't defeat yourself before you even get started! A learning disability is not laziness. It's not a personal defect. It's not a weakness of character. It is what it is. It's a part of who you are and maybe, just maybe, having that disability might make you more empathetic and conscious of the challenges that your patients may face.

    According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, schools must provide reasonable accommodations to students who have learning disabilities. However, the school cannot help you if you don't let your instructors know about your needs. If I was your instructor and saw you struggling, I would want to know what I could do to help you learn. I would feel much better knowing that you had a learning disability than not knowing and thinking that maybe you weren't really motivated.

    Please---stick around AllNurses. Look at some of these threads and read some of the stories. There are nurses here who have beaten the odds, who are working in spite of disabilities and challenges. You can do it, too!

    And no more of this "burden" business...okay?
  4. by   hlr2752
    yeah, I guess you're right. I'm going to the program dean's office tomorrow to see if I can re-schedual my test with the appropriate accomodations. Wish me Luck!


    thanks for the encouragement; been looking into my rights as a student with a disability as well as what to expect from the faculty/college staff and what channels I need to go through to ensure my rights are recognized. Being constructive rather than destructive.

    Thanks again!

  5. by   hlr2752
    well, my college is pritty much telling me to start back at square one and choose a different major..... they said that if I can't pass the first milestone without accomodations then I certainly can't finish the program or get liscensed by the state because they won't make any accomodations for the NCLEX. all of this when I have a higher GPA than a majority of the 'regular' students that pass the TEAS.
  6. by   Moogie
    I think you need to take this higher than your college. You do have rights under the ADA.

    Also, check out this website:
    Last edit by Moogie on Mar 26, '11 : Reason: Addition
  7. by   mehitabela
    I had some trouble in school. I have pretty severe ADHD. Class was really tough and I had to convince each new clinical instructor that on the floor my LD translated into multitasker extrodinaire! Play to your strengths...we all have some. :redpinkhe
  8. by   hlr2752
    I really just can't see myself doing anything else. I have focused all of my studies on becoming a nurse and am being held back by a test that simply measures how well you do on that particular test. It's not like I'm asking them to water-down or change the curriculum for me; all i'm asking for is a basic four function calculator and a quite place to take my test. I got distracted by the sounds of all the other pencils, people walking through by the testing center talking, and would loose my place reading and what step I was on in the math.

    All in all, I don't think that the things I have requested are unreasonable. Any other oppinions?
    Thanks for the link; I had no idea that there was any type of organization like this for us. Its good to know that there are support systems. I would also like to extend my sincerest gratitude for everyone who has helped me here also.
  9. by   jdk0809
    Just an fyi, I also an LD student and was told by my school they do.
    have Nclex accomidations
  10. by   SunnyPupRN
    I have dyscalculia. I ran into roadblock after roadblock getting through nursing school. Listen, they have to provide accomodations for you, as someone else said. They accomodations are not written in stone. *I* came up with my own accomodation [swapping Chem for Algebra], and got the Students with Disabities Center to support me. Don't sit around and wait for someone else to tell you what you need for an accomodation - just think about what you need, and go for it. Get someone, anyone, to back you. A disabilities lawyer would be GREAT. Present your case to the Nursing Admissions Dept. You need a fricking calculator? THAT IS REASONABLE. Present evidence as to WHY it is reasonable: Because any working nurse, anywhere can pick up a calculator and use it on the job.
  11. by   SunnyPupRN
    P.S. Testing in a private area is also reasonable. I did it during nursing school too. Brainstorm your potential backers:
    your academic advisor?
    High school advisor?
    Student Center Disability Support Services?
    Legal aid? Family lawyer?
    Whoever tested you for the LD?
    This is the LAW...but some educators STILL don't know that they can't just shove you out the door because of your LD. So stay calm, and strong.
  12. by   HeartsOpenWide
    well, my college is pritty much telling me to start back at square one and choose a different major..... they said that if I can't pass the first milestone without accomodations then I certainly can't finish the program or get liscensed by the state because they won't make any accomodations for the NCLEX. all of this when I have a higher GPA than a majority of the 'regular' students that pass the TEAS.
    I was too ashamed to admit that I might have a learning disability as well. Not until the semester before I transferred to the University did I final buck up and get tested. They found I had leaning disabilities in 'math calculations' and 'working memory' which impeded my performance when put under time pressures. Once it was discovered that I had a learning disability I was granted time and a half and a private room for testing. I wish I did this at the beginning of my college career. I got into nursing and continued to use my "testing accommodations" that were granted to me as a learning disabled student. I ended up graduating with honors and was accepted into Sigma Theta Tau. Since I was protected under the state I also got extended time and a private room for the NCLEX (because it is law and I am protected under the disability act) which I passed the first time. Having a learning disability does not make you dumb, as I have proven; and your GPA proves as well...we just learn a different way than other people and have to have adjustments made so that we can reach our full potential. Don't be ashamed, get tested, earn your accommodations and perform at your best; you won't ever regret it. I never did.
  13. by   hlr2752
    Wow, I really appreciate all of the support here! I am currently scheduling yet another meeting with the lady over the division. Her main argument to this day, even after I was tested by the psychologist that she referred me to is that I have done too well in my math courses to be disabled severely enough to get what I am requesting. Her exact words were " I don't feel comfortable asking for anything other than extended time on math assignments; calculator usage is also permitted by the instructor's discretion". I don't see how this is about her other than the fact that I have to go through this woman to get what I am legally entitled to.
  14. by   SunnyPupRN
    hlr, she needs to realize this is not about her comfort level. It's about your rights. If you have the documentation from your psychologist that you have LD, please go to your school's Student Support Services or whatever they call it there for the LD/Disabled students and talk to an advisor or director. THEY know the law. Nursing dept isn't playing nice. Don't expect them to. I know we are starting to talk about money when we talk lawyers, but you might have to slap down some money for a lawyer to draw something up for discriminating against you. Before you do that, go to EVERYONE you can possibly go to in the college, and if you keep getting NO's, let them know you will see a lawyer, but back it up.