Creating Good Nurse-Nursing Student Relationships

  1. Hello,

    I'm currently in my first semester as a psychiatric nursing student. I start clinicals next semester and I would like some insight from nurses who have had any sort of interaction with students, whether it be mentorship, supervision, or even just passing by them on the floor and hearing the things they say.

    Now, I'm not asking for tips on how to be buddy-buddy with nurses because I'm sure most of them (at least from what I've heard from my instructors) want to have nothing to do with students if they don't have to. I just want to know what should I do, or avoid doing, to keep myself from being an annoyance to nurses or any other member of staff during my clinicals.

    Thank you.
  2. Visit jackywjwong profile page

    About jackywjwong

    Joined: Sep '18; Posts: 1; Likes: 1

    8 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from jackywjwong
    Hello,

    I'm currently in my first semester as a psychiatric nursing student. I start clinicals next semester and I would like some insight from nurses who have had any sort of interaction with students, whether it be mentorship, supervision, or even just passing by them on the floor and hearing the things they say.

    Now, I'm not asking for tips on how to be buddy-buddy with nurses because I'm sure most of them (at least from what I've heard from my instructors) want to have nothing to do with students if they don't have to. I just want to know what should I do, or avoid doing, to keep myself from being an annoyance to nurses or any other member of staff during my clinicals.

    Thank you.
    Don't take up chairs, desk space, or computer stations that actual staff need.
    Don't ask questions in front of patients or families.
    Realize that it's not your job to police or instruct the staff.
    I like students, actually. The ones we get seem well-instructed and well mannered.
  4. by   OldDude
    Bring a stethoscope, watch, pen, and an eagerness to learn. Leave your damn cell phone in the car.
  5. by   Daisy4RN
    Just realize that the nurses there are working and the priority is the patients, your learning is secondary. Good points above, I would add to come prepared for the day and prepared to help when you can. Use your instructor when possible. Try to pay attention/read what is going on with your assigned nurse and know when you may need to back off a little (ie the nurse is very busy/stressed etc). If you have a specific task/experience you need that day tell the nurse early on. All nurses were students at some point and should/hopefully remember so just do your best and I am sure you will be great. Thx for asking!
  6. by   Rebekulous
    - Talk with the nurse about your goals for the day when you meet. That way you both are on the same page about what you need vs. what can actually happen. (I had a student once who told me her goal was to give chemo. Sorry -- students don't do that. But I could still let her do other student-appropriate things related to chemo.)

    - Questions are good, but like other people have already said, you need to learn how to read the room about when is a good time to ask.

    - A lot of students focus on tasks/skills, because they're fun, and everyone loves practicing IVs. But a LOT of what you will do as a nurse is critical thinking. So when you're at clinicals, take the time to work through the "whys" of what is happening with your patients. The more you can do that, the better you'll be when you're a new grad.

    - Don't take things personally. I like having students, because I enjoy teaching. But it can definitely slow you down. If you get a preceptor who isn't very talkative, or who doesn't let you do everything, it's not necessarily because they don't like you. It could be that they are trying to balance teaching with patient needs. So "go with the flow", and even on those days you'll learn something.

    Good luck!
  7. by   JKL33
    Quote from jackywjwong
    ...I'm sure most of them (at least from what I've heard from my instructors) want to have nothing to do with students if they don't have to.
    Gotta run, but I'll be back to rant about this later! What a crock! That's your first problem right there...
  8. by   traumaRUs
    Moved to nursing student assistance forum
  9. by   Kallie3006
    Why in the heck would an instructor tell a class that? Seriously.
    Don't act like a know it all and of you don't know it, say so and ask for an explanation or a suggestion to find the answer.

    For the love of good gravy, do not do things you have not been taught, do things without your instructor or preceptor Give anything to a patient unless the nurse assigned has said it was ok ( food, water ect)

    We dont have time to play and seek, you want the experience, stay with your preceptor, or let them know if you have to go anywhere.

    Not all days are full of exciting things for you too see, of there is really nothing for you to at the time see if there is anything being done you can observe on.

    If you are going to pass meds, know what they are for and what you need to be mindful of when administering.

    Come in with a mind to learn, participate as much as you can, and ask questions if you have them (not in rooms though)

    Good luck!
  10. by   SqrB3ar
    State what you are allowed to do/what not to do with your instructor and your nurse.

    Follow them around! Whenever my nurse gets up after charting, I jump up right along with her and am there if she/he needs assistance. Execute tedious tasks to help with their load and document everything you did (like drains, aROM, hygiene, vitals, glucose) - although in psych, you may not have to do those things (more like observe, ensure safety)

    If you are questioning something of what the nurse did, don't be afraid to ask why they did what they did. Being eager to learn is the best thing along with asking their experiences/why they became a nurse when appropriate - it kind of builds a bond.

    Keep your phone on silent or away, out of sight. If you need to chart, find a computer that is away from the nurse's station - some nurses tend to have their "spots" have to remember they have a lot of work to do than you realize.

    Just be helpful and respectful. Treat your clinical like interviews. Have fun!

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