Nursing Students with Special Needs


In my doctoral class, we are discussing student diversity in America and in other countries. One of the issues discussed was the accommodation of students with special needs. I have been teaching nursing for over three years and have not (yet) been faced with accommodating special needs students. However, I feel that this may occur at any time. While we have a policy regarding acceptance of students, it is not specific enough when addressing special needs students. Do any of you have special needs students in your classes? If so, what is the extent of their needs? I am having difficulty in understanding how a nursing program could accommodate a vision impaired (blind) person, total hearing impaired person, or a person who could not lift or turn patients. What are your thoughts in this matter? Does your school have a clear policy regarding acceptance of nursing students with special needs?


238 Posts

I am not a teacher, but thought my experience as a handicapped student might be helpful. I work in a skilled nursing facility on the rehab unit. I work from an electric wheelchair but can walk a little around the rooms and such. I don't have much trouble turning people but would be hesitant to walk anybody who was shaky (to the bathroom, for instance.)

I have been an LPN for quite a few years. I recently graduated from the Excelsior ADN program. As you may know, the only clinical portion of that program is the clinical exam (CPNE) at the end. I used a scooter to go around the halls, but parked it outside the room, and walked in, to prevent cross-contamination. There was a gentleman in the program at the same time, in another part of the country, who was fairly hard of hearing and used special equipment, which he bought himself, to aid in his job, such as an amplified stethoscope. He was also successful in passing.

Another job that I had that did not require much physical activity was that of a school nurse. Everything I did in that job, I was able to do from a wheelchair. There are a great many jobs available to nurses now that don't require heavy physical labor. The reason I'm on this board is because I'm thinking of getting my MSN in Education :smokin: I hope you find this post helpful.


14 Posts

Thank you, Cobweb. You have been most helpful.