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Hi everyone,

I am starting nursing school in January and I was wondering how many students use PDA's. I asked Santa for one but I wanted to see how popular they were on this board. Do you find that you use the PDA all the time or is it something that sits in the drawer (SP?):eek: I know some students use them for pharmacology but what else do you use them for?

Anyway, just curious to see how new students use technology to help them in their studies.


jschut, BSN, RN

2,743 Posts

Know what? I have one..(actually two, cause hubby doesn't use his!) and anymore, I find it more of a distraction to have to carry around and use all the time. I guess I'm back to the paper and pencil basics.

I liked it in nursing school though, and I did find the ePocrates drug guide helpful.

Best of luck to you in finding the one right for you!

Happy Holly-days!

Julie :)

suzy253, RN

3,815 Posts

Specializes in Telemetry/Med Surg.

I would like a PDA but I'm not sure if we're allowed to use them as student nurses. I should check this out. They have great programs to download.


1,078 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU.

I LOVE my pda (have had one for years though - so I'm a PDA geek :chuckle)

I use mine in school with a portable keyboard to take notes (its like have a laptop only a heck of a lot smaller/lighter.

Right now at Circuit City you can get a Sony Clie SJ22 (color screen, 16mb on board), with a memory stick (up to 256mb) slot.

$99.00 after $50 mail-in rebate. As far as I know (I work at CC) the promotion is ending 12/6 (although we just got a large shipment in -- so they may have plans of extending it).

You can download lots of great nursing/medical software from http://pdacortex.com

If you want further information, please pm me.


355 Posts

I have a PDA and don't use it... wish I did, though. I am planning on taking a course through COMP USA to get better acquainted with it. I got a keyboard for mine but have never been able to make it work. Don't know if I need more memory... I decided to spend the bucks and time over break and really learn what I need to make it useful to me.


1,062 Posts

Specializes in ICU, psych, corrections.

I have a Palm m130 with a nice folding Logitech keyboard that I got on Ebay. It was a good deal ($125 for everything) and I use it a LOT. I have the ePocrates that is very useful, as well as a patient tracker program that was free as well. I also use it to keep track of birthday's, my weight training program, my shopping list, my Christmas list, my budget, etc.

I use it all the time and love it. The only thing I'm thinking of changing is eventually upgrading to a Pocket PC because I would love to have Word on it to take notes and transfer documents back and forth from it to desktop. Also, the new ones are great because you can play your Mp3's on them....I have well over 1000 songs on my hard drive and it would be nice to carry those around with me instead of carrying a separate Mp3 player. I think some of the newer ones also have phones built into them, as well as cameras, but that doesn't interest me.


1,078 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU.
I use it all the time and love it. The only thing I'm thinking of changing is eventually upgrading to a Pocket PC because I would love to have Word on it to take notes and transfer documents back and forth from it to desktop.

All you need to do is buy wordsmith. http://www.palmgear.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=software.showsoftware&sid=3FA999B4-768F-4EEF-97D147DCF117A643&prodID=11205

I take notes on my palm and they are saved as a word document. I then just hotsync and they are in there own school notes folder (which I created). The folder is available through word or even more conveniently through my window's desktop. No need to upgrade.

Sue, is the PDA that is on sale at CC adequate? A lot of people in my class (about 1/3) bought one at Staples for $299, plus they "had" to buy a disk (or something) for memory for an extra $65 or it would have been "useless" (all their words).

I am thinking this is a little to pricey for my budget. But $99 is right up my alley. The thing is I am going to get my CRNA when I am through with my BSN and PDA's are highly recommended in some schools, and required in others. Will this one be adequate for what I may need in the future?

Sorry I am a computer dummy and as you can tell, don't know much about them.


Specializes in Child/Adolescent Mental Health.

Thanks for the replies.

I am looking at maybe getting a mid-range model because it seems to me that the lower priced models will eventually have to be upgraded, i.e. more memory etc. I have been looking on Amazon, but I am not quite sure which model I want. Any suggestions? I am leaning towards a Palm Tungsten, at least I think that's what it's called.



1,078 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU.

Hi Mona,

The Sony Clie SJ22 has 16mb already and a memory slot for a Memory Stick. This is what you need to purchase in order to have space for medical programs. All of the PDA's including the mid-range ones will require the purchase of some type of memory media (Secure Digital, Memory Stick, Compact Flash). When I bought my PDA the memory stick was on sale for $34.99 plus another $10 rebate. This made it really affordable. Right now, 128mb ms is about $63.

You may find a mid-range PDA with 32mb to start, but it still will not be enough. That is why I recommend this model so highly.

I know a LOT about PDA's including all of the Tungstens and the other models on the market (including pocket PC's by HP or Toshiba). Feel free to IM me for more info. :D


1,078 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU.

Palm Tungsten includes the following models:

Tungsten T1, T2, T3, W(wireless-don't waste your time/money), Tungsten C, and Tungsten E.

Here's more info: http://www.palmone.com/us/products/compare/

The closest Tungsten model to the Sony Clie is the Tungsten E at $199. Also, the Tungsten E does NOT have the universal connection port that the rest of the Tungsten series has. This will make finding a keyboard that will work with it (for taking notes in class) difficult. Targus makes a wireless keyboard, but I don't know how reliable it is. Sometimes just beaming a doc, fails so I'd imagine the wireless keyboard could fail, don't know.


1,062 Posts

Specializes in ICU, psych, corrections.


Thanks for the advice on wordsmith. I have this huge 256k memory card and nothing to put on it! :D I bought it on Ebay right after purchasing my Palm for $50, which was a GREAT deal, but then after putting it in, realized it was way more memory than I needed. So putting that word program on there will be great...no need to go out and buy a more expensive PDA. You know I looked at Circuit City and Best Buy for a keyboard I liked and could not find one that suited my taste? Guess where I finally found one? Ebay...it folds up in half with a hard case and I love the way it types. It's almost like using a standard size keyboard and it makes entering stuff into my Palm SO much easier than hunt and peck or graffiti.

I will buy the program you recommended on hubby's next pay period. I love that Palmgear website...I have downloaded a lot of stuff from here, as well as Skyscape.com.

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