The Trifecta

  1. I had an appointment with my student advisor to talk about my program plan, which is basically the general overview of what classes I'm going to take each semester from now until graduation. I have, what students further along in the program call, "The Trifecta". It includes Fundamentals, Pathophysiology, and Health Assessment all at once, in the same semester. One student said he ended up failing Fundamentals and had to retake it because it was so much. The general consensus was that you have a ton of reading and have to have an incredible amount of focus on each, one ends up not getting as much attention. I have to say, it has me a bit terrified. I'm not a slacker by any means and my time management skills are decent, but it's supposed to be horribly hard.

    With that being said, I was just wondering if anyone had any experience with these courses and how they managed to study, complete assignments, keep your sanity, etc. Any advice and strategies that worked for you would be greatly, and I mean greatly, appreciated. I'm not scheduled to take these three until September, so I'm hoping to use the time until then to master study skills, find out what works for me, improve my note-taking, and just keep myself from having a nervous breakdown.
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    About MusicalCoffee

    Joined: Nov '12; Posts: 47; Likes: 111
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  3. by   michelleh913
    Just wondering if you found any helpful information for the trifecta. I start it in two weeks.
  4. by   203bravo
    I just finished my 1st semester - Patho, Fundamentals & practicum, and Health Assessment & practicum... yes it is a TON and moves very quickly, especially since my classes were designed to meet only once a week for a 4 hour session... Best advice I can give.. don't get behind... I used 2 calendars (1 in my backpack and 1 by my back door so I saw it everyday) to keep up with assignments, exams, etc.. Don't wait to the last minute - especially for exams , cramming does not work in these courses.. Find and use a good resource for NCLEX type questions...

    It can be done -- I made it out with all A's.

    Best of luck.
  5. by   lovenotwar14
    Why are you taking those classes all at once
  6. by   203bravo
    Quote from lovenotwar14
    Why are you taking those classes all at once
    That's the program layout in my program for 1st semester nursing students. All classes are laid out and are only offered once a year.. so have to take them if you want to advance, otherwise have to wait a year if only taking them part time.
  7. by   dtaleton88
    The trifecta is the same layout for my first semester of nursing school. Ive been looking into it and there's mixed feeling and experiences with these classes. The most helpful info I've seen is put everything on the calendar ahead of time, don't get behind and study study study. Good luck everyone stating NS and finishing up pre reqs.
  8. by   MusicalCoffee
    I just finished, and the end couldn't come fast enough. It was the busiest semester I've ever had. Like you all mentioned, making sure to write everything down on a calendar helps a lot. My planner was my life. I also recommend a study group, which also greatly helped me. Even if it's just one person, it helps having someone to talk things out with. If you don't fully understand something, there's a good chance someone else does, and vice versa. My class really relied on each other for motivation and studying. There is so much reading, you really need to schedule time for it and keep up. That's the biggest thing I can say. If your professor emphasizes something, as ours did, highlight it, star it, throw a post-it down, anything to make sure you know that particular piece of information. Honestly, you're going to spend all of your time, and I mean all of it, studying and doing assignments. That's just the reality. It's going to be super stressful, but if you stay focused it'll be fine.
    Once I stopped worrying and thinking about all I had to do in the coming weeks and just focused on getting through the assignments and readings for the day, it felt less overwhelming. If you get confused, lost, or are unsure, ask for help. See the professor after class or during office hours. Ask a classmate to explain it. Don't wait until you fall behind because it'll be impossible to catch up. In the end, though, trust me when I say it feels GREAT finishing your finals on the last day, knowing you made it through it all. It's all worth it. Best of luck!
  9. by   dtaleton88
    How was your clinical experience? Did you get a lot of check offs in the beginning of fundamentals to be able to actually use the skills for a good majority of the semester?
  10. by   Mandy0728
    Um...I start my first semester of nursing school in 7 days and my schedule is as follows:

    Nursing interventions
    Nursing assessment
    Nursing concepts
    Nursing research

    I have one class each day if the week so each class is 2-3 hours. I have 2 labs per week as well.
  11. by   MusicalCoffee
    My first clinical experience was in a rehabilitation and nursing home, and it was amazing. I was more than a little nervous and apprehensive about it, as I've never had any kind of experience in the field before, but I loved it. The skills we learned during our fundamentals, like hand washing, changing bedding, and giving a bed bath, were some of the tasks we did there. I was also lucky enough to have my instructor allow me to give an insulin injection to a patient. There was, however, a significant amount of down time, in which we looked at our patient's chart in order to complete the care plan. We got to observe the wound care nurse, physical therapist, and other nurses provide care as well. The things I learned in fundamentals as well as my health assessment really helped me with my patient, as we also had to perform a head to toe assessment on our patient. I'm looking forward to my next clinical site, which will be a hospital.