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quick question re: patho

NP Students   (2,285 Views | 15 Replies)

5,185 Profile Views; 236 Posts

I'm in an online FNP program. Even the local brick-and-mortar school has most of their didactic courses online. Anyway, the advanced patho course is not impossible, but it is a VERY VERY VERY large amount of information to "learn" in one semester. I was talking to another FNP student at another program. He felt the same way I do - we don't feel like we are learning anything. We feel that yes, we have done ok academically this semester but we don't feel that we can accurately look at a condition and diagnose it. The sheer volume of information has been totally overwhelming. We feel that we might as well not even have taken the course (if that were an option). I don't feel any smarter patho-wise now than I did before. If we had longer to take the course, perhaps we could have managed to retain a thing or two. So my question is this: have any of you gone through the same thing? I surely can't be the only one.

Thanks.

HBGWAN

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31 Posts; 1,518 Profile Views

We share many of the same frustrations -- I attend a "brick and mortar" school near my home. Part of our program is done online. We had to do online patho and pharm this past summer, but our theory courses were in person. In my personal opinion (and what would seem to be the opinion of most of my classmates) we would have been MUCH better served doing the theory courses online during the summer,and spending the spring in "live" patho and pharm classes with an engaging instructor familiar with the material.

Fortunately, our professors for this semester (and hopefully the rest of the program) are clinically active NP's who know how to teach graduate students effectively.

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ghillbert has 20 years experience as a MSN, NP and specializes in CTICU.

1 Follower; 3,691 Posts; 42,621 Profile Views

I learned far more patho during clinicals from doing research about my patients' conditions than I ever did in patho class.

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Cardiac-RN has 8 years experience.

149 Posts; 3,618 Profile Views

Agree with the above posters. It is a lot of information to be reviewed in one semester. But your real ability to diagnosis is not going to come from patho class alone, it is going to come from your clinical rotations when the pieces of what you have read studied (from patho) fit together with your clinical assessment data for that 'aha moment'. One part of it is going to be repetitions, seeing the same condition numerous times will aid in your comfort with recognizing it for diagnosis, another part is going to be searching out unusual cases/ research for learning opportunities.

I think most of us have felt the way you are right now, whether we took it on-line or in class. Things will pull together in your rotations.

Some other strategies I would recommend include seeking out some of your own learning opportunities (seminars, podcasts, youtube videos, CEs), & perhaps purchasing and FNP review course early in your program that you can use to supplement your program and continually review ongoing to manage the large hunk of material.

Good luck,

Cardiac

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honeykrown is a MSN, NP and specializes in family practice.

385 Posts; 8,440 Profile Views

I grasped more of patho when I started my primary care courses. As you go through the program and build on your knowledge it will click. During patho, I felt a lot of the information was too advanced and I didn't learn but when I got to the primary care courses and the topics were reviewed, I realized I learnt a lot in patho. My patho class was all online.

Of course you will build on it more in clinical and in actual practice.

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1,871 Posts; 23,019 Profile Views

Even our physicians who had 4-5 year residencies are on Uptodate, Epocrates and medscape researching and reading throughout a shift to better understand a diagnosis. The patho class is meant to provide a basis not the endpoint of learning.

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236 Posts; 5,185 Profile Views

Thank you all for your replies. It is definitely comforting knowing that I'm not alone in feeling like there is just way too much information to digest during patho class. Hopefully it will all come together once I start my rotations.

Best,

HBGWAN

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31 Posts; 1,518 Profile Views

It's nice to hear that others were in similar situations. I'm looking forward to starting clinicals.

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Meowmixer specializes in PICU.

140 Posts; 3,176 Profile Views

Thank you for this post! I just finished patho this fall and purchased a quick review (all 600 pages of it) to read during my break, and I'm exhausted -_-. I'm terrified that I'm going to get into clinical and look bad because I don't know everything. My clinical courses start at the same time as my track specific (ACPNP) classes do so I feel like I need to know EVERYTHING beforehand. Clearly, I know I'm overreacting, but I can't help it.

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MikeFNPC is a MSN and specializes in FNP.

238 Posts; 6,270 Profile Views

No, of course you're not the only one to have these feelings. What seemed to happen to myself as well as my fellow classmates is that during clinicals there's a gradual Okay, I'm getting it now” feeling. For me there were many moments where I didn't quite understand why we were doing, learning, and writing the papers we were. All I could do was trust my instructors and the process. In the end you'll get it. And don't forget a little fear isn't necessarily a bad thing. Try and learn as much as you can and have fun with it!

Mike

Edited by MikeFNPC
grammatical correction

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Nursing girl28 has 5 years experience and specializes in Psychiatric/Mental Health.

63 Posts; 2,016 Profile Views

Hi,

I live in Austin,TX & I'm thinking of applying to USA'S Bsn-dnp psychiatric program for the fall semester of 2015. You stated that you have campus visits for clinicals. Are you doing this program on a full-time basis? Received an email from the school that there are no campus visits though I intend to attend part time so maybe that's the reason. How's the program so far? I know that students are supposed to find their own clinical sites so worried about that but any information you can share is appreciated. Thanks.

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Nursing girl28 has 5 years experience and specializes in Psychiatric/Mental Health.

63 Posts; 2,016 Profile Views

Hi Meowmixer,

Could you share your experience about USA'S Bsn-dnp program? I am thinking of applying for the psychiatric track for the fall semester of 2015. I live in Austin, TX so have to look for my clinical sites. Thanks.

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