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Student Mistreatment


Hello Everyone,

I warm you now I am writing this thread as a way to vent because I do not want to get depressed again about the professors abusive behavior.

I am currently a junior in college. Just got into the nursing program 1st semester.

For the sake of confidentiality, professor's name is Pac.

This professor, Pac, i have been having difficulty with since day 1 but lately i am at my limit with her. She publicly reprimands me and humiliates me in front of the class. Everyone says she is psycho. Sadly she teaches two of my classes Fundamentals of Nursing and Pathophysiology. Today I had her for patho.

This is what caused me to be upset today :crying2::

There was a professor, San, presenting today about the GI abnormalities. He has a minor Spanish accent and me being tired after clinical made it difficult to understand what he was saying. Another added factor was this is a subject the class has not even studied yet for the exam.

He, San, said something that was "eosinogapharengeal", sadly I don't know. I raised my hand and asked if he would spell that word. I was not going to say, i cant understand with you accent can you say that again?

Professor, Pac, says "Who said that? Own it. Who said that?" I raised my hand. Teacher, Pac, "You are supposed to write how it sounds than go home and look it up. Own it. You do not disrespect the professor. Go home and look it up."

Now I am highly upset. I just asked a simple question about spelling, even raised my hand so how am I disrespecting the presenting professor? Of course I stay quiet because if i say something back i get more in trouble. :mad:

Another student later asked a meaning of a word. That is a big big no no in the class. She NEVER wants you to say that. Yet!!! She does not reprimand this student.

Another time, a student spoke in my direction and I just raised the book to her face so i don't have to speak in class. Next thing i know is she says, Pac, "I will ask you to step out of class if you keep talking. This is the second time." Mind you I wasn;t even looking at her. :uhoh3: For the rest of the class I turned away from anyone that could possibly look my direction.

Now I sit away from people and stare at my desk. I don't raise my hand or even look at her. I am a wall, you do not see me - is my mantra.

I called my fiance to vent because I was so upset and he said pretty much to stop complaining if I'm not going to do something about it. I guess he's getting fed up about me speaking of school, teachers and my weight/body image issues. I don't even talk to him about my weight in a while because now he says the same thing to school.

I just got over my depression that I didnt even realize i had. I used to cry all the time, when i studied i couldnt remember anything the next day. I failed my first two patho test. My second fundamentals test. Enough is a enough. :crying2:

I finally passed the third fundamental exam yay!! :lol2: Clinical is the only class i'm doing great in.

I would never recommend this school because of my impression of this semester. Someone help me because she also teaches advanced patho (graduate), patho (undergraduate), critical thinking and another class.

Health: Hypothyroidism 100mcg, low salt diet, fatigue, limited sleep (always take an afternoon nap now), pain from back fracture (spondylisis ?? -> spelling), weaken right knee, sciatica, major allergies (to everything literally, took a test for it, recommend shots), messed up my reproductive system through stupid usage of electrode pads now my ovary area hurts all the time and i caused my cycle to come two weeks early. Right thigh and knee just aches. I know i have circulation issues because I wake up with swollen feet and leg cramping. :eek:

I can't wait for this semester to end!!! :yeah:

carolmaccas66, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, DSU, Ortho, Onc, Psych.

Goodness ur a mess I don't know where to start!

Firstly, u won't be able to study if u have all these health problems. U need to see ur Dr to get some of them resolved or even looked at.

Secondly, does this prof think ur all 5 years old? U need to get other people together to have a talk with her. Don't go alone, try to talk 2 other people in ur class re her attitude. Remind her ur mature students, not babies, and hiding from her is not going to make a difference. I've met some truly disturbed NMs/senior nurses in my time, & some do have a Hitler complex.

Also we had a lecturer we could not understand, complained re it thru the whole semester, and nearly everyone failed. We all basically went to the head of the school's office and demanded we get passes in our exam because we HAD said we could not understand this lecturer. The school conceded and we all passed. Maybe u could all do something like this?

Make sure u also complain to the head of ur school, and head of ur university/college. Don't stand for any abuse - I wouldn't.


Specializes in Neuro, Neuro ICU.

I'm so sorry you are feeling this way, and I do think that this instructor is being unfair. It seems as if you did something at one point that she didn't like and she is holding a grudge. I cant really offer any advice because I don't know how I would handle the situation if I were in your shoes. I guess I would just TRY (i know easier said than done) to get through it, and know that not all your instructors will be like that.


Specializes in Neuro, Neuro ICU.

also- i agree with carol on seeing a doctor.

If you have a fair director in your program, definitely talk to them.

evolvingrn, BSN, RN

Specializes in Hospice.

hang in there semester is almost over.

kgh31386, BSN, MSN, RN

Has 4 years experience.

Well I gotta say you have a very respectful demeanor. You seem mature and didn't come on here angry or complaining...you have true concerns and issues with the teacher. Is there any way you could meet with them one on one outside of class? You may have said that but I'm half asleep with a cold so I might have missed it. Also as long as you get through with this teacher, no more teacher right?

You are having a really rough semester, but as long as its what you really want to do, hang in there and don't let things get to you. That said - if someone is talking and you say "Can you spell that?" you could probably see how it could be misinterpreted as trying to be funny, or the person could think you're making fun of their accent, or challenging them, etc - way too eacy to misinterpret and I don't think people usually ask people to spell things they are saying. I actually think asking him to repeat it would have been a little nicer - I don't think people with accents like to spell out what they're saying, that's kind of unreasonable. I can understand that you would be frustrated though, because you had good intentions. I wouldn't let it bother you at all though since it was a just was a legitimate misunderstanding, and not a serious one. G/L, enjoy the Thanksgiving break =) :heartbeat

Orange Tree

Specializes in Medical Surgical Orthopedic.

It sounds like your issue with this professor may only be a symptom of a much bigger problem. Are your tests objective ....multiple choice as opposed to essay-type questions? If they are, it's not so great that you have failed three of them this semester. I think you may need to focus on where you're falling short instead of where other people may be.

I'm not trying to be mean or make you feel worse, but I observed several students with similar complaints in my first and second semesters of nursing school. They had problems with mean professors, unfair test questions, personal relationships, their kids, transportation, etc. Everything happened "to" them, and they accepted responsibility for nothing. Although other students were sympathetic, we all knew they wouldn't make it very far- and they didn't. They just didn't "get it". They were "open books" focused on their own problems ....not the problems of their patients.

I think you're doing the right thing by keeping quiet and staying off the radar. Keep studying hard and leave any personal issues you may have at home. Nobody needs to know anything about you except for how committed you are to the care of your patients. Someday, you'll be able to look back and say you made it despite everything that was going on in your life at the time. But for now, your problems don't exist.

classicdame, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator.

sounds like you are suffering from burn out all the way around. If you do not break the cycle you will either get sick, drop out of school or both. You need to get your health in order, talk to the Dean about the instructor and get rest. Otherwise, the rest of nursing school will be one big ordeal for you. Prioritize. Don't try to keep the same lifestyle you had before nursing school - you need time to rest.

casi, ASN, RN

Specializes in LTC. Has 3 years experience.

You just have one semester with this prof. Hang in there and rejoice when your done. You can do it!

BrnEyedGirl, BSN, MSN, RN, APRN

Specializes in Cardiac, ER. Has 18 years experience.

I agree with the others, see you doctor about your multiple health issues. Then try to not take things so personally. You will run across many jerks in your life, acknowledge them politely if it's necessary and move on. Don't allow him/her to be infectious and spread it to you!

Hang in there, nursing school sucks, but it doesn't last forever!

My professor always say stuff like "Look it up." I was talking to her later and I told her that some ppl were taking it badly. She said that the reason she makes you look it up is that you remember something you have to work to look up. She also said that she is trying to teach us to be independent so we will be able to work without relying on other ppl to help us. Make sure you read ahead before you go to class. That way if you have a question you can ask. Don't be intimidated. If you feel more comfortable, ask your study partners. That is who I usually go to 1st if I have a question. If they don't know, I would then go to the teacher. If it is something other students can't answer then it is a valid question your prof needs to answer. If you have another prof you can go to to ask questions, use them. Most teachers like to help. You can also record lectures so you can listen to them again so in case you miss something you don't have to ask. Your prof can't fail you for no reason. If you do your work and pass your test you will graduate. Just look at this as a temporary situation. Focus on passing your tests, and let karma take care of your nasty prof. ;)

I had a queen ***** of hell as an clinical instructor too, I even yelled at her, saying as I stood up"What The HELL DO YOU WANT!" (with an F word)

as she was trying to talk to me I just grabbed my stuff and left the clinical day.

I wrote an appology letter next day. and then she no longer belittle me. I also accepted that this is her way of teaching.

on the last days of clinicals that queen btch of hell told me. "You are going to be a good nurse, I am so proud of you" and I no longer see her as queen ***** of hell. I see her as a mentor who only tries her best to produce top notch nurses.

Dont do what I did. DONT YELL BACK!

If the instructor say "Look it up" Dont be offended.

The instructor is teaching you to become resourceful. as a nurse, you need to be resourceful and full of knowledge.

If the instructor tells you the answer right away... its just spoon feeding a baby and its likely you will forget. thats why LOOK IT UP is the best way.

Edited by dianah
Terms of Service: use all *s

I am sorry you are having so much trouble. I understand how you feel about your instructor. I was in my 4th semester of a community college nursing program. I was so happy before the semester began...it was to be my last, after working soooo hard to get into nursing school, it was finally going to be over. 1st to 3rd sem was hard but got thru. So, from the start of 4th semester, I got this instructor who everyone said be warned she is a she devil! Well that is an understatment! She just hated me from the start, during clinicals she would make me so nervous I would drop things when she walked into the room, she called me names, she would tell me I will never become a nurse, she said she would drop me, I was a wreck. I would cry before, during and after clinicals...I felt so broken down, I never in my life felt that way. I didn't do anything wrong. Except for when she made me make mistakes. No one in that clinical group was perfect, but she just had it out for me so bad.

So, to make a long story short, btw, she did much worse to me, just don't want to go into detail. I finally could not take it anymore, I was losing my mind! I decided, I would drop. After wanting this so bad, I dropped. And, I did go to the director of the program, she did nothing about it!

That was in 2007, I was never able to get back into another RN program, I don't know why, So, I decided to get my LVN and try to get in that way.

I test on Dec 7th, I pray I pass, I really want to be a nurse finally.:o

ObtundedRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 6 years experience.

If you can't ask questions during class, then how are you supposed to learn? I understand they want you to know how to look up things on your own, but, I've always had the thought that a lecture class is a two way communication between the teacher and the class. The teacher is there to convey the information, but the class should be allowed to ask questions.

And what is with the phrase "Own it?" lol.

Faeriewand, ASN, RN

Specializes in med/surg/tele/neuro/rehab/corrections. Has 11 years experience.

Yeah I don't understand the whole "own it" comment either. Didn't seem right for the situation.

Nursing school sucks, but if you can't cope with a difficult professor, how are you going to cope when you have crazy/difficult/rude/mean patients? My advice is to just do your best to study, graduate school and take control over yourself. You cannot control how others behave, only how you react to them.

if there's anything i learned in nsg school, i learned to suck it up.

it doesn't matter if they were wrong/rude/patronizing/belittling, etc.

i learned there's more than one way to skin a cat.

and that's what 'they' want you to learn...

to be resourceful, take initiative, be creative, independent...

because once out in the real world of nursing, you are indeed, going to have to learn the aforementioned.

otherwise 'they' (drs, pts, families, coworkers) will chew you up and spit you out.

seriously, learn to "suck it up".

otherwise, you have little chance to survive once you graduate.

you can do this, and you'll find a way to do so.

wishing you the very best.:)