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What was your experience like in nursing school? I have a lot of questions!

Posted

Has <1 years experience.

I'm awaiting for my letter of acceptance in any of the nursing programs I have applied for

But I am so damn nervous! Not for being accepted or not but the experience!

Before I start off with questions, I want to say that I believe I have anxiety attacks. I've never been checked nor diagnosed for it. But I can't do speeches, presentations, or have people watch me for any performance without getting hot, red, sweaty, and wanting to cry.

I've heard that in nursing school, they have human simulators and your professors, along with classmates, watch you through a 2 way mirror with a microphone. That would really freak me out. I'd be super comfortable if it were just only the professors watching and judging me because I know I can go back to them and ask for help in correction. But the students? Nope. I'd freeze up, get hot and sweaty, and probably cry.

Sooo here are my questions:

*does anyone have this same condition/situation as me?

*how hard is nursing school?

*can you give me advice on your study habits?

*how were you able to balance 16-18 credits each semester?

*have any of you ever failed, literally, gotten an F, or D, in any of your classes?

*how are the clinicals? Can you explain them each, starting off by which class it was? (e.g. 1st semester clinical and name of class, 2nd semester clinical and name of class) what did they each in your clinicals? How well did you do?

*have you ever messed up in clinicals?

*when you first got paired with a nurse, what all did they train/teach you? Are they always with you? Do they always teach you? Are you EVER alone in any clinicals?

*did you have to do any papers? Any projects? Any SPEECHES?

*how helpful were your professors? And classmates?

*I've NEVER had a study group, never been in one. I've always been outcasted by classmates because of my tattoos, so I always been alone. But I've been successful in my classes.

*I took anatomy and physiology online 3 yrs ago. I honestly regret it

because I didn't learn ANYTHING because of the labs online! Everything was cramped together since it was blended course. I'm trying to teach myself at the moment. So with that being said, do your professors go over anatomy and physiology?

*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology? I found it SO difficult to comprehend, that I couldn't remember the functions

*what were your setbacks in nursing school?

*what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?

*what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?

*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?

*what were your grades like throughout? Were they what you because I didn't learn ANYTHING because of the labs online! Everything was cramped together since it was blended course. I'm trying to teach myself at the moment. So with that being said, do your professors go over anatomy and physiology?

*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology? I found it SO difficult to comprehend, that I couldn't remember the functions

*what were your setbacks in nursing school?

*what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?

*what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?

*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?

*what were your grades like throughout? Were they what you expected? Do you wish you could have done more or less?

*what was your favorite and least favorite thing in nursing school

*what apps/books did you use throughout nursing school?

*how long have you been out of nursing school?

*how much did you study for the NCLEX?

*how many times did you take the NCLEX?

*what were the interviews like for an RN?

*what facility did you start off working at? What department?

*If you started off in the ER or critical care, ICU,how was the first day?

*this continues from the previous question, when you had your first emergency pt, what was it like? Did you know what to do? Were there times where you almost lost it?

*how are you liking the nurse life

*what is your favorite and least favorite of where you work?

*what is your advice in preparation for nursing school, during nursing school, and after nursing school?

PLEASE ANSWER ALL! and all the questions within each (*)!! I'd greatly appreciate it!

Irish_Mist, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardicac Neuro Telemetry. Has 100 years experience.

Your post consists of roughly 40 questions. I'm not sure you're going to get a lot of feedback with so many detailed questions. I'd condense your post a bit if I were you. Just a suggestion.

Regarding your anxiety, I would consider speaking to a medical professional whether it be your primary care doctor, a counselor or a psychiatrist. Lastly, you say you regret taking A&P online because you didn't learn anything. My advice would be to retake it in class. Understanding the concepts in A&P is crucial for success as a nursing student and ultimately, an RN.

Best of luck.

malenurse69, MSN, NP

Specializes in ICU / Urgent Care. Has 5 years experience.

Well starting from the top...

Nursing school is pretty hard, but it's pretty relativ.... oh look a squirrel!

I do not have the condition but know that you should try something to get through it because you WILL HAVE TO deal with simulators as well as real patients with people watching you. I have gotten red, flustered and cried but you take a breath and learn from it! Also my school (as well as others) have presentations for every class. Nursing school is no joke, classes and clinicals and studying takes up your time, enjoy what time you have! I am more of a loan studier but did have a group of a few girls that helped me study! I liked to read the material and write down notes and then would re read my notes later. I was able to balance by creating a schedule of my studying, work, gym, even sleep (I love my sleep, more than anything sometimes), you need to find your own balance. I never failed a class but I have failed a few tests and it sucks terribly but don't let it hold you back, learn from it and move on. The classes I had was Funds, med surg, mental health, intermediate med surg, OB, PEDS, advanced med surg (critical care) in that order. You start off slow more of doing vitals and patient care and the further you go the more you get to do (hang meds, participate in procedures/codes, go to different areas like ER/ICU). In OB obviously get to see births and cool stuff, PEDS get to help kids usually pretty basic stuff depending on the hospital and season. Mental health is more observing. I have messed up at clinical but nothing life threatening (broke sterile technique during my first foley cath and had to start over) but I didn't hurt the patient and I started over and did it right. They train and teach what we are allowed to do.. Depends on the level you are on! They are not always with you but when you do procedures and stuff they are with you or your clinical instructors are. I had to do projects and speeches in EVERY single class. How can you talk and teach your patients (basically strangers) if you can't talk to people you see on a regular basis? Just a thought. Most of my professors were extremely helpful and want you to succeed, but use the tools they give you to succeed (tutoring, lectures, notes). Classmates can be a great tool depending on each persons learning style. In nursing classes teachers sometimes go over A and P but usually expect you to know at least basics. Honestly I only remember basics and I did well in school, if there is something you forgot, review it! My setbacks were math, you have lots of math and that's where I am weakest so I had to work twice as hard as some. My school had a policy where you have to pass a math test to pass medications at clinical and I failed a few different times for different classes. The worst part was that the tests get harder the next time you take it (we got 3 chances to pass it) but it made me a better nurse and now I triple check all my math!! Any of my mistakes I fixed with staying positive and moving forward, focusing on the past will not help. I wanted to do nursing because I loved being around other people and wanted to help! No previous major. I had broken down after failing my first math test but I studied my tush off and passed the 2nd time. I saw my first code and cried in my friends arms. My teacher told me to suck it up. That patient was talking to me less than 5 minutes earlier and then just coded in front of me. Obviously I can't be that emotional and I learned that but I feel it also helps make you a more compassionate nurse. I had B's and Cs in my prerequisite classes like A and P but got As and Bs in all my nursing classes. I graduated from West Coast University. The classes were as tough as I thought but it came naturally to me, idk why it's just something that I feel I was born to do! My favorite thing was clinical, meeting new patients and getting awesome experience, you really touch people's lives. My least favorite part.. Learning to deal with smells! There are some things you don't forget. I used the text books required by my school as well as ATI to supplement. I graduated August 2015. I studied for 9 weeks waiting to take my NCLEX, studied a little every day until about a week before then I studied all day until I took it. I only passed Nclex 10 days ago so I am still on the job hunt! My advice would be to study your hardest and try to have fun with it! Nursing is serious but you also have to look at the positive side of things and know you are helping people. Make friends and do your best. That's all you can do! Good luck! Sorry can't answer the last few.

xmilkncookiesx, RN

Has <1 years experience.

I do not have the condition but know that you should try something to get through it because you WILL HAVE TO deal with simulators as well as real patients with people watching you. I have gotten red, flustered and cried but you take a breath and learn from it! Also my school (as well as others) have presentations for every class. Nursing school is no joke, classes and clinicals and studying takes up your time, enjoy what time you have! I am more of a loan studier but did have a group of a few girls that helped me study! I liked to read the material and write down notes and then would re read my notes later. I was able to balance by creating a schedule of my studying, work, gym, even sleep (I love my sleep, more than anything sometimes), you need to find your own balance. I never failed a class but I have failed a few tests and it sucks terribly but don't let it hold you back, learn from it and move on. The classes I had was Funds, med surg, mental health, intermediate med surg, OB, PEDS, advanced med surg (critical care) in that order. You start off slow more of doing vitals and patient care and the further you go the more you get to do (hang meds, participate in procedures/codes, go to different areas like ER/ICU). In OB obviously get to see births and cool stuff, PEDS get to help kids usually pretty basic stuff depending on the hospital and season. Mental health is more observing. I have messed up at clinical but nothing life threatening (broke sterile technique during my first foley cath and had to start over) but I didn't hurt the patient and I started over and did it right. They train and teach what we are allowed to do.. Depends on the level you are on! They are not always with you but when you do procedures and stuff they are with you or your clinical instructors are. I had to do projects and speeches in EVERY single class. How can you talk and teach your patients (basically strangers) if you can't talk to people you see on a regular basis? Just a thought. Most of my professors were extremely helpful and want you to succeed, but use the tools they give you to succeed (tutoring, lectures, notes). Classmates can be a great tool depending on each persons learning style. In nursing classes teachers sometimes go over A and P but usually expect you to know at least basics. Honestly I only remember basics and I did well in school, if there is something you forgot, review it! My setbacks were math, you have lots of math and that's where I am weakest so I had to work twice as hard as some. My school had a policy where you have to pass a math test to pass medications at clinical and I failed a few different times for different classes. The worst part was that the tests get harder the next time you take it (we got 3 chances to pass it) but it made me a better nurse and now I triple check all my math!! Any of my mistakes I fixed with staying positive and moving forward, focusing on the past will not help. I wanted to do nursing because I loved being around other people and wanted to help! No previous major. I had broken down after failing my first math test but I studied my tush off and passed the 2nd time. I saw my first code and cried in my friends arms. My teacher told me to suck it up. That patient was talking to me less than 5 minutes earlier and then just coded in front of me. Obviously I can't be that emotional and I learned that but I feel it also helps make you a more compassionate nurse. I had B's and Cs in my prerequisite classes like A and P but got As and Bs in all my nursing classes. I graduated from West Coast University. The classes were as tough as I thought but it came naturally to me, idk why it's just something that I feel I was born to do! My favorite thing was clinical, meeting new patients and getting awesome experience, you really touch people's lives. My least favorite part.. Learning to deal with smells! There are some things you don't forget. I used the text books required by my school as well as ATI to supplement. I graduated August 2015. I studied for 9 weeks waiting to take my NCLEX, studied a little every day until about a week before then I studied all day until I took it. I only passed Nclex 10 days ago so I am still on the job hunt! My advice would be to study your hardest and try to have fun with it! Nursing is serious but you also have to look at the positive side of things and know you are helping people. Make friends and do your best. That's all you can do! Good luck! Sorry can't answer the last few.

Thank you SO much for answering as much as you can! I'd greatly appreciate it.

I'm not that much of an emotional person, I believe I'll be able to deal with death easily, illnesses, heart breaks, etc. Only until I've gotten close to pts then yes, I will break down eventually.

direw0lf, BSN

Has 3 years experience.

So I'm really curious. .you said you've been out casted for tattoos? May I ask what are your tattoos of and do you know if they have to be covered in your clinicals?

I guess I have to answer some questions since I asked my own!

A&p= very important. Good that you're studying now.

Um..yes speeches..technically presentations and group projects. Have to learn how to collaborate and work with your peers I guess since nursing is important to collaborate and work with each other and part of the multidisciplinary team.

Study groups are helpful even though I used to think I study better on my own, people usually say something I needed to hear and learn. And it helps you remember when you explain to someone else and helps you see how much you really do know the material.

My study habits are to draw as much as I can. And for adventitious breath sounds I made pictures like a mouse for low pitched wheezes (rhonchi) because a mouse is a rodent (R for rhonchi) low to the ground (low pitched). I made a pic of a sibling with his hands raised high for high pitched wheezes (sibilant).. etc.

I was a biology major previously..

Mistakes: getting involved in drama. Avoid it.

I have had a lot of the same questions as you do as pre-nursing student. I have found books on Amazon about nursing school experiences, blogs and also some great YouTube channels where people discuss a lot of what you are asking. Do some research and I think you will find a lot of what you are looking for. Good luck and I hope the letters show up with good news!

UnicornMagic

Specializes in Telemetry. Has <1 years experience.

*I've NEVER had a study group, never been in one. I've always been outcasted by classmates because of my tattoos, so I always been alone. But I've been successful in my classes.

PLEASE ANSWER ALL! and all the questions within each (*)!! I'd greatly appreciate it!

Good luck finding someone who will answer your questions. I honestly don't have the time or patience to even read them all. The tattoo thing is very strange to me.. do you live in a small town? I have both sleeves, both of my leg 1/2 sleeves, chest, back...pretty much every part of me covered with exception to my hands, neck and face. I have never experienced being an outcast as a result.

Haha! I saw this post and was excited to help since I'm in my first semester in nursing school.... but I don't need to take another numerous question test, sorry.

Basically, nursing school is challenging. But if you really want to be a nurse, you'll manage and balance life and school, and learn to say no when people want to hang out/need something. Also, study a little every day. Best of luck!

WookieeRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in PACU. Has 4 years experience.

Holy moly, I don't think you're going to get anyone to write an essay answering all those question.

Nursing school is hard. You get what you put in.

xmilkncookiesx, RN

Has <1 years experience.

Well gee thanks for the help from 2 people only on this post

I think maybe because I'm in a college where majority of Caucasians attend. KU

Tats are on my hand and wrist. I got them so long ago, yrs ago. I use makeup to cover them off, waterproof. Often times I go to school and embrace them because I don't regret getting these tats.

One is on my wrist, it's of kitty paws. I love cats. The other is on top of my hand, its big. It's a beautiful portrait of one of my cats that passed away. Had her for a very long time. Have a friends name on my promise finger because he was my best friend and he passed away 2 yrs ago.

I think people see me as a "typical Hispanic person with tattoos on the hands".

So if that scares ppl away because of the location of my tats, what they are, then something is wrong with them.

I have come across so many different people from looks, interests, personalities, and never judged them.

I use to do MMA, so I have a few visible scars thar make me look mean and rough.

I've never been a bully, I've beaten a few up because they were being viscous little **** heads to others.

I'm a quiet person. I wait til someone else talks to me and I can then keep a conversation going. I'm just shy, not a stuck up mean looking ***** like others perceive me as.

I'm sure all of you were me at one point and had the same questions, or majority of them and wanted to know. But thanks for trying, although most of your responses weren't helpful.

Some people are and will be successful without help. I'm becoming to see that as I progress through the years. That's fine with me.

Read the forums here or elsewhere.

Download or borrow the nursing school experience books. I got a lot of them free in my kindle.

I personally found them to be very repetitive. And most of the "tips" don't work for me.

Watch YouTube videos. There's hours of video on all the things you asked (the ones I read anyway)

It's hard. It's going to be harder if you don't take the time to research information.

pmabraham, BSN, RN

Specializes in Hospice, Palliative Care. Has 3 years experience.

"how hard is nursing school?"

Common question, but any answer is irrelevant as the person answering is not you. What's hard for one, might be easy for another... and even if both hard, who can measure it? Our program ranks 8th in the United States of America... a number of classes are a lot smaller than when they started come graduation time. Sometimes that's due to it being difficult (hard), and other times, it is other factors.

"can you give me advice on your study habits?"

* Study 20 minutes, review 5 minutes, do something physical for 5 minutes; rinse and repeat

* Make sure you are regularly doing NCLEX questions on the subject matter you are studying; review all rationales.

* Use multiple sources (typically no more than 2 or 3) so you get different angles on the material; if caught for lack of time, stick with the school required material.

"how were you able to balance 16-18 credits each semester?"

Prerequisites was 9 to 14 credits each semester; RN school has yet to top off 9.5 as clinicals typically count as 1 credit even though you are there for 6 to 8 hours or more. The issue isn't balancing credits, it's juggling reading five to twelve chapters per week plus watching podcasts, watching ATI videos, etc.

"have any of you ever failed, literally, gotten an F, or D, in any of your classes?"

No; and thankfully that trend will continue.

*how are the clinicals? Can you explain them each, starting off by which class it was? (e.g. 1st semester clinical and name of class, 2nd semester clinical and name of class) what did they each in your clinicals? How well did you do?"

This varies by school. Good question, but too broad given each nursing school will handle it differently.

"have you ever messed up in clinicals?"

Define messed up? Made mistakes; yes. Got in trouble for anything? Thankfully no.

"when you first got paired with a nurse, what all did they train/teach you? Are they always with you? Do they always teach you? Are you EVER alone in any clinicals?"

That's something you will learn in terms of what they will teach YOU (what I'm taught doesn't mean you'll get taught it). At our clinicals, we are left alone; though there are certain actions (i.e. giving meds) where we need an RN at our side.

"did you have to do any papers? Any projects? Any SPEECHES?"

Yes, yes, yes.

"how helpful were your professors? And classmates?"

Why does this matter as it will vary by school? Will you have my specific professors? My specific classmates?

"do your professors go over anatomy and physiology? "

Rarely; you are expected to have mastered all of your perquisites.

"*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology?"

Yes; and what I don't remember, I review before class / clinicals.

"what were your setbacks in nursing school?"

1st semester, not being confident enough.

"what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?"

See above. Lack of confidence met making mistakes in clinical labs (1st semester clinicals was 100% lab based). Solution was working for 3 months as a personal care assistant, then med tech.

"what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?"

too long an answer for now; 30 years in IT with the last 18 being an expert in cyber security as it was related to web hosting.

"*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

Yes; it's normal.

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?"

In progress.

"what were your grades like throughout?"

While all of your questions are good ones; this like a number of others is irrelevant. What I get for grades has nothing with what you may or will get for grades. Furthermore, once you are in RN school, you are always happy you are passing (C's get degrees).

"what was your favorite and least favorite thing in nursing school"

Group projects; yes, they still exist.

"what apps/books did you use throughout nursing school?"

Evernote -- https://allnurses.com/nursing-study-tips/some-tips-for-1016981.html

Good Notes (ios app)

Lippincott Q&A for NCLEX-RN

Davis MedSurg Success

Saunders comprehensive for NCLEX

WookieeRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in PACU. Has 4 years experience.

Common question, but any answer is irrelevant as the person answering is not you. What's hard for one, might be easy for another... and even if both hard, who can measure it? Our program ranks 8th in the United States of America... a number of classes are a lot smaller than when they started come graduation time. Sometimes that's due to it being difficult (hard), and other times, it is other factors.

Exactly. I don't truly study. I still get As. The person next to me studies day and night and we have the exact same grade. "Hardness" is an individual perception. I would tell you right now that nursing school isn't as hard as I thought it would be, but the person next to me might say the complete opposite.

As far as "studying," I don't take notes while reading. To me it's pointless because I will be focusing on writing the notes and not the content. I only take lecture notes of material that didn't stick from my reading. I rarely review them. I do most of my note taking in concept maps. It helps me because that's how I think. Others don't like it.

xmilkncookiesx, RN

Has <1 years experience.

"how hard is nursing school?"

Common question, but any answer is irrelevant as the person answering is not you. What's hard for one, might be easy for another... and even if both hard, who can measure it? Our program ranks 8th in the United States of America... a number of classes are a lot smaller than when they started come graduation time. Sometimes that's due to it being difficult (hard), and other times, it is other factors.

"can you give me advice on your study habits?"

* Study 20 minutes, review 5 minutes, do something physical for 5 minutes; rinse and repeat

* Make sure you are regularly doing NCLEX questions on the subject matter you are studying; review all rationales.

* Use multiple sources (typically no more than 2 or 3) so you get different angles on the material; if caught for lack of time, stick with the school required material.

"how were you able to balance 16-18 credits each semester?"

Prerequisites was 9 to 14 credits each semester; RN school has yet to top off 9.5 as clinicals typically count as 1 credit even though you are there for 6 to 8 hours or more. The issue isn't balancing credits, it's juggling reading five to twelve chapters per week plus watching podcasts, watching ATI videos, etc.

"have any of you ever failed, literally, gotten an F, or D, in any of your classes?"

No; and thankfully that trend will continue.

*how are the clinicals? Can you explain them each, starting off by which class it was? (e.g. 1st semester clinical and name of class, 2nd semester clinical and name of class) what did they each in your clinicals? How well did you do?"

This varies by school. Good question, but too broad given each nursing school will handle it differently.

"have you ever messed up in clinicals?"

Define messed up? Made mistakes; yes. Got in trouble for anything? Thankfully no.

"when you first got paired with a nurse, what all did they train/teach you? Are they always with you? Do they always teach you? Are you EVER alone in any clinicals?"

That's something you will learn in terms of what they will teach YOU (what I'm taught doesn't mean you'll get taught it). At our clinicals, we are left alone; though there are certain actions (i.e. giving meds) where we need an RN at our side.

"did you have to do any papers? Any projects? Any SPEECHES?"

Yes, yes, yes.

"how helpful were your professors? And classmates?"

Why does this matter as it will vary by school? Will you have my specific professors? My specific classmates?

"do your professors go over anatomy and physiology? "

Rarely; you are expected to have mastered all of your perquisites.

"*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology?"

Yes; and what I don't remember, I review before class / clinicals.

"what were your setbacks in nursing school?"

1st semester, not being confident enough.

"what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?"

See above. Lack of confidence met making mistakes in clinical labs (1st semester clinicals was 100% lab based). Solution was working for 3 months as a personal care assistant, then med tech.

"what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?"

too long an answer for now; 30 years in IT with the last 18 being an expert in cyber security as it was related to web hosting.

"*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

Yes; it's normal.

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?"

In progress.

"what were your grades like throughout?"

While all of your questions are good ones; this like a number of others is irrelevant. What I get for grades has nothing with what you may or will get for grades. Furthermore, once you are in RN school, you are always happy you are passing (C's get degrees).

"what was your favorite and least favorite thing in nursing school"

Group projects; yes, they still exist.

"what apps/books did you use throughout nursing school?"

Evernote -- https://allnurses.com/nursing-study-tips/some-tips-for-1016981.html

Good Notes (ios app)

Lippincott Q&A for NCLEX-RN

Davis MedSurg Success

Saunders comprehensive for NCLEX

It matters to me because I want to have an understanding and have an example of how and what students go through during nursing school.

OF COURSE we're not going to have the same professors and same experience. But I wanted to know what were your experiences and how did you overcome any of them.

Didn't have to be so rude about it. Damn

It matters to me because I want to have an understanding and have an example of how and what students go through during nursing school.

OF COURSE we're not going to have the same professors and same experience. But I wanted to know what were your experiences and how did you overcome any of them.

Didn't have to be so rude about it. Damn

I feel that what pmabraham said was very helpful. I don't think anyone here is being rude. Nursing school is going to be tough love, so please try to learn to see when people are genuinely trying to help you out.

Edited by wanderlust20
grammar error

LadyFree28, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics, Rehab, Trauma. Has 10 years experience.

:facepalm:

OP, you seem pretty nervous about the whole nursing experience...please bear in mind that some of us posters who are nurses and/or nursing students may not have the time to read and respond to the posts; however, I do have some time now on my day off to respond to your post (posting on my phone):

I'm awaiting for my letter of acceptance in any of the nursing programs I have applied for

But I am so damn nervous! Not for being accepted or not but the experience!

Before I start off with questions, I want to say that I believe I have anxiety attacks. I've never been checked nor diagnosed for it. But I can't do speeches, presentations, or have people watch me for any performance without getting hot, red, sweaty, and wanting to cry.

If you think you have that issue, it would be best to see a professional to help you with techniques in handling these situations; in a nursing program you will be tested and challenged out of you comfort zone in order to think and perform in the nursing model of care; you will be scrutinized (in a good way IMHO) to make sure that everything you do is in best practice and to prepare you to become a competent novice nurse.

I've heard that in nursing school, they have human simulators and your professors, along with classmates, watch you through a 2 way mirror with a microphone. That would really freak me out. I'd be super comfortable if it were just only the professors watching and judging me because I know I can go back to them and ask for help in correction. But the students? Nope. I'd freeze up, get hot and sweaty, and probably cry.

I didn't have human simulators in my program; we used each other in our clinical group and our clinical instructors helped with honing our technique; we also didn't have a simulator room-not every program has that, plus before one is tested on skills, one should have time to practice; we had a skills lab where one could practice with a nurse educator on honing our skills for testing as well as clinical.

Sooo here are my questions:

*does anyone have this same condition/situation as me?

*how hard is nursing school?

*can you give me advice on your study habits?

*I have a mood disorder trait that is deep in anxiety-I failed an ADN program first semester due to this-I didn't get recognized for test anxiety until I was in my PN (practical nursing) program; I was able to find out strategies and my learning, studying, and nursing style through PN school; so when I went on from my BSN education, I knew how to study. I am a kinesthetic learner, so hands on and movement helps; so, when taking tests, I rely on action words and phrases to choose the best answers; I also learned during my BSN program that I was an auditory learner, so I started taping lectures and listening to them at night.

* Nursing school is time consuming; with the right tools, the work can be challenging and doable; however, not everyone is able to be a nurse, hence, even some of the smartest people that I knew couldn't hack certain parts, for example, once must be able to successfully do theory (classroom) and practicum (clinical); being able to symbiotically succeed does require work-more so than others, some less work.

*what helped me study was a book that I acquired from my nursing instructor in PN school: Critical Thinking and Nursing Judgement by LaFevre-it's on Amazon and is a great read that I even use as a nurse, especially since I'm in a new specialty and feel as though I am a novice nurse all over again. I also studied in school using the nursing process; most of the texts are set up that way, and it helped me understand the information my thinking in the nursing model; I also used review books based on the subjects that were in class; I used The Success Series to help prepare for the exams.

*how were you able to balance 16-18 credits each semester?

*have any of you ever failed, literally, gotten an F, or D, in any of your classes?

*how are the clinicals? Can you explain them each, starting off by which class it was? (e.g. 1st semester clinical and name of class, 2nd semester clinical and name of class) what did they each in your clinicals? How well did you do?

*have you ever messed up in clinicals?

*when you first got paired with a nurse, what all did they train/teach you? Are they always with you? Do they always teach you? Are you EVER alone in any clinicals?

*did you have to do any papers? Any projects? Any SPEECHES?

*how helpful were your professors? And classmates?

*I've NEVER had a study group, never been in one. I've always been outcasted by classmates because of my tattoos, so I always been alone. But I've been successful in my classes.

*I took anatomy and physiology online 3 yrs ago. I honestly regret it

because I didn't learn ANYTHING because of the labs online! Everything was cramped together since it was blended course. I'm trying to teach myself at the moment. So with that being said, do your professors go over anatomy and physiology?

*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology? I found it SO difficult to comprehend, that I couldn't remember the functions

*what were your setbacks in nursing school?

*what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?

*what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?

*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

Okay, I had to break apart a these questions because they are pretty detailed, and I answered a few of them in my first response; I'll try to answer this line in a paragraph form:

When I entered an ADN program, I only did 15 credits that semester to maintain full time; when I went into the PN program, it was M-F, five days a week with credit hours required by the state; howeve it was like 40 hours a week not including care plan time and studying; and when I went for my BSN, I was working as a LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse) and was in a accelerated BSN program that met two evenings a week and had clinicals on the weekends, with he option to do weekdays due to the program being for workers as well as people who already had healthcare experience-I was already a licensed nurse and had flexible hours, as well as grown up bills-mortgage and utilities, etc-so I had to work 30 plus hours a week and spend 20 hours including class and clinical time and outside studying and care plan time as well, so time was precious to me; although I did go on vacation during one semester right before my mid semester break and didn't hardly miss anything and still passed the course...that was interesting; I don't recommend that for everyone to do... :laugh:

As far as clinicals: they are, to me, the training ground to help hone your nursing practice; however there is a caveat-you are learning your instructors' nursing practice at that time, which can be not up to best practice. I clashed with one of my PN instructors because she was teaching against what was being taught in the class room; she carried such a personal vendetta, she prevented me from getting an award for best grades, because to her I was being subordinate-I got the last laugh because I ended up getting the award at a later date and I passed the program, although she seemed to want to continue the vendetta; I made sure to do my work and pass.

In my BSN program, when instructors found out I was an LPN, they wanted to test and challenge me because I was learning a new role and scope, and they were so supportive of me; most of my instructors were practicing nurses who kept up (that particular instructor in my PN program was not), so learning from them was an enriching experience.

Each clinical experience is based upon the class; you start out with basic nursing skills and work up to what your program teaches, along on what is allowed in your program.

Now about theory; which ties into the A&P question; what nursing is built upon is the foundation of A&P; there is little time to go over it because nursing is so jam packed as it is, so doing a review is best.

As far as studying: I mainly studied alone; sometimes I would study with another or a few people that were lone wolves as I was; most of the time I studied by myself with no issues, or took advantage of the school's study sessions to help me understand the information more.

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?

LaSalle University

*what were your grades like throughout? Were they what you because I didn't learn ANYTHING because of the labs online! Everything was cramped together since it was blended course. I'm trying to teach myself at the moment. So with that being said, do your professors go over anatomy and physiology?

*do any of you remember anatomy and physiology? I found it SO difficult to comprehend, that I couldn't remember the functions

*what were your setbacks in nursing school?

*what mistakes have you made in nursing school? What was your solution?

*what made you want to do nursing? Did you have a previous major?

*have you ever broke down and cried, because of under stress, or just nervousness, in class/lab/clinical?

*what school did you graduate from in nursing school?

*what were your grades like throughout? Were they what you expected? Do you wish you could have done more or less?

*what was your favorite and least favorite thing in nursing school

*what apps/books did you use throughout nursing school?

My grades wet a solid B/B- throughout the program, with my clinicals exceeding expectations. I think I did well enough; however, since I needed a GPA a little high to prevent myself from taking the GREs when I go to grad school, I plan on taking the GREs and taking post-baccalaureate classes when I cross that bridge. I don't regret the grades that I had because with someone that had PTSD due to an event prior to starting nursing school and battling thorough most of it without medication therapy I could never be too proud of myself.

I enjoyed nursing school, partly because I was in healthcare; there was no subject where I truly disliked; I just got through it.

As far as apps, I used Epocrates for drug information, an iStethoscope app for Assessment info; the NCLEX apps I used after I completed my education, and for those I used Lippinicott, which was very thorough.

*how long have you been out of nursing school?

PN school 10 years BSN program 3 years.

*how much did you study for the NCLEX?

*how many times did you take the NCLEX?

Because of my test anxiety, I studied for two months for both NCLEX-PN and NCLEX-RN; I passed each exam the first time.

*what were the interviews like for an RN?

*what facility did you start off working at? What department?

*If you started off in the ER or critical care, ICU,how was the first day?

In my area, interviews were very arduous due to the fact I live somewhere where the was a nursing glut; also due to my experience as a licensed nurse already (just with a different scope) I was heavily pursued, because of my experience, but was still a novice RN. I worked at my previous job and finally moved up to RN wages, then I took a job a a PICU, which wasn't a good fit at the time as a novice RN, and was a supervisor in a nursing home. I learned some pretty good skills on leadership, and improved on my assessment skills which helped me land a job in a Pedi Post Acute after six months where my previous skills as a LPN with a Pedi background and my new skills as an RN was enough to give notice where they wanted me to be a supervisor on nights, I did that for a year until I landed a job in a Level I Trauma PediED, where I currently work and have truly found my fit as an ED nurse.

Since I worked both ICU and ER, both days were almost similar, just learning the ropes, with the exception in the ED, they knew and accepted my background and previous employment, so I started doing discharge teaching after my first patient and went from there.

*this continues from the previous question, when you had your first emergency pt, what was it like? Did you know what to do? Were there times where you almost lost it?

In school one emergency it stands out the most because I see my clinical instructor where I work and she tells the story to all her students when she sees me.

I was taking care of a kid, and the kid immediately starts to have a seizure, I let my classmate get help, started counting the duration of the seizure, had oxygen in place and did that without freaking out or crying afterwards or anything. I was regarded as being so calm during the whole time.

As far as emergency pts now, I always anticipate emegencies because sick kids, as well as people can crump, and the focus is to maintain safety, as well as intervene with help and safety when emergencies arise and do what's best safely and efficiently for the patient.

*how are you liking the nurse life

*what is your favorite and least favorite of where you work?

I've been in healthcare for 15 years, 10 of those years in nursing. My take is, as long as I can do nursing care competently , everything else is secondary-within reason; meaning, I have worked in some facilities where they were ordered to shut down because of violations, mismanagement, Health Department showing up each week because of complaints in addition to the follow ups along with that, and have worked where staffing was horrendous-I had to precept, do respiratory care and take a cart because there were two nurses (me and the person I was supposed to train) have made me vote with my feet because that is unreasonable; other annoyances don't bother me as much as long as patient safety and my ability to nurse isn't compromised.

I will say "the nurse life" had allowed me to live comfortably, to own property and travel outside of the country. :D

*what is your advice in preparation for nursing school, during nursing school, and after nursing school?

My advice is to invest your time in understanding the nursing model, understand the key to surviving and thriving in nursing leaning, knowing, and performing the art of advocacy, and embrace moving from novice of expert in this profession; learning is a lifelong process and there is always the opportunity to learn in this business.

Best wishes.

Edited by LadyFree28

pmabraham, BSN, RN

Specializes in Hospice, Palliative Care. Has 3 years experience.

Good day, xmilkncookiesx:

If a person takes their time to answer the majority of your questions, and you don't like the answers because they point out that while all of your questions are good questions, some are irrelevant, doesn't mean they are being rude.

While it is a good desire to want to know how others overcome obstacles in the process, often times the roads are extremely different. And, if you don't know already, as you progress through life -- whether by wisdom that comes with aging experience or by classroom theory -- you will learn that even if two people appear to have parallel experiences, the internal processing of all feelings (all feelings being valid) are unique to the individual. Which is why we must always use caution with cliche words such as "I know how you feel" (which 99.999% of the time, no, they don't).

Now, what I do recommend is that if you have a passion, walk in the passion. If you would like to have a passion (but don't know if you have it, or you personally feel you struggle with it), then walk in the direction of the passion praying to Jesus it will catch fire. Don't give up. Go for it!

Thank you.