You’ve signed up for classes to advance your career, but there’s a lot on your mind.
Being a nurse isn’t easy. It takes critical thinking, speed of thought and excellent communication skills. And adding classes on top of your busy schedule can make you feel overburdened.
But you don’t have to worry. Here are some simple tips that will help you thrive in your RN-to-BSN program.
Tips for Nurses in School
Don’t Underestimate Downtime
Even with a packed course load, you will find some downtime to relax. It’s crucial that you use it. Even though you’re working to take the next step in your career, don’t feel guilty about self-care and taking time for yourself to rest and recuperate. Attending school and working can be stressful, and it’s important to take the time to relax in order to remain strong the whole way through.
Anatomy and physiology is one of the most important courses you will take in your RN-to-BSN journey. In the class, there are numerous terms you’ll need to learn and memorize.
One of the best ways to memorize these terms is by using flashcards, such as those produced by Mosby’s and Barron’s. In addition, you can color code the cards depending on what organ system the term belongs to, like the skeletal, muscular or cardiovascular.
A study of memory performance found that color can be very effective in a learning setting. The study found that color helps carry information to our memory banks and is found to “play a significant role in enhancing memory performance.”
Build a Binder for Each Class
Effective organization for the RN-to-BSN program is key. Using a binder will help keep your notes organized, so you can easily review them when working on homework assignments.
Use color-coding to divide your binder into different sections and customize folders. This will help you make the most of your notes when everything is visible, allowing you to connect the dots as you learn additional information.
Rewrite or Re-Type Your Notes
Even if you take comprehensive notes during a class session, the next time you look at them they might look like a foreign language, as you’ve lost the context of when you took the notes. When we learn information, we remember it best as soon as we’ve learned it, forgetting little details as time passes.
In order to fight this loss, it’s important to review what you learned immediately after you learned it. To take it a step further, it’s recommended that you rewrite and reorganize your notes. While it may seem cumbersome, rewriting (or typing/re-typing) your notes will reinforce what you learned and create a stronger internal connection to your brain.
Find Your Favorite Quiet and Comfortable Study Spots
Take advantage of public libraries or relaxing coffee shops to study and learn. Be sure to bring an extension cord for your computer in case there isn’t an electrical outlet next to your favorite seat.
Make To-Do Lists and Strategize
Prioritize your tasks by following the syllabus provided by your professor and use a personal calendar to organize due dates. Also, make a to-do list the night before a busy work day. You’re much more likely to get work done if you plan your goals ahead of time.
Study Passively on Your Off Time
Surround yourself with nursing content. Listen to nursing podcasts, read discussions on nursing forums and download nursing apps.
Socialize as Much as Possible
The process of socializing with others can help you develop your professional identity as a nurse. Spending time with and meeting other nurses can help you develop a sense of belonging within the nursing community.
Know Your Prefixes and Suffixes
Understanding the roots of words is an excellent way to learn complicated medical terminology and can help you solve future problems and make split-second decisions.
Accomplish Your Goals at Husson
Your dreams to advance your career as a nurse are attainable, and Husson University can help you get there. Apply today for Husson’s fully online RN-to-BSN degree, allowing you the opportunity to continue your nursing education while working. Learn from dedicated faculty in small classes sizes, and take a deeper look into the field of nursing and medicine, studying topics such as quality improvement in healthcare systems, evidence-based practice and health policy issues. Husson accepts up to 90 transfer credits, meaning you can earn your degree in as little as 12 months.
Get started today!