Getting through nursing school may prove quite a challenge. The rate in which you are learning information is astounding, and it may seem like a wave of tests that keep coming your way. Do not lose your cool; however, with proper study, you can ace your tests and will able to apply your knowledge in your new career in no time. Here are four nursing school study tips to help keep you working smart and achieving success.
Have Good Study Habits
Having good study habits is the most crucial factor when it comes to retaining the information you are going over. First, make sure the place where you are studying is quiet and free from distraction. Turn off your phone, close the door, and let others know not to disturb you. This may be common sense, but you would be surprised how often a study session can go off the rails due to simple interruptions that could have been avoided. From there, you will need to get organized. Be sure to have a system in place, which shows you all the work that is due, deadlines, and upcoming exams you need to study for. Efficient note taking and flashcards will help you remember key points. If you have a friend who takes notes, you may want to compare your notes with theirs because they may have highlighted some items that you have missed.
Study Alone or in Groups
Do you work better on your own, or does your brain actually come alive when you are in a cram session with others? Knowing yourself will help you learn in the best way. If you are studying alone, be sure you keep a practical study schedule and stick with it. Go over your information again and again and when you think you have it down, go over it one more time. If studying in a group, do try to keep it to a small number of people at a time. Larger groups tend to have too many distractions and often end up wasting time. A study group of three or four is usually ideal as you will have enough people to learn from, but not so many that a bathroom break or food break is happening every other minute. Groups are good for quizzing each other and sharing notes and ideas.
Relax, Breathe and Repeat
Take a break! If you are bored, sleepy or just fidgeting, it is time to take a short break. Setting goals such as one hour of study to a ten or fifteen minute break is usually a good goal. If you find one subject losing your interest, try studying something at a faster paced for a while, then return to the original work. If you are not being productive, then you will gradually grow more frustrated and end up wasting time anyway. Sometimes a quick walk around the block or snack certainly does help. As long as you are not using these breaks to put off studying all together! Keep an eye on your progress, looking at upcoming dates to help keep you motivated. Also, remember to get plenty of rest, eat healthy, and try to remember to breathe!
Ask for Help
If you find that you keep getting stuck or just cannot get your mind wrapped around a subject, ask for help! Ask questions during class, ask to try things out for yourself, speak up if you do not understand something. Your professors are there to teach you, they do not want you to cram for a test; they want you to grasp the knowledge and make it your own.
If it is still difficult to study, then seek out help from those who have been there before. Look for senior students. Most will be flattered that you came to them for studying advice, and you just might find their experience helpful in making the knowledge stick. There may be mentor programs, so be sure to ask around.
These nursing school study tips can help you put away the information, pass your exams, and overall do well in this chapter of your life. Always remember, you have chosen this course so you can have a steady career that you will enjoy in the future. Learn all you can from nursing school, so you can have confidence in yourself when it comes time to test your skills and work with real patients.