The Truth About Nursing School: Is It Hard?

Most undergraduate programs come with their fair share of challenges, and nursing school isn’t an exception.

Like many other noble professions, nursing requires you to go to a reputable institution for training. Unfortunately, to become a successful registered nurse (RN), you’ll have to surmount innumerable challenges as a student and later on in your career.

This article addresses the challenges you are likely to face as a nursing student and tips for overcoming them. Enjoy.

What Makes Nursing School Hard?

The following often make nursing school seem like a Herculean feat to many people:

  1. Rigorous Admission Requirements

Massachusetts is home to numerous reputable institutions, including the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Simmons, University, and Boston College. That said, you can’t just waltz into any of these colleges and take nursing classes. For that, you must meet a stipulated number of requirements.

For instance, to join a program like Boston College’s Connell School of Nursing, you must be a high school graduate and have a high GPA (3 or higher). Moreover, some institutions only admit applicants who’ve completed specified prerequisites like anatomy and microbiology, while others require prospective students to take an entrance exam and surpass a set minimum score.

  1. Complicated Classes and Concepts

Admittedly, many nursing schools have some manageable classes, including Social Sciences, English Composition, and Intro to Communication. On the same note, they have demanding courses galore.

Classes that most students find extremely challenging include Pathophysiology and Pharmacology. Arguably, the former, Pathophysiology, is the most demanding course you’ll encounter as a nursing student. Pharmacology can also be a nightmare considering that it requires you to memorize concepts like the countless adverse effects of drugs and their interactions with the human body.

  1. Challenging Exams

If you think nursing classes are the most challenging elements you’ll encounter as a student, it’s time to reconsider. Why? After studying, you’ll need to take formidable exams designed to test your course material knowledge and ability to apply information in day-to-day life.

You’ll have to study extensively and memorize complex concepts to pass most nursing school tests. You may even have to pull a few all-nighters before sitting for taxing exams in complicated subjects like pathophysiology.

  1. Clinical Rotations

Nursing students have to complete clinicals before earning their degrees. That means you have to join a medical team and spend time learning what your specialty entails. Generally, clinical rotations put you in a better position to grasp what professionals in a specific field do on a day-to-day basis.

In Massachusetts, students must spend atleast 540 hours in clinical practice.

Although clinicals can be fun, they also have their darker side. For starters, you may have to interact and collaborate with intolerant or uncooperative instructors and team members. Moreover, some of the issues you may encounter in clinical settings may be outright upsetting and heartbreaking because scenarios in healthcare are often unpredictable.

Tips for Making Nursing School Easier

Nursing school isn’t easy, no doubt. But you can make the experience less challenging by:

  • Scheduling enough study time
  • Trying to understand concepts as opposed to cramming information
  • Taking a break whenever you’re exhausted
  • Rewarding yourself after passing an exam
  • Joining a dedicated study group
  • Prepping before classes

But Don’t Worry; It’s All Worth It

Just because nursing school is hard doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enroll. Remember, registered nurses are in high demand in Massachusetts and other US states. So, if you persevere through the required course, put in the work, and pass with flying colors, your career will likely flourish within a short time.

To summarize, if you want the job security, juicy salary, and personal fulfillment often associated with an RN career, prepare to tackle the challenges in nursing school.