Many adults change careers at an older age and decide to go back to college. Going to nursing school after several years of being away from a learning environment has its own challenges. The last time you studied for an exam was probably over ten yours ago, and now as a nursing student, you have to do exams almost on a monthly basis.
Nonetheless, there are many mature students who have come out successful by scoring even higher grades than their younger counterparts. But what does it take to emerge successfully as an adult nursing student?
One thing that will keep you motivated as an adult nursing student is to understand your intention of going back to school. Ask yourself what you are trying to achieve by training as a nurse at this age?
In short, write down all your goals on paper. Once you write them, put the paper somewhere visible so that they will always act as motivation for you to study and work hard particularly on days you feel discouraged.
When studying, look at the bigger picture, connect the dots, recall and compare information with experiences. Look at case studies and get as much hands-on experience during your clinical rounds so that it all ties up in your mind.
Planning and self-assessment
Take a leading role in both planning, monitoring and evaluating your progress.
You need to account for what you have already learnt and try to see what you are not doing well and improvise ways on how to improve in that particular area. Self-assessment is paramount.
Time management is critical in the sense that it will help you know how to structure and schedule your studying timetable. Besides, you can create more hours for those topics that are a bit complex and need more time to study.
Avoid rote learning
Rote learning is trying to cram everything into your mind and memorizing the material so that you can recall it in exactly the way you read or heard it. This type of learning is ‘just for the exam.’
Although this method works for some people, it can mess you up. The problem with cramming is that if you happen to forget one point, everything evaporates, and you are left blank.
It is best to read and understand concepts rather than memorizing for the purpose of exams.
Groups are important when it comes to preparing for exams. You’ll get a different perspective of the concepts from your fellow students. You will have the advantage of understanding topics that you originally did not. Also, it creates a platform where you can ask questions concerning various subjects.
Avoid last minute reading
As long as you have gone through all the topics and done your revision properly there is no reason to get anxious. Go to the exam room with full confidence -and everything will turn out just fine.
Passing exams does not have to be hard for mature students. Prepare yourself adequately and employ some of the mentioned strategies and you will do well.