How To Study For Nursing Test

You may find it hard to access the right information on the internet, so we are here to help you in the following article, providing the best and updated information on how to study for nursing fundamentals, what to study before nursing school. Read on to learn more. We at collegelearners have all the information that you need about how to study effectively for nursing tests. Read on to learn more.

How To Study For Nursing Test

There’s no question that nursing school is challenging. And when you are trying to manage home and work responsibilities on top of your nursing studies, the amount of studying you need to do could seem insurmountable. How on Earth are you supposed to get all of these chapters read, never mind review notes, prepare for the nursing exam and retain all of the vital information that you absolutely must know for a successful career in nursing?

The first step is to take a deep breath. You can do this. Nursing school just takes a little bit of planning, some time management and a few study tips and strategies to help separate the “need to know” from the “nice to know” and improve your information retention.

1. Follow the nursing exam study guide

One of the best ways to focus your nursing studies is to base your learning around the NCLEX test. Reviewing a study guide not only reveals which subject areas the nursing exam focuses on, but also how the test presents questions. Clearly, not everything you need to know as a nurse is contained in the licensing exam, but if you study towards the nursing exam all along, you’ll feel more confident on testing day.

2. Study a little every day

You cannot cram a week’s worth of study into a few hours on the weekend. Commit to spending a little time on your nursing studies every day, even if you have to break it into several smaller increments in order to get it in. You’ll feel less overwhelmed and retain more information.

3. Focus on the material covered in class

Your instructors are going to assign many chapters to read each week, plus outside resources to review. Instead of carefully reading and outlining every single word, take a cue from your class time. What topics does the instructor spend time reviewing? What are the key points covered in class? Focus your attention on these areas.

4. Think in terms of action, not facts

It’s important for nurses to understand why certain conditions occur and what is happening physiologically in a patient. However, the patient is not interested in hearing those facts – he or she just wants to feel better. When you are studying for the nursing exam, ask yourself, “How will I help my patients with this information?” You’ll be a better nurse as well as a better student.

5. Form a study group

Research shows that students who study with peers retain approximately 90% of what they learn, as opposed to just 60% of what they hear in class alone and just 10% of what they read. Not to mention, studying with others helps provide encouragement and moral support. Get together with a few of your fellow nursing students (research shows that groups of three are the most effective) and put your heads together to share study tips and improve your performance.

6. Skim-read first

Nursing school requires a lot of reading, but if you try to retain everything on your first pass, you are just going to be frustrated. Before you read a chapter, skim the material first. Look at headings, subheadings and highlighted terms and review the summaries and questions at the end of the chapter, to determine which information is most important.

7. Use outside sources

There’s nothing that says you can only learn from your text or instructor. Augment your class resources with others; for example, if you are learning about diabetes, review the Mayo Clinic, WebMD and American Diabetes Association websites to learn more. Do this before you read a chapter, as a type of “preview” to your reading. Remember, though, that your textbook and instructor are to be considered the final, correct authority.

8. Know your learning style

Everyone learns differently: some need to see information, some need to hear it, while others learn kinetically. So in effect, everyone needs to discover which study tips work best for them. Know your own style and use it to your advantage. For example, kinetic learners often do best when they write out their notes, as the motion of writing helps them remember.

9. Use downtime as study time

Nursing studies require a certain level of memorization. Create flashcards or notes that will help you review those facts when you are doing other things. For example, tape cards listing vital sign ranges to your bathroom mirror, so you’ll see them when you’re brushing your teeth. Eventually, without even really trying, those numbers will be second nature.

10. Take breaks

If you spend all of your time studying, you are just going to get overwhelmed and probably not retain as much information as you would hope. Be sure to take regular breaks so you do not lose interest or enthusiasm. Sometimes, just a short change of scenery can help recharge your batteries and improve retention.

Successfully completing nursing school is a major commitment, but one that you can easily handle with a plan, some good study tips and the right approach to studying.

how to study for nursing fundamentals

Nursing fundamentals is a class required by most nursing programs that nursing students take during the first semester of nursing school. This class is also known as nursing foundations, depending on what your nursing program calls it.

Many nursing programs split this class into a lecture (which is attended throughout the semester) and then a skills lab and clinical site. This allows the student to apply the theory learned in class to the “real world”.

Students learn basic nursing skills, caring for the perioperative patient, positioning patients, medication administration, nursing theories, charting, and legal stuff (HIPAA, OSHA etc) in this class.

So, why do students struggle in nursing fundamentals, and how do students study for nursing fundamentals? This class can be difficult for students because it covers a lot of material for each exam and the exam questions require a higher level of thinking. Simply memorizing facts about nursing will not help on an exam in nursing foundations. The student must be able to think critically and apply what they’ve learned to the scenario.

How to Study for Nursing Fundamentals (Nursing Foundations)

In this article, I want to share with you 6 strategies on how you can study for this class and ace it.

6 Strategies on How to Pass Nursing Fundamentals in Nursing School

Strategy 1: Know how you learn best! What is your learning style? Are you a visual, tactile, read-write, or auditory learner? Figuring out how you learn the best will save you time because different learners learn in different ways.

Strategy 2: Comprehend the material, DON’T memorize it! This class covers the basic foundations of nursing and you have to truly understand the reasoning for nursing interventions and proper techniques. You can’t simply memorize the material and then do a brain dump after the exam. You must know the:

  • nursing process (assessment, planning, implementation, evaluating)
  • prioritizing patient care (Maslow’s hierarchy)
  • a nurses scope of practice
  • the scope of practice of others
  • patient safety etc.

The above information will help you excel on every exam!

Strategy 3: Don’t let test style trick you, but learn how to answer NCLEX style questions! See this video on how to successfully answer NCLEX style questions. Nursing fundamentals exam questions can be tricky and sometimes there are two “best” answers and you must determine which one is the best for that particular scenario.

Strategy 4: Practice! Practice! NCLEX Style questions before each exam.  *NCLEX Saunders Comprehensive Review Guide is an excellent study guide (helped me in nursing school) that contains NCLEX style questions over nursing fundamentals.

Strategy 5: Purchase MaryAnn Hogan Nursing Fundamentals Pearson Reviews & Rationales: Nursing Fundamentals* as a study guide for nursing fundamentals! This is another great book that saved my grade when I took nursing fundamentals. This book breaks down the material in a simple way and tells you what you need to know for exams.

Strategy 6: Know how to prepare for each exam! Do this by looking over you class notes & power-points, and then read the section in your study guide that you just read about in your notes/power-points. Then practice the questions at the end of chapter in the study guide. Be sure to pay attention to the rationales, and read in your textbook the sections you are having a hard time grasping. While doing this, look for key concepts that are being repeated over and over again…very important…most likely material for a test question.

Recommended: How to Study for Medical-Surgical Nursing

*Recommended books in this post are based on my own personal experience as a nursing student. The book links will take you to We are an affiliate for and if you purchase an item using the provided links we obtain a commission. The commission helps fund this free website for nursing students and nurses.

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