Wednesday, December 10, 2008

to transfer, or not to transfer

I've been asked about why I feel the need to transfer nursing programs.

Here we go:

*current program is not privately accredited, although it is state approved

*current program is on the July '08 State Board of Nursing report as being one of the programs in the state with a less than 80% NCLEX pass rate

*current program in a state of transition due to previous instructors leaving just prior to classes starting this August

*One of the replacement instructors walked out after being forced to by the second year students because they didn't like her teaching style(yeah, that speaks volumes about so much, but it is not what is at issue here).

*The dean of nursing, who has been teaching our intro class, has not been able to answer questions from us students, that a dean should be able to answer. Examples of such a question include general information about ATI testing, or information about classes of the upcoming semester.

*The instructor who came back is actually an awesome teacher, but it's not certain she will remain past the spring semester.

*When we've been taught skills we're taught one day, tested the following week, and that's it. Those skills are not re-visited, at all, the rest of the semester. There is no skills final. Because of my previous medical training (Air Force medic, and Medical Assistant) I am ok with this, so far. What about later when we're learning other skills that are new even to me? I can't imagine being one of the students in this program who have no experience. Some of them have voiced their concerns over not being sure about their vital signs skills.

*This semester we were in lecture a total of three hours(two for intro and one for basic skills), and lab 5-6 hours, during the "on" weeks. Our intro class was a "hybrid" class and the off weeks were spent online answering some sort of nursing related question:
The nursing process is defined as being composed of five phases: assess, diagnose, plan, implement, and evaluate. Which of these phases do you believe is most important to the delivery of high quality nursing care, and to the achievement of positive client outcomes? Do not respond that all of the phases are equally important – that evades the question. Demonstrate critical thinking in the argument you present to support one phase over the others.

*one hour a week dedicated to basic skills?

*next semester we have two hours for Nursing Principles and Concepts I, six hours for its lab, 1 hour for Principles of Pharmacology, and two hours for Mental Health Nursing. Supposedly this semester they were extending the latter two to span the whole semester, whereas in the past they've been eight week courses, first pharm, and then mental health. I've heard they'll be changing it back?

*We start our first clinicals this spring, after which we will no longer be in lab. So we'll go from 6 hours of lab a week, to only clinicals Wednesdays and Thursdays 6:30a-12:30p.

*there is no availability for open lab to practice

That's about it for now, because now I'm getting madder.

I know no program is perfect, but when you're paying for an education that is supposed to provide you with the knowledge and skills to pass a state board that determines your career you want to have the best chance possible.


Drofen said...

You know my thoughts, so I'll leave the poor dead horse lie. :)

Lorie said...

Ok.. my answer to this weeks question is assess... nurses don't diagnose.. only doctors do.. I say transfer.. just comparing your program to what I remember of mine and it does not seem structured enought for me. That is so important!

Heather said...

you know my opinion too, LEAVE. I've left a program that was HELL and I couldn't be happier that I did.

DBS said...

Sounds like transferring would be the right thing to do. If you have a program in mind that would provide a better education I'd go for it. If it requires some more research I would stick with the current program through spring and then transfer in the fall so that you don't lose a semester where you could be in school, although it's not the ideal school.
Good luck!

Sarrah said...

I would say you are making a very good decision in transfering. How is that program running at all? seems pretty dodgy.

Tiffany said...

I say that you have amade a great choice and you should leave. Im really disapointed with my program, but not because of any of those issues.

Go to the good girl!

KLS said...

So, I'd say the consensus is...I should transfer!? Yep, yep, yep!

andrea said...

OMG OMG OMG. Nurses totally diagnose!! Nursing diagnoses describe the important things--Pain!! Risks!! Stuff that matters to the PERSON, not just the illness! Okay I'm a nurse nerd. I would say assessment is the most important thing. A good nurse knows what should be going on and what shouldn't. Making a formal nursing Dx based on the assessment isn't a priority to me, but assessing the situation and finding a problem is what leads to planning treatment, implementing it (which can be delegated even to assistants or soemtimes family members), and eventual evaluation. I think planning is next most important. An RN is the BOSS and it's his or her job to decide what to do. But all those things are important, I kind of think it's silly to ask for the most important one. I guess the exercise does prompt you to consider the importance of all of them.

Eh, it doesn't seem like they offer you enough time or resources to work on the things you want to work on. Because those things aren't available, you won't get what you want out of it. Though I am commenting late, I would support your decision to transfer.

running wildly said...

Yes yes yes! Nurses DO diagnose. In fact, we actually have "nursing diagnoses." I TOTALLY agree with Andrea's comment!

I see now why you want to transfer schools. It seems to me that you are not getting nearly enough lecture nor clinical time. The two go hand in hand and are CRUCIAL for the pieces to fit together. Sigh. I'd get out too. I see it now. Best of luck getting into your new program. Run and never look back.

KLS said...

To clarify, Lorie was kidding about the nurses not diagnosing thing. She has been a nurse for twelve years, and told me the running joke is that nurses don't diagnose, doctors she said before. I'm guessing it's the age-old nursing vs. medical thing at play here.

'nuff said on that. Let's not use my blog as a war zone, please!

andrea said...

OHH haha! I was not in on the joke. I'm so sorry if it seemed like I was yelling. Gee I wonder what gave that impression. Probably my [over]excess of "!!!"s d/t exhaustion r/t late night paper writing. I meant no disrespect, my nursing friends! I went to this CNSA conference and they were all about defending the nurse and the nurse's role. I'm a crusader now, sorry! Haha. Whoo I'm so tired. I really apologize for anything I mis-said. I don't want to trash up anyone's blog. Sorry!