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Tips for New Nursing School Students

You are excited about attending nursing school, but you know it will be hard, time-consuming work. Here are some tips to help you get through your nursing program.

Time Management Tips for Nursing School

Organization is key to successfully completing nursing school. Set up an easy-to-use calendar, either on paper or on your computer. Use that calendar to schedule everything, including time for coursework, your job, your personal life, and even sleep and relaxation.

When you receive the syllabus for a class, put all the due dates and deadlines on the calendar. This allows you to create a schedule to complete everything on time.

Additional tips:

  • If you use an online calendar, set email or mobile phone reminders.
  • Break down large assignments into smaller, more manageable tasks.
  • Start assignments as early as possible. Last-minute cramming is stressful, and studies have shown that learning over time is more effective.
  • Be flexible. Life happens. If you get off-schedule, regroup, reschedule and keep going.

Study Tips for Nursing School

Many students find flashcards an effective way to study, although this technique works best for visual learners. If you are an auditory learner, you may find it useful to listen to lectures more than once. The ability to do so is one of the great advantages of an online BSN program. You could also record yourself reading study material and then listen to it. Understand your learning style (online assessments are available), and find ways to work with it.

When you study for exams, try to understand the major topic of each exam. It is unrealistic to think you can memorize hundreds of pages of material for a 25-question exam. Understanding topics will get you through most questions. Many exams will include a few questions out of left field. Let them go and focus on what you know.

Study groups are also useful. Each person in the group brings different strengths and may have a different understanding of the material. Each member can create practice study questions for different topics and share with other members.

Self-Care Tips for Nursing School

Another important detail to put on your calendar is time off from nursing studies. Self-care is essential to preventing burnout, which could derail your schoolwork.

Self-care includes getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet and exercising. Put all those things in the calendar. Also, practice a stress reduction technique that you enjoy and find effective. A few options include the following:

  • Hobbies.
  • Breathing exercises.
  • Music.
  • Meditation.
  • Mental imagery or visualization.
  • Socializing.
  • Journaling.

Having a support system of family and friends can also help with self-care. If you need help, either personally or with school, ask for it.

Learn about the UT Arlington online BSN program.



Furia, K. (2015, August 13). Nursing School Time Management Tips.

Nursing School Survival Tips. (2013).

Kersey, P. (2013, April 10). 14 Pieces of Advice Every Nursing Student Should Receive.

Paul, A. M. (2015, August 1). Why Cramming Gets a “C”.

Spitrey, J. (2015, July 29). 10 Expert Tips for Surviving Nursing School.

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