4 Hardest Parts of Nursing School


Just watching the gorgeous Alexis Nicole and listening to her relaxed, chatty presentation makes this clip worth viewing – but this doesn’t make her tips for dealing with the four hardest parts of nursing school any less valuable for every nursing student out there. These tips are not only Alexis’ own opinion – she discussed them with lots of other nurses as well.

Alexis believes that the most challenging part of nursing school is the NCLEX questions. They are not like regular multiple choice questions where you can quickly rule out the wrong answers. They really test your ability to think critically – most of the choices seem correct but you have to really think about what is the most correct in the situation.

She advises that to answer these questions you should ask yourself where you need to intervene first – what is going to harm the patient first, what is the most critical thing that can happen. “What helped me was doing a ton and ton of practice questions.”

In the comment section following the video a number of students, especially those with budget constraints, asked where they can find NCLEX practice questions. The thousands of free NCLEX practice questions on Nurseslabs is a very good place to start!

The next point Alexis discusses is that many nursing students battle with personal funds that are low, mainly because they are unable to work and study at the same time. Nursing school has enough stress of its own without adding further stress about money. The solution is to learn how to budget. Work out how much you can spend every week and draw the cash amount – when it is finished, be disciplined and accept that you have reached your spending limit for the week.


SEE ALSO: What to expect in nursing school? 

You also need to manage your time very well because the load of coursework, clinicals and the amount of study can be overwhelming. Some nursing students even have work, family, and kids on top of this. Using a planner and actually writing down blocks of time, showing when you are going to do what helps to push you into doing what you should. Then there is cutting out unnecessary time wasters – especially surfing on social media.

The final hard part of nursing school Alexa deals with is managing stress and anxiety. “A lot of nursing students tend to be stressed out because nursing school does come with a lot!” she says. “A good way to manage that is to make sure that you’re taking time out for yourself.” Plan for a day where you are do nothing nursing related and take time to do some things that you enjoy. Also try out her advice for dealing with test anxiety – when sitting down before the exam do some deep breathing exercises and tell yourself “I know all this information, I’ve studied enough, I’ve done practice questions, all the information is in my head.”

Alexis Nicole is a recently qualified registered nurse with a BSN. Visit her channel, The Nurse Nook, on YouTube!


Frieda Paton is a registered nurse with a Master’s degree in nursing education. Her passion for nursing education, nursing issues and advocacy for the profession were ignited while she worked as an education officer, and later editor, at a national nurses’ association. This passion, together with interest in health and wellness education since her student days, stayed with her throughout her further career as a nurse educator and occupational health nurse. Having reached retirement age, she continues to contribute to the profession as a full-time freelance writer. In the news and feature articles she writes for Nurseslabs, she hopes to inspire nursing students and nurses on the job to reflect on the trends and issues that affect their profession and communities - and play their part in advocacy wherever they find themselves.

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