Is Nursing School Hard? 7 Things to Consider

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When leaping into a nursing career, you may wonder, "is nursing school hard?" You can expect the program to be challenging, but several factors must be considered, including how to set the right expectations and the difficulty of the curriculum.

nurse writing at table

In deciding whether to change careers and become a nurse, many have wondered, “is nursing school hard?” It’s a good question that deserves a well-explained answer. Nursing is a challenging field, and as such, nursing school will come with challenges that push your knowledge and skills so that you graduate as prepared as possible for the career ahead.

The Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program at CSP Global leverages your existing non-nursing credits or your non-nursing bachelor’s degree. You could earn your accelerated BSN in as few as 16 months through online coursework, in-person labs, and clinical learning. Earning a BSN degree on an accelerated timeline can be rigorous but rewarding.

So, exactly how hard is nursing school? Because CSP Global prepares its students to graduate as fully prepared nurses on an accelerated timeline, several factors must be considered before applying. Here are seven things to know before you start your nursing journey.

1. Setting the Right Expectations Matters

Questions like, “how difficult is a nursing program?” are important to ask as they help to set expectations beforehand. Being realistic in your expectations of the program can help you prepare for the challenges and keep you from burning out. It takes dedication and self-motivation to be successful in an ABSN program. Much of the curriculum’s intensity is because the curriculum at Concordia University prepares you to sit for the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX), the licensure exam required to practice as a Registered Nurse.

Do all the necessary research before enrolling in a nursing program. The admissions counselors at Concordia are happy to answer any questions you may have to help ensure you understand what the future looks like as you work toward passing the NCLEX and earning your nursing degree.

student nurse with child patient

2. Nursing Content is Challenging

The world of nursing is foreign to most people, and there is a reason for that. The content that nursing students learn is often complex, requiring an understanding of a person’s physical well-being and emotional, mental, and social well-being. Because of this, Concordia’s nursing program provides an in-depth and expansive education that pushes the boundaries of students’ abilities.

Nursing classes in CSP Global’s ABSN program include:

  • Pharmacology in Nursing
  • Behavioral Health Nursing
  • Nursing Care of Childbearing and Childrearing Family
  • Aging, Chronicity, and Palliative Care
  • Transition into Professional Nursing

3. You Need to Manage Your Schedule Tightly

Concordia uses an e-Learning system to teach students didactic nursing theory coursework. This online approach gives you more flexibility because it allows you to study on your terms, at the time and in the place you choose. However, using the online learning component does not mean you can slack on your studies. You must still meet deadlines and stay on track with quizzes and exams.

In addition, you will manage scheduled on-site labs as well as clinical learning at local healthcare facilities. Because students can manage their schedules, increased responsibility comes with it. To succeed in the program, you will need to find ways of organizing your time and doing everything to the best of your abilities.

4. Nursing School Requires Dedication

Nursing is a highly rewarding field with opportunities to impact countless lives, but it does require high levels of commitment to earn your degree. Not only will you need to gain knowledge in various sciences and nursing practices, but you will also need to apply it to myriad scenarios. This means you will have to fully understand the information you learn in online classes and your practical experiences.

To achieve this, you will need to commit time not just to nursing classes but also to studying and committing what you learn to memory. Take the time to absorb what you learn until you feel confident applying it to an actual patient. This is the level of dedication required from nursing students.

students working online

5. Adjusting Priorities

Since nursing school will require much energy, time, and effort, you will need to free up space in other areas of your life. Think of nursing school as your new full-time job. You may need to readjust your work schedule or even your job entirely. You will certainly need to make changes to your day-to-day schedule.

Prepare to prioritize nursing school over other activities in your life. If you are a night owl, you may have to prioritize going to bed early so that you are refreshed for your early morning clinical the next day. Set your priorities before beginning the program to help you succeed.

You may be wondering if nursing school is worth the sacrifices. Learn why nursing school is worth it.

smiling nurse holding open book

6. Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

In nursing school, you will have a lot of information thrown at you, and in an accelerated program, it will happen even quicker. It is essential to be adaptable and ready to learn throughout your time in the program. These will give you valuable skills that transfer to a career as a nurse.

CSP Global’s accelerated nursing program requires that students complete labs and clinicals to stretch and grow skills within practical scenarios alongside skilled nurse professionals. We have teamed up with the a variety of healthcare and community-based agencies so you receive a wide variety of clinical learning experiences and valuable exposure to the settings where nursing care is valuable. Experienced clinical faculty will be there to guide your learning experiences and help you develop your competence.

7. Advocating for Your Learning

As a nursing student, you must advocate for yourself in all areas of your education. You are not sitting in a classroom with an instructor in online classes, but they are still there to help. They are happy to answer questions, provide support, and meet for office hours. You need only to reach out and pursue this support.

Labs and clinical learning are perfect opportunities to learn, try new things, and ask for help. Nursing school is when it is OK not to understand and the best way to learn is by asking the professionals around you. Not only will they provide answers and tips for nursing practice, but they will also help encourage you to continue working towards your goal of becoming a profession nurse.

Concordia St. Paul ABSN student standing in front of university logo

Your Nursing School Success Story Begins at Concordia

At Concordia, you have the added benefit of starting your education sooner. There are three start dates a year, which means more qualified students can get started on their nursing education with us each year. We’re enrolling now, and there is no waitlist.

A BSN degree from Concordia helps prepare you to become the type of nurse our communities need to meet the future of healthcare. Our holistic education approach teaches you how to treat patients and prepares you to be a leader in health care.

Is a nursing degree hard? Yes. However, as the needs of the healthcare industry change, hospitals are increasingly establishing new education and experience standards for nursing staff. One of the new common standards is hiring only nurses with a bachelor’s degree or higher in nursing. Set yourself apart from others and give yourself an advantage by earning a BSN now to start your career confidently.

Now that you have answered the question, “is nursing school hard?” it is time to take the first step. Contact an admissions counselor to get started on your new career today.