[BEST OF] How to Memorize Everything in Nursing School (Episode 51-Navigating Nursing School Podcast)

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Hey there! This is Nurse Nicole, founder of Your Nursing Tutor and the VIP Tutoring Membership, and today I’m resharing one of the 4 most popular podcast episodes of 2021, just in case you haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet. Today’s episode is my answer to the commonly asked question, “How can you memorize everything you need to in nursing school when there’s so much information?”

I’ll be giving you my most helpful tips for how to reduce your overwhelm and make your memorization in nursing school a lot more manageable, by telling you the difference between information you NEED to memorize, versus information that you really need to find a different way to remember. And of course, I’ll be giving suggestions for alternative ways to study, too!

I’ll also be sharing my hard and fast rule for the ONLY situation where you should be making flashcards…and I’m going to clue you in right now, that I’m not going to be saying drug cards.Also, if you’ve ever wondered why it is that you can usually narrow down your answer choices to 2 options…but then always pick the wrong answer, I’ll be giving you the explanation for that, too. As well as how you can to FIX that problem, of course!


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Links from Episode 51:

VIP Tutoring Membership (www.YourNursingTutor.com/vip): Get the affordable tutoring support you need to finally transform all your hard work into grades that you can be proud of.

Free Facebook Group: Nursing Students in Nursing School, (Free Help and Support)


Transcript for Episode 51

Hey there! This is Nurse Nicole, founder of Your Nursing Tutor and the VIP Tutoring Membership, and today I’m resharing one of the 4 most popular podcast episodes of 2021, just in case you haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet. Today’s episode is my answer to the commonly asked question, “How can you memorize everything you need to in nursing school when there’s so much information?”

I’ll be giving you my most helpful tips for how to reduce your overwhelm and make your memorization in nursing school a lot more manageable, by telling you the difference between information you NEED to memorize, versus information that you really need to find a different way to remember. And of course, I’ll be giving suggestions for alternative ways to study, too!

I’ll also be sharing my hard and fast rule for the ONLY situation where you should be making flashcards…and I’m going to clue you in right now, that I’m not going to be saying drug cards.

Also, if you’ve ever wondered why it is that you can usually narrow down your answer choices to 2 options…but then always pick the wrong answer, I’ll be giving you the explanation for that, too. As well as how you can to FIX that problem, of course!

Enjoy today’s episode!

———–

In this video I am going to answer for you one of the most common questions I get about nursing school, which is, how do you memorize everything in nursing school?

 I’m Nicole Whitworth, I’m the founder of your nursing tutor and I have been a professional nursing tutor for over 12 years. I specialize in helping students bridge the gap between being a want to be nurse all the way to being an expert nurse by training you how to study in a way that trains your brain to automatically think like a nurse. 

How do you memorize everything in nursing school? It really comes down to deciding learning one difference, okay? The difference is, what information should you memorize, and what information do you need to study another way. 

Because the shorter answer is, how do you memorize everything in nursing school, you DON’T memorize everything in nursing school! But you do need to pass your classes, there’s different ways to study that are going to help you be more successful so that you can be a successful nursing student instead of one of the nursing students who struggle constantly through the program as things get harder and harder. 

If you can master this difference, then you will be one of the students that nursing school gets easier and easier for. Just like any new skill that you’re learning, it should get easier as you practice. 

First thing that you want to think about when you’re differentiating whether you should memorize it or study in a different way, is if it’s a one off, straightforward fact. So perfect examples are going to be lab values or vocabulary definitions, things like that, anatomy and physiology, etc. Those you want to memorize, and flashcards are great for this. 

In fact, this is the only thing I recommend flashcards for! If you’re using flashcards to try to memorize all of the facts in pharmacology, and about all the characteristics of drugs and mechanisms of action and everything, then pharmacology is going to remain difficult for you! Because that’s much too complex information to put on a flashcard. 

Instead, I want to focus on memorizing things that are very straightforward, like a “one to one” correlation. “If This, Then That,” you can flip over the flashcard and have your answer. 

It’s got to be the very simplest, baseline, foundational type of information. That’s the stuff you memorize in nursing school. And that’s not too overwhelming, okay? 

Two, is the complex information. This is the stuff that when you try to memorize it, you’re going to feel overwhelmed, because you can’t, okay? You might feel like you can for the exam, but you’re not going to retain it long term because you don’t actually understand it, it’s not the type of thing you can just straight up memorize. 

Examples of this more complex information is going to be groups have information. For example, signs and symptoms of a disorder, those kinds of things you need to study for understanding, not for memorization. 

I’ll give you a further example. You want to figure out what the underlying Anatomy and Physiology, or pathophysiology, that causes this group of signs and symptoms, for example, so that you can understand why they occur, versus simply trying to memorize them without knowing why they occur. 

Because you know, if you have a list of symptoms for disorder A and a list of symptoms for disorder B, then when you get to an exam and they’re asking, “A patient has these symptoms, what are you going to do next?” Well, you have to know what disorder those symptoms represent in order to be able to figure out what you’re going to do next. But if you just had these two generic lists of symptoms in your head, they’re going to get mixed up. 

And THIS is the reason why nursing students can narrow down exam questions to two answer choices…and then always pick the wrong one. Because you know, it’s one of these two that you’re pulling from, but it’s a little fuzzy on the details, because you memorize instead of understanding. 

Instead, if you go through and say, well, the normal A&P does this, but because “X” is broken, this is what’s going to happen instead with we’re going to see these kind of symptoms as a result, because it’s not working properly. And this is what happens when it doesn’t work properly. 

Then when you get to that exam question, the correct answer is literally going to jump out at you. It’s going to be so obvious because you understand it! And you didn’t even have to memorize any of the symptoms, because they just made sense to you. Because this is what happens when it’s broken. 

I promise you, if you study this way, and I actually created a simple four step process, I call it the Silver Bullet Study System, just to explain to nursing students exactly how to study this way, so that you learn to understand the more complex information because you know, spoiler alert: this is what it means to think like a nurse! 

But if you study this way, then you won’t even need an NCLEX review course at the end of nursing school because you will remember everything that you studied forever! 

You don’t forget the stories that you’re telling yourself with the A&P, and what happens next, and figuring out and taking the time to wrestle with the information and understand it. And so THAT is how nursing school gets EASIER instead of harder when you study the complex information for understanding…and save the memorizing for the simple facts. 

Now if you would like some help learning how to tell the difference between the simple facts that you should be memorizing, and the more complex information that you need to understand, and even if you would like some help, you’re studying that complex information in a way that’s going to automatically train your brain to think like a nurse, then I would love to help you with that through my VIP tutoring membership and you can find more information about that at www.YourNursingTutor.com/VIP

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