Nursing degree

(9 Posts)
Zadocthepriest Fri 26-Apr-13 12:53:36

Daughter in lower 6th decided on nursing degree but we would like any advise/ info from other students (or their mums).

She is aiming for 3 B's in relevant subjects and would like to end up studying in a student friendly town but realises that placements are a big issue. (older siblings having brilliant student experience at Lincoln and Oxford Brookes).

Any personal experience on work-load, timetables, placements, mixing with other students or nurses, or things to avoid etc etc would all be very useful.

boomting Fri 26-Apr-13 15:11:23

She will need to decide on what track she wants to take - adult, chilld, MH, learning disability or midwifery (though the latter is a completely different degree, it's something that might interest her).

BBB will get her into most nursing courses - for instance, Uni of Manchester wants BBB / BBC / BCC depending on whether or not you want to do adult / child / MH nursing respectively.

Placements are a big issue, especially early morning transport to them. Most nursing students that I know own a car for that very reason.

Has she had a look at The Student Room? There's a whole section devoted to nursing.

As bommting says, BBB will get her into most placessmile

My DD2 is in her first year at Nottingham (Learning disability nursing) and on the whole is having a good time. The work load is HEAVY.. after a very long day at placement they have to come back and do work and lots of it. DD2 has been reeling with exhaustion by the end of placements. She shares a (fab) flat style hall of residence with 5 other girls, covering all the branches of nursing plus a midwife and they are all equally knackered.

Incidentally she was a bit disappointed at first to discover that the nurses are all housed together a Notts... but soon discovered why.. you really don't want to share a flat with a bunch of students who have 4 hours lectures a week and party til 5am if you have to be on shift at 7am! It hasn't stopped them meeting lots of non nursing students and having a great social life.DD1 says Nottingham has some great places !

DD2 Doesn't drive. It does make life trickier but not impossible. One of the other girls brought her car but parking permit was mega expensive so she took it back home and catches the bus (£1 all round Nottingham) It makes the further flung placements a long day but again.. lots of them manage. Incidentally my DD1 is doing medicine and doesn't drive either and has to get even further away.. but they DO get reimbursed.

The one place we looked at that was really poor for non car owners is Keele Uni where they told us, iof you don't have a car , it's not suitable! But that might have been for the LD nursing placements. We asked specifically about placement distances and it ruled out Keele and UWE of the ones we looked at. Coventry was pretty good, Northampton wasn't so good, and in the end DD2 fell in love with Notts when we visited. She would have loved to go to Ox Brookes as it's near us (she would have lived at home ) but they didn't do LD theresad

Good luck to your daughter... smile

Zadocthepriest Mon 29-Apr-13 10:21:51

Thanks for your replies. I should have said...Adult Nursing, definitely no car.

We have checked the Student Room but obviously nursing students are far too busy to reply!

I have started trawling through the uni web-sites' small print (if such a thing exists). Not many give detailed info on placements and some are actually very offputting (advising living at placement and travelling into uni or implying that lack of public transport to rural placements is the students' problem)

So we have realised that the best unis are probably those in larger cities such as Nottingham.

Any more info will be gratefully read.

whitecloud Tue 07-May-13 16:41:02

Zadocthepriest - sorry am a bit late in replying. My dd has applied for nursing. She found it helpful to:

Subscribe to the Nursing Times or Standard - they tell you what is really happening in nursing and discuss topics that are useful to know about in an interview.

Try and get some relevant voluntary work experience. We are lucky to live near a teaching hospital, but my dd also volunteers at a care home for the disabled and did work in a holiday club for disadvantaged children. It was abroad, but you could find something here. They seemed to like this - it gives you more to talk about on your personal statement and at the interview. You can also find out if you like being in the medical field.

When you go to open days quiz them about placements and getting there. We talked to the student nurses and they said that in practice there isn't any point in sending a student to a placement they can't get to. Think they do car shares as well and in some places you can borrow a car if you do drive. The northern cities probably have better public transport. Some places send you to placements in a certain zone for the whole three years. It could be accessible to the uni, but then you don't get experience of the whole area.

We found it helpful to get to open days early and try to talk to the students and tutors before they get busy. They were really nice and informative.

You do have to work hard on your academic work, but they set a lot of store on personality and aptitude. One tutor told us that she interviewed someone with brilliant academic qualifications, but they would hardly look at her so didn't think they would be very good with other people! 3 Bs should be fine.

Best of luck.

Zadocthepriest Fri 10-May-13 12:18:55

Thanks very much, Whitecloud; lots of helpful advice. So has your daughter started her course yet?

Dd has just started helping at Age UKwhich she is enjoying and has some hospital experience set up for the summer. Must set up some uni visits for after the exams. Reading the nursing journals is an idea we hadn't thought of.

whitecloud Sat 11-May-13 18:28:41

Zadocthepriest - dd is studying hard for her A2s at the moment. It is good that your dd has got voluntary work. We also found it useful after dd applied and towards the interviews to keep an eye on papers, websites etc about topical issues in nursing. Some interviewers asked about what was going on in the nursing world. Glad all the info helps.

Indith Sat 11-May-13 18:33:47

I'm doing midwifery at the moment. For our placements it tends to be that the youngsters who live in halls have the placements that are in urban areas, easy to get to on public transport etc from their halls and those living at home, with own transport, mature students etc get the placements further out. They seem to be pretty flexible about it. Plus, though the NHS bursary if cost of travel to placement is more than cost of travel to university then you can claim the difference back.

whitecloud Mon 13-May-13 17:35:18

Thanks for useful info, Indith. Forgot to say, Zadoc, that it is worth checking when students have to go out on placement in the first year. Most places let them have the first term at uni and then go on placement after Christmas, so that they can get settled in. But some don't. My dd decided she definitely didn't want to go out on placement before
Christmas. It is a factor.

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