Anyone started their access course to become a nurse/midwife?

(71 Posts)
MishMashMosher Thu 06-Sep-18 07:43:56

I hope this is the right place to post.

I have started my access to Higher education course and will hopefully be applying to do a nursing degree starting 2019. Anyone else in the same boat wanting to chat? smile

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MishMashMosher Thu 06-Sep-18 19:33:33

Well I should be doing some work but on here with a cup of tea instead! I do have the laptop out so that counts right?

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donajimena Thu 06-Sep-18 19:35:16

I'm not doing nursing but I did a foundation year last year so I am in my first year this year. Are you enjoying it?

MishMashMosher Thu 06-Sep-18 19:43:37

What are you studying? Well done on completing your foundation year!

I wouldn't say I'm enjoying it just yet as the first few units aren't about the subject I want to study, just learning how to write essays and referencing ect. I'm currently doing an essay on social media, which I'm finding very dull!

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Liesmyparentstoldme Fri 07-Sep-18 13:11:44

Hi, I'm not doing nursing or midwifery. However, I am starting a science access course in Tuesday. With the goal of university in 2019. The college I'll be at, has a nursing access course as well. My tutor told me there is some crossover with the two.

I hope I relearn how to write essays. I think I need to!

MishMashMosher Fri 07-Sep-18 16:51:27

I think all access course have the same few units so I assume you'll do the essay writing stuff too. It's definitely helpful Im just impatient to get into the interesting stuff!

How are you feeling about starting?

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MishMashMosher Fri 07-Sep-18 16:51:52

And what are you hoping to do at uni next year?

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Liesmyparentstoldme Fri 07-Sep-18 19:43:52

Yeah. I know what you mean!

I'm really excited, but also really nervous grin how are you feeling about it?

I:m hoping to do Biomedical science. Hopefully at the University of Essex. Do you have a particular Uni in mind?

MishMashMosher Fri 07-Sep-18 20:14:49

Oh wow biomedical science. I love science-y stuff. I bet that will be interesting.

Let me know how your first day goes!

I'm going to be applying for northumbria and Sunderland. I'm already worrying about not getting in. Sunderland would be a pain to get to but their entry requirements are lower. I have kids and a husband so we can't relocate. What about you?

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beckslovestimmy Fri 07-Sep-18 21:06:18

I'm already qualified and did the nursing diploma and then a post registration degree. Although these first units are probably a bit tedious they will be invaluable once you start the course. Referencing always tripped me up. If you can get your head round it now it will be massively helpful!! Good luck. I love my job and wouldn't do anything else.

donajimena Sat 08-Sep-18 06:03:08

I'm studying Environmental Health. I understand what you mean about finding some stuff tedious. My foundation had very little relevance to my degree, however it was invaluable. I learnt so much about academic writing, research etc. I'm raring to go now.

Liesmyparentstoldme Sat 08-Sep-18 06:50:25

Thanks smile I will.

Oh, I'm totally worried about not getting in as well, failing the course etc!

I understand I have 2 dd's. Ive also applied to UOS and UEA, because they're the closest. Essex is a bit further. I'd really like to go there though, because they do a placement year.

Liesmyparentstoldme Sat 08-Sep-18 06:52:16

I bet it was. That's the area I'm worrying about. I'm hoping after a year of doing the access course. I'll be ready for Uni!

MishMashMosher Sat 08-Sep-18 09:20:26

Yes tedious is exactly what it is! I've got one more ungraded unit after this and then I'm onto the good stuff. I had to do a unit on learning styles which was awful.

I'm. Actually doing my access course online. I've triple checked with both unis I'm applying for that they accept it and they do. It's the same course I'd be doing if I'd gone to college.

I'm having to do a report on social media at the moment and I'm finding it very difficult. I've got loads to say but I'm finding writing it down in a report style challenging as I don't know if I'm doing it right. I don't have anyone to ask. The 'college ' are pretty useless if you need help and it can take them a week to reply to emails. They have no phone number for me to ring.

Luckily this isn't a graded unit so I just need to pass it to finish the unit.

Lies, how many distinctions/merits do you need? I need 18D 27M

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Liesmyparentstoldme Sat 08-Sep-18 11:51:54

That's annoying. I thought with online courses there was loads of support.

Not being graded must take the pressure off!

All at merit or above for Essex. UEA = 36D 9M and UOS = 15D 30M.

donajimena Sat 08-Sep-18 12:09:29

I bought a book essays for dummies. Its really helped grin

donajimena Sat 08-Sep-18 12:13:27

I use Citethisforme for referencing. I'm guessing its kind of cheating but ive checked and its pretty accurate.

NoFucksImAQueen Sat 08-Sep-18 12:25:24

I'm finished my access course and am off to uni this year to do adult nursing. happy to offer any insight and answer questions if needed.

mildshock Sat 08-Sep-18 12:38:43

I finished my access course in 2016, I'm now a student children's nurse (though on maternity leave). My college were also rubbish with support and took forever to get back to us on anything. One tutor lost many students marked work, which she had also forgotten to document anywhere.

Happy to answer any questions you might have.

MishMashMosher Sat 08-Sep-18 12:39:07

Sorry if I'm being stupid but what is citethusforme?

Congrats nofucks! Are you excited? I have so many questions! How did you find the access course? Is it hard to get distinctions?

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MishMashMosher Sat 08-Sep-18 12:41:13

Congratulations to you too mildshock! How are you finding life as a student nurse? I did consider children's nursing but have decided on adult nursing.

If you have DC, how does student nurse life fit in?

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mildshock Sat 08-Sep-18 13:08:38

I loved it, very much looking forward to going back.
It'll be an 18 month break from my studies by the time I return to uni in May.

I found most of the lectures engaging, and my placements have been very interesting so far.

I have 2 children, DS1 (5) and DS2 (11m). It was fine with DS1 while at uni, as he went to nursery 3 days a week. It became a bit more difficult while on placement, as DP works shifts, and my first placement followed ward shift patterns. We had to ask family to look after DS1 and put him to bed and I'd finish a shift at 8.30pm, pick up DS in his pjs and get him home. Didn't happen more than once a week thankfully.

Since going on maternity leave, DS1 has started school. Luckily there's a childminder across the road from us, who has space for both our DC, so when DP is working and I'm at uni/placement, she can have them from 7-6, or MIL/SIL can babysit them.

You'll likely need to get creative with childcare if your husband works shifts. Do you have a lot of family/friends to support you?

We lived in County Durham while I was at college.
I also applied to Northumbria, but didn't get in, it was very competitive!
Is Teesside uni and option? I was offered a place there but I went elsewhere, and we relocated.

DP easily transferred as the company he was with at the time is nationwide. We're now living in Gloucestershire, close to his family.

Distinctions aren't difficult to achieve, I came out with 3 distinctions and 2 merits, for 5 modules. I can't remember the breakdown for each piece of work though. is a website that allows you to generate and list your references in order. Get into practice using this as it's a great tool. Don't forget to double check it before you submit as there's sometimes mistakes generated. My uni and college use Harvard Referencing.

Have you been given any marked assignments yet?

MishMashMosher Sat 08-Sep-18 13:53:08

Thanks for your detailed reply! Sounds like you've had to be really organised. Luckily my husband works set hours. He always home from work by half 4 and 3 on Fridays. The problem is that he starts work at 7.30 so will need to use before school childcare quite early on. I don't really have any family to rely so so it will literally be 100% formal childcare. Luckily my DC will be 6 and 8 by the time I start so not babies.

Unfortunately teesside is too far away as we live in Northumberland. Even northumbria uni is nearly an hour away. I think I'll more likely get a place at Sunderland as the entry requirements are lower.

Did you do much work experience before you applied?

I haven't had any graded units yet. There are 20 units and the first 6 are ungraded. I'm on unit 5 at the moment.

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Liesmyparentstoldme Sat 08-Sep-18 14:43:14

Congratulations @midshock and @nofucks. Did you have Uni interviews? If so what was it like? What questions were asked?

mildshock Sat 08-Sep-18 15:59:04

Your husband being on set hours is ideal really!

I had no formal experience at all, just personal.

DS1 spent some time in hospital following major emergency surgery, it was that experience which made me want to get into that, so I used that in the admissions process.

Yes, most (if not all) nursing courses require an interview, they can't gauge the type of person you are just from a personal statement, they need to meet you. It's not a 10 minute one either, it'll take all day.

Remember that your grades are not the only thing they're looking at. They want well-rounded nurses, who are aware of what it is they'll be doing when qualified.

In all 3 interviews at my chosen unis, there were:

*Written assessment*: at Northumbria we watched a video about child patient with T1 diabetes, and we had to describe how we'd have improved their nursing experience. At Teesside and my uni, it was more vague, along the lines of "tell us of a time you experienced nursing care".
*Maths test*: you had to pass a certain number of questions to be allowed to continue with the interview process.
*Group interview*: this is to see how you interact with others. Do you shout them down, do you listen, are you confident enough to speak your mind, are you empathetic?
*Group activity*: this could be anything, don't stress about it, try to have fun. I can't remember if they did this at Teesside.
Individual interview: they'll likely ask why nursing, why that particular branch of nursing, where do you see yourself working. At Northumbria they seemed to dislike people saying they were empathetic, they asked many people if they knew the meaning of the word. They might not ask about the 6 C's, but research that, it'll be handy to know.
Role play scenario: someone will be a patient (usually the interviewer) and you'll be the nurse. Remember to offer them a drink grin

Some of the students from college were offered places despite falling slightly below the grades because they excelled in the interview process. I was offered a place straight away at Teesside, and put on a waitlist for my Uni (I didn't find out I had a place until mid April!), and rejected from Northumbria.
Definitely go to the open days, you can ask lots of questions and meet some of the people who will interview you smile

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