6 Essential Tips for Nurses Pursuing Higher Education

Unquestionably, nursing is one of healthcare's most challenging but extremely rewarding occupations. To provide the best quality care to the patients, the professionals in this sector must always remain alert, work irregular hours under demanding conditions, and fight compassion fatigue. And while it may not be an easy task, it pays off in the satisfaction of changing patients' lives for the better.

6 Essential Tips for Nurses Pursuing Higher Education

A BSN degree from an accredited institution is a prerequisite for entering the nursing field. The degree is essential to gaining the foundational knowledge and skills required to handle the day-to-day demands of the job. However, a bachelor's degree alone is insufficient. Nurses often deal with patients outside hospital premises. For instance, nurses also deliver care at nurse-managed health facilities, migrant health clinics, community centers, and even homes. Therefore, nurses at all levels are encouraged to further their education to offer top-notch quality care to all patients.

That said, no one can dispute how demanding and stressful a nursing student's life is; ask any practicing nurse, and they can attest to this. After all, to succeed in nursing school, you must memorize several medical terminologies, complete clinical rotations, keep up with your grades, and stay prepared for challenging exams. Nonetheless, there are some essential tips for nurses pursuing higher education to position themselves for success. 

So, let’s have a look:

1. Go for online learning

Do you wish to boost your earnings and advance your nursing career? What other way than pursuing an online degree? Nowadays, renowned institutes offer online courses for students who want to manage their studies flexibly while overlooking employment responsibilities.

If you wish to care for patients' holistic health and need a shift from bedside-focused job roles, consider enrolling in an MSN FNP online degree program and increase your knowledge and skill in the field. The program will equip you with research, diagnostic, and clinical skills. Similarly, since the cornerstone of this profession is holistic health assessment, the degree will prepare you to handle anything from health education and screenings to managing diseases and illnesses.

2. Determine your learning style

Have you ever thought about why you tend to grasp video lectures more quickly than audio notes? Well, the reason is every person has a specific learning style. For instance, some people learn best visually and audibly, while others like to take notes to help them remember things later.

Some individuals choose to concentrate primarily on reading materials and check their understanding through online tests and quizzes. For instance, many nursing schools mandate a passing score on the TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills) to evaluate applicants. If you find yourself in this position, you can adopt this studying approach by accessing online reading materials and assessing your knowledge using free TEAS practice tests offered by the Career Employer test prep site. This method has proven to be effective as practice tests closely mimic the actual exam, instilling confidence in your knowledge and acquainting you with what to expect. 

So, discover your preferred learning style first before jumping in headfirst. Your success as a nursing student depends on understanding how your brain acquires knowledge and processes it. Knowing your preferred learning style is especially crucial if you enroll in an online degree program since you will be studying independently. 

3. Talk to your professors 

At nursing schools, your professors might be more than just your instructor or teachers; they can also be your closest allies. So don't be afraid to get to know them and build strong relations with them. Doing so can be advantageous to your career success. For example, your professors can help you prepare better for exams, assist you in finding a potential mentor or even become one for you, recommend joining relevant professional organizations, and provide information about upcoming practicums or internships. In addition, they can offer letters of recommendation for future employment. 

But while your professors would like you to excel in your career, it’s only possible if you take the initiative.

4. Organization is key 

Of course, you won't want to slack up on your educational goals. And that’s why being organized is essential because every learning task will provide unique difficulties. Besides, being organized makes tracking upcoming tasks, assignments, deadlines, and exam dates easier.

Making a daily routine is one of the best ways to handle the workload associated with nursing school. Therefore, making an hour-by-hour summary of your day would be best. The summary must include days and times of class, social responsibilities, family commitments, appointments, and breaks.

A daily plan that you may consult can help you prioritize your responsibilities, better manage your time, and decide when to take breaks.

5. Lean on your peers 

Your peers are a valuable source for your nursing school's success. Do you know that the learning pyramid states that pupils who pass knowledge to their peers may retain 90% of what they have learned, making this method the most efficient? So, studying in groups or seeking help from your classmates is an excellent way for maximal achievement in your course program. Moreover, study groups might be beneficial because your peers might pick up on crucial concepts you may have missed.

Not only this, study groups have endless benefits. For instance, they can assist you in maintaining your academic motivation, making networking possibilities available, holding you accountable in front of other group members, and also having access to other resourceful materials. 

6. Prioritize self-care

This tip is the most crucial one. While your goal of advancing your nursing career is ambitious, you shouldn't exhaust yourself. It is true that when pursuing a nursing degree, self-care frequently suffers. But if your health isn't at its peak, you won't be able to do anything. Put this way, the responsibilities of nursing school can be stressful. Nursing students should practice coping mechanisms to manage academic pressures, a type of self-care. 

Ultimately, you can maintain a stable mental state throughout your demanding nursing degree program by scheduling downtime daily and weekly. Most importantly, taking good care of yourself can help you maintain optimal health and manage your workload better. And this includes eating regular healthy meals, minimizing excessive caffeine intake, being active, and getting plenty of sleep.


Without a doubt, pursuing higher education as a nurse is challenging. The amount of studying you must do may feel impossible initially, especially if you are trying to balance your education with other obligations like employment and family. After all, you might question how you would absorb all those lectures, let alone take notes for review, be ready for the nursing exam, and remember everything you need to know to have a successful nursing career. But this is something you can accomplish.

Remember that the best educational experiences come from letting go of the idea of perfection. So, incorporate these study strategies, stay dedicated, and you will be on your way to succeeding in your program rather than just surviving it.