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Updated by Meagan Hollman on Mar 12, 2013
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8 Tips for Nursing Students Starting Clinical Rotations

For nursing students attending a nursing college in Utah, the words “clinical rotations” can be a catalyst for an attack of the nerves. Clinical rotations aren’t meant to be an ordeal; they’re designed to help you prepare to be the best nurse you can be. Take a look at some of these tips to help you keep calm and carry on through clinicals.

1

Prepare.

Prepare.

Brush over the patient charts and plan out your day before it even starts. Make sure you thoroughly know clinical procedures and have perfected them during the clinical labs taught at your Utah nursing college. Be prepared for hard work.

2

Share.

Share.

Share your clinical experiences with other nursing students. This will help you vent frustration, learn new skills and realize that you are not alone in your insecurities. Create study groups and meet often.

3

Be Open.

Be Open.

If you show up to the clinical on your first day already hating it, then your experience will be miserable. But if you keep an open mind, you may realize how much you actually enjoy nursing homes or pediatrics.

4

Be Aware.

Be Aware.

Get to know everyone in your nursing unit, including the clerks, techs and CNAs. Make friends with them so that if you ever need a favor, they’ll jump in to help, and vice versa.

5

Use All Your Resources.

Use All Your Resources.

This includes asking other nurses for advice and making sure you have the latest drug guide and clinical procedure review book. Also, share your struggles and successes with your professor at your Utah nursing college. He or she can help you improve by searching for clinical opportunities just for you.

6

Be Professional.

Be Professional.

Introduce yourself; speak clearly and make eye contact. Show patients you care about them by always being friendly; make an effort to build a rapport with them.

7

Persevere.

Persevere.

You will inevitably make a mistake. It’s okay. Make a mental note to never do it again and move on. You’re also going to get a little skittish the first time you spot an open wound—a nursing college in Utah can’t prepare you for that shock. Keep calm. You’ll learn to work around your queasiness.