Classes You’ll Take in Nursing School
Jennifer L.W. Fink, RN, BSN is a professional freelance writer with almost a decade of experience as a Registered Nurse. She’s worked in both hospitals and nursing homes as a med-surg, geriatric and transplant nurse. Her national publication credits include Parents, RN, Ladies’ Home Journal, Nursing Spectrum, Pregnancy and Journal of Christian Nursing.
Nursing is a diverse profession that requires a well-rounded education. You’ll be steeped in the sciences – a thorough understanding of the human body is essential for a nurse – but you’ll also study human behavior and interaction in classes such as psychology. You’ll also need excellent communication skills, so English classes are a necessity. And don’t forget computer skills and math! Because believe it or not, nurses actually use math on-the-job. (Drip rates, anyone?)
If nursing school sounds challenging, that’s because it is. Expect to spend a whole lot of time studying!
Basic Nursing Courses
Basic courses include:
Depending on your school, you may also study:
- Sociology of the Family
- Philosophy and/or Ethics
You’ll also be required to take a couple composition courses and some basic math in your first years of nursing school.
Later, you’ll study:
- Pathophysiology, the science of disease
- Pharmacology, the science of medications
- Nutrition, or how various nutrients affect the body and healing
- the Foundations of Nursing Practice, where you’ll be introduced to nursing as a profession
- Health Assessment; that’s when you’ll learn how to take blood pressures, assess lung sounds and detect signs of disease.
Advanced Nursing Courses
After you’ve completed the basics, you’ll study:
- the Nursing Care of Adults
- Children and Childbearing Families
Each course will likely last a semester and include classroom and clinical sessions. You’ll also take courses in:
- Gerontology (the care of older adults)
- Mental Health.
Depending on your program, you may also take courses in
- Nursing Leadership
- Nursing Research
- Community Health
You might even be able to choose a clinical course in an area of your interest.
Reading over the list of required course, it’s natural to feel overwhelmed. It’s a lot of material to cover in a little time! But many nurses have done it before you, and you can too.