A Guide to Surviving Nursing School Finals

By ThriveAP Intern and Nursing Student Olivia DeFilippo

Finals week is fast approaching and my friends and I are anxiously awaiting the long nights in the library and frequent Starbucks runs (peppermint mocha, anyone?!). The life of a nursing student can be difficult sometimes, however it is so rewarding…once finals are over, that is! To help you make it through finals week, I’ve identified a few pieces of advice and study resources that have helped me in the past.

Here are a few tips to help you breeze through finals week:


1. Get enough sleep

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You cannot turn into a superhero during finals week. It is impossible to pull an all-nighter and confidently ace an exam.


2. Start preparing ahead of time

Start compiling your flashcards and typing up your study guides a week before your exam to save you time, and anxiety, later.


3. Don’t abandon your health

It is so easy to get into a routine in the library and then forget to eat lunch or panic and stay awake for 72 hours studying (true story: my roommate!). Your health is your priority and if you are not feeling your best then you will not do your best.


4. Study with a group

Studying with a group has helped me so much in nursing school. It allows you to get questions answered and get clarification when you don’t understand a concept. While you may understand beta blockers really well, others may comprehend anticoagulants better, so share information and teach each other!


5. Use your resources

Do not think that you can handle finals alone. Go to study hours and ask questions. Use YouTube to visualize the disorders you are studying. Here are a few apps I use to help study for finals:

  • Quizlet: Create virtual flashcards and generate quizzes to test yourself. You can star the flashcards you are having trouble with and study just those later. I love using Quizlet because it is so easy to access previous flashcard sets for a cumulative exam.
  • STUDYBIBLE: This app is very similar to Quizlet as you can make digital flashcards however, with this app you can file your flashcard sets by institution, class and teacher. If you are completely lost then use this to find flashcards that other students have made for your exam!
  • RefME: This one is a great resource for papers. All you have to do is take a picture of the book’s barcode and the app will generate a correct citation! Download the app and set up an account to get started. You must confirm your email address to get the full benefits of the app. Never again will you be docked points on a paper for an incorrect citation.

Good luck on finals!


What study tips do you have for other nursing and nurse practitioner students?


You Might Also Like: 7 Habits of Highly Effective Nurse Practitioner Students


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