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While I waited to start Nursing School

Stephanie
The list author says: "If you're like me, you're a great student, but it took two rounds of applications to finally get in to nursing school because demand for spots far exceeds availability. Why let the time between finishing pre-reqs and starting nursing school go to waste? Nursing school is challenging--so why not read up on what to expect and things you will need to memorize anyway?

While waiting to get in, I became a certified nursing assistant (CNA), volunteered in two hospitals, and took several classes often taught during nursing school (pharmacology, pathophysiology, etc.) Here are the books that have helped me tremendously along the way:"
How to Survive and Maybe Even Love Nursing School: A Guide for Students by Students
How to Survive and Maybe Even Love Nursing School: A Guide for Students by Students
"Easy read with many, many excellent suggestions.  Time well spent reading this book."
Pharmacology for Nursing Care, 7th Edition
Pharmacology for Nursing Care, 7th Edition
"A tremendous resource!  Lehne takes great care to update his text in a timely fashion and it is very readable.  Important text is in larger font; drugs that are not used frequently are in smaller text.  He also indicates frequency of adverse reactions (when data is available) and evidenced-based medicine practices."
Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance
Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance
"Covers a wide range of topics--from how mortality rates during childbirth were drastically improved to why it is so hard to get hospital workers to wash their hands more frequently.  Really well written, I couldn't put it down."
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
"Reads like a novel.  Well written cautionary tale of why both patient education and consent are so important.  Scientific breakthroughs are explained well and accessible to laypersons."
Dosage Calculations
Dosage Calculations
"Did you hate the math portion on the TEAS exam?  This book has a great math review and many med dosage problems.  A good topic to master prior to starting nursing school."
The Art of Comforting: What to Say and Do for People in Distress
The Art of Comforting: What to Say and Do for People in Distress
"Just started reading this and it is so helpful!  There have been times when I just don't know what to say or do while spending time with a patient--this has helped me get "unstuck" and avoid platitudes."
The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)
The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)
"This was required reading for a class--but what a gem!  Offers hundreds of techniques to activate the parasympathetic nervous system.  Everything from visualization to assertiveness training."
Kozier and Erb's Techniques in Clinical Nursing "Basic to Intermediate Skills" (5th Edition)
Kozier and Erb's Techniques in Clinical Nursing "Basic to Intermediate Skills" (5th Edition)
"I keep this on hand to review skills I learned as a CNA."
Pharmacology Success: A Course Review Applying Critical Thinking to Test Taking (Davis's Success)
Pharmacology Success: A Course Review Applying Critical Thinking to Test Taking (Davis's Success)
"So many, many multiple questions--my favorite way to study!  Each chapter is subdivided by disease so you can quickly identify which questions to do to practice for your exam.  At the end of each chapter there are rationales for each question as well as a comprehensive exam."
Prentice Hall Nursing Reviews & Rationales: Pathophysiology, 2nd Edition
Prentice Hall Nursing Reviews & Rationales: Pathophysiology, 2nd Edition
"The Review & Rationale series is excellent for reviewing prior to exams.  They are in outline format for quick reading; there are pre & post quizzes (just 10 questions each) to help you identify what you need to study."
Prentice-Hall Reviews & Rationales: Pharmacology, 2nd Edition)
Prentice-Hall Reviews & Rationales: Pharmacology, 2nd Edition)
"The Review & Rationale series is excellent for reviewing prior to exams.  They are in outline format for quick reading; there are pre & post quizzes (just 10 questions each) to help you identify what you need to study. I didn't have much time to read this book, so I tried the Vango Notes (audio book version).  Audio version was really scaled down--I should have just looked at the book."
Study Guide and Workbook for Understanding Pathophysiology, 4e
Study Guide and Workbook for Understanding Pathophysiology, 4e
"Good tables/charts in some review sections before a set of multiple choice/matching questions.  Also includes short case studies, with answers given for both multiple choice and case studies. Was able to use this study guide without having the accompanying textbook.  I used the 6th ed. (2010)"
Study Guide for Pathophysiology, 4e
Study Guide for Pathophysiology, 4e
"Mostly multiple choice, matching, fill-in questions, and some case studies.  Answers included in the back."
Study Guide for Pathophysiology for the Health Professions, 4e
Study Guide for Pathophysiology for the Health Professions, 4e
"Contains a lot of charts that you fill in to help you compare diseases--very useful! At first I almost returned it because it lacked multiple choice questions--I'm so glad I didn't."
What Helped Get Me Through: Cancer Survivors Share Wisdom and Hope
What Helped Get Me Through: Cancer Survivors Share Wisdom and Hope
"There is a chapter for health professionals as well as friends/family, etc.  Great insights as to what patients need in terms of emotional support.  It is a collection of short blurbs written by cancer survivors, making it a quick read."
How to Be a Perfect Stranger: The Essential Religious Etiquette Handbook
How to Be a Perfect Stranger: The Essential Religious Etiquette Handbook
"This includes information on funerals/mourning practices of many major religions.  A reference text."
Clinical Pathophysiology Made Ridiculously Simple
Clinical Pathophysiology Made Ridiculously Simple
"Designed more for NP or MD students, it's a lot of dense info written very concisely.  But it doesn't dumb down the material and it has a few clever pneumonics, charts, and graphs."
Diseases and Disorders: A Nursing Therapeutics Manual
Diseases and Disorders: A Nursing Therapeutics Manual
"A great reference book--I am definitely holding on to it for care plans. I showed it to a Telehealth nurse and she now has a reference copy."
The Real Grey's Anatomy: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Real Lives of Surgical Residents
The Real Grey's Anatomy: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Real Lives of Surgical Residents
"This book doesn't really discuss what nurses do...but neither does the show.  Nonetheless, it's an interesting, quick read."
Sudden Death and the Myth of CPR
Sudden Death and the Myth of CPR
"An eye-opener.  Timmermans goes into great detail of how CPR was developed, why we don't have clear statistics for CPR outcomes, and how TV has really distorted our view of how frequently patients are successfully revived.  Don't let the negative reviews on Amazon dissuade you from reading it and making up your own mind."