Study groups are a helpful resource for nursing students. Since there is so much to learn in classroom instruction and simulations, a study group can help you to review the information and prepare for tests. It also gives you the opportunity to talk with other nursing students if you have questions. Virtual study groups are especially beneficial because they allow students to study anywhere. There is no need to rent a study hall or a meeting space, so flexible group times can be made available.

Virtual study groups cut down on commute time, which frees up more moments for cramming in notes, working part-time or driving to lectures or nursing labs . Another advantage of this is that it gives people from other classes and locations the opportunity to collaborate together. You may even network with your fellow nursing hopefuls, sharing study secrets or hints on where they buy their affordable scrubs and nursing supplies. If you are comfortable meeting online and would like to try a study group for nursing students, the following tips will help you to make the most of your experience.

Find the Right Group

There are a variety of Internet-based academic resources and nursing study sites for students online. Though there are many options, it is essential for nursing students to find the group that best fits their academic needs and study style. First, check to see if your university sponsors a virtual study group. By signing up for a virtual program that is affiliated with your school, your study group will align with your coursework. Should you encounter any challenges, it will be easy to contact a representative of your school.

Sometimes, nursing schools do not have virtual study groups available. In this case, ask an instructor or a professor about which options they recommend. Another way to discover a new study group is to visit the website of nursing societies, membership associations for nursing students or nursing exam prep sites. By taking a little time to find the appropriate group, you will be more successful while you study.

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Check Your Technology

Virtual study groups require a few different forms of hardware and software. You will need a tablet or laptop, as well as a reliable Internet connection. Avoid trying to study on your smartphone, which is too small to review the material and network with fellow students. You will also need a working camera and microphone so you can talk with everyone.

Find out ahead of time what kind of video chat software the group will use. Test it a couple of days before your first study session. This approach will help you to troubleshoot issues and prevent glitches when the group starts.

Attend Every Session

Online study groups require consistency. If you sign up for one, be sure to participate in every session. If you are sporadic with your attendance, you may have a hard time catching up on new material. Your group may also be ahead of you when you return. If your fellow students have to fill you in on information they already reviewed, it cuts down on the time available to study new material.

Be courteous by arriving to the session a few moments ahead of time. While you do not need to turn on your microphone or camera until the group begins, you will be sure that you are ready when the group leader starts the class. If you must miss a session for academic or personal reasons, let your group know ahead of time. Message everyone to let them know why you will not be there and be sure to grab the material that they will be learning or reviewing during the session. Reading the material on your own will allow you to jump back in the next week.

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Set Group Goals

In order to stay on track, your group must set formal goals. The virtual study groups that are organized by schools and universities usually have a study plan available. If your group follows the plan each week, you will be caught up on all material when it is time for your nursing exams or tests.

Informal, virtual study groups created by students or run by other organizations may require you to set the goals yourself. Assign one or two students to create the schedule and lead group goal planning. If you are all willing to collaborate on the schedule and study material, you will ensure you create group goals that everyone can meet and achieve.

Measure Your Success

Once your group goals are set, it will be easier to measure success. There are many virtual study apps and school software that are designed to keep you updated on your progress. Some study sections or “pods” may close automatically when it is time to finish material and move on to the next portion.

Try to find out your test and exam schedule ahead of time. Complete the material on each test before it arrives. Once everyone in the study group takes the exam, you can share your scores to evaluate how you are doing. If the grades are similar, you will know if you are succeeding in your studies or if you need to adjust the schedule or program. Over time, you will discover who may need a little more assistance with certain subjects. You will also find out whether you need to ask your instructor about certain topics or if you need additional study tools.

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Succeeding in Study Groups and Nursing School

A virtual study group is a collaborative and convenient way for nursing students to study for their exams and course material. Checking your technology, planning your study material and arriving on time for each session can help you to be successful. Other tips for making the most of study groups in nursing school include saving your notes in a cloud-sharing software for easy access anywhere you study. The amount of time that it takes to learn new nursing material can make school challenging, but eventually, you will learn everything you need to know to become a professional and competent nurse. If you attend regular virtual study groups, you are also sure to make a few friends or connections along the way.

Andrina Bell
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