Chapter 1: Introduction

Post-secondary Expectations

In the post-secondary nursing environment, academic expectations differ from what you may have experienced in high school, see Table 1.1. You are expected to do more work, and managing your workload may be challenging. This book teaches you strategies for managing your time while reading and writing effectively.

Along with the quantity of work, the quality of your work also changes. It is not enough to understand and summarize course material. You are expected to engage seriously with new ideas by reflecting on them, analyzing them, critiquing them, making connections, drawing conclusions, and finding new ways of thinking about a given subject.

Table 1.1: Expectations for high-school versus post-secondary nursing programs.

High-school programs Post-secondary nursing programs

Reading assignments are moderately long. Teachers may set aside some class time for reading and reviewing the material in depth.

Some reading assignments may be very long. You are expected to come to class and lab having completed the readings and ready to engage in discussion and practice skills.

Teachers often provide study guides and other aids to help you prepare for exams.

Reviewing for exams is primarily your responsibility.

Your grade is determined by your performance on a wide variety of assessments, including minor and major assignments. Not all assessments are writing-based.

Your grade may depend on just a few major assessments. These assessments may include a combination of writing assignments and multiple-choice tests as well as other types of evaluations.

Writing assignments include personal writing and creative writing in addition to expository writing.

You are expected to engage in many types of writing, including reflective writing, summary and synthesis writing, and critical and analytic writing.

The structure and format of writing assignments is generally stable over the high-school years.

Depending on the course, you may be asked to master new forms of writing and follow standards within the profession of nursing and other related fields.

Teachers often go out of their way to identify and try to help students who are performing poorly on exams, missing classes, not turning in assignments, or just struggling with the course. Often, teachers give students many ‘second chances.’

Teachers expect you to be proactive and take steps to help yourself. If you are struggling with your course work, make an appointment with your teacher or another support person, such as a learning strategist or counsellor.



Sounds like a lot? Remember, it is a journey to developing your ability as a scholarly writer. Engaging with this textbook is a great first step.



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The Scholarship of Writing in Nursing Education: 1st Canadian Edition Copyright © 2019 by Jennifer Lapum; Oona St-Amant; Michelle Hughes; Andy Tan; Arina Bogdan; Frances Dimaranan; Rachel Frantzke; and Nada Savicevic is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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