American Sentinel University Offers Useful Study Tips for Online Nursing Students

American Sentinel University’s healthcare blog, ‘The Sentinel Watch,’ launched a new eight-part nursing blog series: ‘Back to U – Karen’s Corner’ available at and guest blogger, Dr. Karen Whitham, assistant dean, undergraduate nursing programs shares her personal experiences about what it’s like going back to school mid-career and offers valuable insight about balancing work, life, and school to earn an advanced degree for career advancement.

This is part five of an eight-part series.

Going back to school after a 10 to 20 year hiatus is daunting enough, but if it’s your first encounter with online learning, you could probably use a few words of encouragement, along with some helpful study tips. First, let me commend you for taking an important step toward improving patient outcomes. Your degree is not just a piece of paper. It will give you the practical knowledge you can use to lower morbidity rates. As long as you remain committed to this purpose, you will be successful!

Pick a time and a place
The beauty of a virtual classroom is that it’s available to you anywhere you have an Internet connection, 24/7. But therein lies the danger! If you’re not careful, you can find yourself at the end of a week having accomplished nothing. Therefore, the most important thing you can do is pick a specific time and place to engage with your studies. You only need to plan for 10-15 hours a week. Shorter, more frequent study sessions are more effective, but you’ll need to find what works for you. If your schedule is always fluctuating, then make it a habit every Sunday or Monday to map out your study schedule for the week ahead.

Go from paper to pixels
You’re probably accustomed to taking notes on paper. However, taking notes on your computer is just as effective when it comes to learning and retaining new information. It’s also an amazing time saver! You can search an electronic document in seconds whereas looking for information in hand-written notes can be very time-consuming. I found it especially helpful to create just one Word document for each course. This keeps everything in one place, making it easy to search and review by topic.

Reach out to classmates
Online learning can be as interactive and collaborative as you make it. The Moodle platform provides a chat room for you to interact with your professor and peers. It’s not uncommon for classmates to exchange email addresses and phone numbers, so that you can form study groups or a study buddy system if you want to, or simply jump on the phone to exchange ideas. Even though some of your classmates may live in different time zones, don’t be surprised if you make a few friends along the way. After all, you’ll find you have a lot in common.

Stay tuned to ‘Karen’s Corner’ as Dr. Whitham shares more helpful tips about the RN to BSN program.

The ‘Back to U – Karen’s Corner’ blog series will run through September 7 and covers such topics as:

-So You’re Going Back to School…At Your Age?

-Is This the Right Time to Get Your BSN?

-How to Get Your BSN and Still Have a Life

-The Virtues of a Virtual Classroom

-Study Tips for the Online Student

-Balancing Homework with Family

-No Stress, No Struggle: Ask the Question
-Making Time for You

If you’ve ever dreamed of earning your BSN learn how American Sentinel can help make that dream a reality and earn your BSN in under one year and for less than $12,000.

American Sentinel University offers market-relevant, high-quality nursing degree programs, including a CCNE-accredited RN to BSN program that is ideal for nurses who want to expand their knowledge base, become more marketable and enjoy greater career stability and mobility. The RN to BSN can be earned in less than one year and for less than $12,000. Learn more about American Sentinel University’s RN to BSN degree program at or call 866.922.5690.

About American Sentinel University 
American Sentinel University delivers accredited online degree programs in nursing (BSN, MSN, and DNP) and healthcare management (MBA Healthcare, MS in information systems management, and MS in business intelligence and analytics). Its affordable, flexible bachelor’s and master’s nursing degree programs are accredited by the Commission for the Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), of One Dupont Circle, NW Suite 530, Washington, D.C., 20036. The DNP program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) of 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, Ga., 30326. The university is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, DEAC, 1101 17th Street NW, Suite 808, Washington, D.C. 20036, (202) 234-5100,

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