Accelerated Nursing Clinicals: What to Expect

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During nursing clinicals, you can expect to complete multiple eight- to 12-hour clinical shifts each week. These shifts will be overseen by a clinical nurse preceptor, who will guide you through the process. You’ll start with basic nursing duties that become more complex as you advance through the program.

nursing student using stethoscope in sim lab

Clinical rotations are a cornerstone of your nursing education. It’s during this portion of accelerated nursing school that you interact with real patients and work alongside experts in the health care field.

Through the Accelerated 2nd Degree ABSN program at Notre Dame of Maryland University, you’ll complete nursing coursework and participate in skills and simulation labs and clinical rotations, building confidence in what you’ve learned.

There is no better place to complete your clinical rotations than Baltimore. In this blog post, we will outline what to expect during nursing school clinicals.

What to Expect in Nursing Clinicals

Clinical rotations typically involve nursing students working with patients at local health care institutions under the supervision of clinical academics or preceptors.

Our nursing students put into practice all they’ve learned in their nursing theory classes, nursing skills labs, and simulation labs in terms of how to interact with and care for patients in a real-world health care setting. This often involves working in several specialist areas to identify the nursing students’ area of interest.

In their first semester of study, NDMU ABSN students begin shadowing practicing nurses each week during their scheduled 8- to 12-hour clinical shifts.

Students often learn fundamental nursing tasks, including charting and making beds, during their first few clinical rotations. As they advance through their degree, the students take on more responsibilities and more challenging clinical duties.

Accelerated Nursing Clinicals at Baltimore Health Care Facilities

Clinical placements are one of the most important components of the NDMU ABSN curriculum. In our ABSN program, the clinical portion is designed to offer first-hand experience and perspectives on how to deliver safe and effective patient care.

2 nursing students in classroom working on classwork

In our ABSN program, you’ll also work with patients and their families in a variety of clinical settings and areas of nursing practice, including:

  • Medical surgical nursing
  • Advanced medical surgical nursing
  • Pediatrics
  • Obstetrics
  • Psychiatric/Mental health nursing
  • Community health

You’ll complete the 15-month program in close proximity to some of the region’s most prestigious health care providers. While we can’t guarantee specific clinical placement locations, we can assure you that you will gain valuable real-world experiences at any of the following clinical sites in the Baltimore metropolitan area:

  • Anne Arundel Medical Center
  • Franklin Square Hospital
  • GBMC
  • Howard General Hospital
  • Johns Hopkins Bayview
  • Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital
  • MedStar Harbor Hospital
  • MedStar Union Hospital
  • Mercy Medical Center
  • Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital
  • Sinai
  • St. Agnes Hospital
  • UMMC Midtown Campus
  • University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC)
  • University of Maryland St. Joseph’s Medical Center

Clinicals are an excellent opportunity to network with other health care professionals and discover more about nurses’ typical daily responsibilities. Because you'll be gaining valuable experience by working with some of the greatest medical experts in the region, we frequently advise students to consider their clinical placements as a job interview.

Why are Clinical Rotations Important?

All BSN programs should include clinical rotations because they provide nursing students a chance to experience the daily complexities of health care environments. Through the ABSN clinical rotations, students will be prepared for success in their future nursing jobs owing to the patients they interact with and health situations they experience during their clinical rotations.

Because clinical rotations involve seeing and caring for actual patients in real health care facilities, they provide a clear picture of what it's like to work as a nurse. Students gain a more sophisticated understanding of how the nursing theory and skills that they study and practice in their nursing labs come into play on the job.

The NDMU ABSN program immerses students in diverse areas of nursing practice by offering rotations that allow them to assist in patient care while working alongside expert clinical instructors.

Nursing student studying for the ABSN program

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Clinical Hours

While enrolled in the NDMU ABSN program, you can expect to participate in more than 700 hours of clinical rotations over four full-time semesters.

While this may sound like a lot of time, clinicals are broken down into several 8- to 12-hour clinical shifts multiple days a week, mimicking the shift length you will likely experience during a typical week working as a nurse.

It is worth mentioning that many traditional BSN programs take 4 years complete, with clinical rotations typically starting in the last year or semester of the program after completing nursing theory coursework and labs in earlier semesters.

A major benefit of enrolling in an ABSN program like the one offered by NDMU is that clinical rotations begin in the first semester, providing you with a preliminary experience of what nursing entails.

Are You Ready to Earn Your Nursing Degree?

Nursing student smiling while at locker

Now that you know more about nursing clinicals, what to expect, and how our ABSN program works, it’s time to put your dreams into action. Upon graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from the NDMU ABSN program, you’ll be equipped with the skills and knowledge to sit for the NCLEX and enter the nursing field with confidence.

Reach out to our team of dedicated admissions counselors today to learn more about why enrolling in our 15-month ABSN program in at NMDU is the right choice for your future nursing career.