Critical thinking is embedded in a nurse’s everyday routine.
They flex this mental muscle each day they enter the floor.
Start to think about why that answer is correct and what the possible consequences might be.
Simply memorizing the material won’t translate well into a real-life nursing setting.
When you’re faced with decisions that could ultimately mean life or death, the ability to analyze a situation and come to a solution separates the good nurses from the great ones.
Nursing school offers a multitude of material to master and high expectations for your performance.But in order to learn in a way that will actually equip you to become an excellent nurse, you have to go beyond just memorizing terms.You need to apply an analytical mindset to understanding course material.You learn all sorts of practical skills in nursing school, like flawlessly dressing a wound, taking vitals like a pro or giving an IV without flinching.But without the ability to think clearly and make rational decisions, those skills alone won’t get you very far—you need to think critically as well.“Nurses are faced with decision-making situations in patient care, and each decision they make impacts patient outcomes.Nursing critical thinking skills drive the decision-making process and impact the quality of care provided,” says Georgia Vest, DNP, RN and senior dean of nursing at Rasmussen College School of Nursing.The nursing profession tends to attract those who have natural nurturing abilities, a desire to help others and a knack for science or anatomy.But there is another important skill that successful nurses share and it’s often over-looked: the ability to think critically.One way for students to begin implementing critical thinking is by applying the nursing process to their line of thought, according to Vest.The process includes five steps: assessment, diagnosis, outcomes/planning, implementation and evaluation.