From Capstone Hate to Nursing Love: A Survival Guide


The nursing capstone is a culminating experience for nursing students. It is an opportunity to apply all that they have learned in their nursing program to real-world practice. While the capstone can be a rewarding experience, it can also be challenging. Many students find that they are overwhelmed by the workload, the high stakes, and the feeling of being unprepared.

Why do students hate the nursing capstone?

There are a few reasons why students might hate the nursing capstone. First, the workload is often heavy. Students are expected to work long hours and handle a large number of patients. Second, the stakes are high. Capstone students are responsible for making real-world decisions that can impact the lives of their patients. Third, students may feel overwhelmed and unprepared. They may feel like they don’t have the knowledge or skills they need to be successful. Finally, students may lack support. They may not feel like they have enough support from their preceptors or other nurses.

Common challenges of the nursing capstone

Here are some of the most common challenges that nursing capstone students face:

  • Heavy workload
  • High stakes
  • Feeling overwhelmed and unprepared
  • Lack of support
  • Self-doubt and imposter syndrome

How to overcome the challenges of the nursing capstone

Here are some tips on how to overcome the challenges of the nursing capstone:

  • Manage your time effectively: Create a daily or weekly schedule that helps you stay on top of your workload.
  • Delegate tasks: Ask your preceptor or other nurses for help with tasks that you don’t have time for or that you’re not comfortable doing on your own.
  • Ask questions: Don’t be afraid to ask questions of your preceptor, other nurses, or even patients.
  • Take breaks: It’s important to take breaks throughout the day to avoid burnout.
  • Find a support system: Talk to your friends, family, or other nursing students about what you’re going through.

How to make the most of your nursing capstone

Here are some tips on how to make the most of your nursing capstone experience:

  • Be proactive: Don’t wait for your preceptor to give you assignments. Ask for work to do and volunteer to help out with projects.
  • Be a team player: Be supportive of your fellow nursing students and nurses.
  • Take advantage of learning opportunities: Attend educational workshops and seminars, and read nursing journals and articles.
  • Reflect on your experiences: Take time at the end of each day to reflect on what you learned and what you could have done better.


The nursing capstone can be a challenging experience, but it’s also an opportunity to learn and grow as a nurse. By following the tips above, you can overcome the challenges of the capstone and make the most of this important learning experience.


Q:What do I do if I’m not getting enough support from my preceptor?

If you’re not getting enough support from your preceptor, talk to them about your concerns. If they’re not receptive to your feedback, talk to your clinical instructor or another nurse who you trust.

Q:What do I do if I’m feeling overwhelmed and unprepared?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed and unprepared, talk to your preceptor or clinical instructor. They can help you develop a plan to manage your workload and improve your skills.

Q:What do I do if I’m starting to doubt my abilities?

If you’re starting to doubt your abilities, talk to your preceptor, clinical instructor, or other trusted nurses. They can remind you of your strengths and help you develop a plan to improve your weaknesses.

Q:What do I do if I’m not sure if I want to be a nurse after all?

It’s okay to change your mind about becoming a nurse. If you’re realizing that nursing isn’t right for you, talk to your clinical instructor or academic advisor. They can help you explore other career options.

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