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Finding Balance As A Nurse That Works And Studies

Being nurse that works and studies is possible thanks to the flexibility of online learning. It’s never been easier to gain a new qualification while maintaining your income – all it takes is some smart scheduling and forward planning. 

In this guide we’ll provide tips for gaining a new qualification while also working as a nurse. This way, you can work towards your career goals while still working in healthcare.

Can you work while studying nursing?

Yes, it’s possible to keep working while also studying to gain a postgraduate qualification such as a Master of Health (Advanced Nursing). At Federation Uni Online, we offer flexible modes of study – perfect for shift workers or those who are juggling work and family commitments. 

If you don’t have the time to spend commuting to a campus, or you work unusual hours, our online nursing courses make it easy to study from home at times that suit your schedule. The following tips have come from former Federation Uni students who have successfully managed to study while working.

Tell your workplace about your study plans

Before you start your course, let your supervisors, managers and colleagues know that you’re going to be undertaking some study. The benefits of communicating with your workplace include:

  • Professional mentorship: Your workplace is likely to be supportive of your decision to study, and you might even receive an offer of mentorship. 
  • The possibility of study leave: Depending on your contract, you might be eligible to apply for paid study leave. 
  • Understanding and support: Within your workplace, you’ll be surrounded by people who know what it’s like to work while studying. Being open with your colleagues invites offers of support – even if it’s just regular reassurance that you’re on the right track, and to keep going! 

Career progression: If you have your eye on a position such as Nurse Unit Manager, it might be possible to move up within your current workplace once you’ve completed your course. This might be the time for you to upskill and become a nurse that works and studies.

Make the most of online resources 

Help and support is available for Federation Uni Online students. When you begin your course, we recommend that you familiarise yourself with the many support services that exist to help you fit study into your busy lifestyle. These include:

  • Student Advisors: If you ever have questions or concerns about your studies, our student support team is only a phone call away. 
  • Online Learning Advisors: Our tutors – known as Online Learning Advisors (OLA) are committed to helping you navigate your weekly assessments, and answering any questions you might have about the course content. 
  • Your Online Community: Through online discussion boards and a private messaging service, it’s easy to make meaningful connections with other students. Your peer network is an extremely important aspect of uni life – so take every opportunity that comes your way to communicate and share your journey!
  • Counselling: Federation Uni Online students have access to no-cost counselling services. Our friendly team of counsellors is here to help you meet the challenges of student life. 
  • Study Support: Need help with referencing or academic writing? We have an extensive range of study support services available to help you, including subject mentors, library help and Studiosity for online feedback from academic experts. 

Lean on your family and friends 

Being a nurse that works and studies is not easy! Those who already work in healthcare will know how important it is to have supportive family and friends. If you want to take the step to study at a postgraduate level, make sure you keep your loved ones in the loop, so they can step in to help if you need it. 

Working as a nurse while studying might mean you need to make a few sacrifices, as you won’t have as much free time. There’s nothing wrong with reaching out to the people around you if you ever need a helping hand – chances are, you’ve helped them when they needed it, and they’ll be happy for a chance to return the favour.

Make time for yourself 

Taking time out to relax and unwind is just as important as studying. Whenever you accomplish something in your degree – whether it’s handing in an assignment or completing all your weekly readings – it’s important to reward yourself. 

The first benefit is that you’ll start to form positive associations with study, which will make you more inclined to keep going. Secondly, taking time away from your academic work to do something restorative will help to prevent burnout. 

It could be helpful to write a list of pleasurable activities that you can use as rewards for reaching important milestones. Everyone is different, but here are some suggestions:

  • Going for a long walk in nature
  • Taking a swim 
  • Cooking your favourite food
  • Catching up with friends
  • Going out for a nice dinner 
  • Taking a leisurely bubble bath
  • Watching a movie

Make sleep a priority

Although it might seem tempting to burn the candle at both ends, this won’t do you any favours in the long run. Sleep is vital for coping with work and study, so you need to factor it in when planning your week. 

Our team is here to help you if you ever run into problems. If you need to reduce your study load, or take a leave of absence, please contact our student support team for guidance and advice. 

How many hours should a nurse study?

The number of hours you spend studying per week will depend on whether you’re studying part time or full time. 

If you have questions about studying at Federation Uni Online, please feel free to contact us. We can provide advice to those considering working as a nurse while studying, and help get you closer to achieving your goals.

Feeling inspired?

Learn more about the Master of Health (Advanced Nursing) and discover how this qualification can take your career in healthcare to the next level. 

You can get in touch with our Course Consultants to discuss your study options, or download a brochure to learn more about studying at Federation Uni Online. 

Read to take the plunge? Apply online today