4 Main Roles of a Student Nurse

4 Main Roles of a Student Nurse

The roles of a student nurse may be limited but essential at the same time. Many student nurses help in many clinical areas. They help promote, maintain, and restore patients’ health after a procedure to gain practical experience. They must follow the clinical instructor’s instructions to execute these duties properly.

Being a student nurse offers you to practice what you’ve learned in nursing school. It may be challenging but all worth it. 


Main Roles of a Student Nurse

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 3 million registered nurses are employed in hospitals, nursing homes, long-term facilities, clinics, and other nurse-related work environments.

As a student nurse, your role is not limited to your campus alone but also in a hospital setting where you will be caring for patients too. And as you help your patients to heal, you are also tasked to promote their privacy, dignity, and safety. 


Get your patient assignment

Before you start your nursing clinical rounds, your clinical instructor will assign your patient assignment. This assignment has your patient’s name that you’ll be assigned for the day.

Your clinical instructor will also expect you to understand your patient’s diagnosis. You must know about their medical condition and the treatment they need. 


Nursing care

As a student nurse, you’ll be responsible for assisting your patients whenever they need help, particularly when eating or bathing. You will also help in keeping your patients warm after their baths. Also, when bathing your patients, you must always keep their beds dry.

Placing a towel under your patient does the trick. Always ask for consent when caring for your patients because some of them are uncomfortable when there are student nurses around. 


Administer medications

Part of your clinical rotations as a student nurse is to give or administer medications after determining the effects of the medication on them. Of course, this will only be done with the supervision and approval of your clinical instructor. 

To prepare, ensure you have the right dose and administer the medication at the right time. As you do this, call the patient by name as you administer the meds. Another way to confirm their identity is by checking their patient ID. 



One of the most common sayings used in the medical field is, “If you didn’t chart it, it never happened.” It is why you must provide all the information or procedure you did to your patient in their chart. It will serve many purposes in terms of caring for your patients. 

Charting means you must document all the medical procedures done. It includes your patient’s condition, medication list, treatment plan, and symptoms experienced by your patients. A patient’s chart also includes the patient’s medical history and diagnosis provided by the physician. 


Always Know the Roles of a Student Nurse

Your clinicals are the best time to gather nursing experience. It is also an excellent time to get a hands-on experience with many nursing procedures and observe how a nursing unit works. Knowing your main roles as a student nurse will make your nursing clinicals easier. 

Of course, it will be a little intimidating to be surrounded by professional and seasoned nurses already equipped with skills and knowledge regarding patient care. But with careful planning and guidance from your clinical instructor, you will also be an excellent student nurse. 


Looking for more student resources? Check out these helpful links!

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