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#1479 - 03/12/2009 15:42 PM Mom is going back to school
cebbie Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/12/2009
Hello all,
I am currently a college student in my senior year..getting so close to graduating!! Woohoo! But I'm not posting about myself. I have a question for you all and am in need of some advice.

My mom is in her late 40s and is trying to go back to school to become a nurse. She already has some experience in the medical field, as she went to business college for medical transcription. Now she wants to further her associates and get a bachelor's degree. She's already working full time and has one child still at home. She's finding it really hard to be able to work in enough time to study. RIght now, she's taking one class, an algebra class, and is feeling pretty overwhelmed. I would like to help her more, but as I am going to school four hours away, that's not normally possible. (I'm on spring break right now and am trying to help her prepare for an upcoming test.) My sister, who has already graduated from college has been helping her out as well.
I just really feel for her, because I know she feels like she is wasting her time and money. My family is already on a very tight budget so I know she feels especially guilty about the money. I really want to see her succeed, and I think she can. I just think she has a mental block up , convincing herself that she is no good at math and never will be. She feels really dumb in comparison to some of the younger students in the class. I've tried to say reassuring things, but I feel like what I'm saying isn't very helpful.
What else can I do or say to help motivate her and help her feel like she can accomplish her goal? I know she is smart, but just out of practice. I know she can do it, but she just gets so frustrated. Any ideas?

#1480 - 03/13/2009 17:56 PM Re: Mom is going back to school [Re: cebbie]
Admin Offline


Registered: 12/10/2008
Loc: California
Your mom is certainly not alone! One resource on the Internet your mom might check out is Purple Math. It has great information to help adult students get back into math and algebra, and features an online forum to post questions.

Your mom might also be interested in another student's experience with math when he returned to school.

The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) may be helpful, especially the College Mathematics examination. According to the Board, the CLEP math exam covers skills generally studied in college by students who are not majoring in mathmatics or are majoring in fields not requiring knowledge of advanced mathematics. Some schools accept the examination to satisfy their math requirements and there are many study aids available to help prepare for the test. She can learn more about the College Level Examination Program on the College Board Website and more about the many options of the CLEP here.

You are right in encouraging your mom that she can do it! She might look into tutoring sessions at the college or a study group with other nontraditional students. There are tutoring services available online that she can enjoy in the privacy of her home.

Good luck! :)
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#1484 - 03/17/2009 00:22 AM Re: Mom is going back to school [Re: cebbie]
Shleets Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/15/2009
Reassure your mom that it is not fluid intelligence that will bring her success, it is hard work, self-discipline and perseverance in using her crystallized intelligence for which gets stronger with age. This is a very well supported scientific theory and would explain why all of the wise ones were older (Confucius, Plato, Socrates, Aristotle).
Resourcefulness is no longer an issue these days with the mounds of reliable information online (yes there is a lot of garbage too but luckily you can pluck those out.)
Tell her to hire a local student tutor for cheap or continue to hammer away at her weaknesses and she will get there.
Time management is going to play a key role as well as study location. Even a young student cannot study in a room with distractions. Tell her she has time on her side, it's only recently with the technology boom that the youth have been given more intellectual credit than they deserve.
If she's concerned with her fluid intelligence tell her to download a free program using n-back exercises. Google n-back and you'll see what I'm talking about. She can even look at this as her Mount Kilimanjaro. I'd be proud of her if she was my mom, this isn't going to be easy, wish her a little luck but mostly hard work.

#1549 - 06/05/2009 13:08 PM Re: Mom is going back to school [Re: cebbie]
online ed(ward) Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/04/2009
You should definitely continue to encourage your mom; returning to school is one of the most rewarding experiences available. I went back to school at 35 and it was one of the best decisions of my life.

Let her know that even some of her younger classmates are struggling with the math as well. There's no reason she can't succeed; as others have noted, it's more about hard work than anything else.

Your mom also has options available to study online. Perhaps without the constant reminder that fellow classmates are so young, she could just focus on studying. Linfield College, based in Portland, Oregon, offers one of the better nursing programs in the country. In addition, they've also published a great resource, the "Online College Guide" which could help your mom learn more about studying online.

Best of luck, and keep encouraging her!

#1551 - 06/08/2009 04:15 AM A story of my friend [Re: cebbie]
msgoldrush Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/28/2009
I had this friend, He only finished an associate course then, he worked for a Well known Car Company in our place as a maintenance. Well he's really good at it that even Bachelor graduates would undergo training from him. It was okay at first but what annoys him is that those whom he trained would get the promotion, and he would just remain as a poor mechanic, it didn't happen just once, actually they all became his BOSS... It's really frustrating,because he knew he can handle the job well more than those fresh grads, but he knew it will be impossible for him to get the promotion since he's just an associate grad. What he did is... he further his studies, He took Aviation Engineering at the age of 37 and graduated at the age of 41 well at the same time he's working as a freelance mechanic... Well really good for him, 'coz now He's an Aviation Engineer and A pilot for some commercial planes... I think If it's your dream you can really make it... It just need time + patience + determination + action = Success!!! I hope you'll share this with your mom...


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