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What’s It Like to Be a Tempo Nursing Student at Walden?

Competency-based learning helps keep you engaged in your career and family life as you earn a nursing degree online.

If you’re working full time and think a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) degree is out of reach, then it’s time to learn more about competency-based education.

When you earn a nursing degree online in Walden University’s Tempo Learning® format, you’ll demonstrate competencies instead of completing courses. Competencies are the skills, knowledge, and abilities you need to be successful in your career.

In the Tempo Learning® format, you’ll study at your own pace—moving ahead as you achieve mastery—and on a schedule that works for you. Rachel Colletta, a clinical nurse educator, said that’s why she chose Walden’s online Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) Completion Program in the Tempo Learning® format.

“I like to move quickly,” she said. “Once I start something, I don’t want to be held up by restrictions like how many courses I can take or start and end dates. I just dive into it—so Tempo Learning® was perfect for me.”

Tempo Learning® is an all-you-can-learn model: You subscribe to three-month learning periods instead of paying for courses or credit hours. The number of competencies you complete during a learning period is up to you, and it depends on your skill, experience, and the amount of time you have available to study.

Once enrolled in Tempo Learning®, you’ll be assigned an academic coach, who will be with you throughout your journey. Colletta said the academic coaches are “wonderful.”

“They’re very responsive. All the faculty have been really quick to answer questions.” She offered these additional insights and anecdotes to help highlight what it’s like to be a Tempo Learning® nursing student:

Personalized Learning
“I found early on that some of the competencies are geared toward nurses in a clinical setting, while I am in more of a research and educator role. I met with my faculty to find topics that worked for my assignments and were applicable to my interests, so that I could pull from work experience that’s more relevant to my career. It makes a powerful difference.”

Practice Makes Perfect
“When I didn’t get the assessment right on the first try for one of my competencies, I was devastated. But I realized that it really is part of the learning process—to get things not quite right, then receive really specific feedback and understand how to fix it. Now I jump in and I know it’s all part of the cycle.”

Learning vs. Grading
“I really appreciate the way learning is measured with Tempo Learning®. Instead of getting a letter grade, we work on something until we’re sure we’ve learned it. I go for ‘mastery’ status—it’s a real confidence booster for me.”

Faculty: Her ‘Secret Weapon’
“The faculty subject matter experts are great and always available. If I get stuck at just one point, they are really quick to help me identify exactly what I need to move on. That’s part of the reason I’m able to move at my quick pace.”

World-Class Support
“Tempo has exceeded my expectations, just in terms of the wonderful people who are there to help. My academic coach came up with a solution for me to be able to work through competencies more quickly—I didn’t think it would be possible, but when I told him my issue, he stepped right in with a great workaround.”

Finding Your Balance
Colletta said earning a degree online showed her she had more free time than she thought—and you may find the same thing, too. Competency-based learning can give you the flexibility to live life and learn at your pace, gaining the skills and knowledge you need to move into a next-level nursing career.

Walden University is an accredited institution offering an online Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) Completion Program in the Tempo Learning®  format. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission,