Nursing School Essentials – 15 Supplies You Need

Nursing School

Starting nursing school is an exciting time. You’ll be learning valuable skills that can serve you well in a healthcare career, meeting classmates who could become future colleagues, and pursuing your dream of becoming a registered nurse.

As you begin nursing school, you want to put yourself in a position for success. Part of that is having the right supplies and tools to help you get the most of your education.

In this post, we’ll cover 15 nursing school essentials you will need to begin your nursing journey.

Nursing School Essentials for Class

Weekly Planner – While you’re in nursing school, you’ll be juggling a busy schedule. Some days you’ll have class and other days you may have a simulation or clinical rotation, and a weekly planner will help to schedule time for studying, and your personal life. It’s important to organize your schedule in a simple way, and a weekly planner is a great way to do it.

Notebooks – You’ll be taking lots of notes while attending nursing school. Whether it’s in the classroom, labs, or clinicals, there will be many things to remember and write down. It’s a good idea to invest in some quality notebooks. Bonus points if the notebook is small enough to bring to a clinical shift with you so you can reference notes quickly.

Sticky Notes – You’re going to be referencing multiple different books during nursing school classes. Some topics / chapters may come in handy later during your studies, so marking important pages will make them easier to reference at a later date. Sticky notes with different shapes and colors will keep you organized.

Arizona College of Nursing Student in Class Preparing For NCLEX Exam Highlighters – As you comb through your books and notes, highlighting important information will help you study for exams. Highlighters with various colors may help to stay organized. You may also use this nursing school supply during clinical days to highlight important patient information.

Phone Apps – There are many different phone/tablet applications that can support you during nursing school studies. These applications are often available for both iOS and Android devices. Here are just a few types of applications to look into:

  1. Nursing Education Flashcard Apps – These programs can help you study by offering medical memorization tricks and presenting practice flashcards with important nursing terms / concepts.
  2. Mental Health & Wellness Apps for Nurses – There are many applications available to support emotional wellness and self-care specifically for nurses and nursing students. These apps can be helpful during moments of stress.
  3. Nursing Knowledge Reference Apps – There are several apps that contain a database of relevant medical information that you can reference when needed. The apps can include information on medications, disease overviews, lab/diagnostic information, and more.

Nursing School Essentials for a Clinical Shift

For clinical and simulation lab, you’ll need a very specific set of nursing school supplies to help fulfill your responsibilities. Depending upon your nursing program, some of these supplies may be required to purchase before starting labs / clinical rotations.

Nursing Program Near Me Faculty With Students In Nursing School Lab Stethoscope – The first essential item needed for clinical/simulation lab is a stethoscope. You will use this tool to listen to lung, heart and bowel sounds. Keep this with you at all times while on a clinical rotation; you never know when you’ll need it!

Pen light – A penlight is a small flashlight, about the size of a pen that can be very helpful for nurses. The device can help you in assessing things like a patient’s eyes. Keep this in your scrub pocket during clinical and simulation lab experiences.

Scissors – A pair of scissors specifically designed for medicine is a nursing school supply many students find to be useful during a clinical shift. Sometimes called first aid scissors or trauma shears, this tool will help cut dressings, clothing and more.

Water Bottle – As a nursing student, it’s important to model healthy behaviors. This includes staying hydrated! Traveling to class and clinicals with a water bottle ensures you are keeping up with your fluid intake on-the-go. Why not use this opportunity to represent your college? If you’re headed to Arizona College of Nursing, you can purchase our stainless-steel water bottle here.

Nursing Bag – There are a lot of supplies you’ll need for clinicals – a stethoscope, pen light, scissors, notebooks, and more. You don’t want to forget anything during that early-morning wakeup for clinical day. Having a dedicated nursing bag will keep all of your belongings in one place.

Nursing School Essential Attire

Nursing students spend a lot of time in clinicals. This is the time when you get to put the things you’ve learned in the classroom to good use! It’s important that you are prepared with the right attire for this real-world experience.

Scrubs – The first nursing school essential you’ll need is a set (or two) of scrubs. Usually, the scrubs for a clinical shift will include school colors and the college logo. You may even find that your scrubs are your most comfortable attire and decide to purchase a few extra pairs to wear while you study! If you’re heading to Arizona College of Nursing, you can purchase your scrubs here.

Scrub Jacket – Hospitals are known for their colder temperatures which help prevent germ growth. During clinical rotations, you will be wearing scrubs, a scrub jacket to match your regular scrubs will come in handy.

Comfortable Shoes – You’ll be spending a lot of time on your feet during simulation lab and clinicals. A pair of comfortable shoes is an essential nursing school item. Check with your school before you purchase them. Some schools require a specific color shoe (usually black or white). If you’re heading to Arizona College of Nursing, you can purchase your shoes here.

Compression Socks – Just as important as a comfortable pair of shoes, compression socks are also essential to have in nursing school. These socks enhance circulation while you’re on your feet all day. You don’t want to deal with swollen feet at the end of a long clinical day!

Hair Ties – If your hair is long, you’ll need to pull it back for a clinical shift and in the simulation lab. It’s part of standard healthcare protocols aimed at patient safety. A hair tie will prevent hospital germs from traveling home with you. A hair tie is certainly a nursing school essential.

Start Your Future in Nursing Today

Nursing School Faculty In LabIf you’re considering a career as a registered nurse (RN), Arizona College of Nursing is here to help you pursue your dream. Our BSN program enables you to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in just 3 years or less with qualifying transfer credits. We’ve helped hundreds of students to earn a BSN degree and enter the nursing profession – and we’re ready to support you on your path to becoming an RN.

Why Choose Arizona College of Nursing?

  1. Earn a BSN degree in 3 years or less with eligible transfer credits
  2. Campus locations throughout the US
  3. Night classes for general education courses
  4. Hybrid Online/In-Person format for general education classes
  5. Nursing education is all we do
  6. CCNE-Accredited Program*
  7. NCLEX-RN success coaches and exam preparation class
  8. Financial aid available to those who qualify

Discover Your Path to a Career in Nursing

Information in this post is accurate as of .

*The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program at Arizona College of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education ( All Arizona College of Nursing and Arizona College campuses are institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (, a U.S. Department of Education-recognized national accrediting agency.