# Overcoming Writer’s Block on Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment: Strategies and Tips

As a nursing student, it is not uncommon to feel stuck while writing an assignment, especially when attempting to complete a task as challenging as the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment. In fact, writer’s block can negatively affect one’s performance on the assessment and their overall academic performance. In this article, we will explore the causes of writer’s block, strategies to overcome it, and tips for maintaining one’s sanity during the writing process.


 Understanding the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment

The Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment is a computer-based assessment designed to evaluate a nursing student’s critical thinking skills and ability to perform a head-to-toe assessment. It comprises tasks like health history, patient exams, documentation, and evaluation of the patient’s response. Writing is therefore integral to the performance of nursing students during the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment. The following are highlights of the assessment:


 Common Causes of Writer’s Block

Before overcoming writer’s block, it is important to understand its root cause. Here are the common causes of writer’s block:

The above stressors faced by nursing students can lead to writers block, so developing personalized coping strategies helps in sorting the frustrations and anxiety.


 Strategies for Overcoming Writer’s Block

The following are some effective strategies that can help nursing students overcome writer’s block:

Identify the root cause

To overcome writer’s block, the student should identify what is causing it in the first place. There are a few possible causes like fear of failure, unclear directions on the assignment, or even self-sabotaging beliefs. Once identified, the student needs to build a new plan of attack that better accommodates the roadblock.



Freewriting is an excellent way to overcome writer’s block. It involves writing freely and continuously without worrying about structure, grammar, or punctuation. It means writing every single idea that comes to the mind without restraint.

 Mind Mapping

Mind mapping is an effective strategy that involves using a visual diagram to organize and structure ideas. It promotes neater writing while making it more coherent and systematic.


Outlining is another way to break down large assignments into smaller, more manageable parts. A person can break an assignment into subtopics or sections, each with its objectives and goals.

 Break it down into smaller chunks

Sometimes, it is effective to break the assignment into smaller tasks that seem more doable. For example, the student can start with the introduction, write a conclusion, or even the reference page first.


Tips for Maintaining One’s Sanity

Maintaining one’s sanity is important to reduce overall burnout or even mental health issues in nursing students. Here are a few tips that can help students maintain their sanity while writing:

 Physical and Mental Self-care tips

Writing can be mentally and physically exhausting. Taking breaks is important for rejuvenation and improved productivity.

 The importance of taking a break and maintaining work-life balance

Students must take some time off their studies to unwind, spend time with friends and family or relax or do other hobbies.

 Suggesting self-coach techniques that can offer pep talk during a tough time

A self-coaching technique involves giving oneself an internal pep talk. The student can remind themselves of their past successes and strengths to boost their confidence.



In conclusion, writer’s block can be debilitating, especially for nursing students struggling to complete assignments like the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment. Knowing the common causes of writer’s block, understanding the assessment and its requirements, and employing effective strategies to overcome writer’s block can lead to better academic performance. Lastly, maintaining one’s sanity is equally important. Keep in mind the tips shared above; baby steps make a difference!



Q. What exactly is the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment?

The Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment is a computer-based assessment tool that evaluates nursing students’ critical thinking skills and ability to perform a head-to-toe assessment.

Q. How often can I take the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment?

Students can take the Shadow Health Comprehensive Assessment as often as needed.

Q. Can I retake only the writing component of the preliminary assessment?

No. The assessment must be taken as a whole.

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