nursing student planners

The 5 Best Planners for Nursing Students [BUYING GUIDE]

Written by: Kristine Thorndyke

When juggling the demands of nursing school, it’s important to have one of the best planners for nursing students to stay on top of things.  Nursing students need to be able to organize their schedules, assignments, and goals for nursing school and beyond.  By having a solid nursing school planner, you take a lot of the hassle out of staying organized in your day-to-day life!

The top of our list is our very own TPN Nursing Student Planner for the upcoming academic school year from July 2023 – June 2024. With proven layouts for weekly organization and prioritization as well as monthly S.M.A.R.T. Goal tracking, you’re sure to reach your academic and personal goals.

The Best Planners for Nursing Students

Digital Nursing Student Planner

best nursing student planner

The TPN Nursing student planner has been designed with proven layouts that will keep you organized for your nursing school classes as well as better plan and track your goals both in and outside of the classroom.

You’ll never miss a thing with the weekly spreads that include daily logs, priorities, habit tracking, and assignments.

On a monthly basis, you can benefit from SMART Goal setting, where you identify and track progress and perform an obstacle/solution analysis.

Being a great nursing student doesn’t just stop when you achieve academic success, however. Included are also guided journaling, where you have prompts for gratitude and affirmations. You can feel more grounded and confident as you gain a greater sense of being in the present.

Lastly, we understand stress and expectations can be high in school. You can enjoy the de-stressing benefit of beautiful anatomy coloring pages that feature intricate design patterns!

  • Weekly spread includes prioritizing and habit tracking
  • SMART Goal setting helps you to break down and achieve your goals
  • Beautiful coloring pages help you to de-stress
  • Guided journaling and affirmation setting keeps you grounded

Erin Condren 12-Month Academic Planner

This academic planner is our top pick for the best planner for nursing school.  It includes a sheet of nursing school planner stickers and dedicated pages to prepare for projects and exams.  You have your choice of eight gorgeous cover designs, while each notebook comes bound with strong metal and contains 234 pages.

The robust features are part of what make this such an excellent planner for any nursing student.  The pages allow you to create customized plans on a yearly, monthly, and weekly basis.  You can keep track of deadlines while tracking your goals.  In addition to the class schedules, you have 12 calendar spreads, 52 week spreads, customizable notes pages, and places to note your projects and exams.

  • Sturdy metal binding, thick pages, and a choice of 8 different covers
  • Monthly and weekly planning tools with customizable notes
  • Sticker sheet and monthly tabs for easy organization
  • Daily class scheduling pages and places to note projects and exams
  • 12-month planning calendar
Best Overall
12 Month Academic Planner - Erin Condren 12 Month Academic Planner - Erin Condren

Imagine being able to stay organized for exams, projects, homework, and track your goals all in one place... well now you can with Erin Condren's 12-month academic planner.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Related: How To Write a Why I Want to Be a Nurse Essay

TheHappyPlannerCo Extended Planner for Nursing Student

This nursing student planner made our list of the best gifts for nursing students in 2024.

This planner is specifically designed for nursing students, including very specific tracking and organization systems.  It’s a great choice for nursing students who want a tool built for their specific needs, rather than a generic academic planner.  In addition to the planning tools for academic life, there are also diary tools to record home life, along with to-do lists for every area of study.

best planners for nursing students

This flexible planner also includes a variety of important tools for managing your time and mental health.  You can plot your course details and assignments, set goals, record self-care strategies, track bibliography information, take notes, and even record your travel expenses and budget.

You can use this planner to help keep track of school as well as any part-time jobs. You can get side hustle ideas with our list of the best jobs for nursing students.

  • 12-month academic planner specifically designed for nursing students
  • Open diary format lets you track both school and home life
  • Includes important help pages like self-care strategies, course trackers, and budgeting guides
  • To-do lists make tracking assignments and keeping up with chores easy
  • General notes pages can be customized to suit any of your needs
Best Handmade Nursing Planner
Nursing Student Planner by TheHappyStudentCo Nursing Student Planner by TheHappyStudentCo

A perfect organization tool to keep your classes, assignments, and social needs in one spot!

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Related: 20 Positive Nurse Affirmations & How to Use Them

The Complete Nursing School 18-month Planner

I’m a fan of the clean white and pale-blue aesthetic of this nursing student planner by NurseInTheMaking on Etsy. The 18-month tabbed nursing student planner is likely all that you’ll need to stay organized (though they do offer some fun add-ons including badge reels, stickers, and more at an additional cost).

In this nursing planner, you’ll have a weekly spread that includes space to keep track of your assignments and classwork as well as monthly spreads for important dates. For those who are looking to get organized down to the last hour, you have the ability to plan for each day in military time.

  • Specific to nursing students
  • Weekly nursing tips
  • No-bleed through paper
  • Black spiral bound
  • Many add-on options including badge reels, buttons, stickers, etc.
Best 18-Month Planner
The Complete Nursing School Planner - 18 Months The Complete Nursing School Planner - 18 Months

An 18-month tabbed nursing student planner that helps you keep organized daily, weekly, and monthly.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

The Nursing Student Planner by LuxBook

This digital planner is a great choice for students who prefer to minimize their paper load.  If you prefer to organize your academic life using tablet, computer, and smartphone apps like Goodnotes, the product was made for you.  It’s best for people who are already familiar with the functions of Goodnotes.

The planner is designed similarly to a paper planner, with different spreads, research templates, and section dividers.  In addition to the monthly, weekly, and daily spreads, the nursing planner includes trackers for habits, assignments, and annual income.  This can be a great way to track what you’re earning at your part-time job. Looking for work? Check our guide for the 17 best nursing student jobs.

Nursing-specific templates are included, such as medication study sheets, a master plan template, and a template for questions to ask in class.

  • Digital planner and help guide compatible with notes apps including Goodnotes, Xodo, and Notability
  • Monthly, weekly, and daily spreads
  • Six divided sections with four customizable dividers
  • Helpful tools including study tips, questions for class, and nursing-specific research templates
  • Includes habit tracker, assignment tracker, and income tracker
Best Digital Nursing Planner
Digital Nursing Student Planner Bundle | Etsy Digital Nursing Student Planner Bundle | Etsy

Get organized.. instantly.. with this digital download academic planner by Luxbook.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Ultimate Nursing Student Planner Bundle

Rather than being shipped in printed form, this nursing student planner comes as a printable PDF.  There are two advantages to this: The format is much more affordable, and you get instant access after purchase instead of needing to wait.  You also receive three copies of the planner in standard letter, A4, and A5 paper sizing.

The planner comes with nursing notes on each weekly spread.  You have a place to plot your course schedule and course overviews, a goal planner, a project planner, and a study planner.  Assignment and grade tracking pages are included.  You’re given monthly, weekly, and daily spreads, along with three different styles of note-taking pages.

  • Affordable PDF download with printable pages in 3 sizes
  • Note-taking pages in Dot-Grid, Graph, and Cornell Method formats
  • Monthly, weekly, and daily planner pages
  • Study, project, and goal planning pages
  • Assignment and grades tracking pages
Ultimate Nursing Student Planner Bundle | Etsy Ultimate Nursing Student Planner Bundle | Etsy

A budget-friendly option for a nursing planner that can be downloaded digitally and printed at home.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Buying Guide for the Best Planners for Nursing Students

There are quite a few factors to keep in mind when choosing a nursing day planner.  The right planner for you depends mostly on your organizational style.  While all students need their planner to fill the same basic needs, the format can vary.

A planner needs to accomplish the following things:

  • Keeping your daily schedule organized, so you know how to manage your time each day
  • Allowing you to track your upcoming due dates, tests, and projects
  • Helping you set goals and feel accomplished when you complete tasks
  • Organizing your class materials, so it’s easier to take notes and study

We’ll take a look at how different planners are structured, along with some alternative potential options for organizing your things.

Digital or Printed Nursing School Planner 

One of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether to buy a digital or printed planner.  Digital planners typically use phone or tablet apps (such as GoodNotes or Notability), while printed planners are bound more traditionally with paper. Our 2023-2024 school year nursing school planner works seamlessly on GoodNotes or Notability, depending on whether you have an Android or Apple device.

The right one for you will vary.  There are distinct advantages and disadvantages to both.  In fact, the academic community hotly debates whether digital or printed planners are better.

Advantages of Digital Nursing School Planners

Digital planners have become more and more popular in today’s smartphone age.  In the past, it was difficult to keep your notes and schedule online, since doing so required computer access.  But today, digital planning apps allow you to access your information wherever you have your phone and a 3G connection.

A digital planner is also more convenient and portable.  You can store a lot more information without taking up any extra room in your backpack.  With a digital planner, you can keep hundreds of pages of notes, dozens of to-do lists, daily schedules, weekly plans, and longer project plans, and you won’t have to worry about running out of space.

Some students may also find digital planners helpful because of their interactive tools.  Oftentimes you can set up alerts about impending due dates or reminders to study at a certain time.  The interactive level makes the apps a coveted time management tool.

Advantages of Printed Nursing School Planners

There are reasons that printed planners aren’t obsolete, even with the advent of such convenient smartphone technology.  In addition to being the preferred method of organization for many students, they also confer some scientific benefits.

Paper planners allow for a stronger level of focus.  If you find yourself desensitized to app reminders, a paper planner is a better way of tracking your due dates.  It forces your brain to engage and acknowledge the information, rather than swiping it away for later.  

In the same vein, taking notes by hand helps to encode them into your memory much more easily than typing them does.  You’re more likely to remember what you’ve written if you note it in your paper planner.  People with paper planners also tend to be more concise and self-directed, since there’s limited room to explain what’s important to you.

Paper planners have been shown to lower stress levels by helping people manage their tasks.  Even if you have an overwhelming amount of work to do, you can use a paper planner to prioritize.  With a digital app, the reminder notifications can quickly become too much to deal with.  And many experts recommend using paper to connect to your environment, rather than “zoning out” behind a smartphone screen.

Nursing Planners VS General Academic Planners

Planners like the Extended Planner for Nursing Students by TheHappyPlannerCo are specifically built for nurses.  Meanwhile, the Erin Condren Academic Planner is built with all types of students in mind.

12 Month Academic Planner - Erin Condren 12 Month Academic Planner - Erin Condren

Imagine being able to stay organized for exams, projects, homework, and track your goals all in one place... well now you can with Erin Condren's 12-month academic planner.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Nursing students can use either type of planner to achieve their goals.  Academic planners tend to have strong scheduling and organizational tools.  They may also come with customizable dividers and notes sheets.  You’re more likely to find extra customization tools in generic academic planners, as the goal is for students to personalize the planner to their needs.

For those seeking general academic planners, you can see our list of the 5 Best Goodnotes Planners for 2024 and beyond.

Nursing planners have a focus on the specific demands of nursing school.  They understand the core components that nursing students need to learn.  It’s common for nursing planners to come with nursing facts, important details about standardized testing, and templates to track core class assignments.

When deciding which type of planner to get, the big question is how much customization you want to do yourself.  Would you prefer to have your templates already laid out, or do you want to create your own unique study system?

Binding a PDF Planner Yourself 

You can also bind a PDF planner yourself, with some of the costs covered here. You’ll need the PDF pages with the schedule, to-do lists, notes sheets, and any other included items.  Once you have the printed sheets, you can get to work.

Creating your own planner is a great choice if you like DIY projects, flexible customization, and money-saving tricks.  You can turn the planner into your own art project.  Many people also create planners with removable pages, allowing them to replace the information with new schedules every year.


Accessories are available for nursing school planners to offer better personalization, organization, and aesthetic appeal.

Nursing planner stickers are a popular option.  If your choice of planner doesn’t include any, you can purchase an extra sheet.  These funky stickers allow you to add visual organizational cues to your schedule, so you know exactly what you’re seeing at a glance.

You might also invest in writing utensils like colored markers.  As long as your planner paper is thick enough, markers and highlighters add beautiful pops of color while making it even easier to organize.  Like the stickers, they can serve as important visual cues.

iBayam Journal Planner Pens Colored Pens iBayam Journal Planner Pens Colored Pens

Smart fine line coloring pens make for a great way to jazz up your planner and organizer.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/19/2024 11:05 am GMT

Another helpful accessory is an organizational tool for your writing utensils.  You can keep track of your pencils, pens, markers, and highlighters.  Since they don’t get lost in your bag, you always have access to your full system of visual color coding.

Best Nursing Planner FAQ

Do you need a planner for nursing school?

Yes, you will need to use a planner to keep on-track for your assignments, coursework, tests, and important dates. Whether you opt for a nursing school-specific or general academic planner is up to you.

Do nurses use planners, too?

Of course! Nurses have to multitask a lot in their days, so staying organized is one of the best ways for nurses to manage their time. Planners are especially helpful for nurses who are working to reach a specific goal and need to track their SMART nursing goals.

Are there any free online nursing planners?

Most nursing planners charge a fee for their time and effort in creation, but you can try out Picmonic’s free nursing planner digital download before you decide on purchasing your own planner.


The best planner for nursing school is one that can keep you organized and on-schedule.  It should have ample room to track your assignments, write your testing information, view your upcoming events, and personalize your setup to meet your unique needs.  There are many different kinds of planners on the market, with some having stickers and movable dividers, while others are electronic-based.

If you’re still on the fence for the best planner for nursing students, then you can’t go wrong with the TPN Nursing Student Planner. This 12-month planner is available in a digital format, so that you can take it with you wherever you use your mobile devices. Keep track of your assignments, plan your goals, journal, and even de-stress with some beautiful coloring pages.