How Much Education Does a Nurse Need? – No matter the educational pathway you choose to utilize in becoming a nurse, you’ll have to first pass the National Council Licensure Examination ( NCLEX-RN) as this is what will certify you to become a licensed registered nurse (RN). Getting this credential is actually the minimum qualification you need to become a nurse . And to be able to sit for the exam, you are expected to have earned an Associate Degree education in Nursing (ADN), or you have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from a registered institution , earning a nursing diploma also sets you eligible to take the exam.
The ideal route to getting a nursing degree should be in accordance with your professional goals while also enhancing your experience in the healthcare field. With that already at the back of your mind let’s look at the amount of education needed to become a nurse or the educational qualifications to grow your nursing career.
What is the Program Duration in a Nursing School?
The length of academic studies in nursing school can be determined based on the degree you select. For instance, for the ADN programs, the duration is typically said to be a two-year degree, and for a BSN program, the duration is usually about four years . In all, the particular degree you need to become a nurse hugely relies on the kind of nurse you wish to become.
How Much Education Does a Nurse Need?
Talking about the amount of education that a nurse needs, there are a wide range of levels for nursing aspirants and for nurses in the field already to consider as they map out their career path, beginning with the startup undergraduate options that will first establish your career to other advanced level degrees in Nursing, all these can help you get to the status you want to reach.
Earning Associate Degrees in Nursing or in Nursing Diploma
This is among the educational pathway to becoming a nurse, in fact it is the first step to becoming a registered nurse, is getting an ADN from a two-year program obtained at a community college or vocational school or by getting diploma from an institution running an approved nursing program.
As a reaction, many colleges and universities are offering degree programs that are known to build on a student’s existing credentials, which includes the following: LPN to BSN, RN to BSN and RN to MSN. These bridging of degree programs will help you in developing your professional identity as an RN. In the same vain, you progress in this career path through the open doors in the nursing positions in a variety of settings, beginning with hospitals and with doctor’s offices to the nursing schools and to the long-term care facilities.
Bachelor of Science in Nursing
A bachelor education is the best route for preparing anyone to taking the licensure exam in nursing,” according to Moriarty-Litz. To get bachelor’s degree in nursing , it can be obtained within four years, and you have to search out for the programs that are being offered at different accredited college or university .
“A nurse that was educated at the baccalaureate level is expected to have the knowledge, skills and attitudes that are required to do justice with the ever rising complexity of patient care, which is as a result of an increased life expectancy, a more diverse patient population and the ever-rising patient turnover in the admissions at the hospital ,”
In addition to the compulsory required science education, BSN-prepared nurses acquire knowledge about soft skills that are, important skills in the profession. With reference to Moriarty-Litz say, these skills are:
- Collaboration: Dealing as part of the inter-professional teams, like doctors, pharmacists, medical technicians as well as caseworkers, is now the standard of nursing and that for all health professions education, going by the source from National League for Nursing.
- Communication : it stands for the ability to converse clearly, efficiently and effectively with people that is patients and colleagues who are from a wide range of backgrounds and persons from different cultures.
- Critical thinking: This stands for problem-solving with the help of interpretation, analysis and through the evaluation of your thinking skills. This is a vital tool for nurses according to an article from “Acta Informatica Medica ” ( journal).
- Organization: it is crucial for nurses to be organized and methodical in the manner they approach/deal with their responsibilities, most importantly judging by the fact that many aspects of nursing care are known to be time-sensitive.
In the long run, nurses that are in hold of bachelor’s degree will be the most wanted in the workforce. As a cause, many employers of nurses usually/specifically need new hires to have obtained BSN (sourcing from a 2022 AACN survey) . Most times these employers will give registered nurses a specific duration/ timeframe in order to earn the degree.
Advanced Degrees/Studies in Nursing
Going by findings from the IOM report , nurses who earned graduate degrees are expected to “take up different roles in advanced practice, leadership, teaching and research.” Some of the Advanced degrees in nursing are:
1. Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN) :
- Advanced practice nurses working as nurse practitioners (NPs),
- The clinical nurse specialists (CNSs),
- certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) and
- The certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) which requires an MSN degree
The above are helping to extend the reach of primary care, says AACN. As a nurse, you may wish to narrow your focus to be within an MSN program . You may choose to focus in an MSN program with topics from Healthcare Quality and Safety , Population Health or in Nurse Executive Leadership.
2. Master’s in Nursing Education:
This is for nurses who are with an aptitude for teaching or flare for mentoring, getting a master’s degree in nursing will put you in train in order to be eligible to teach/lecture current and future nurses. While the high need/demand for nursing programs , most of the institutions are in need of prepared nurse educators, sourcing from the details by Moriarty-Litz.
An advanced degree obtained in nursing will go a long way in preparing you to work in different educational settings, which includes schools of nursing, institutions of higher education or universities. The clinical educator option will tracks train you to be fit to work as a staff educator under a long-term care system or even in an acute care settings. Getting an education in Nursing is known to be a wide-open journey and it surely needs instructors who will teach in face-to-face classes as well as via different online educational programs.
3. Dual Degree Programs:
These programs gives you the avenue to specialize in the combination of an MSN together with a second advanced degree, which may be
- Master’s of Business Administration ( MBA ),
- Master of Public Health ( MPH ),
- Master of Health Administration ( MHA) and other related master’s degrees.
4. Doctor of Philosophy – PhD / Doctor of Nursing Practice – DNP
This education form trains scientists as well as researchers, it is these researchers that will targets practitioners. In all, both scientist and researchers work hand in hand in advancing nursing practice.
The ideal route to getting a nursing degree should be in accordance with your professional goals while also enhancing your experience in the healthcare field. The particular degree you need to become a nurse hugely relies on the kind of nurse you wish to become. Know what works for you!
Frequently Asked Questions
What qualifications do I need to nurse?
You are expected to have earned an Associate Degree education in Nursing (ADN), or you have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from a registered institution , earning a nursing diploma also sets you eligible
What course should I study to become a nurse?
Get a university degree in Nursing/Nursing Science
Can I become a registered nurse in 3 years?
Applying into an ADN program , it will be completed in 2-3 years, whereas traditional BSN programs take four years
What is the quickest RN program?
Getting associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN) , note that NCLEX licensure examination is still required.
What is the monthly salary of an RN?
On average, RNs working in the US are paid a monthly salary of up to $6,900.
- All nursingschools.com – Which Nursing Degree Does an RN Need?
- Denvercollegeofnursing.edu/blog – Educational Requirements for Registered Nurses
- Baker.edu – What Degree Do You Need to Be a Nurse?
- Snhu.edu – What Degree Do You Need to Become a Nurse?
- Goodwin.edu – How Much Education Does a Nurse Need to Succeed?
- Gmercyu.edu – How to Become a Nurse