Graduate degrees as entry-level for other healthcare professions - page 2

You all are probably aware that PT requires (or will soon require, can't recall) the masters degree for entry into practice. Pharmacists need the PharmD. Etc., etc. Did any of these other... Read More

  1. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Maybe it was taken personally because folks are as good as saying in order to elevate nursing to the level of respect that pharmacists, PT/OT 's and other medical professionals enjoy, we need to all have a BSN degree. I have to ask: Where does that leave ADN-prepared nurses in this? We are the majority in RN nursing today. And what do you propose we do with ADN-prepared RN's ----the 1000s and 1000s of us there are? Assign us some sort of advanced -LPN status? Or force us to earn our baccalaureate degrees in, say, 5 years or else...? Just curious. (I for one, am working that myself).

    Educational preparation is only a piece of the picture; (important, yes)--- but how can you not agree? If Educational levels would be so instrumental in elevating us all in the public eye, why is it so many TEACHERS get no respect, yet they all hold bachelors and master's degrees (or higher)? How come is it THEIR pay and working conditions can be so downright pitiful??

    I agree with whoever said unity is a key part of this issue and its resolution, especially within the medical/nursing communities.

    What about the image we ourselves present to the public and our coworkers, both on and off duty? Do we look as professional as we would like to believe we ARE? Do we behave professionally, or backbite at every turn? First impressions are lasting ones. And, How many of us volunteer in the community to educate them as what exactly we do and how we do it? That would go a long way to dispel misconceptions people have about nursing that they get from TV and the media. It is a multi-dimensional issue and we need to think outside the box and look at the BIG picture.

    Education is important; no one would argue that, but I highly doubt it would resolve the problem of lack of respect in the public eye we perceive for nursing. I think we have a lot more work to do than that.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Oct 9, '02
  2. by   MICU RN
    1. BSN entry!
    2.Unions
    3. nurses stop stabbing each other in the back and threatening to write up each other at every whim.
    4.start promoting the things we do to make a difference in the patient's outcome that require education and intellect. We need to get away from the " we are special and different from other healthcare workers because we really care about the patient", that is absurd, most of the other healthcare workers I work with appear to care just as much as most of the nurses I work with.
    ANd to validate what the Enright said in his/her post, many of the doctors I work with are usually very surprised that I started out with an associate degree. And I don't take the AD vs BSN debate personal. We need to get our act togather and it has to start with one entry level to the profession. Do we want be perceived as vo-tech or university prepared. The choice is ours. And I hope no one takes this personal, we are talking about future improvements to our profession. All the AD and diploma nurses could be grandfathered in and we start with a new entry level.
  3. by   mark_LD_RN
    oh no not again
    I agree the entry level should be BSN,
    BUT with that said the LPN's and ADN out there now would need to be grandfathered in and encouraged and given assistance needed to obtain higher degrees.
    as said many times before this is not saying the BSN is the better nurse but it as recent studies have shown increase nurses respect and pay over time,and over time actually help alleviate the nursing shortage by making nursing more attractive to younger people starting out.
    we as nurses need to learn to work together and do what is best for nursing as a whole and not fight among ourselves.

    I hope this thread don't turn ugly as most of the ones along these lines have.

    I am also starting to think a union would be a good idea.
  4. by   globalRN
    Originally posted by mark_LD_RN
    oh no not again
    I agree the entry level should be BSN,
    BUT with that said the LPN's and ADN out there now would need to be grandfathered in and encouraged and given assistance needed to obtain higher degrees.
    as said many times before this is not saying the BSN is the better nurse but it as recent studies have shown increase nurses respect and pay over time,and over time actually help alleviate the nursing shortage by making nursing more attractive to younger people starting out.
    we as nurses need to learn to work together and do what is best for nursing as a whole and not fight among ourselves.

    I hope this thread don't turn ugly as most of the ones along these lines have.

    I am also starting to think a union would be a good idea.
    Many valid points....nurses who don't have their BSN need not feel threatened...they would be grandfathered in. The BSN would be the entry level for new nursing students. I don't see why this is still an issue >20 years after I graduated(when in Canada, in 1979, it was understood that the year 2000 would be BSN for entry to practice...didn't happen 100%. IMO, three levels of entry just doesn't 'cut it' as a profession). I think a lot of the opposition comes from the exisiting nursing membership which is largely comprised of non-degree RNs. A visionary nurse, Luther Christman who is featured on the last issue of the STT journal says existing nurses need to think of the future when looking at BSN for entry. I agree that having a BSN entry will gain us more respect/compensation as professionals and thereby attract individuals to nursing.

    As to the main issue at hand, a masters in PT is a nearly done deal. In Canada, baccalaureate prepared PT schools are a dying breed...I think BC still has one...the rest are graduate level. Same in the US. I even met a PT going for her PhD, she felt that 'raising the bar' would greatly benefit their profession.
  5. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    Before you require a higher degree,you must fix the curicculum.

    Just one small part of the problem would be the impractical care plans. Does anyone even do one in the professional setting? Care planning is a product of growing pains in the development of nursing as a profession,but it's a primitive tradition now held in the curicculum by a few old fossils with power.

    "Raise the bar" by developing a curicculum that is in tune with 21st centuary medicine.
  6. by   Vsummer1
    Originally posted by Enright
    This is one of the old chestnuts in the nursing world....the debate over entry level education. I think it is an embarrassment to all of nursing in the US that we still allow the 3 entries to the RN. I sit on the State Medical Society board in my role as a nurse consultant to a state agency...you can't believe how often I hear "gee, a lot of these nurses only have 2 years of college!". I think it is a tremendous issue in terms of respect and autonomy. On the same note, I think there should no longer be advanced practice nurses grandmothered in who do not have master's degrees. They should sunset the ones who are out there.

    I think you should need an ADN for your LPN and a BSN for the RN.
    YOU THINK AN ADN IS only TWO YEARS of college??? Look at this realistically please. It took me two years just to get the pre-reqs done in order to enter my two years of core nursing classes. NO ONE (at least in the two states I know of) can get the ADN in two years of college due to the microbiology, chemistry etc. pre-reqs. The LPN yes, but not the ADN. What do I need to be a BSN? A few more NON nursing courses.
  7. by   Q.
    First, Sharon, excellent post.

    Peeps, I agree, we must fix the curricula. With the plethora of wacked-out nursing theories out there, based on hog-wash, the supernatural and clairvoyance, I don't see any benefit to having us go through that.

    However, I have to disagree with NurseMark. In our society, education IS valued and IS respected. Sure, there are exceptions, but in general, our society places value on things that as a whole they can measure and relate to. Non-nurses can not relate and measure our empirical knowledge simply because we SAY it is measurable. Instead, society looks at our tasks, our caring - things that society CAN relate to as non-nurses, and uses that as a measurement of worth. But those things are not all that nurses are. We have a load of scientific and empirical knowledge which we need to verify; holding a Bachelor's degree, which our society has generally accepted as something of worth and value, allows us to be compared.

    In addition, holding such degrees allows us to have a voice in important areas: congressional hearings, debates, and to publish (again, there are exceptions to this - but in general, to be heard, you need to credentials to back you up).

    I agree with you that nursing fails to unite - but could it be because of debates like this? Could it be that we automatically take offense to raising standards and start to defend ourselves? It's not about us as a person - but us as a profession. A profession that constantly feels it is unique and absolute from everything else; a profession that still is the only one that does not have a 4 year degree as the minimum, though we work with collaborators of health care who do. I'm sorry, but I don't think we can be taken seriously until we are on the same plane as our other health care collaborators (PT, etc).

    I believe if nursing WAS seen as intellectually challenging, stimulating, and had higher pay BECAUSE we hold a 4 year degree, that may actually abate the shortage before it worsens.
  8. by   mark_LD_RN
    Peeps-- I don't see where the curriculum is all that far off the needs of today at the BSN level. I agree that there could be a little less emphasis on theorists and care plans, but a form of care plans is used today in every jacho accredditted hospital.

    VSUMMER1- no I do not think an ADN is just two yrs like i said many times before there is as little as 3 to 4 months difference in ADN and BSN programs in my area. BUt the ADN program is still not ABSN and in many peoples view it is considered a technical level not a professional level. This is not meant to insult any one. it is just time we unite and do what is best for nursing as a whole. we need not to be so self centered lets look outside ourselves and see the whole picture.

    susyK-- Idon't see where we disagree, you seem to say the same things I am trying to convey.


    it is time to raise the bar,all other areas of health care have.if we are to interact and provide care we need to do the same. nursing needs to do what it takes to get us considered as professionals and for us to getthe respect we deserve. So why don't we all try to pull together and give this some serious thought with out fighting ,argueing or belittleing each other.as it will be in our bestinterest and the nurses of the future if we do so.IMHO
  9. by   imenid37
    i think it would be good to have the bsn as entry level into rn practice IF the programs were more accessible and the QUALITY and QUANTITY of the clinical portions of the bsn programs equaled or surpassed that of the adn programs. back in the days of big hair when i graduated from my aa program, our prgram's n-clex pass rate exceeded that of others in the state of md, including bsn programs such as the u of md and far exceeded programs such as coppin state. why? i am not sure exactly, but if you are spending more time and $ on school, then you should be getting something better in terms of education, not just a different piece of paper.

    i do have a bsn, because it was a personal goal for me and one day, i hope to have an msn, in fact. i think one answer to why we don't make the bsn our standard is because up to this point in time, we have not "built the better nurse" w/ the bsn. if we make the bsn mean something in terms of skill and knowledge, at the bedside where it counts, then we should rally around it as standard. right now i work w/ a not so new grad w/ a bsn from another state. her skills and knowledge are shameful. plain and simple. we all ask ourselves how this person could've graduated? she failed boards twice. they didn't give many tests in school. they relied on journaling. who was that helping? on the other hand, we have people on other units i have have met who just graduated from the local community college who after a rocky start (as we all have) are doing very well.

    we need to nurture our new grads this is also very true, but we need the schools to give us a strong basis from which to build on.
  10. by   live4today
    Originally posted by shannonRN
    i agree 100%. changing the entry level of nursing may help obtain that higher level of respect that nursing deserves. i'm not saying that it is the only way to get the respect, just that it will help. ............waiting for the debate to begin....
    I second the "waiting for the debate to begin"!!!

    AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

    Nothing like a good scream to start the day!

    I am sooooooo sick and tired of being sick and tired of nurses arguing this debate and trying to instill something that should be a personal level of education for each person. IF......AND I SAY THAT LOUDLY.........IF.....having a certain degree made a more qualified nurse, then why in the hellskee.....like my new word...........why in the hellskee don't those "so called educational differences" show up on the NCLEX in alllllllllllllllll the years nursing grads have been sitting for the same NCLEX exam? Can anyone answer me this?
    Last edit by live4today on Oct 10, '02
  11. by   Q.
    Originally posted by mark_LD_RN


    susyK-- Idon't see where we disagree, you seem to say the same things I am trying to convey.

    Mark, my L&D brother - not YOU, but NurseMark25.
  12. by   Q.
    Originally posted by mark_LD_RN
    Peeps-- I don't see where the curriculum is all that far off the needs of today at the BSN level. I agree that there could be a little less emphasis on theorists and care plans, but a form of care plans is used today in every jacho accredditted hospital.

    Quite the contrary, I think. Theories should be emphasized as much as they are because most of our practice is theory-based, like it or not. And I agree with care plans. It gives structure for a new nurse to learn, and, is theory-driven.

    BUT...the theories that DO exist are ridiculous. See my old thread "Can someone be a nurse without Jean Watson?" James Huffman included a link to a phenomenal article written by a layperson in regards to the ridiculous and scientifically UNsound theories nursing tries to pass off. It was embarassing. I think we need to take a look at our supposed "grand theories" and rethink what nursing is, and then change the curricula to reflect that philosophy. Once we have control over nursing education and it is standardized (key word) then we can mandate the Bachelor's as a minimum.

    As for teachers that someone commented on. Not all have a BS or MS either. One teacher simply holds a certificate. Only recently I believe did teachers begin to require higher education - as well they should.

    Nursing needs to stop being so fragmented and disjointed. Take a look at the history of how medical education developed in this country - we could learn a thing or two from it.
  13. by   live4today
    Originally posted by Peeps Mcarthur
    ................... Staffing will get worse(if you can believe it) and "licensed" nurses won't have anything to be puffy about and prop up thier egos everyday..................
    Peeps......those same nurses will then strive to be the one with the most certifications behind their names.

    It's a human issue to always try and outdo one another.....especially women who feel they have a lot of making up to do for being left behind in the career field in the first place.

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