Why is education not valued within our profession? - page 8

why is education not highly valued within the nursing profession? think about the large scheme of other "professions". education is held in high regard. why is this not the case in nursing? ... Read More

  1. by   Charles S. Smith, RN, MS
    Originally posted by MollyJ
    Witness here the cost of the three levels of Registered Nursing preparation.

    Acrimony
    Hurt feelings
    Anger
    Uncertainty
    Anecdotal reports of the ill-prepared nurse from one background or another that furthers divisivenss.
    PAIN

    The BEST (but not the only) reason we need a single level or preparation: so that we can discontinue having this painful and destructive conversation.
    Ah Molly! So wise, much beyond your years. I am proud to stand beside you as colleague!
    chas
  2. by   KC CHICK
    'round and 'round we go.....where we stop, no one knows.

    nurs4kids, i am catching the same vibe you did...that this now implies safety issues for patient care. it was a poor move to bring it to this forum since the thread starter stated the thread was not discussing if a bsn was better than an adn in providing patient care.

    absolutely love your post molly......you've got the right idea. unfortunately, maybe that's what it will take for all of us 'catty' individuals to be civil to each other...although it is -without a doubt- a poor reason for pursuing higher education.

    my opinion.
    anne.
    in the timeless words of rodney king ,"can't we all just get along?".
    Last edit by KC CHICK on Nov 17, '01
  3. by   fergus51
    Tracy, after doing a few weeks on peds, I don't think ICU is harder at all!!!
  4. by   BrandyBSN
    I agree, moving it to this forum was not a good idea. THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PATIENT SAFETY! All nurses, regardless of educational level passed the NCLEX to insure safe patient care. This is only about education, and its value, and in no way, shape, or form is to be interpreted as saying that the lack of a BSN puts our patients in jeopardy.

    BrandyBSN
  5. by   rninformatics
    I believe education is valued in nursing in fact sometimes to the exclusion of practical experience.

    I graduated from an Associates Degree program in 1985 (DANG I'm old ), practiced in multiple acute care settings for 10 years and finished my BSN completion in 1996. I was fortunate to have an employer at that time that provided 100% tuition reimbursement and I was motivated. The legacy that my mother left all her children was that education is the key. She use to say that "It's something NO ONE can ever take away from you"
    I'm in graduate school know and those words motivate and guide me when I've spent 12 hours at work and am looking at 6 more hours of study.

    I value education because that is the way I was raised, I don't impose those beliefs on anyone else. I've seen the BSN entry debate from both sides. Practical experience combined with education is the key to good nursing. Our profession does seen to give contraditory messages related to valuing higher education while minimizing clinical experience.
    My three cents!
    Last edit by rninformatics on Nov 17, '01
  6. by   NurseTami
    Thank you Nrs4kids- see, I too believe experience counts for something

    You said it more eloquently than I - I am an ADN and if a BSN is doing the same job as me, should they be paid more?
    At the school of nursing I attended, the LPN program was 3-4 semesters, the RN at leat 6, the RN completion for LPNs is 3 not including the pre-reqs. I went to a Community college, the Universities around here differ, but I can get my BSN in 4-6 semesters if I go full time like I did before.( And it ISN'T happening!) I went back to futher my education for personal goals, not for $.

    It almost seems like this thread is just pulling us apart.

    I do believe that education is valued, but it seems that it is valued if it is used as a tool to move up on the ladder. A nurse who recieves a higher degree is almost expected to move up-from what I have seen.
    What have the rest of you seen at your places of employment?
  7. by   Q.
    Tracy,

    I can understand your questions about why should a bedside nurse doing the same job as each other get paid more simply for the degree. I do. I guess what some BSNs are looking for, is perhaps SOME recognition of the amount of education they do have. Even 50cents more an hour. Would you not agree that someone who completed a 4 year degree is worth at least 50cents more an hour for the effort?

    I also think it is a misnomer that BSNs are quick to get management positions, etc. At least at my facility, having a BSN entitles you to no more job openings than any other RN. Lots of times, the only jobs available for ANY nurse is at the bedside. That's where the shortage is most critical.

    Also, what about the bedside nurse who gets certified in her speciality? Do they get more pay? What about the CEN, the RNC in obstetrics, etc? What about being "certified" in fetal heart ratae interpretation? Again, what is the incentive here? There is none and that is dangerous, in my mind. It allows the profession to atrophy.

    I myself am going back to grad school because I want to teach and I can't teach or become a professor without my Master's. Simple as that. It has nothing to do with money. It has more to do with that I enjoy the academic environment and love to teach.

    Hope you have a good Thanksgiving!
  8. by   Mijourney
    Hi. MollyJ, like your points. However, once the educational matter is resolved, I'm quite sure that our nature as women (maybe some men) will not let us down in finding something else to wage a chronic catty-like debate and discussion over.

    Suzy K, I agree with you about BSNs and management jobs. They are in no greater demand for management positions for most employers in my neck of the woods then are other types of nurses. There are times when employers may write "BSN preferred" in their ads, but that does not disqualify any nurse who feels that he or she may have a chance to be hired. Best wishes in your pursuit in becoming a nurse educator.

    NursTami, I don't feel this thread is pulling us apart. It shouldn't if we try to stay "professional" with our discussions and debate. Credentialing has always been a controversial subject in the nursing profession. What really hurt nursing in my opinion is that nursing allowed someone else to sit in the driver's seat while so many of us felt comfortable sitting in the back seat or at best, the passenger seat. We have to be ever so careful of suggesting any change to nursing for we offend others who don't see it our way. That's understandable. That's what makes this bb go around. But, it still shouldn't stop meaningful discussion on an important topic.

    rninformatics, I don't believe I've seen anyone diminishing the importance of practical experience. As I was told by another poster, I wonder if your comment about clinical experience being valued less then higher education was for effect. After all, I am, not was, a diploma nurse and I'm still in the "field" (meaning home health patient care).
  9. by   nurs4kids
    Suzy,
    I was not speaking of my personal feelings on the topic of pay for compensation. I was playing devil's advocate. I've said over and over, and I still say, BSN'S should be paid more because you sacrificed more. My point was at trying to see exactly what is meant by "compensated". We go from "pay" to "respect" to "professionalism" in this discussion, yet none of those are the same. Many places DO compensate for a higher degree, although I don't feel 50 cents is enough. But, if the gripe is about no monetary recognition, 50 cents IS recognition. If we're talking about respect, that is not going to be gained by educating ourselves, but by educating the public AND by setting our limits and sticking to demands (ie; uniting). If we're talking about professionalism, then I feel we're talking about a whole new way nurses must look at nursing. That would begin with making sure society sees us as professionals. I feel they already do and are just ignorant to the problems facing our field. So, I think publicity is the answer. But, if I'm wrong (and I have been once or twice in my life ), then setting an education minimum at BSN may be the beginning of the answer. Still, we'd have to demand what we deserve. See where that word "demand" keeps coming up? I think THAT's our problem. We just take, don't demand.

    As for not being financially compensated for certifications. I agree, it's sad. I love your line about it allowing the profession to atrophy, so true. Nurses have always been "called" to nursing. So the certification is for OUR benefit, because it enables us to better care for OUR patient. It's for OUR benefit, why should the CEO's pay us more?? Of course, that's not true. It does benefit us, but it benefits the patient more. We just continue to get certifications w/o demanding compensation. My whole point, and I said this the other related thread: If we make BSN the minimum entry level WITHOUT uniting and setting demands, then the CEO's will be of the opinion, "They're doing the same job they were doing BEFORE the BSN was required, why should I pay them more?".

    So, Suz, I agree with you totally. I'm very irritated right now because I'm training a BSN with 30+ years experience in something other than peds. She was hired making more than the majority of those on this floor, because of her education and experience combined. She's a damn idiot. She's three months out of orientation (total time on floor 6 months) and continues to do stupid things and ask stupid questions. We are all ready to scream and are tempted to start charging her a flat $5 fee for each question asked (higher if stupid). Soooooooo, I'm a bit sarcastic about the whole education and experience thing. I'm not sure what is the correct answer

    Thanks! Hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving, too!!!

    Ya will alwayz bez my sistah..even if ya won't claim me cuz I gost less edumacationz..lol <ducks>
  10. by   JWaldron
    Personally, I have worked with some really stupid BSNs (not new grads, either) and some really talented and highly skilled LPNs. I have not, in general, found BSNs to be better nurses than ADNs when it comes to giving patient care. Education doesn't make you smarter, it just makes you better informed (if you let it). In my experience, most real nursing skills don't come out of a classroom, they come from experience and caring to do things the right way. I value learning very highly; I seek to learn all the time, from many sources, not just academic ones, although I certainly value that too. I have a Master's degree, and I used to teach at one time (not nursing), but I do bedside nursing because that's what I want to be doing right now; I probably won't want to do that forever, because I won't be ABLE to do it forever - it's too physically demanding.

    I do have to say, however, that I find Brandy's attitude somewhat condescending towards those who don't see things quite the way she does. I'm also a little puzzled by the appropriateness or inappropriateness of signing BSN after a name when one has not yet graduated? Or have you? In whhich case, congratulations. Education is it's own reward, and the sense of satisfaction and accomplishment at the earning of a degree is well-earned.

    As far as being treated like professionals, don't bet on education being the only answer. We have to ACT like the professionals we in fact ARE, and demand that we be treated like professionals. We need to insist on professional practice models which give us say in the practice of our profession, we need to accept accountability for the maintenance of our professional skills and knowledge base, we need to keep active in professionl organizations and in policy-making bodies, and we can't all let somebody else do it.

    J
  11. by   Mijourney
    Hi. The conversation needs to progress beyond skills and experience. As Suzy K indicated in her post, you can have and find incompetency at any level and in any profession. I do agree with the posters who point out that most of us who pursued and obtained additional education are not complaining about the education itself. This includes certifications as well as formal schooling.

    Quite a few posters have suggested that achieving professional status should be an individual endeavor only. Are you saying that the character of nursing school candidates should be screened more thoroughly to guarantee some measure of quality and ethics? I think that action would lead to a more acute shortage of nurses then establishing a standard entry level to professional practice.

    What would happen with this is that candidates would be screened on certain personal characteristics as well as for motives for going into nursing. Those who are accepted would be carefully assessed at intervals to see if what they wrote on their application is correct. I'm not sure if that's doable, legal, and I know that there would be a big objection to that.

    So what actions can we take as a group that would get nursing going in a direction of progress. Establishing an entry level of professional practice is only one of them. You can't become a professional by simply "behaving" as one. As with nursing experience, so much life experience goes into an individual nurse's behavior that shapes the way he or she acts on the job. Because of the many different ways of entering nursing practice (aide, CNA, LPN, RN, etc.) our workforce is probably the most diverse. Therefore, IMO, anything that helps nursing move forward must be done as a group.

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