ADN question - not a debate!!!

  1. Because of some strange circumstances I am finishing up prereq's for a BSN but am possibly changing to an ADN program.

    I noticed that the ADN program doesn't require some classes like Pathophysiology or Pharmacology and less clinicals like the BSN program does. Is this true with all ADN programs, or is this one just like this?

    I am not trying to start some kind of debate, I am just curious if anyone feels this has caused a problem not having this info when going out into the real world, or do you learn most of this info in the program anyway?

    Thanks!
    Renee
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  2. 22 Comments

  3. by   Vsummer1
    First of all, I started an ADN program in AZ and had to quit due to health problems. I ended up having to leave AZ and came to California. The ADN program I am in now does NOT require either pharm or patho.

    The anatomy and physiology I had was very different than what is required here in California. No pharm here at all, but required in AZ! They have one semester of just anatomy, and one semester of just physiology here in Ca. But, the classes I had before were University transfer courses and geared as such whereas the CA classes that my classmates required may have been only geared to the ADN.

    So, in answer to your question, yes some ADN programs do require those courses.
  4. by   LaVorneRN
    Renee,
    The ADN program I graduated from certainly did have pharmacology(not a prerequisite) but patho was incorporated in our med/surg and advanced med/surg lectures and clinicals. Our program, we discovered, incorporated most of what's in the BSN program, like management and research, but it reminded me of summer school. It was like a condensed version of the BSN program. Also, we didn't have less clinicals than the BSN students it was just structured differently. Every semester we had clinicals along with lectures whereas theirs was split up-they felt we had a better clinical experience than they did because it was all continuous where for them it was broken up-beginning semesters they had it, none in the middle,then picked up again at the end.
    This is the way it was at UAA(University of Alaska Anchorage)
    It is a very thorough program.
    Hope this helps
  5. by   ashemson
    Thanks. And I am sure that pharm and patho are taught there, just not their own individual class. Which is fine, less classes to take! I just wanted to see what other ADN programs were like.

    Thanks guys!
    Renee
  6. by   Anaclaire
    The ADN program I completed did not include Pathophysiology. I took that when I continued on to get my BSN (at the same university). I also took other classes like Physical Assessment (a much more in depth class as compared to what we learned in the ADN program), Community Health Nursing, Educational Psychology, Research, Statistics, and higher level Psychology and Biology classes, etc.

    When I've looked into the ADN to BSN programs in a 3 state area, (GA, AL, FL) I found them to be very similar to the one I was in. Some focused more on psychosocial (psychology-sociology) issues and others focused more on scientific (chemistry-biology) issues.

    It seems like the BSN classes help us learn much more in depth about topics related to nursing. Many include leadership courses which will help with management I suppose, but I found the classes were helpful for me just in dealing with fellow employees and when needing to delegate things and knowing a bit about how my managers were thinking.

    I remember when taking the first "nursing" BSN class, "Physical Assessment" I thought, "Darn, why didn't we get to learn this in the ADN program! I would have been so much better at my assessments!" When it was all over, I was glad to have the BSN classes under my belt. I truly believe they really made me a more well-rounded person because I felt I knew even more about how medicines work, how diseases are to be treated, how to interact with people and their families in states of severe physical illness, and well, I could go on and on.

    Don't get me wrong, I was a good nurse with my ADN. I'm still a good nurse now. I'm just glad I continued on. I'm speaking for myself only. You ask, "I am just curious if anyone feels this has caused a problem not having this info when going out into the real world, or do you learn most of this info in the program anyway?" In my case, I don't think I'd have learned all I did anyway, but am sure I could have done a decent job without all the extra classes. I did for a few years as a matter of fact. In the end though, as I said before, I'm glad I learned what I did in the BSN program too.

    I'll be interested to see what other people in the country have to say about their ADN and BSN program differences.

    Wishing you only the best!
  7. by   ashemson
    Anaclair - maybe another crazy question, but if an ADN and BSN can both test for then RN, why continue on and get the BSN??? Is it simply for the extra education, or is BSN looked upon differently when hiring???

    Oh Man, I hope I am not starting a fight! But, I have noticed others saying they did that on the boards here, and I always wondered why...
  8. by   marilynmom
    Originally posted by ashemson
    Anaclair - maybe another crazy question, but if an ADN and BSN can both test for then RN, why continue on and get the BSN??? Is it simply for the extra education, or is BSN looked upon differently when hiring???
    Im not Anaclair but I am getting my BSN, not ADN. The reasons for getting my BSN are I want to get a masters degree (Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwife, CRNA, etc just to name a few all require a BSN) a ADN would very much limit me with that. An ADN is a 2-3 year program (depending on how you do your pre reqs and all) and a BSN is a 4 year bachelors degree. With a BSN you have many more opportunities which is why I choose it. It will take me about 3 more semesters of schooling to get my BSN over my ADN, not a whole lot.

    So it really depends on what you want to do as a nurse and how soon you need to get workin' ! I hate to see any debates about this sort of thing, its a personal choice depending on what you want to do ya know? I dont think either one is a right or wrong choice.

    I am sure some places prefer to hire those with a BSN and some places dont care but with a nursing shortage I wouldn't think any of them would care and just want a good nurse.

    Anyways, hope that helps some

    Marilyn
  9. by   javamom
    I'm in the ADN program at a university in Ohio and we do have to take pharmacology and pathophysiology and micro as requisite courses. I *wish* we didn't! :chuckle
  10. by   ashemson
    Marilyn, I wasn't even thinking about needing the BSN for practitioner or midwife, etc. Guess that makes sense! Thanks for setting me straight!!
  11. by   LaVorneRN
    I know you didn't ask me but I can share...heehee!
    I have my ADN but have worked in nursing for 15yrs. as a CNA, unit sec. and phlebotomist in numerous hospitals. I plan to work for a year or 2 while working on my BSN. My goal is to be a psych nurse practitioner or advanced NP(master's degree).
    There are jobs that require you have a BSN-nursing management, community nursing, research for example and some jobs that will pay more if you have your BSN as opposed to your ADN. It depends on the state and facility.
    You have more options the higher you go, basically. For instance, if you get sick of patient care or nursing in general but you have a BSN, you could be a drug rep. (most places require a bachelor's degree in anything), a doctor's office manager, etc. You cover the differences in nursing school-who can do what with which degree.
    I do know some nurses with their ADN who do have jobs in management and other areas I was taught are exclusive to BSN nurses, so don't be surprised at what you see out there.
    Hope this helps answer your question.
  12. by   Love-A-Nurse
    pathopysiology is incorperated into our nursing [med/surg/ob] classes. we have 2 seperate pharmacology [basic and advanced] classes and i am in an 2 yr asn program.
  13. by   kimmicoobug
    also in an ADN programs. Our pharmacology is incorporated into our theory classes. I did take an optional pharm class last year...and it was such a joke, prob why it was optional. As far as clinicals we go twice a week, every week during the quarter. Actually, I am very curious as to how the BSN clinicals work since I am very unfamiliar with the BSN programs. Oh, and A&P were two separate classes not necessarily required prior to entering the program. We do go through it all over again in nursing.

    I do plan to continue to get my BSN, hopefully starting next year after I take boards this summer. I chose this route because of financial reasons. Community college is cheaper when on a tight budget. There is a college here in town that offers BSN, but it is 3 times more expensive. My community college now has telecourse or online or something for RN-BSN, so I am definitely looking into that.
  14. by   Katnip
    Most ADn programs I've seen incorporate patho and pharm into the other lectures like adult health or women's health. BSN programs tend to teach them separately.

    I agree it's a personal choice which to choose. About half the class in my BSN program are RNs who want to either just get that BSN or want to go on for a Master's.

    Our clinicals for BSN are 2-3 days a week for a total of 14 weeks for each semester. In our last semester, we have Community Health clinical which is only one day a week for 14 weeks and 135 hours of clinical in the specialty of our choice. Other schools may be different.

    For the most part, most staff nursing jobs don't differentiate between degrees. But now that I'm job hunting I'm seeing more "BSN preferred" job ads. I doubt they'd turn down an ADN though, there's really no reason to.

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