BA to ADN to MSN?

  1. I already have a BA and am going back to school to get my ADN. Is it possible to go straight in to a master's program without getting my BSN? Thanks!
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    About sholmsen

    Joined: Mar '09; Posts: 25; Likes: 4


  3. by   knittingmonster
    Some schools offer a RN to MSN program. The one that I am looking at for the future requires 24 course hours of bridgework. So you are basically making up the Bachelor's.

    I am doing the same thing--BA to ADN and eventually a Master's.
  4. by   juliewoo
    If you want to get your masters, why don't you just do a Direct Entry program? You can apply with a bachelor's in any field and graduate in 2-3 years with an MSN.
  5. by   sholmsen
    Thanks for the feedback knittingmonster and juliewoo. Well, I'm not sure which field I would like to specialize in yet so I wanted to get some experience first before I go in to a masters program. Good to hear there are others doing the same thing. Good luck!
  6. by   LifelongDream
    I understand your wanting to get your MSN, but have you thought about an accelerated BSN? I had my BS in Biology and went to the Second Degree BSN Program through Texas Tech Health Sciences Center. We finished in 12 months (Started Aug. 13th last year and finish Aug. 7th this year! That way, you end up with your RN/BSN in one year and you can get a little experience with a bigger check! Then, I think it would be much easier to go on for your Masters! Just a thought. Good luck.
  7. by   sholmsen
    Hi elguezsm, yup, I've thought of that. I applied to a few 2nd degree programs. I actually almost, almost (so close) moved to DC (I'm from CA) to attend one there, but I just last week decided not to move and instead attend a community college near where I live. The thought of possibly having $80,000 of debt hanging over my head was unbearable. How did you like your program? Did you feel it went to quickly or was it ok? BTW, congrats on just graduating!!! Awesome!!
  8. by   LifelongDream

    I loved, LOVED my program. I had attended one semester of traditional nursing school when I was 19. I was a great student, studied hard, graduated a year early from high school... But I still felt like I was barely keeping my head above water and it felt as if they were trying really hard to get rid of people. I found out I was pregnant with my daughter in November and that was the straw that broke the camel's back! I withdrew and went on to the university to get my BS in Biology. I taught for five years and heard about this program. I never wanted to quit nursing school, but at the time, I was emotionally and physically exhausted and it didn't seem worth it.

    I heard about Texas Tech's program last February and realized I only needed the CNA class, the nutrition, and pathophysiology. I knocked them out in summer school and applied in May (before my summer classes). I was accepted in June and I started in August. The program is about $20,000, BUT I got student loans to pay for it. It was totally worth it. I will make up that much in my first 6 months of working!

    NOW, to address you question "Did I like the program?". My answer is absolutely yes! Granted there were one or two instructors that didn't grade anything... the whole time we were in theirclass and waited two weeks after classes to post grades, but they weren't on the classes that were the main ones, so I didn't stress over it. The instructors all carry school issued cell phones and they are totally okay with you calling them until 9 or 10pm at night if you have any questions. In addition, they don't seem to be "Out to Get You!". They are respectful of the fact that you were smart enough and mature enough to get your first degree and just maybe you might have a lick of sense! If you are considering this school, I would say without an ounce of hesitation, GO FOR IT.

    The program is offered in several locations that start at different times: Austin/ElPaso admit Spring semester and Abilene,Permian Basin (Odessa/Midland), and Lubbock admit Fall semester. Here's the website if you want to look into it a little more!
  9. by   sholmsen
    Wow, thanks for all of the info. That's so cool that you had such a great experience.
  10. by   mmm333
    First of all, there is a big difference between the following:

    1) Entry MSN (non-nurses with no license who want to enter nursing and get their MSN all at once)
    2) RN>MSN (licensed nurses who have an ADN and want the MSN, + maybe "pick up their BSN" along the way)
    3) BARN>MSN (licensed RNs who have a BA or BS degree who want to pursue their MSN next)

    I believe that those with a BA should not pursue a BSN. One or two bachelor's degrees is enough. What really matters is that RNs have the right preparation for the MSN. ADN nurses do not have the background in public health/community nursing, theory, and research that BSNs have. Other areas might be advanced physical assessment, pharmacology, computer/informatics, etc. Because of this, most RN>MSN programs require a little "patch-up" work that basically brings the BA-RN up to snuff with the BSN folks, before they can begin the MSN work.

    So if you are a BA-RN you should be looking into a good public/community health nursing course, since this is the most common prereq that you'll have to fill. In all,it looks like about 1 semester of undergrad work. If you do a BSN it could take 9-12 months full time to do a "completion" or "2nd degree program". These seem to me like a waste of 6 months that does not recognize the work you did to get a bachelor's degree. Nursing is peculiar in its sometimes disparaging view of other disciplines of study. For example, some schools websites claim that a BSN is required as a prereq to their MSN program.

    The only reason I can see for doing BA>ADN>BSN that is to achieve much higher pay scales (you are at a glass ceiling now and need that BSN) OR you need a BSN pronto in order to become a military nurse (the military requires its officers/leaders to have a bachelor's at minimum since man enlisted have their associate's- they generally don't take ADN nurse officers unless they are already enrolled in a BSN program which is rare, they want to see at least a BA+RN before making you an officer in order to justify you being placed in charge of *managing* enlisted troops in addition to being a nurse). Military nurse are both nurses and leaders/managers "from the git go". Anyway... BA>ADN>BSN>MSN seems like a 5-legged dog. BA>ADN>MSN is a trimmer approach.

    ANA/NLNAC and those such organizations are the ones who recommend what the novice ADN (basic skills), the BSN (+public health and limited research), and the expert MSN nurse (research, heavy theory, specialized focus, etc) should be prepared for by education. You can research this if you want to know their rationale. The Gold standard is the MSN and the profession wants the MSN to be the only path of entry into nursing in the distant future. It's happening slower due to the shortage, though. What should matter to the BA>RN is "do I have the knowledge and skills to pursue grad study?". If you do the patch-up work and have a little work experience, it should be no big deal to anybody whether you have a BSN on top of your BA.

    At issue here is whether the BA-RN should spend an additional 6-12 or more months getting a redundant bachelor's degree before pursuing their MSN. My answer is "no".
  11. by   mmm333
    each msn program is different, but as an example, this faq from san jose state university explains that msn applicants with rn lic.+ ba only have to take several courses (not have a bsn) in order to enter msn study:

    can i be admitted into the master's in nursing program if my undergraduate bachelor's degree is not in nursing?
    [font=times new roman,times new roman][font=times new roman,times new roman]
    [font=times new roman,times new roman][font=times new roman,times new roman], [font=times new roman,times new roman][font=times new roman,times new roman]only if you have a ca rn license [font=times new roman,times new roman][font=times new roman,times new roman]and a bachelor's degree in other field, you can be admitted with conditions. the conditions include successfully passing the following four courses with a b or better: nurs 127b (community nursing theory), nurs 147b (community practicum), nurs 137 (nursing process), and nurs 128 (nursing research). you will also need to meet the writing competency requirements of the wst and hp 100w writing course, and you must also have a statistics class within the last 3 years and an economics course equivalent to econ1a.
  12. by   PacoUSA
    i wanted to resurrect this thread because this is my exact scenario at this time as i have a ba and a jd. i am in the process of applying to both accelerated bsn and traditional adn programs but i fear that financially i will only be able to swing an adn on a part time basis. it is appealing however to know that there is an option to pursue an msn without first obtaining the bsn. i have always subconsciously subscribed to maximilian333's opinion that the bsn is redundant when you have a prior bachelors, but i keep getting pushed into the notion that one needs a bsn to get a job nowadays in the major metro areas. looked at a few schools of personal interest ...

    columbia university in ny seems to accept in their msn programs nurses with prior non-nursing bachelor's. they add the following proviso in their program descriptions, which sounds very reasonable:

    *rn's with a non-nursing baccalaureate degree are required to complete 5 credits in community health in addition to the course requirement listed.

    i noticed stony brook (also in ny) likewise accepts non-nursing bachelors for msn, though the requirements seem more stringent:

    * clinical practice portfolio
    applicants to a master's program with a non-nursing bachelor's degree are required to submit a clinical practice portfolio to be evaluated for baccalaureate-level nursing competencies. if the portfolio does not meet academic standards, the student cannot matriculate.

    i am more motivated to pursue the ba>adn>msn route as well because i understand the msn is being phased out in favor of the dnp as the entry degree for nurse practitioners by 2015 (though at this rate i am not sure if i may make that deadline). but an msn is something i do indeed wish to pursue and circumventing the bsn is an appealing option.

    feedback welcome, thanks!
  13. by   mmm333
    paco386, if you do a little more looking you might agree with me that the Entry MSN (EMSN) programs are basically [ABSN+MSN] ; regular MSN programs for those already RNs generally only take 1.5-2 years. So during that first year you end up taking all of the same stuff you would take in an ABSN anyway, just at graduate school rate$. So do your homework there and you may see what I saw- that there is no shorcut and no circumventing the year of school that makes you an RN.

    This is what I found to be somewhat true:

    [Accelerated BSN(RN)+ regular MSN] = [1+2=3 years total]
    Entry-MSN(RN) = 2-3 years uninterrupted
    [ADN(RN)+(BA)+MSN]= [2 + 2 = 4 years total]

    (In the E-MSN they train you up as an RN during the first year during what is an intense, accelerated first year that qualifies you to take the NCLEX- which sounds an awful lot like an expensive accelerated BSN followed by two years of master's-level work along with a busy schedule of working for free as a GN/Graduate Nurse or SN/Student Nurse, or on your RN-Interim or Provisional Permit or whatever). The Accelerated BSN seems like it would be the best/fastest route for a person of your academic background. ADN grads do get hired but the BSN is the best match to all of the job postings. Most of the professional organizations are against the ADN being an entry point and recommend the BSN or higher, and many employers state that BSN applicants are "preferred". Many federal job postings specify BSN preparation. Yet the ADNs are still filling the gaps created by the overall nursing shortage. The main difference between the ADN and the BSN are: community health/public health, management, and research theoretical components. The ADN grads come out with more skills hours, starting IVs like pros, etc. They often get more clinical time and more skills labs. The MSN students sometimes run into trouble during their 3-3.5 years of preparation and never finish, and sometimes have trouble finding entry-level employment since they are percieved as overqualified or conversely underexposed to clinical skills and oversaturated with theory. Those are all just perceptions and schools will vary, but I think the ABSN is the best path for entry if you want a quick path to getting that license and having the option to work for a while before starting your MSN, to do your MSN while working, and perhaps get it paid for by your employer. If you have the brains, youth, and money, the EMSN does seem like an awesome choice, but in my opinion too much can go wrong with such a big investment. 3 years is a long time since all that needs to happen in that 3 year period is one misstep for you to be back to square one.

    BTW I am a BA+RN stuck in a pickle because I want to go back into the military and need to choose a quick, affordable, accredited RN>BSN program that has rolling admissions and won't spring any big surprises on me. But the military only accepts BSNs - I've done quite a bit of research and that rule seems to be pretty solid despite rumors / old tales asserting the contrary.

    Also I'm going to do you a favor right now and warn you (though I'm sure you've figured this out for yourself already) that nursing is a whole new ball game, that you might want to take a "clean slate" approach to nursing despite your awesome credentials (that JD might come in really handy later though- congratulations- nursing needs folks like you who can be real professionals active in both nursing and peripheral zones like law). PS I'm an ABA-paralegal certificate holder and hope to serve on a QA/compliance/legal-related committee someday so I can use my background in law to contribute.

    Your academic preparation really does make you suited to an E-MSN or high-calibre ABSN program. But any route will work. My ADN program had a large number of BAs from prestigious universities like Berkeley, master's degrees, etc. There were also some high calibre people with years of experience working in healthcare as techs or UCs. Not to mention those 20-year olds who are so smart that they chose nursing right out of high school instead of waiting until they were 30 (I think these were our smartest students). Still, you are never going to know who the good nurses are until they are with the patients. Take whatever program accepts you and fits your budget and get that RN license. You'll do very well with your analytical background, especially on the legal issues! Good luck amigo.
    Last edit by mmm333 on Jul 4, '10
  14. by   melmarie23
    I too had a previous Bachelors before going into nursing school. I went the direct entry MSN route. Not all direct entry programs require you to specialize (mine is a generalist Clinical Nurse Leader program) and is a 2 year program. I just sat for my boards on Friday and I graduate in December.