BSN versus ADN?

  1. Echo will you please stop posting!!!! I know, I know some of my posts are becoming repetitive. I even said "I know" twice!

    Okay I have been freaking out over waiting lists trying to figure out how I can position myself to get in sooner. I have actually come up with a *plan* but have almost exclusively looked at ADN programs because they are shorter. Basically I need to complete A&P, Microbiology and a Math class to get in.

    BSN? I need to take the aforementioned courses and a couple of others. Most of the general education courses I completed a long time ago, and none except Math or Sciences would need to be repeated. Basically it would only take two semesters to complete my pre-reqs for either program.

    Would I be foolish to go the ADN route if I could go the BSN route in the same time frame? I realize the costs would be higher, but I will likely qualify for FA.

    Lastly, are the waiting lists usually shorter for a BSN program?

    I do plan on finishing up my pre-reqs at a Community College, but in your humble opinion should I be looking at a BSN program over an ADN program?
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   Love-A-Nurse
    "would i be foolish to go the adn route if i could go the bsn route in the same time frame? i realize the costs would be higher, but i will likely qualify for fa. "





    foolish, no. i would consider the time frame, distance, and future plans within the next 5 years or so. whatever you decide, i do wish you all the best.
  4. by   Cynthiann
    I'm in the same situation as you, trying to decide BSN over ADN. If I get in the ADN program this spring I will graduate Dec 05. If I do the BSN I will graduate May 06. That's only a 5 month difference. But to go the BSN route I have to take almost 40 hours by next summer. I need my BSN since I eventually plan on going to graduate school.

    What I decided to do is just apply to the ADN program for the spring while I work on my BSN pre-reqs. If I get in I will probably just stay at the CC. If I don't get in, I will be putting in my app. for the university. I figure I might as well go for my BSN if it's exactly the same amount of time. At least it's only 9 months for the RN-BSN program if I do get in the ADN program.

    That may not of helped you but I just wanted to let you know that you are not alone. Good luck!
  5. by   iliel
    I left a University and finished pre reqs and will do my prog at a CC. I will be done faster (May 06) a BSN will tack on another year. I want to do the RN-MSN route so I will keep up the pre reqs no matter what. Plus, my only goal right now is 1) finish nursing 2) move out of here as fast as I can!!!!!
    This is an easy choice for me since there is no waiting list, but you have to decide which is right for you in terms of wait and cost.
    Good luck!
  6. by   NICU_Nurse
    I have an ADN, and if I had been able to, I'd have done the BSN route, but there was no way I could stay in school that long uninterrupted. If you can do that, and it will take the same amount of time to get *into* either program, and you are willing to go for the increased expenses, I say go for the BSN. It's a royal pain and frustration to get out of your ADN and then feel like you should have done the whole thing right off in the first place, trust me.

    You won't necessarily need the BSN right away if you're working as a staff nurse, but you might find yourself wanting to move upwards or go into management, or even pursue your Master's, and it's much easier if you'e got the BSN in all of those situations.
  7. by   NICU_Nurse
    err...that should have been "you've"...edit buton's not working.
  8. by   amped
    I know there are schools in my area that bridge from ADN to MSN; So instead of going ADN then BSN to graduate, you can just go through 2 programs.

    I had to decide between an ADN and a BSN program. I choose the ADN program because they had a higher percentage of graduates passing the NCLEX and a better reputation in my community - more knowledgable, more clinical exp, etc.

    I say apply to both and see what happens.

    Good luck!
  9. by   palesarah
    I choose the ADN program because they had a higher percentage of graduates passing the NCLEX and a better reputation in my community - more knowledgable, more clinical exp, etc.
    ditto that! I decided to go back to school for nursing 6 months after graduating with a BA. I chose a CC with an ADN prgram because it had a better reputation than the university's BSN program, even though the univeristy was 10 minutes away and the CC was 45 minutes away.

    I just started working a month ago, and of the 11 new grads at my hospital, only 1 has failed the NCLEX- one of the BSN grads. The BSN program has an 87% pass rate versus my ADN program's 98% pass rate. The ADN nurses have a better reputation in the hospital; staff nurses frequently comment on how the "tech school" nurses come out of school better prepared for "real-world" nursing.

    But, these are just the differences in my programs. I'd encourage you to look at the details of your education programs- NCLEX pass rates, job placement rates, etc. If you can talk to graduates of both programs find out how they felt their educations prepared them for their jobs. If it looks like one program will better prepare you for your career, I'd consider that one, regardless of what degree you'll graduate with. If you feel the programs are otherwise equal and the cost is not prohibitive, go for the BSN!

    Or, if the waiting lists are as bad as they sound, apply to both and see which one you get into first
  10. by   tinyhands4Him
    From what I saw in nursing school during clinicals the main difference with BSN and ADN nurses are skills....BSN focuses more on critical thinking and knowledge behind everything...you get the skills, but not as much as the ADN nurses b/c this is their main focus....both can be gained with experience on the job and so in a few yrs they are equal. I agree with Kristi though...you won't need the BSN at first, but may want to move up. If you can...go for the BSN and get it over with to begin with. If you don't have the time, money, ect.....go the ADN route and then you can take the classes on the side in a RN-BSN program...they work with you so you can still work full-time and get the degrees and most employers will pay for your schooling and help with your scheduling....education is encouraged on the job. Good luck in whatever you decide!
  11. by   ainz
    I have been an RN for 18 years. Earned ADN, then BSN, then MSN/MHA. During my career I have gone from staff nurse to hospital CEO. And I most definitely consider my administrative role as a continuation of my nursing practice.

    To answer the original question--go for the BSN.

    Whether nurses choose to believe it or not, our profession (or should we say quasi-profession) is a target for being greatly reduced and possibly eliminated. Why? Consider the following:
    The people that run healthcare in this country are not clinicians. The people that run it are the people that control the money. Nursing salaries are the single most expensive line item for a hospital's operating cost. Administrators and corporate execs always ALWAYS look for ways to reduce cost and increase profits. With reimbursement cuts and demands for higher profits, these guys are getting desperate. Nursing is a target.

    We must do a few things to counter this. One is to clearly define the one, single way a person can become a registered nurse. In the eyes of an administrator who is an accountant or MBA or MHA, how do you explain the difference between a nurse with a 3 year diploma, 2 year degree, 4 year degree, or a 6 year masters degree, when they are all qualified to essentially do the same things that will generate revenue for his hospital, they are all called "nurse" they all took the same NCLEX, and all are called RNs? LPNs finish a 1 year program but they are still called "nurse."

    What if there were different ways to become an MD? You could do the 2 year program, or the 4 year program, and then after a while you could go back and do a residency in something. What would you think if you were in the doctor's office with your sick child who had severe diabetes and you asked the doctor about their eduation and the doctor said,"well, I finished the 2 year program and got my MD. I have been planning on going back to the fast-track 4 year program but I am also considering doing that online because it is more convenient. But I really want to do a residency of some kind, I am currently just a generic MD but I did go take some prep courses and got my certification in pediatric endocrinology."

    If you are considering nursing school---go in with the mindset to become a professional registered nurse, get the broadest and most liberal education you can, and work extra hard to learn the hands-on, task oriented skills that make you immediately marketable. Don't worry too much about your hands-on skills, once you get out in the real world you will do so many tasks, so often and so quickly you will soon be able to do them in your sleep. But if you miss out on the broader education then you are robbing yourself, and the rest of nursing and healthcare, of a broad knowledge base and a more well rounded view of the world and the people that make up the world. You will find soon enough that communicating and relating to people, and the concept of EQ, is just as important to your success as the task oriented hands on skills.
  12. by   zacarias
    Ainz,

    I loved your example of the MD who graduated from the two-year program LOL!! The funny/sad thing is that we nurses talk that way about all these different avenues we can go down in our career. You're a very wise person and hope to see more of your posts.
  13. by   iliel
    Ainz, how do you feel about people who wish to do an RN-MSN route but are doing a ADN prog so they can get the req work experience before starting a MSN prog. I ask because I noticed that in doing this, I you don't recieve a BSN, does that really matter after you have a MSN?

    BTW, I also enjoyed your post, you made a lot of clear and understandable points.
    Last edit by iliel on Jul 18, '03
  14. by   LoriB
    It is my understanding that you already have to have a BS (in any subject) to bridge from an ADN to the MSN program. Is this correct? I have a BS in Computer Science and when I asked the college about continuing on after my ADN I was told I don't need to finish the BSN, I could go straight to the MSN with one semester of transition (community health nursing).

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