The bachelor degree frustration

  1. [font=Comic Sans MS]I am a second year nursing student, who entered in to the program with the intent of gradding with my diploma. This year we were told it is manditory to obtain a [font=Comic Sans MS]BScN Degree. This is so frustrating to me so I asked some faculty what they thought and they said that in this a positive step for better care. With the nursing shortage in Canada and now the four year program I am wondering if this is a wise rule to lay down. What do other nurses and students think about this. thanks .
    Last edit by behumble on Feb 19, '04 : Reason: format
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   epg_pei
    Quote from behumble
    [font=Comic Sans MS]I am a second year nursing student, who entered in to the program with the intent of gradding with my diploma. This year we were told it is manditory to obtain a [font=Comic Sans MS]BScN Degree. This is so frustrating to me so I asked some faculty what they thought and they said that in this a positive step for better care. With the nursing shortage in Canada and now the four year program I am wondering if this is a wise rule to lay down. What do other nurses and students think about this. thanks .
    Faculty invariably reply that degrees equal better care. :chuckle Which must mean that the care being delivered right now by the vast majority of nurses, who hold only diplomas, is inferior. Faculty also need to encourage the continued enrollment of students into degree programs to pay their salaries. Is it a wise rule? It is if you're already a degreed nurse isn't it. Kinda promoting your own job security aren't you? Hmmm.....

    As a wise man once said, don't believe the hype.
  4. by   fergus51
    It certainly can't hurt. It takes a little extra time, but I don't see any real problem with only having one route to RN status in Ontario. It was CNOs decision.
  5. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    this is just mho, but i don't find that degree programs are providing enough clinical, hands-on nursing education. i have worked with degreed nurses who have been working at the bedside more than a year who have never discontinued a foley, put in an ng or changed a central line dressing. i can't figure out how someone is supposed to perform the real work of bedside nursing if they've never really experienced it as a student. i looked into a post-basic degree program a few years back, and was taken aback by the variety of courses i could take as part of my nursing degree... conversational ukrainian, earth and planetary science, feminist perspectives on the french revolution, and a wide selection of other humanities, arts and sciences courses that have little bearing on day-to-day living, never mind nursing. sorry, can't do it.
  6. by   JMP
    I am a RN who is currently finishing my post RN degree (BSN) the courses are great- very much focused on practice issues and concerns- I have taken a theory course, family nursing, nursing research, nursing history, nursing management and three practicums. THe praticums focus on MY interests and I CHOOSE the placements.

    I would encourage degree completion- I have learned so much about practice issues, horizontal violence, power in the nursing workplace, etc.

    I work full time - between the ICU and the dialysis unit in an acute care hospital.

    I am over 40- and find the whole experience very rewarding.

    THe program is at U of VIctoria- totally on-line..... and I recommend it highly.

    Yes, clincial skills are important. I was lucky enough to graduate from a good three year college program, work three years in a good teaching hospital, take a one year ciritcal care diploma program and now complete my degree.

    JMP
  7. by   vislandnurse
    Quote from epg_pei
    Faculty invariably reply that degrees equal better care. :chuckle Which must mean that the care being delivered right now by the vast majority of nurses, who hold only diplomas, is inferior. Faculty also need to encourage the continued enrollment of students into degree programs to pay their salaries. Is it a wise rule? It is if you're already a degreed nurse isn't it. Kinda promoting your own job security aren't you? Hmmm.....

    As a wise man once said, don't believe the hype.
    Sorry, can't agree with your statement that the requirement for degree preparation now implies that the quality of care provided by most diploma prepared nurses is inferior. It just means that with the increasing acuity and technology facing nurses today requires increased levels of critical thinking, which is especially critical for those beginning practice that do not have the experience. Being degree prepared cannot make up for the years of experience that the diploma prepared nurses have gained.
    In response to your statement that faculty need the continued enrollment of students into degreed programs to pay their salaries, I say rediculous! Not sure what the waitlists to get into nursing programs are like where you live, but faculty have no worries here about filling nursing seats for the next several years!
    And job security for degreed nurses? Don't think too many nurses need to worry about losing their jobs right about now - I heard there was a nursing shortage.
  8. by   JMP
    Quote from vislandnurse
    Sorry, can't agree with your statement that the requirement for degree preparation now implies that the quality of care provided by most diploma prepared nurses is inferior. It just means that with the increasing acuity and technology facing nurses today requires increased levels of critical thinking, which is especially critical for those beginning practice that do not have the experience. Being degree prepared cannot make up for the years of experience that the diploma prepared nurses have gained.
    In response to your statement that faculty need the continued enrollment of students into degreed programs to pay their salaries, I say rediculous! Not sure what the waitlists to get into nursing programs are like where you live, but faculty have no worries here about filling nursing seats for the next several years!
    And job security for degreed nurses? Don't think too many nurses need to worry about losing their jobs right about now - I heard there was a nursing shortage.
    The drive in Ontario for BSN as entry to practice is now reality- and has been long sought after by many. The thing is that every professional in the healthcare setting- OT-pharm-nutrionists-PT-social work etc. are ALL required to be degree prepared. I see nothing wrong with requiring degree as entry to practice. It does not mean diploma nurses are less- but I can tell you continued education of any type makes anyone a better informed professional- as I mentioned in another post- education and experience are two great friends- and no one can ever take them from you.
    JMP
  9. by   vislandnurse
    Yes, degree preparation is required now in British Columbia as well - and I couldn't agree with you more regarding education and experience...I am gaining the education and will eventually gain the experience!
  10. by   behumble
    Thank -you all so much for your valuable input. It is well heeded.
    Last edit by behumble on Feb 22, '04 : Reason: compo
  11. by   VShaw
    Hi everyone-

    I am currently enrolled in a two year diploma program in the US (I still live in Canada but commute to school daily as I live on the US border) since here the only nursing programs offered are four year degrees. I was wondering which provinces still accept new 2 year diplomas and if there is any talk of all of the provinces moving to the bachelors degree requirement.

    Thank you.
  12. by   fergus51
    As far as I knew, it's BC, Ontario and PEI that require the BSN.
  13. by   epg_pei
    Quote from vislandnurse
    Sorry, can't agree with your statement that the requirement for degree preparation now implies that the quality of care provided by most diploma prepared nurses is inferior. It just means that with the increasing acuity and technology facing nurses today requires increased levels of critical thinking, which is especially critical for those beginning practice that do not have the experience. Being degree prepared cannot make up for the years of experience that the diploma prepared nurses have gained.
    In response to your statement that faculty need the continued enrollment of students into degreed programs to pay their salaries, I say rediculous! Not sure what the waitlists to get into nursing programs are like where you live, but faculty have no worries here about filling nursing seats for the next several years!
    And job security for degreed nurses? Don't think too many nurses need to worry about losing their jobs right about now - I heard there was a nursing shortage.
    I guess maybe you've missed the points I wanted to make. I know technnology is increasing the demands on nurses. But diploma nurses are out there everyday working with the technology while the degree nurse are still in school practicing their APA format, to name one example. How that creates a better floor nurse eludes me. I'm told degreed nurses are better prepared for roles as, say, public nurses or nurse managers. But will we all perform these roles? No. Most of us will be floor nurses. And for that role, I continue to believe a diploma based education is most efficient and effective.

    To the fact that faculty needs continued high enrollments, recall the lean years of the early 90s. Nurses leaving the field in droves, part time work at barely above minimum wage. Schools were starving for students, and one professor I spoke to recently related that one regional university was considering dropping its degree program entirely. How times change. If waitlists were today as they were then, my faculty would be significantly smaller than it is now. And I am quite sure the members of the faculty have no desire to see those days return. Someone has to pay their salaries. That's where students enter.

    Lastly, if degreed nurses and diploma nurses have the same right to call themselves RN, why the restriction in favour of degreed nurses? My class is filled with people who would rather have gone to college, but because of the restrictions in place, chose university. I suspect others feel the same way, else this question would not be bandied about quite so much.

    Final thought: There is no nursing shortage. There is a shortage of political will to spend money on the health care network to hire nurses. Governments and their policies come and go.
  14. by   fergus51
    egg-pei,
    some of us want to see nurses' education at the BSN level and we aren't instructors out to protect our jobs. You just have to go through one contract dispute where the letters to the editor overwhelmingly read "Why do nurses think they should get so much money? They don't even have degrees!" and you'll start to think about it a little differently. Like it or not, a Bachelor's degree is becoming increasingly important in most fields, and nurses can't be immune to that. Formal education is valued. It doesn't mean you'll be better prepared for the floor necessarily, but imho, no new nurse is. I honestly can't tell who has a degree and who doesn't at work.

    It doesn't mean that diploma nurses are lesser or not as good as nurses with degrees, they are equals and I think it's misleading for people imply otherwise. And if this does nothing but rid the province of that stupid rivalry I think it'll be worth it. It sucks that new nurses don't have as much choice as far as how they become nurses, but that's true of most professions.
    Last edit by fergus51 on Feb 26, '04

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