LPN. or RN - page 5

by gapeacheykeen 28,663 Views | 67 Comments

I recently relocated due to a nasty divorce, I have been trying to figure out which to do. LPN or BSN. I was waiting for the in-state tuition to kick in before I made a decision. (In Arkansas the wait is only 6 mo ) I really... Read More


  1. 2
    Quote from AJPV
    The claim that "very few" ADNs are getting hired in hospitals anymore is simply false in many areas of the country. ...
    All I'm saying is that it is very important for you to do your homework ahead of time FOR YOUR REGION since hiring trends are highly variable from one region to another. Do plan to pursue your BSN - but think about the timing and whether it is feasible to get hired first as an ADN and then let your hospital pay your BSN bridge program tuition for you. If you factor in all the financial variables (ADN versus BSN tuition cost, 2 extra years of earning RN salary rather than still being unlicensed during your junior & senior years in a traditional 4-year BSN program, being able to capitalize on a hospital paying your BSN bridge tuition), you stand to come out ahead by well over $100k if you pursue your ADN first.
    Not really. The homework has already been done. Your $100k advantage is predicated upon very specific and (based on current hospital reimbursement trends) unlikely circumstances.

    If one is young (say 21) and with very little debt and or has the ability to support oneself after attending and graduating (getting licensed) with an ADN RN, then it's probably preferable; assuming there's a nearby ADN to BSN program (either online or locally) that one can easily enroll in. You're highly unlikely to hear any HR director say they'd prefer an ADN RN over a BSN RN (with the same resume). Thus, if one feels they have the time and flexibility to spend competing for a job, getting a job and then spending 1 to 2 years earning a BSN part-time, then more power to them. That being said, for EVERYONE else, earning a BSN as quickly as possible has advantages that far supersede the inherent limitations of entering a profession with a non-professional degree. This is not a commentary on whether one nurse is automatically more intelligent or skilled than an another, BUT evidenced-based research suggests that earning a BSN simply provides for better long-term outcomes; in patient care, and personal salary.
    moonchild86 and sapphire18 like this.
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    It really depends on your situation. I went through an unexpected divorce, and it just isn't feasible for me to not work for two years and do the RN program. I am currently in a one year LPN program. It is a challenging program, to say the least. While we have all of our nursing classes, we are simultaneously taking all of our pre-reqs. The pre-reqs are condensed from 16 weeks to 10. The length of time is condensed, not the material presented. If you have your pre-reqs done though, you would have it good. I plan on working as an LPN and pursuing my RN part time. I wish I could go straight through and get my RN, but I will get some valuable work experience while I am pursuing it.
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    I am career changer. I would never have dreamed of going for my LVN because it would be wasted time and a pay cut from my previous job. I worked as a CNA as a teenager, but that's been a very VERY long time ago. I don't regret getting my ADN because it was faster, since I had all the prerequisites - and the ADN program in my area has a better reputation than the BSN program - but started working on the BSN as soon as I had my license. It will take a semester more of school than if I'd gone straight BSN - but I will have been working as an RN for three years when I finish my BSN - so it worked for me.

    My 17 year old wants to go into nursing. I told him I will pay for his LVN. I will not pay for him to go to RN school for four simple reasons:

    1. LVN program is 1 year. ADN is 3, BSN is 4. LVN knocks a year off of the ADN, ADN knocks 3 years off BSN if you do it right... so on paper, no time wasted - although definitely more semester hours, less tuition because the LVN and ADN tuition is 40 - 50% of the price of the BSN tuition per credit hour. LVNs are still a hot commodity in rural TX; he should have no problem getting a job.

    2. LVN program is ONLY 1 year. His girlfriend graduates HS the year after him, and they want to get married when she graduates. I want him to be 'done' with something before they get married. LVN offers a nice pausing place for that, if he chooses to pause... and he can do prereqs and a majority of nursing school online while working and supporting his wife / family if he chooses to do that. I will help him as much as I can with tuition, ongoing - but at least with an LVN he can support himself.

    3. LVN program here makes a better nurse. The best RNs that I have worked with were LVNs first or went through a hospital diploma program to get their RN. I want him to have those skills.

    4. He has a lot of maturing to do before he is ready to be considered 'a professional'. LVN school will help him to grow up quickly - like Nurse basic training.
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    I took my Nclex PN and the result was not good. Is there any one that have taken board once or twice that can advice me how you pass and what do you do, because my first time i was having a serious anxiety which make me not to finishing the questions and i got poor result. please any advice you caan give.
  5. 1
    Quote from Oakley44
    Not really. The homework has already been done. Your $100k advantage is predicated upon very specific and (based on current hospital reimbursement trends) unlikely circumstances.

    If one is young (say 21) and with very little debt and or has the ability to support oneself after attending and graduating (getting licensed) with an ADN RN, then it's probably preferable; assuming there's a nearby ADN to BSN program (either online or locally) that one can easily enroll in. You're highly unlikely to hear any HR director say they'd prefer an ADN RN over a BSN RN (with the same resume). Thus, if one feels they have the time and flexibility to spend competing for a job, getting a job and then spending 1 to 2 years earning a BSN part-time, then more power to them. That being said, for EVERYONE else, earning a BSN as quickly as possible has advantages that far supersede the inherent limitations of entering a profession with a non-professional degree. This is not a commentary on whether one nurse is automatically more intelligent or skilled than an another, BUT evidenced-based research suggests that earning a BSN simply provides for better long-term outcomes; in patient care, and personal salary.
    Oakley: I respect some parts of your opinion, but I must say that I have serious problems with you telling me that my ADN degree is "non-professional." My degree in fact says "Professional Nursing." I wonder how "professional" it is that only 2 of the BSN programs in our metro area have a higher NCLEX pass rate than my ADN school (and by less than 1%), while the remaining 5 BSN programs have lower pass rates than my school (some are lower by as much as 15%). One of the public state school BSN programs is now on probation with the state board for its low pass rate. And I should be begging to let that school empty my bank account?

    My own circumstances and those of most students in my class proves that ADN students can in fact land good hospital jobs. You mentioned that it might make sense to pursue an ADN as long as you are young and have very little debt. The average age of students in ADN programs is actually older than BSN programs. I along with many in my class are over 30. Debt and other life commitments are actually good reasons TO pursue an ADN.
    nursel56 likes this.
  6. 1
    Quote from Oakley44
    This really shouldn't be a drawn out answer session but, just for fun, I'll add to the fray:

    As many said before, assuming you have the ability of time and tuition, go BSN and avoid even thinking about LPN/LVN as an option.

    There will be LPN/LVN thinking that what I just said was harsh/ignorant but if you have the motivation and academic know-how to start out at a professional level, then you should. Many nursing organizations are striving to change the image of Nursing as a profession and, truthfully, the origin and scope of the LPN/LVN is not a professional one;
    Since you said "truthfully" I'm concerned someone exploring nursing career options might be misled by that comment as well. Whatever your opinion is of LPNs, no nursing organization has ever suggested the problem with the professional image is caused by the presence of LPNs. Or ADNs and diploma nurses for that matter -- even though they are proponents of the BSN minimum degree for entry to the profession.

    They are emphasizing the career-track approach now as they are well aware of the obstacles some ADN RNs will face if/when it becomes mandatory.

    If anyone is interested in what nursing organizations really want - this is one of the go-to documents.

    The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health - Institute of Medicine

    Scopes of practice are primarily laws - nuts and bolts. Therefore, if you look at them in that light - you need to look at them side by side for the state you want to work in. Ascribing a value judgement such as "professional" is not part of scope of practice. It is a part of vociferous and frequent debate here on allnurses.

    At this point and most likely for the foreseeable future the difference in salary is negligible for staff (RN)nurses. There is no evidence that better patient outcomes are caused by the type of degree one has either, but that's a topic for another day.

    I would advise anyone trying to decide what track to pursue to realize most of what motivates our overlords is money. Nothing more esoteric than that. Even if they make a "prestige" choice it's motivated by money. If we ever get back to the days of a true nursing shortage they will drop the BSN only requirement like a hot potato.

    I'm pessimistic about the economy so I would absolutely suggest that people get their BSN if they have the time and money to do it. However, as of now 60% of working nurses are Associate Degree nurses and they are very professional.
    Last edit by nursel56 on Feb 16, '12
    AJPV likes this.
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    Its completely circumstantial. I was a BSN prenursing student once upon a time. My grades were fair, and after 8 years of unsuccessful attempts to get accepted into a RN program, ADN and BSN, I applied one time to an LPN program and was accepted. I worked 2 years prior to this as a CNA, I dont regret any of it because as an LPN, my pay doubled what I was making as a CNA, secondly, I was ready to move out on my own and with my debt(I couldnt take working at a CNA rate of pay for 2 more years when in age I was knocking on 30 and possessed a B.S. degree which was not in high demand)
    I could not make it on my own comfortably off of CNA pay here in GA. As an LPN, I'm living more comfortably, enjoying my job alot more and in pursuit of my BSN with Indiana State University LPN-BSN program, which are not hassling me so about a GPA(which I found, higher GPAs do not always qualify you to be a good nurse), you need to possess compassion for the field as well as have the necessary knowledge to make sound decisions. My LPN nursing classes GPA was alot higher than the GPA i had in my general ed. courses and Ive been told by several patients/coworkers, I'm a good nurse, although I have less than a 1 year experience as a LPN, but for me, it paid to be a CNA first.

    Being a CNA made me realize, I didnt want to be that for long due to my qualifications, plus it allowed me get a feel of nursing in which I came to realize, I really did enjoy caring for other and it was a true passion I possessed and still do. I also feel if you can handle being a CNA you can handle nursing. As a CNA, I gained alot of experience and knowledge I was able to apply to my job and schooling as a LPN. You are pretty much limited to nursing homes (which really over works you but pays fairly decent). I'm currently working in corrections at a local jail. At a nursing home setting, the RN and LPN did pretty much the same job, difference was, RN could call time of death whereas LPN had to get an RN to do so but RNs made more.

    And its true here in Athens,GA as well, Hospitals are not accepting LPNs much. Something about achieving a magnet status(some kind of nationwide recognition), hospitals have to hire more degree containing employees(ADN,BSN, Physicians, etc), outside of the techs, and as you know, LPNs obtain diploma. Here i havent heard of pay being much of a difference for ADN vs. BSN, and they are desired equally in most settings.

    I had a classmate get hired at a hospital in the Atlanta, GA area, and Ive found more of those hospital in the Atlanta area to still hire LPNs with experience of course in most cases, here in Athens,GA we have 2 major hospitals, both seeked that magnet status, so getting on as a LPN is slim to none although in rare instance will a LPN get hire, the ones currently working were employed before this status was seeked. So I am in pursuit of my BSN so that I am not so limited to doctor offices (who seem to pay the least but comes with other perks), nursing homes(usually pay more but make you work for the money), or in my new case at a jail (turnover rate high for various reasons).

    Ive worked at all of the above areas so far, in addition to the seasonal flu clinic offered to LPN and RNs each flu season where I made the most as a lpn, but getting hours are first come first served and its only 3-4 months out the year no benefits.(with Mollen Clinic)

    Pay as a CNA varied from $8-$9 an hour starting out in nursing homes and home care settings
    Pay as a LPN varired from $13.50-$20 an hour,

    Up North and Out West, Ive heard pay is alot higher for CNAs and nurses.

    Im pursuing a BSN over a ADN because I want to become a RN and be done with it until I decide if I want to do Nurse Practitioner and later teach nursing later on in life. If you can afford to wait two years or more before becoming a nurse, I say go for your ADN or BSN, depending on your goals and the area you are living in. But I'm not knocking the LPN route.

    You know they call LPNs the pill pushers and RNs the paper nurses for a reason around here.
    Now this is just for me
    nursel56 and AJPV like this.
  8. 0
    Quote from nursel56
    ...at this point and most likely for the foreseeable future the difference in salary is negligible for staff (rn)nurses. there is no evidence that better patient outcomes are caused by the type of degree one has either, but that's a topic for another day...

    ...i'm pessimistic about the economy so i would absolutely suggest that people get their bsn if they have the time and money to do it. however, as of now 60% of working nurses are associate degree nurses and they are very professional.
    first of all...of course it's about the money - but there's more to it.

    i'm not using the word professional in such a pedestrian matter. i'm utilizing it to make a distinction between a vocational approach where skills-based education is emphasized and a more "critical thinking"-infused approach. i use ""marks around the phrase critical thinking because i realize the common place attitude that many nurses have when they hear this oft-misused phrase.

    furthermore, the fact remains that there is extent evidence which clearly indicates better patient outcomes when cared for by bsn-prepared nurses. see below.

    you're dissection of my, admittedly, arbitrary use of the word "truthfully" was nearly as obnoxious as my criticism of it but, come on, really?? i reel at the possibility that my opinions posted on this thread might so easily lead others astray.

    boom:

    "[color=#414141]in a study published in the september 24, 2003 issue of the journal of the american medical association[color=#414141] (jama), dr. linda aiken and her colleagues at the university of pennsylvania identified a clear link between higher levels of nursing education and better patient outcomes. this extensive study found that surgical patients have a "substantial survival advantage" if treated in hospitals with higher proportions of nurses educated at the baccalaureate or higher degree level. in hospitals, a 10 percent increase in the proportion of nurses holding bsn degrees decreased the risk of patient death and failure to rescue by 5 percent. the study authors further recommend that public financing of nursing education should aim at shaping a workforce best prepared to meet the needs of the population. they also call for renewed support and incentives from nurse employers to encourage registered nurses to pursue education at the baccalaureate and higher degree levels."

    american association of colleges of nursing | the impact of education on nursing practice
  9. 2
    Quote from Oakley44
    First of all...of course it's about the money - but there's more to it.

    I'm not using the word professional in such a pedestrian matter. I'm utilizing it to make a distinction between a vocational approach where skills-based education is emphasized and a more "critical thinking"-infused approach. I use ""marks around the phrase critical thinking because I realize the common place attitude that many nurses have when they hear this oft-misused phrase.
    My comments related to your use of this statement

    "Many nursing organizations are striving to change the image of Nursing as a profession and, truthfully, the origin and scope of the LPN/LVN is not a professional one;"

    much more than a quibble about the meaning of the word "professional". You made a link between what nursing organizations are trying to do and the LPN scope of practice. That is an untruth.

    What exactly is a "critical thinking infused" approach? After you explain that I'll let you know if that "skills-based" LPN program differs significantly. I doubt you will because it's just so much easier to drop a glib line or two that uses one or two catchwords that don't really say anything and evaporate under scrutiny.

    You could read the link in my previous post for another barrage of words that at least carry the imprimatur of a respectable think tank. There you will find that they consider the extra education a positive step in areas that have nothing to do with your odds of killing off your post-op surgical patient in PA between 1998 and 1999 or bedside care at all.

    Furthermore, the fact remains that there is extent evidence which clearly indicates better patient outcomes when cared for by BSN-prepared nurses. See below.
    Do you know what "proof" means? There may be extant facts that co-exist but have no causal relationship. That isn't evidence. You made a mistake that shows you don't really understand research very well. Put simply there are lots of other things that could explain the results. So your Aiken chart review "gotcha" kind of fell flat.

    If you employ critical thinking you might ask yourself if the American Association of Colleges of Nursing might have an agenda? Like a keeping their jobs kind of agenda? Just a thought.

    Boom: (phhhhffffffffft. . sorry.) :-/
    Last edit by nursel56 on Feb 24, '12
    moonchild86 and AJPV like this.
  10. 0
    Quote from nursel56
    My comments related to your use of this statement

    "Many nursing organizations are striving to change the image of Nursing as a profession and, truthfully, the origin and scope of the LPN/LVN is not a professional one;"

    much more than a quibble about the meaning of the word "professional". You made a link between what nursing organizations are trying to do and the LPN scope of practice. That is an untruth.

    What exactly is a "critical thinking infused" approach? After you explain that I'll let you know if that "skills-based" LPN program differs significantly. I doubt you will because it's just so much easier to drop a glib line or two that uses one or two catchwords that don't really say anything and evaporate under scrutiny.

    You could read the link in my previous post for another barrage of words that at least carry the imprimatur of a respectable think tank. There you will find that they consider the extra education a positive step in areas that have nothing to do with your odds of killing off your post-op surgical patient in PA between 1998 and 1999 or bedside care at all.

    Do you know what "proof" means? There may be extant facts that co-exist but have no causal relationship. That isn't evidence. You made a mistake that shows you don't really understand research very well. Put simply there are lots of other things that could explain the results. So your Aiken chart review "gotcha" kind of fell flat.

    If you employ critical thinking you might ask yourself if the American Association of Colleges of Nursing might have an agenda? Like a keeping their jobs kind of agenda? Just a thought.

    Boom: (phhhhffffffffft. . sorry.) :-/


    My reply was deleted and I don't have the will to re-write the whole thing so as to continue our rather tenuous war of 10-dollar words.... I will say that my argument was ceteris paribus and leave it at that.


    Oh and also your tone is starting to take on a degree of condescension that I wasn't quite expecting but I should give you kudos for the use of the words imprimatur and glib (a la Tom Cruise).






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