Hi everybody, I am looking for advice concerning the world of academia and nursing. I have a BSN and have been accepted to an NP program that I will not be able to finish until three years from now because of the core classes being full for a year
(first time I've ever used one of those!). Anyway, I have thought hard about teaching and considered using an FNP masters in nursing to do so, however I have recently found a masters program with a focus in nursing education and I am thinking about doing that as it can be done much, much quicker.
I am looking for comments/advice about getting a masters with an education focus vs. an FNP focus. How hard is it to find, get into, do a postmasters program for advanced practice nursing?
How hard is it to find a teaching job? How hard is it to find a PHD program? etc., etc. Thanks
Dec 5, '06
Quote from barb4575
I would have to disagree with some of what has been posted here thus far. I am certain that becoming a NP would be beneficial for that role and the money/autonomy/respect are just some of the rationales NP's cite for job satisfaction. However, just as all nurses cannot teach, all NP's cannot teach. What I have found in both BSN and ADN education is that an NP is not taught how to teach with the exception of client education. I have seen a few that could do very well in the theory portion, but were unable to cope with the clinical arena due to the high instructor:student ratio.
I am a firm believer in selecting a graduate program where all of the graduates are competent Clinical Nurse Specialists. Then, a track for Education should be selected so that the graduate will hold the competencies which are required to be effective in academia. I can say that in my experience, most nurse educators are ineffective in their role. Most of this is due to the new nurse educator not receiving appropriate orientation or mentorship and he/she was not taught the basics of education and its theories. For example, many nurse educators are not aware of Bloom's Taxonomy. I am unclear why they did not learn this at the BSN level when learning to write client objectives and testing of the client's knowledge gained through teaching.
This is something that I feel very strongly about and I also believe that many nurse educators today will teach how they were taught. For the most part, this was ineffective. There are always exceptions.
Hope this helps you to see another perspective and one that is quite different than the majority who have written here. As a current doctoral student in Education with 24 years of experience, I can assure you that I am speaking first-hand regarding the academia issue of educational preparation for the nurse faculty.
Thank you and good luck,
I am by no means any sort of expert on this subject; I am merely a BSN student finishing up my degree.
However, I was speaking to a few professors concerning this same issue. I plan to pursue my NP and then my Ph.D. right after my BSN. I was asking professors whether they think an Ed.D or a Ph.D. would be of benefit, or whether I should pursue my Ph.D. in nursing and focus on education in some way. They both disagreed. They said that it would be nice for professors to have a great deal of experience in the education field and know the ideas and concepts behind education; however, it not necessary at all. They said that if you look at a list of all of the college professors within a university, you will find that the majority of them never had any sort of educational experience, aside from any sort of TA/GA experience or their few required education classes within their graduate program. Universities are not necessarily looking for quality in their education skills, but rather quality in the work they did as a Ph.D., their published work, and their area of specialty.
I started thinking about what they had said, and I realized they were completely right. When I think back over the last 4 years, a large % of my professors obviously had no educational experience because they were some of the most horrible teachers/professors. However, I also came upon many that were absolutely wonderful and had this knack to be a professor.
I think I've come to figure out why those wonderful professors were so wonderful, and it comes down to passion. I've noticed that those people who are passionate about their area of expertise and passionate about academics are by far better than those unpassionate professors who received their Ph.D. in education.
Just my input though.
So, I guess the overall point of my post is -- if you are passionate about nursing and academics, then by all means pursue what you feel will make you marketable and content. If you have the passion and want to become an FNP, then by all means, pursue that field. Don't pursue an MSN with a concentration in education if that isn't what you necessarily want. If, and when, after you receive your FNP, you decide to continue on for your Ph.D., definitely look into schools and begin applying.
Last edit by MikeyJ on Dec 5, '06