Nursing school steps

  1. Hello, new here, I recently completed my Bachelors degree in Psychology & had planned to apply to a masters program to be a P.A. Well I have a friend who is an ARNP & she changed my mind and now I'm going in the nursing route. Only downfall is that I feel like I'm starting from scratch all over again :/ I have seen some accelerated programs but they're none close enough to me to attend. My question is, do I have to start from the bottom and go to school and get my ADN be an LPN, then apply to a RN-BSN, is there any way that I can skip the LPN and go directly into an RN program?? Just trying to save some time, being that I've already wasted lots of time and money before changing my mind. Any help, tips, advice would be greatly appreciated. thanks in advance & God Bless.
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   BSNbeDONE
    Absolutely! Choose an accredited ASN or accelerated BSN program and apply. With your previous credits/degree, I'd try the ABSN if I were you, although I've heard they tend to be quite expensive. It might be cheaper for you since you already have a bachelors.

    You can enter nursing with a diploma (LPN), ASN, or BSN. Personally, I never could understand why someone hold a bachelor degree in anything would choose to enter nursing as anything other than a BSN-prepared individual. But as it is a choice, it does happen.

    Forgot to mention that nursing school entry is very competitive. I hope your GPA is on point as you'll be going up against too many applicants to count.

    Good luck to you!
    Last edit by BSNbeDONE on Mar 19 : Reason: Added info
  4. by   Double-Helix
    I’m curious what changed your mind to pursue a nursing degree after the conversation with your friend? I ask this because advanced practice nursing encompasses a huge scope of potential career paths and job descriptions. It doesn’t seem like you have a good understanding of nursing degrees, which makes me wonder if you really understand the nursing scope of practice. One conversation with a friend who loves her job is hardly enough research on which to be basing a decision that will cost you a lot of time and money.

    You do not get your ADN in order to be an LPN. LPN is a Licensed Practical Nurse, and it’s a separate diploma training program with a similar, but distinct scope of practice from an RN. Students graduating from these programs take the NCLEX-PN licensing exam. ADN programs will give you a Associates Degree in Nursing, and allow you to sit for the NCLEX-RN examination. After passing that exam you will become a registered nurse. BSN programs allow you to take the same NCLEX-RN examination and grant you the same licensure as an ADN prepared graduate. However, BSN prepared nurses are more highly desirable employees, and many major hospitals will require a BSN to be eligible for hire. You will need a BSN degree if your goal is to become a Nurse Practitioner or advanced practice nurse.

    Because you already have a Bachelors degree in another field, your choices are to enter any of the programs I described and start from the beginning. This would probably take about 2 years for an ADN program and 3-4 years for a BSN. You may get credit for some of the courses you’ve already taken for your psychology degree that could reduce the number of classes you have to take, but generally the clinical courses are on a set schedule and you can’t move through the program more quickly. Or you can enter an Accelerated BSN program, which allows applicants with a bachelors degree from another field to move quickly through clinical and didactic courses, obtain a BSN and sit for the NCLEX exam after 12-18 months of study. This is by far the quickest route to a BSN, but also will be expensive and applications are quite competitive.

    If you wish to be an NP, after obtaining a BSN you can apply to a graduate program, although it is highly recommended that you obtain solid experience as an RN before attempting to become an NP.

    I suggest you do some shadowing of nurses and NPs in various fields that you think interest you. Gain a more thorough understanding of what it is to be a nurse in these positions and see if it lines up with your interests and expectations.
  5. by   cleback
    Can I ask why you chose nursing over the PA route? If you have a competitive application, you would have a more direct route to practice as a PA. As the previous poster described, it may be a while before you're even at a point to where you can apply to an NP program.
  6. by   HelloWish
    I think already having completed the pre-reqs to become a PA then it makes more sense to pursue that route. If you become a NP then you have to go to school for your RN and then complete your masters too - at least 4 more years of school plus the experience you need as an RN. You will need about 2 years experience as an RN to be excepted into most nurse practitioner schools.
  7. by   Josh Runkle
    There are many schools that offer a graduate entry option for Nurse Practitioner programs. Typically, you enter with a non-nursing bachelor's degree and then complete about 3 years of graduate school which combines RN and CNP training.
    http://www.aacn.nche.edu/Education-Resources/APLIST.PDF (Entry Level Master's Nursing Programs start on page 4)
  8. by   TheCommuter
    We moved your thread to our Pre-Nursing Student forum:

    http://allnurses.com/pre-nursing-student/
  9. by   Kristyj_05
    Thank you, extremely helpful insight given.
    its much more then to say, I talked to one person and changed my mind, but didn't want to type out my entire life story as to when, why, what, etc. In a nut shell, I had already compared PA vs NP in the past and the biggest thing for me was, well I don't think I'd ever want to open up my own business and work independently, and at that point where I was started it was just best to do the PA route, I have 3,500 Hrs of HCE from working with a family practice & for a cosmetic surgeon, I've shadowed some PA's and my friend, the ARNP.....but until recently giving it much thought, I had a change of heart and decided that one day I do want to open up my own practice, and going back again looking into the pros and cons of my situation, it was best that I went the nursing route as they have a more broad outlook on so many different gateways, and again, they can work independently and a PA cannot as they have to be under the direction of a physician....another huge thing was that it would be cheaper for me even after already having my Bachelors degree, I know they have programs where you can serve in an underserved area and get it paid for but after much thought and prayer, all directions went to nursing route....
    im just not familiar in the process of the schooling as to what you can possibly bridge, or whether you have to start from the beginning, etc. I was all about the PA life up u til recently and so now I'm just looking into where to go from here....I HAVE spoken to a local Nursing program that I plan to apply to next year and receive my LPN-ADN, then apply for their RN-BSN, and then apply to a Graduate program, which is what I will most likely end up doing, but I just wanted to see if I had to do the LPN,ADN or if I could skip it or if I just just stick out the 2 yrs and do it.
    Thanks again!!

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