psych degree?

  1. I am just starting a 3yr BSN program and double majoring in psych. Anyone else done this or do you think it will be beneficial in working as a psych nurse? I figure it can't hurt, but is that possibly going to be an extra selling point in the job market once I get there?

    thanks
    •  
  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   CharlieRN
    I'd hire you. But I would really prefer psych nurses that have some medsurg or emergency medicine experience. The Psych care environment is lousy with people with psych degrees. Someone with a general medical background is rare and valuable. Such a nurse may easily have a clearer idea of medical issues than the Psychiatrist in charge of the patient's care.
  4. by   normj
    Quote from CharlieRN
    I'd hire you. But I would really prefer psych nurses that have some medsurg or emergency medicine experience. The Psych care environment is lousy with people with psych degrees. Someone with a general medical background is rare and valuable. Such a nurse may easily have a clearer idea of medical issues than the Psychiatrist in charge of the patient's care.
    Ditto. I had only 6 months of med-surg before i went into psych, and i am regarded as the unit 'expert' on medical stuff, often fielding questions from nurses with 25+ years experience in psych who have no recent med experience. Plus, people with MA's in psychology or education are a dime a dozen in most markets (not to denigrate them, it's just reality), so they are cheap to hire ... that's why they frequently resent us nurses with much lower education (in terms of time spent in school) who make much more money.

    I'd do more med-surg before going to psych if i had it to do again. I catch our docs doing dumb moves (e.g. too much insulin) all the time.
  5. by   Thunderwolf
    Totally agree with getting your feet wet first in med/medsurg.
  6. by   PRNMEDS
    I have a BA in Psychology, then went back for my degree in nursing. I think it is helpful to have the Psych Degree for a few reasons. For one it gives you a better understanding of the different disorders that your patients have. Also gives you a better background on developmental theories (ie Erickson, Freud, etc.) if you end up working with children or Adolescents (my nursing school only gave an overview of this, in Psych learned a lot more). Finally when going for a job as a psych nure - how could it hurt to have a psych degree?

    With regards to everyone saying get some med-surge experience, I think that is basicaly good advice (though I personaly believe overated), but is mutualy exclusive from getting a psych degree (along with your RN). You can get both degrees, then work in med-surge for 6 -12 months. Good luck.
  7. by   shock-me-sane
    awesome! thank you all for the advice. i will shoot for med-surg first and then jump headfirst into psych.

close