Associates degree vs. Bachelors - page 2

by RNntraining 4,431 Views | 18 Comments

I was just wondering if anyone could clarify wether there's actually a significant difference if one opts for an associates degree program rather than a bachelors degree program. Most would say time is the first difference but i... Read More


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    Yes, there is generally no difference in pay between the BSN and ADN, but think of your future. You may be (and I hope you will be) estatically happy being a bedside nurse, but the day may come when you want the opportunity to do other things in nursing-research, case management, nurse practitioner, etc, etc, etc....

    Getting your BSN now will make it easier for you to change gears later.

    I, with a small group of over 40 "senior citizens", just finished a BSN completion program for that very reason-we have been happy at the bedside, but we all wanted an opportunity to move into areas of nursing that would be easier on our aging feet and knees.

    Upward mobility in nursing is possible without the degree, but generally requires being in the right place at the right time, or knowing the right contacts.

    There is no guarantee, but getting your BSN now may well make things better for you down the road.
    Last edit by spineCNOR on Sep 13, '02
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    Hey there! Don't worry about asking that question. It is a perfectly good one and if it makes others upset or annoyed well why does it?

    I am a recent BSN grad. At the end of the road, an RN is an RN is an RN. Neither is better. However, there is a ton of talk that upsets people saying that in order to "raise the bar for nursing" a BSN should be entry level. This is what upsets people. While I am not saying that a BSN will make a better nurse, bc it will not. It does make sense that requiring a bachelor's degree will improve nursing overall. Other professions out there do the same thing. We as nurses seem for some reason to be very slow and reluctant when it comes to change.

    I personally did start off slightly higher salary wise than fellow ADN grads. It varies state to state, facility to facility. For you, it seems that if it is going to take just as long to get your BSN as your ADN, why not just go for the BSN? This way if you ever decide to go back for your master's, it will be easier!

    The only difference in the program to me from talking to others, so please, I am not claiming to be an expert and I am trying to choose my words carefully bc I do not want to offend anyone!!!!! The only difference b/n the two programs is that the BSN programs have Research and Leadership and Management classess. Both require similiar prereq classes. Both cover basically all of the same nursing theory, clinical, etc.

    Do I think the extra classes were beneficial to me? ABSOLUTELY!!! Not that I couldn't make it w/o them. But these classes gave me the chance to understand research and evidenced based practice and question more of the why this and that rather than just doing this and that. The leadership class we spent a semester shadowing a nurse manager and also taking turns being charge nurse for our clinical groups. It really helped us put ourselves in their shoes and understand what they do.

    I will repeat myself though. An RN is an RN no matter what degree behind it.
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    congrats spineCNOR on your accomplishment and thank you new ccu rn. I've always told myself that I'd at least have my bachelors degree, and when I found out that there wasn't a huge difference between the two I considered just going for the associates program since it's more affordable. But then it will actually end up being more costly for me to complete my adn and then when i decide to complete my bsn i'll still end up forking out the mula$. thanks again for your help
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    There are many good, bad, and ugly discussions on this topic. May I just add something from a different perspective?

    Many of my coworkers talk about the terrible school loans they have to pay off from going to a university and getting their BSN. Thosuands of dollars, $300-400 per month payments for some of them. Our BSN differential is a mere 5%, which comes out to not even $100 extra per month.

    Point being, several of the girls at work wish they had gotten an ADN, which would have been quicker and cheaper... then gone back for a BSN later when they are more financially stable (because then they would be working as a nurse and not a cashier or whatever). Something to consider if money or time is an issue (and when is it not).
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    I do not know exactly what the difference is. But I do have some insight. I have a best friend that that is getting an Associates while I am obtaining my Bachelor's. We are stressing the same and she has just as much to do as I. The only difference that I see is that right now I am getting more hands on experience in labs. There is also more opportunity for leadership. In the end where the difference will stand is not whether we are just licensed RN's but what did we actively do while obtaining the degree. It also depends on what you want your future to be. I want to be a nurse practitioner so I will need to obtain an advanced degree and getting my BSN will get me one step further.
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    I agree with Kristi, ADN programs are cheaper and you can get your BSN while you work as a RN. Also, in the area I went to school the hospitals here paid for you to continue your education. Good luck with your decision.
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    originally posted by rnntraining
    i was just wondering if anyone could clarify wether there's actually a significant difference if one opts for an associates degree program rather than a bachelors degree program. most would say time is the first difference but i found that to be false at least in my area. at the community college here, it's called a two year program since it's a two year school, but in all actuality before you can even apply for the program you have to have at least a year to year and a half of prereqs. out of the way. so it ends up taking just as long at the univ. then i've heard that there isn't a pay difference between the two degrees. the difference is apparent when it comes time for promotions. t or f? any help would be appreciated
    imo the best advice anyone can give, is for you to do what is best for you.

    in my case, i kinda ended up going for my childhood dream because hubbies job moved us. i didn't like the job opportunities or offers available in my area. so, at the ripe old age of 40 enrolled in college for the first time in my life, and to tell you the truth i just wasn't sure i could do it :imbar it turned out there is a cc about 2 miles from my house and after doing some research i found it would take me 3 years to do the adn program at at total cost of around $8,000. (as opposed to upwards of $20,000 at the 4 year schools) it was my choice to take the support classes during the first year, we have anywhere between 5-10 students per year that do the program in 2 years. (many students spread out the first 2 years of the bsn to 3 or 4 years, depending on their circumstances) i also did some checking around and found the largest new grad pay difference to be $1/hr so figured it would take me about $12 years to make up the difference. so the cc route was the one for me. i will probably continue for the bsn via distance learning once i am working and possibly go for my masters so i can teach nursing at some point in time.:hatparty: as far as the bsn being required, that has been tossed around for 25 years.

    good luck in whatever you decide and remember whichever way you go, you will still end up a
  8. 0
    Originally posted by New CCU RN
    Hey there! Don't worry about asking that question. It is a perfectly good one and if it makes others upset or annoyed well why does it?
    It is a legitimate question, and it doesn't upset or annoy us at all! We've just been here a little longer than you and have seen this question, and the drama that follows it, a few times before. We're just waiting patiently under the chair for when the mud starts flying around......

    Heather
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    Thank you for your replies everyone My fiance's job has forced him to live in a small town about two hours south of Tucson, AZ. So if I get my ADN here and we get hitched, when I pursue my BSN later I'd like to be able to do it either online or once a week. Is this possible or is it the same intense full schedule routine as the two years you're running around at clinicals and practically living on campus?


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