Associates RN vs BSN

  1. Is there a huge difference in salary, or marketability, or ability to land a job versus the two? I already hold a BS in communications, so after my prereqs would it be a better idea to just get an associates and start working, or to go all the way through and get another bachelors? Very much looking forward to hearing different opinions and experiences with this.
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    Joined: Jul '11; Posts: 19; Likes: 2


  3. by   mamaxmaria
    Here in NJ it is very hard to find a job in a hospital with an associates. If you already have a Bachelors I suggest looking into RN programs at 4 year colleges. If you already hold a bachelors you might be able to obtain you BSN in 2 years...instead of doing the 2 years for your associates.

    I'm sure in most places there is a difference in pay.... but not in my hospital... all nurses are paid the same no matter what degree or specialty.

    Go for your BSN
  4. by   StrwbryblndRN
    Right now no new grad is looking good at getting a job.
    Otherwise, where I am at, ADN lands a job the same as BSN with little difference in pay.
    Just like Mamaxmaria said it may not take you long to get your BSN vs ADN.
    BSN takes you further in a place of employment too. i.e. management.
    If the cost of BSN does not daunt you go for it. That was my major reason for going for ADN instead of BSN. I had small kids and a very small budget and did not want alot of student loans.
  5. by   NurseLoveJoy88
    Do a search here on AN, you will find this topic discussed many times. You may find the answers you are looking for. Good luck.
  6. by   ckh23
    From more recent posts it seems hospitals are more interested in hiring nurses with a BSN. However I really think it depends on the area of the country you live in. A lot of new grads are having problems finding jobs regardless of their degree.

    If you already have a BS, I would look into nursing programs that have accelerated BSN programs.

    The pay scale is not much different. Most facility's pay is based on years of experience, but not all.
  7. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from NurseLoveJoy88
    Do a search here on AN, you will find this topic discussed many times. You may find the answers you are looking for. Good luck.
    yep, we even have a forum re this very issue, bsn vs adn, diploma nsg.

    in your case, i would undoubtedly get your bsn.
    these days, it's transitioning as the minimum entry into nsg.
    shouldn't even be a consideration.
    the time it'd take you to get your associates, you could have your bsn already.

  8. by   ImThatGuy
    It seems like the BSN is a better fit for a career-growth type of position. However, if you're just in a hurry to start working the ADN would probably serve you better. You could then work while doing the RN-BSN from a "real" online school. That was actually my plan, but the ADN program will full up and the "generic" BSN program wasn't so I got into the BSN. I have a science degree, myself, so I had all the prereqs. Either way, I would've had to put in two years just to sit for the licensure test, but the ADN program would've required less classes thus less work on my part (plus cheaper) while I'm in school and already working two other jobs. I don't mind now though. I won't have to do any extra stuff later. I'll just have the BSN. Interestingly, a couple of people that had started off a semester into the ADN program, then quit to get into the BSN program say our program is more student-oriented. Even though there are some higher academic demands they say the faculty is more helpful and more geared towards preparing them/us for career roles. The way they talk the ADN program was just a funnel; push people through as fast as you can with no regard for learning.
  9. by   SNIXRN
    Having an RN license isn't good enough (whether it's an Associates or BSN). It the other things you do to stand out.

    I have my associates. Landed an extremely competitive position at a hospital (even on day shift) - but I volunteered at the hospital for over two years, I also volunteered considerably in the community.
  10. by   nurseprnRN
    take your bs/ba and apply to a bachelor's-in-anything-to-mn program, or at very least an accelerated bsn program. don't waste your time on an associate's degree. it really won't save you much in the infinite scheme of things, and it will actually delay things in some ways. you think nursing school is hard (or will)? try doing it while you're actually working as a nurse. waaaay harder. go read the thread.
  11. by   mika_sf
    IMHO I don't think it has to be an either or decision. I am currently in an ADN RN program, and if there are no jobs when I finish, I will just do a 1 year bridge program to a BSN. That way, I'll either be working and getting experience under my belt (which is really the key to getting the job you want) or I'll be getting my BSN in 3 years rather than 4.
  12. by   bsnanat2
    I originally planned to get my ASN, but after meeting with an advisor, I decided on the BSN route. When you compare the time for prereqs and the actual program, why not get the BSN? My school currently offers both programs and will eventually fade out the ASN. Even in this economy, all the BSN grads from my class had jobs within 2 mos and many of the ASN students are still looking. I know they are good nurses because the program is difficult, but the recruiters were looking past academics and NCLEX. In the application process, several of the local hospitals asked for essays (APA format & on subject), evidence of research and community awareness/involvement with NO portfolios allowed. For those who made it passed this portion and were invited to interview, they asked situational questions and wanted to know "why" something was the right answer. My point is that most BSN programs provide you with community health opportunities, plenty of research and writing and more instruction in "why" an intervention is the correct one in a certain situation. Ready or not, the BSN is becoming the default degree of entry. In a few years the only places that won't expect you to have a BSN are areas that don't have any BSN programs - and I guarantee you they will expect you to get one (RN-BSN).
  13. by   Robublind
    In SoCal alot of the hospitals here won't even look at you unless you have either experience or a BSN. If you can get into a BSN program, do it. I would not be in a hurry to get out of school. The job market is pretty crappy now.

    Saying all that, New grads from ADN programs do get hired but you need to stand out from the pack. Some of the things you need to do is: ACLS,PALS, ECG and hospital experience.

    If I was just entering nursing school I would do a 3 year BSN program (the first year is general ed and prereqs). At the same time, I would look to get either a CNA job or be unit secretary while you are in school. Hospitals want to hire people they know and people who know how their hospital works. Half of the train they put nurses through is how to computer chart, what forms you need to fill out and policies and procedures.

    For the Accelerated program: I don't think you can learn to be a nurse in that short of time. My brain can only handle that must information in such a short time.
  14. by   michele742
    Honestly, in terms of pay, it won't matter starting out. However, with an ADN you cannot move up, you have to have that BSN if you want to further your career in nursing. Also, I have heard that many hospitals are wanting their nurses to have a BSN or get it if they don't have it already.

    Having said that, I am going into the ADN program first...then doing a bridge to BSN. Why? Because my husband is a professor and it's free...plain and simple (I would be a complete airhead if I didn't take advantage of that). They don't have a 4 yr nursing program but they do have a bridge option (which I will also take advantage of once I get that ADN).

    Also ADN costs are less and at the school I will be attending the program takes exactly 16 months to complete. Make sure that while your in the ADN program that you are networking. I cannot tell you how important that is in the working world in general. A lot of times it's not 'what' you know it's 'who' you know, even if that is unfair it's the absolute truth.

    Even so, if you have the means and time to do the BSN then that is your best bet if you want to move up in your career. If a department head has the opportunity to hire a nurse with a BSN or a nurse with an ADN, unless you know someone or have connections or stand out in some positive way, the BSN will win out every time.