KellNY - I appreciate that you think it's a crazy thought. I don't see that you needed to be so harsh in your critique. I see your reasons for opposing the idea. I'm just tossing thoughts out there as I try to make sense of nursing education and nursing as a profession.
So why did I bring up this particular thought? Because outside of nursing and even within nursing, people don't know what a BSN provides beyond RN training.
Is is management training that differentiates BSN from RN programs? My BSN program didn't teach it. We did have a course in ethical and legal issue in nursing that touched on things like delegation. From my perspective, BSNs are preferred in management not because they had special training in it, but that the bachelor's degree usually requires practicing thinking from a wider perspective than just immediate circumstances. I think most bachelor's degrees give practice in this.
Is it "critical thinking" that makes the difference bewteen BSN and RN? Does that mean RNs don't learn and use critical thinking? I think not. RNs DO use critical thinking in regard to patient care. The bachelor's degree, as noted above, gives practice in another realm of critical thinking - such as on an organizational and societal level.
Is it learning about research? In my program, yes. We specifically had 2 courses in relation to this. We also had the opportunity to work directly with nurse researchers as an elective if we desired.
Is it the extra training in public health? In my program, yes. We had a course in epidemiology and a public health nursing course and rotation. I don't know if this is standard in all BSN programs. If so, that right there is a good chunk of the difference in RN and BSN training.
Is it the "mind-broadening" experience of a bachelor's degree? Yes. My program included 4 upper division electives you could choose in related fields such as medical sociology and developmental psychology. There were also all of the gen ed requirements of the university such as lower division humanities (history, anthropology), social sciences (sociology, psychology) and physical sciences (astronomy, physics) etc. This benefit of a college education comes with any bachelor's degree.
My BSN program was a 2 yr program at a state university. We took all the pre-reqs and lower division coursework before applying formally to the nursing program
. So it was 2 years for all RN training AND other BSN/bachelor's coursework. Let me reiterate - TWO YEARS for *ALL* RN training AND public health and nursing research and upper division electives.
I think instead of "BSN-only" for certain jobs, there should be someway to earn the equivalent of BSN without having to earn another bachelor's degree if one already has one. Some accelerated programs do this. And there are RN-BSN programs that try to accomodate this. But it's a patchwork of different solutions for those who have a bachelor's degree in another field to earn a BSN. If one already has a bachelor's degree, the RN course required and the *BSN* coursework required should be clear. RN coursework being nursing care and rotations and nursing issues. *BSN* coursework being nursing research, public health, and whatever else that is supposed to cover. Maybe "BSN-equivalency" certfication. Wherein if someone has a bachelor's degree and an RN, they just have to take nursing research, public health, etc but not actually have to earn a second bachelor's degree.