RN-BSN vs RN-MSN

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    I graduated from a community college program 2 years ago and have been working as a RN since. I recently decided to go back to school and continue towards my goal of becoming a NP. As I have been researching schools I see that there are a lot of programs now offering RN-MSN. I figure by doing this program I would save a significant amount of time and money.
    The one school that I seem to be leaning towards is Walden.
    Does anyone know of this school and have any insight on this program?
    Would there be any reason to continue on the traditional path RN-BSN-MSN that I may be overlooking...besides the fact that with Walden you do NOT gain a BSN along the way Therefore if you quit before finishing, you dont have anything to show for your effort.
    Thanks in advance.
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  3. 8 Comments so far...

  4. 2
    Walden is one of the new for-profit "universities", which have spotty records as related to recruitment tactics, billing, and pass/fail ratios. I have no specific knowledge of Walden, but I'd be very wary of any of these McUniversities. Are there no state or other local not-for-profit schools for you to consider?
    Not_A_Hat_Person and kabfighter like this.
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    I personally decided to do my RN-BSN instead of directly going RN-MSN because I wanted to be as marketable as possible while deciding which NP program I want to go with. In my area, most hospitals are going towards BSN preferred, so I'd like to have my options as wide open as possible.
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    Yeah you should shop around, and some NP programs may require the BSN, so look carefully at the requirements. I also know someone who went to one of these for profit schoosl (graceland) and she owes $100,000 in loans. My NP program only was about $10,000 but I used my GI bill.
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    While some MSN-NP programs require the BSN, some do not, although those will require boith a baccalaurate of some sort and a number of bridge classes for the MSN. There are very few colleges that I'm aware of that offer the MSN that do not also require a baccalaureate as a prerequisite. As you note, one big drawback is that if for some reason you cannot complete the program, you would have essentially wasted a considerable amount of both time an money. I do not know much about Walden however, as one poster has already pointed out, it is one of number of for-profit schools with lackluster records and very high tuition.

    My advice is to be very careful about borrowing for education in general and even more so in the case of for-profits. Educational debt is very difficult - nearly impossible in fact - to have discharged if you run into difficulty. There are thousands of stories of students at these schools who have run up large debts and then had to drop out. Of course, this also happens at traditional brick-and-mortar schools but seems to more common at for-profits. Transferring credits from these schools is often also a problem.

    An RN-BSN program at any number of fully accredited schools will be less than 10 grand and would be my suggestion as a start.
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    I have a non nursing BS from 2001. I went back to CC for my ADN. I have been working over a year as an RN. I actually applied to RN-MSN at a local University. My GPA is 2.75 from non nursing courses calculated over 10 years ago. So I have less options. I did not get accepted directly into the MSN. I need to complete 3 courses and be evaluated based on success of those classes before I can enter the MSN courses. So far I have a 4.0 so its working out. However, I will prob complete these courses over the next two years. Then apply to a few more programs since the ones avail are MSN in management , community health, and education. I would prob want education and then get a DNP or another MSN in my specialty field as an NP. It will be a long journey but I feel that once you get your MSN you are specialized in a field. As an RN I can experience a variety of jobs. I work in peds in home health, I work on skilled floors in geriatrics and volunteer as a school nurse. I like maternity, wound care, peds, critical care, and I'd like to try the OR. Once I have an MSN degree, I will be settled. So I am taking my time and enjoying my life with my kids as well as continuing my education. Its not for everyone, true. but this really is the way I am going. Good luck. Also be careful of certain schools. If they want you more than you can believe it might have a catch. Ask questions like, does my state accept their accreditation for me to sit for exams strait out of graduation ? and do they give you a practicum or is that your job to find one? Make sure the price is reasonable. Schools that require less to get accepted usually give you less but cost more. Be careful, good luck.
    lindarn likes this.
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    I saw your post and was wodering about MSN and NP? Does your MSN come before you go for your NP. I have my BSN and took some Mastes classes but haven't been in school in 3 years. Now there are so many programs I don't know how to choose. I would like to be a bedside nurse-like a hospitalist in my hospital-do I need my MSN or NP? Any help is much appreciated.
  10. 0
    I am debating with myself what track is better Adn to BSn or ADN to MSN?Also,are there any universities that offer ADN to MSN program with awarded BSN at the end ?
  11. 0
    Check out Western Governors University. I am almost finished with my MSN. I went ADN-MSN awarded BSN in the middle now it's awarded at the end of the MSN program


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