ADN or BSN...how much does it really matter?

  1. 0
    Hello everyone. I am not a nurse yet but rather applying to get in to a nursing program. My original plan was to just get my ADN, make contacts, and get a job upon graduation so I could start earning money sooner. Now I am worried I will have trouble getting a job without the BSN in this economy/job market. I am hoping to go into L&D, OB, PICU, NICU...you see the idea. I hope to go back for a BSN or RN-MS later on with the financial assistance of my employer. I'd appreciate any feedback from nurses who have taken different paths as well as those in charge of hiring.

    Thanks so much!

    Nikki
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  3. 31 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    It matters more now than it did 5 or 10 years ago.

    Will you still be able to find a job as a floor nurse with an ADN? Probably.

    However, you may not want to discount the possibility that you may not want to do floor nursing for your entire career.

    When I became a nurse, I just KNEW I wanted to just be a floor nurse. Five years later, I'm looking for work outside of the floor. And I'm finding that not having my BSN has closed a lot of doors for me.

    I think getting an ADN and then enrolling in an RN-BSN program is a great option for many people, but I would recommend to ANYONE that you go for your BSN, however you choose to do it.
    Jules A likes this.
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    It really depends on the market where you are. Around here there is only one major BSN program, so entry level positions are taken by ADNs and RNs. The facility I work at advertises "BSN preferred" so the BSN gets the edge.

    I would say that if the market is tight where you are and you have the time and means, go ahead and get your BSN now. It might help you get an entry level position, but it will also serve you well in the future as you age and want to get away from floor nursing and do other things.

    All the best.
  6. 0
    Thanks! What exactly do you mean by floor nurse? I assume you just mean working on the floor taking care of patients one on one?
  7. 0
    Quote from neyman
    Thanks! What exactly do you mean by floor nurse? I assume you just mean working on the floor taking care of patients one on one?

    Floor nursing is basically Med/Surg nursing. Anyone not in a specialty area such as ICU, ER, Post-op, step down, L&D, ect is considered a "floor nurse."
  8. 0
    The job postings I've been seeing around here don't specify BSN. They just require a year or two of experience. I am in the DC metro area and am 36 years old...if that helps direct any advice.
  9. 0
    At 36, I can understand the desire to get to work quickly, so the ADN might be a good option, and you can always get the BSN through a bridge program. Sometimes though with pre-reqs etc. BSN schools take only a year or less longer than ADN programs, but are more expensive depending on if you go to public schools.

    Maybe you can hone in on some locals in DC and ask the same question here: http://allnurses.com/washington-dc-nurses/
  10. 1
    Quote from ScottE
    Floor nursing is basically Med/Surg nursing. Anyone not in a specialty area such as ICU, ER, Post-op, step down, L&D, ect is considered a "floor nurse."
    Well, I work L&D and I still consider myself a "floor nurse". By "floor nurse" I meant working on a floor in a hospital (as opposed to case management, community health, nursing administration, etc).
    nursgirl likes this.
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    Thanks, I just posted over there as well. I was told it would take me a semester longer than the ADN but with the additional prereqs I need, the way the app deadline works, and the BSN program curriculum, I am looking at another year...assuming I get accepted on my first attempt. I should mention, I do have a BA in another field.
  12. 1
    Have you checked into "accellerated BSN" programs....they only take those with a bachelor's degree in another field and fast track to an RN in one year. But it's very intense. Just another of the dozens of things to think about.
    SummitRN likes this.


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