ADN-RN program before BSN or just BSN?

Posted
by lightshesaid lightshesaid (New) New

Hello everyone!

I am a pre-nursing student. While researching programs, I started to wonder what was better: getting a BSN outright, first, or getting an ASN/ADN first and passing the NCLEX then doing an RN-BSN program.

I have been planning on doing the latter but I have every intention of getting my BSN because of the specialty I am interested in, so should I just do my BSN outright?

I thought that I could start working to amount more clinical experience while doing my RN-BSN program, but I know that a ton of places aren't even seeing people without a BSN.

Everyone always has such great points on this site so I thought I'd ask. :)

Background: I am a pre-nursing student in the greater LA/Inland Empire and do not already have a degree in another field.

barcode120x, ADN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Telemetry. Has 6 years experience.

I thought that I could start working to amount more clinical experience while doing my RN-BSN program, but I know that a ton of places aren't even seeing people without a BSN.

Not quite true and I believe that is a misconception many pre-nursing students have about the job field with an ADN vs BSN. It depends on how saturated your area is in terms of new grads and how well your resume (basically your background info) stands out versus any other new grad and that's what gets you the job (as well as networking). Maybe in the far future it'll come to the point where BSN is required, but hospitals won't discriminate based on degree (except if you are applying for a magnet hospital) right now.

ADN route is generally cheaper, but CAN take more time since ADN programs are impacted, but if you get top notch grades and score high on college's "multi-criteria screening," you could potentially get in quickly. I've heard from both instructors are nurses that they like ADN students because ADN programs tend to focus more on clinical practice and hands-on stuff, where as the BSN does that too, but not to the same extent due to focusing more on research and papers. Getting an ADN can also allow to start working to save up money for your BSN route.

BSN is expensive, of course. If you in a rush and can pull out loans or have the money to start, get an accelerated BSN program and/or private university is where you should go. Again, it depends on your situation. As mentioned earlier, BSN tends to focus more on research and paperwork, but you still have clinical practice. Also, a BSN can open up your job field a lot more than ADN, especially if you don't plan on working bedside.

I am from the Inland Empire area as well and I do not know of many hospitals that "aren't even seeing people without a BSN" unless it's a magnet hospital, which there are none in this area haha. I would recommend the ADN route if you are in a stable situation then do the RN-BSN route. That's what I am doing right now! Well, I've been putting off my BSN but it will happen! Lol.

Short answer: look at job postings. Do they say BSN preferred or BSN required?

Not quite true and I believe that is a misconception many pre-nursing students have about the job field with an ADN vs BSN.

That just flies in the face of everything I have heard about California and the San Francisco and LA areas specifically. Rural California? That's a different story. But highly populated cities in California have a reputation for requiring BSNs.

I go back and fourth as while with the same decision... I'm open to either one. I think it depends on where your at in life as while (finance wise). An ASN is really attractive to me because its less money to obtain versus a bachelors. And the thought of getting hired at a facility that will pay for bridge program is more ideal. I'm personally really scared of student debt.

If this is your first degree and you have the time and money right now to get your BSN, you should go for it, especially if that is your goal later on anyways. If ASN/ADN is a better fit, then stick to it. I can agree with the others and say that I haven't seen a ton of hospitals that require BSN's only but then again I am on the East Coast. Check the hospitals you want to work at and see what the education requirements are for a job you want. There are a ton of options for ADN's. I myself am a pre-nursing student for an ADN degree and it works great. I can get my BSN later if I want or do a RN to MSN degree. It's all about your situation and what fits you best.