Adult NP waste of time?!?!


I applied to USA's adult/gero NP program and while I have not heard a definite answer I did call the school today and so far I'm not on the list of people who have had their applications declined. They also say "packages" should be going out by the end of next week.

So...I figure there is a fair shot I will hear something definite soon.

But I have read from someone who has been there that FNP is definitely a better way to go and not to waste time on the ANP. This makes my heart sink. I was excited, now I feel like all the wind has been let out of my sails.

Please humor me by giving some advice.

#1-Would it be that hard to upgrade to a FNP after the ANP? I ask because I was afraid I would not be competitive for the FNP because there are so many applicants (even though my grades are good and I have a lot of experience working with adult and geriatric patients I don't think I could compare with top students.)

#2-Can you change your course of study after you have been accepted into the school? This seems like a shoddy way to go about it, but I'm not very familiar with admission to graduate school and the process.

I just want to make a good decision. I don't want to be stuck with a degree I can't use.


661 Posts

Specializes in acute rehab, med surg, LTC, peds, home c. Has 16 years experience.

I work with an adult NP. She is fabulous and makes great money. We work at an inpatient rehab facility and she is the MDs "right hand man". An adult NP is definitely not useless. Beside the only difference between an adult and a family NP certification is about 6 credits worth of pediatrics. You can always go back and get it. good luck.

Advanced Practice Columnist / Guide

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

9 Articles; 4,338 Posts

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care, General Cardiology. Has 31 years experience.

FNP does give you more options because of the ability to see patients of all age groups. In the primary care arena, the FNP would be qualified to provide care in family practice, internal medicine, pediatric, geriatric, and women's health settings. This proves that there is definitely more options if you have the broad-based training the FNP offers.

However, it doesn't mean that ANP's are useless. Remember that physicians in Internal Medicine practices only see adults and some adolescents. These kinds of practices are ideal for someone trained as an ANP. You also mentioned that you are doing a dual GNP/ANP. In my area of the country, many physician groups are constantly looking for NP's to round in long-term care facilities. If this is something you are interested in doing, then definitely seek out this type of practice and see if they are available where you live. The suggestion about rehab facilities is a good one. I worked in PM&R during my first year of being an NP in an acute rehab hospital that only admits adult patients and I was the only ACNP among the rest who all happen to be ANP's.

One of the keys to finding a job as an NP is to network early. You mentioned that you work with adults and the elderly. What kind of physicians do you get in contact with day in and day out. Could it be possible that they only treat adults and would be interested in adding a non-physician provider to their practice?

Finally, I would ask the director at U South Alabama on how easy it is to articulate to FNP after having finished your ANP. In some universities, it only takes a semester of additional credits in peds to complete the FNP component. In some, it can take longer than that. The key is to stay in the same university that will allow you to complete the FNP component in just one semester because if you take your ANP in one school and articulate to FNP in another, some of the previous courses you took may not carry over as easily. Some programs allow students to change tracks while in the program but others lock you in the specific NP track you were admitted to. I'm afraid U South Alabama might be one of those schools that lock you in the track. Again, you won't know all this information until you ask.

Specializes in Pediatric/Adolescent, Med-Surg.

You're the one going back to school, so I think you should devote your time and money into doing what you want. I personally, can't imagine working with anyone but pediatrics at this time, so I feel confident getting a PNP. I know I won't be as easily hirable as an FNP, but I will be more excited and into the classes I take as well as the patients I treat. Plus it would only take me a couple classes later on to be able to see adults.


2,438 Posts


USA's program is an Adult/Gero ACUTE CARE NP program. Not an ANP. Two different specialties. You need to decide if you want to provide primary care or acute care =)

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