Associate vs. Baccalaureate degrees in Nursing

Nursing Students ADN/BSN


We are interested in discussing the differences between Registered Nurses with Associate degrees in nursing (ADN) and those with baccalaureate degrees in Nursing (BSN).

Some individuals believe that ADN prepared nurses have had more clinical experience throughout their schooling, leading to increased skills proficiency. On the other hand, many BSN programs tend to stress community health, research, leadership and management, as well as theory based practice.

What do you believe the differences are (education and workplace) between an ADN degree and a BSN degree? If you have your ADN, whould you consider returning to school to obtain your BSN? If so, why? What were the motivating factors in your choice of selecting an ADN or BSN program? We are looking forward to your input!

For those of you in countries other than the United States, let us know how nursing education is structured in your country of residence. Are there different educational routes to becoming a nurse? How many years are your nursing programs? Etc...

Having just finished getting the equivalent of a bachelors in nursing after practing for 10 years on an ADN I feel I can offer some comments on the two. I didn't find that the BS work gave me much to add to my current job as a staff nurse in a hospital, and my employer doesn't at all acknowledge any difference between the two degrees. What it did give me was some preparation for the graduate work I am now doing (my work experience has given me far more though). Also having been a preceptor for numerous ADN students vs working along side BSN students, I feel the ADN students skills are just as good as the BSN ones and success depends more on the individual instead of the program they are in.

Erin - thanks for your response. You mentioned that your current employer does not recognize the difference between the two degrees (ADN vs. BSN). Do you think employers should recognize the difference? If so, should there be differential pay? What other suggestions do you have for recognizing the differences? As an ADN graduate, did you have the oppotunity to advance into leadership and management positions? What was your reasoning for obtaining your BSN?

Do you think employers should encourage employees to have a BSN degree rather than an ADN? Why or why not? We would appreciate your input!

My name is María Dolores Rodríguez. I am from Motril, Spain but I am

studying first of "Enfermería" in Ceuta, Spain. To become a nurse you have to

pass three years of college in which you study and are practicing at the

same time, since the the first year.

In Spain there are two plans of Enfermería, the "old one" is the one

Ceuta has. The difference is that in the new plan there are more

subjects and it is based on credits. Tha doesn't mean it is more

difficult. The old plan has eight subject per year but they condense all

the material. And could maybe be hardest. And the new one has 16 a year

but they are divided into periods of for month. So you take eight the

first four months and the rest in the other. I you don't pass one of

them you have to wait until September to take a new exam. I hope I have answered your question.


Thank you for your response. After graduating the program in which you are now enrolled, what type of degree will you have? What subjects are included in el programa de enfermeria? Do you find the program very challenging? How many hours per week is spent "practicing" in a hospital setting? Are there settings other than hospitals? In your program, do you take other classes along with nursing classes? What are the clinical limitations as a student nurse in the hospital setting? For example, as students, we are not allowed to give IV push medications or hang blood. We value your input! Thank you!

Specializes in Trauma.

Where are you from and why have you posted 8 threads on this particular subject? Just curious, as it seems a tad odd.

Your other threads have numerous replies.

Specializes in Med/Surg <1; Epic Certified <1.
Where are you from and why have you posted 8 threads on this particular subject? Just curious, as it seems a tad odd.

Your other threads have numerous replies.


I feel like we're fodder for a research or USA Today article?!?! Kind of creepy, especially as I understand this is always kind of a hot topic around here....

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

whoa! dudes! this is an old, old thread. how on god's green earth did you find and resurrect this?

in the philippines, there is no such thing as ADN. all nurses must have a BSN.. and you cannot work on a hospital without any bachelors degree at all..

Specializes in Education, FP, LNC, Forensics, ED, OB.

Thread almost 10 years old.

To discuss similar topic, please start another thread.

+ Add a Comment