Best major before BSN/MSN program?

Nursing Students Post Graduate


Would it be more beneficial to have a BA is criminal justice or psychology before applying to a BSN/MSN program? I understand that all non-nursing majors are considered, but do certain bachelor degrees look better on applications? Does it really make a difference?

I cannot speak for all of the 750+ schools with BSN or MSN nursing programs in the country; I can only speak my own institution. One's college major has very little importance. What matters more is the underlying GPA, what is said in the letters of recommendation, the quality of writing in the essays, the grades in the prerequisite classes, one's professional work experience (post-graduation), as well as an applicant's prior experience in healthcare. We've enrolled a professional clown (who was a theatre major), a dolphin trainer (with a degree in marine biology), a statistician, many reformed lawyers, and dozens of bio or psych majors over the past few years.

Study what you love and have a passion for. Chances are strong that you will have better grades in the subject that you love.

I agree with the advice above. My major is in zero way related to nursing, and I'm headed to nursing school. I simply picked another field that interest me! All of the other factors play a much bigger role.

Thank you! This was very helpful :)

Specializes in Outpatient Psychiatry.

The college I got my BSN and RN training at didn't care at all that I had a BS degree already. In fact, I think a couple of the instructors resented it, but some of them were generally hateful women anyway. However, the fact that my previous degree covered every prereq needed for nursing classes, sans nutrition, didn't hurt me at all.

Follow your interests. You'll do better if you like what you're learning, and you won't look back later wishing you had studied (insert subject) more thoroughly.

Specializes in Emergency, Case Management, Informatics.

I'll echo what everyone else has said -- your previous degree subject doesn't matter a hill of beans, only the GPA and whether or not you've managed to knock out some of those pre-req's with it.

The only thing that I'd add in is that if you're truly interested in something like psych nursing, a psych degree wouldn't hurt. Criminal justice wouldn't really be all that useful, unless you're planning on going into forensic nursing. Even then, its usefulness would be questionable.

I may be reading too much into this, but it seems as though you don't have a degree yet, so the better question is: why bother getting a degree in another field if you're interested in nursing? You're going to spend a whole lot of time and money on something that you're not going to use. Again, unless it's something that you truly have a passion for, it's a waste to go for another undergrad degree. I would save that money and put it toward an additional Master's degree down the road, if you're still inclined to do so at that later time.

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