BSN to MSN without RN experience?

Specialties NP


I am currently an undergraduate pursuing my BSN degree. I was told that starting in 2015 all NP will have to get their doctorate, as opposed to just their masters. I know I want to become a NP but do not graduate with my BSN until 2012. For this reason, I was thinking about applying to a masters program right after I graduate. I intend on working full time and going to school full time (ideally). However, I was reading another forum that said some nurses who have their masters can't get a NP position and are have to gain experience as a RN first (even though they have their masters). If I work while getting my masters could I find a NP job or will I most likely still need more experience as a RN?

I have also looked into many MSN programs - some require a minimum work experience upon acceptance and some do not- so I know that getting into a program without experience will not be an issue.

Any insight on this topic would be greatly appreciated

The majority of PAs do have significant health care experience prior to starting PA school. The profession was founded on being a 2nd health care career. Sadly, the focus is becoming more and more on having less experience the same way there are becoming more and more direct entry NP programs.

Luckily, PA programs give you triple the clinical hours of NP programs to compensate a little bit for the increasing lack of previous quality health care experience. Yes, NP programs are focused while PA programs are not, but most PA students have a fair amount of clinical hours and can choose to "focus" and can get 600+ hours in a focused area.. the same as a typical MSN program.

Additionally, PA programs also have more didactic hours.

Specializes in SICU.
I don't think experience as an RN should be required for someone to attend an NP program. If the program is set up correctly one should learn what they need to practice in the program. Physicians do not need medical experience to apply to an MD program! Yet they practice medicine upon graduation.


MD's do not practice medicine upon graduation by themselves. They have years of residency under the supervision of Attendings before being allowed out on their own.

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