CRNA Instruction

  1. Hi everybody. Don't know as I've seen this topic before, but am interested in knowing your opinions on best educational route to eventually teach or instruct in a CRNA program.

    I realize at this point there are probably several routes one can take; it would be great for any instructors on the board to weigh in with your opinions.

    Here's a couple of questions I had (some get back to the MSN vs MSX issue): Does anybody favor a "science" background over a nursing background (BS, MS, PhD in biology, physics, chemistry, etc)? How about an advanced degree in education? Does one even need a BSN? (I realize many, but not all, schools want a BSN for admission to their programs).

    It would seem as though there is room for more schools of nursing anesthesia, and therefore more opportunities to teach. Thanks for any input you have! - Doug
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    About Doug Cameron

    Joined: Apr '02; Posts: 29


  3. by   meandragonbrett
    I think the amount of CRNA schools will remain the same. This way the amount of CRNAs will be controled, and the demand for them will be high, which will keep the salary high. You mentioned a MSX, what's that? You must have a BSN to become a CRNA, and at most schools the instructors are usually have a PhD as well. I'm not trying to knock your intelligence or anything, but you seem to be a little confused on how you become a CRNA, if you are just let us know and we'll be more than happy to answer any questions you have about the profession. Kevin is one CRNA that I know of that's on the board, and he has helped out everyone on this board with his well thought out posts! Thanks again kevin for all the GREAT info.

  4. by   Doug Cameron
    Brett, my dear young friend....

    Thanks for your most interesting reply. Perhaps I can make it simpler for you.

    1) There is a market shortage for CRNA's (and other anesthesia personnel. Has been for a long time, and will likely be for a long time. Therefore, there is a market for both quality CRNA programs and for those who can instruct in those programs....whether you or I or anyone else wants the number of programs to remain the same. However, that has little to do with my original question...

    2) MSX.... X is a variable common to most of the sciences...mathematics, physics, chemistry....and I meant it as a variable as well, ie, a MS in NURSING (that's the MSN part ...) or an MS in a physical science (chemistry, biology, nursing anesthesia, etc....).
    You may remember, there have been a significant number of posts dealing with the issue of whether one should apply to CRNA programs which confer an MSN vs some type of MS or MSNA. My question therefore would be....if one is interested in eventually INSTRUCTING in a program, is one degree more desirable than another? Love to hear from some actual teachers on this one.

    3) Most CRNA instructors DO NOT have PhD's. Many do, but far from "most".....

    4) One does NOT need a BSN to enter CRNA school. Many schools DO require a BSN; however there is a significant number who will accept an RN with a science degree. Again, usually, but not always, those conferring an MSN want a BSN; those conferring an MS of another type will accept an RN with a science degree.

    5) I'm not trying to knock YOUR intelligence or anything...... but you may want to read the question twice before you answer - it certainly does cut down on the ..... confusion (also good advice for taking the GRE's............... ).
  5. by   TexasCRNA
    Doug, I think the easiest way to be able to teach CRNAs is to become one. My instructors at the program that I am attending all have their PHD in biology, chemistry or physics ( those that teach the sciences) and for my anesthesia courses they are taught by the MDs and other master level CRNAs. I do know that PHD science teachers a few and far between and they are always in need.
  6. by   meandragonbrett
    I'm not going to allow myself to reply to your post doug, i'm going to maintain a professional manner and not allow myself to act like the people that are on *those who know what i'm saying* (I know has nothing to do with this board)

  7. by   Doug Cameron
    Folks, guess I'm not making myself clear. Let's try a different tack. Assuming one was an RN currently making plans to attend a CRNA program, who eventually wanted to teach with a tertiary degree, would you advise them to stick with a MSN-granting program, the logical subsequent course being a PhD in Nursing, or would it be reasonable to pursue a non-MSN CRNA program, and subsequently a PhD in one of the sciences or even education? Or, perhaps, does it not matter in the least?
  8. by   Doug Cameron
    Also, to Brett - sorry you did not appreciate my post. I certainly did not mean to offend you. However, I must remind you that I posted a very reasonable question, and you called my intelligence into question. Not sure why you did that, but I guess I would have expected a strong response, if I were you. In any event, I'm not interested in flame wars either. If I have offended you, please forgive me.
  9. by   AL bug
    Hey Doug, I am in anesthesia school now, so I can only tell you the degrees my instructors have. I have only seen one person on this board who said he was an instructor at Southern Missouri, I think. We have three didactic instructors and they have MS in Nurse Anesthesia, MS in Human Resourses, and MS in Nursing. They all have strong clinical background. Personally, if I were taking the path to teach later, I would stick to the sciences. We have Anatomy&Phis., Chemistry, Physics, Pharmacology, etc. I think a program would look more fondly at a strong science background than nursing, but I am not in love with the nursing field either. I only got a BSN because it took a year less than a science degree, and I was in a hurry to get to CRNA school.
    Are you a nurse now or plan to go to CRNA school to become an instructor?
    In my advice to anyone who is planning on becoming a CRNA, whether you plan to teach or not, I would get ADN and BS in Biology, Chemistry, etc. I don't think the classes that I took for BSN had one thing to do with anesthesia and were annoying to have to take. I love the sciences and they are so much more pertinent to anesthesia. Hope this helps.
  10. by   AL bug
    By the way, none of them have a PhD, and the program has an excellent turnout and passing rate for boards.

    Another point: I applied to 5 schools and none of them required a BSN.

    The program I am in now offers Master of Health Care Administration. I think any program would say its degree has its benefits. I don't know why a MSN would be any more adventageous to you for teaching than another administration degree or some of the others that are offered. (I don't have to do any nursing research either )
  11. by   AL bug
    After reading my posts, I don't think they made a whole lot of sense. I think we have done a remarkable job of screwing up the intent of your question. I hope this clears up my former excuse for an answer. This is my final answer: Stick with the sciences for your MS, too. I would advise MSX or MS in some type of admin.
  12. by   meandragonbrett
    Why don't we just redo this whole thing? LoL. Yes, I didn't realize what I had said until I did and it was like D'OH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU IDIOT~~~~ Sorry for anything that offended you doug, that was NOT my intent

  13. by   Doug Cameron
    Thanks, bug, I found your posts most helpful; they made much sense. To answer your question, I have been an RN for over 20 years, an ADN with a BA in Classics (go figure) and an MEd. Sooo, looking at schools, I am more inclined to NOT pursue the MSN route, and stick with the MS route. I am a teacher at heart, however, and know whatever circumstances I wind up in, I will be most happy when I can teach - which is one of the reasons I am choosing to go back to CRNA school - great opportunities to teach. Not sure about other parts of the country, but here in New England (especially Boston), nurses can get quite snobby about their profession and the appropriate degrees one should have to be a "professional nurse". Unfortunately, one can have much education (even in the sciences) and experience and still be considered "second-rate" because they do not posess the glorious BSN (or MSN, etc.). Thanks again for the helpful posts.
  14. by   kmchugh

    Most CRNA programs do not even require a BSN to enter. An ADN, with a BS in another field is sufficient. Many CRNA programs do not grant "Master's of Nursing" degrees. My degree is a Master's of Science, Nurse Anesthesia. I didn't really know it at the time I applied to CRNA school, but given what I know now, I am glad that I got an MSNA rather than an MSN - A (Master of Science, Nursing - Anesthesia). The difference is subtle, and mostly involves taking a couple of additional classes in things like nursing theory and nursing history. Folks who know me know that I think most nursing theory is redundant at best, and in some cases (see Roger's theories) were developed and written at the height of a long period on LSD.

    To teach CRNA students (as I understand it) does not require a MSN. It requires a CRNA with a Master's degree. The program director where I went to school (Newman University) had diplomas in both nursing and nurse anesthesia. I don't really remember what his master's degree was in, but he had obtained a PhD in adult education. Dr Tony Chipas (the director) recognized a need for nurse anesthesia education located in Wichita, and set out to start a program. He first tried to affiliate that program with Wichita State University. Generally, they could not have started the program (I think) because that would have competed with a program at another regents school, Kansas University. However, as he tells it, when he approached the Nursing Department at WSU, he was told that he should stop working on his adult education PhD, and get his BACHELOR'S degree in nursing first! That's when he knew it was time to look elsewhere. When he approached Newman University, they essentially looked at his proposal, studied the feasibilty, and said "let's do it." To Tony's credit (and believe me, I think he deserves A LOT of credit), it took him two years from receiving the go ahead from NU, to becoming accredited and admitting his first class. That's fast.

    Bottom line? Some places will want you to have a BSN, MSN, and possibly a PhD in a nursing related discipline to teach. But, at most places I know, the director has either a MSNA or PhD, not necessarily in nursing, and must be a CRNA. Other instructors in related topics (physiology, anatomy, pathophys) have degrees in their related fields, but do not have to be CRNA's. The instructors who teach anesthesia, both didactic and clinical, are CRNA's. A large number of them are CRNA's with Master's degrees.

    Kevin McHugh

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