Choosing a second bachelor's degree



I am an RN that has recently obtained my associates degree in nursing. I am currently working on my bachelors degree and I was thinking of double majoring. I wanted to know if you all could give me some feedback on good choices for a second major for different types of nursing out there. I have not worked in a hospital setting, so I don't know some of the degrees that will "help" when applying for different positions...

An example would be a major of psychology for psychiatric nursing...

I am open minded to all fields, just need a little help. Thanks!


245 Posts

This is overly ambitious and I'm not completely sure it's necessary, but kudos for going for it. I think a B.S. (not B.A) in psych would come in handy in every nursing field. At my university, I received a minor in NPB (neurology, physio, and behavior). I don't know how this will help me with patients, but it was really interesting. Maybe a BA in business or economics could help with a management position. I know a RN with a MBA, she works with accounting and is a nurse recruiter. In any case, good luck!

Here is a list of interesting (in my opinion) minors that are offered where I hope to continue my BScN: disability studies, ASL, occupational health and safety, criminal justice, organizational leadership, child and youth services.


150 Posts

I would recommend a second in Bio if you can pull the weight. But of course, it all depends on what your interests are and any second degree will be an asset both in appearance and by adding intellectual diversity.


26 Posts

Spanish! It is super useful. And will give you more of an edge in job applications than psychology (IMHO). The nurse managers will practically salivate over you. :redbeathe

[P.S. All, please do NOT reply to this post saying patients should learn English. :mad:]

I would recommend a second in Bio if you can pull the weight. But of course, it all depends on what your interests are and any second degree will be an asset both in appearance and by adding intellectual diversity.

I completely agree with this. Tough as it may be, it sounds like a good idea if she's that motivated.:yeah: Another comment suggested Spanish. I think a foreign language would definitely look great on an application, but I wouldn't major/minor in it. I would purchase Rosetta Stone. :lol2:


150 Posts

Definitely! RS works if you do. Besides your bachelor's should require at least two years of foreign language. At the end of that, functional practice will move you towards fluency-a foreign language minor isn't much more work either.

Specializes in ED, ICU, MS/MT, PCU, CM, House Sup, Frontline mgr. Has 15 years experience.

op: i do not know if the above are actually nurses yet…. so i will chime in.... a bsn is all you need at the bachelor’s level in applying to various positions. speaking from experience, no one cares about degrees outside of nursing for nursing positions. for example, there are plenty of us with second ba/bss because we are career changers and i have not had any job care about my bachelors degree other than my bsn. on the other hand, if you wish to get a second one then do so in anything you enjoy.

in addition, a master’s degree will help you receive various positions away from the bedside. an mba/msn combo or either or depending on your area of the country (some areas only want msns in upper management while others will accept an mba alone...) will help you to land a management position. however, an education alone will not be the deciding factor. there are plenty of bedside nurses with masters degrees who have little chance of leaving the bedside for management even if he/she wishes!!! be sure to have connections along with the kind of work experience that proves leadership to assist you in a rise up the food chain in your career. gl!

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 46 years experience.

I agree totally with MBARNBSN. But I wanted to add a few more thoughts.

What type of things interest you? That's what should be driving your 2nd major because if you have a true interest in something, your life and your career may develop in that direction. Don't choose a 2nd major major because you think it is the "right" one for nursing. There is no "right" or "best" one for nursing. If you have the opportunity and interest in getting a 2nd major, get it in a feel that matches with your inner interests. That inner interest and motivation will be what you find yourself gravitating towards 5, 10, 20 years from now -- and your study now will be a credential that may be able to help you when your natural interests start to lead you in a given direction.

For example: If you have a genuine interest in caring for children, then get a degree in something related to children -- child development, recreation, etc. If you have a genuine interest in politics, get a degree in political science, public policy, etc. Whatever ... because as you go through life, the best career path for you will be one lead by your inner interests -- and study in that area will help you along the way.

I wish I had studied history as a 2nd field at some point. Then I would be able to explore nursing history and the history of issues in nursing that interest me in a more scholarly way. I would have the skills to use historical methods to understand things more deeply. I also wish I had studied more philosophy ... and art ... and sociology ... and adult education. Each field (and many more) would give me tools to help me be a better nurse.

Which fields interest you the most at this time of your life?