absn or rn?

  1. Hi all, I am thinking of becoming a nurse. First, I just want to say I am very happy to have found this site because it has shown all the negative sides of nursing that I didn't know about and is making me think very carefully before I start any programs.

    My question is about the best way to become a nurse. I have a B.A. in Spanish and so far I've found two options where I live. i could either apply for an ABSN option or just start all over and go to community college to become an RN. I have a family with one little one and another on the way. I was thinking of starting my prereqs slowly since I want to stay home with my kids for now. Then, when this baby that is on the way gets around preschool age, do the 1 year of intensive study and get my license. I am kind of nervous about whether this is really the best course of action though . For those who have done the absn, how intensive is that one year? And when do you do clinicals? It seems to me that 1 year is a very short time to take all the needed classes plus clinicals. I am sort of leaning toward the associate degree because I could do it part time and maybe get some experience as a student intern while going to school. From my understanding a person with a BA plus an RN license would have to take the same classes as a person getting their BSN, so does it really make a difference in terms of getting a job, especially a leadership position? I guess my question is would an RN with a BA be looked at any differently than an RN with a BSN?
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    Joined: Jun '09; Posts: 35; Likes: 10

    8 Comments

  3. by   VICEDRN
    In this state, you have to take Community, Research and Leadership to get your BSN. These are all nursing classes so I would imagine that having a BA + RN would be a bit different then having the BSN when it comes to employment but I can't say for certain.

    I am in an accelerated BSN program and have a previous BA. Its intense but you can do it. You will take all of the same classes as someone on the traditional track.

    If you prefer, you can also try to take the traditional track which takes more like 5 semesters as opposed to four in the accelerated track. You might have more time for a job or whatever. Forget the student interning stuff. There are jobs available, for example tech or CNA but you usually have to have two semesters of clinicals first so either way, those first two semesters are mostly devoted to school when you are talking about nursing career paths.

    Interning is usually more like a short, summer kind of thing with a set number of experiences. For example, 8 12 hour shifts. Its not really a job but it does pay sometimes for those shifts. Do you know what I mean or am I talking a little crazy to you? lol

    In terms of clinical, I don't know really what you are asking. Clinical is not a big deal. You might have class Mon and Tues and then clinical Wednesday or Thursday that first semester. The second you might have more clinical days but then it would look like class Mon and Tues, clinical Wed and Thurs. Clinical experiences are kind of limited to 8 hours each or so that first semester and second semester.

    Finally, I understand that it many ways there is little to no difference between the ADN and BSN in terms of hiring save for maybe a buck or two an hour depending on the facility and the possibility of more access to leadership positions but that again, seems to be depend on the facility.

    If you have a Bachelors already, its easy to convert to the BSN and that's what I recommend but that's also what I am doing so you take that with a grain of salt I guess.
  4. by   NC Girl BSN
    Do your research on both programs. At most the Community Colleges in NC, they have a time limit on the sciences. Your sciences can't be over 5 yrs old so make sure you ask when doing your research. I don't know what your area is like but there is a oversupply of people trying to get into a nursing program. It took me over 2 yrs to get into a program and even then I got rejected and settled for a LPN prgram and then went another year through a different program to get my RN. So you should start now and ask the advisors at the schools the ratio to students applying and the availble seats. Cost is a big factor too. University is alot more expensive than CC.
  5. by   mommyonamission
    Quote from NC Girl RN
    Do your research on both programs. At most the Community Colleges in NC, they have a time limit on the sciences. Your sciences can't be over 5 yrs old so make sure you ask when doing your research. I don't know what your area is like but there is a oversupply of people trying to get into a nursing program. It took me over 2 yrs to get into a program and even then I got rejected and settled for a LPN prgram and then went another year through a different program to get my RN. So you should start now and ask the advisors at the schools the ratio to students applying and the availble seats. Cost is a big factor too. University is alot more expensive than CC.
    Not all the community colleges in NC have a time limit on your sciences. For example, Durham Tech does not have a limit for college-level courses completed with a C or better. At least that's what I was told at their info session last week in regards to the A&P I that I took over 10 years ago. Just FYI.
  6. by   CrufflerJJ
    Are you SURE that you could do the ADN program "part time"? If by this, you mean that you could stretch out the program (so as to be able to spend more time with your family), I'm not too sure about that.

    I did an ABSN, and am glad that I went that route. The 5 quarter program I attended was very intense, but the time goes surprisingly fast. We did clinicals during the week, typically 6-12 hour shifts. During my final couple quarters, when I was working with a preceptor, I was rotating clinical shifts (days/nights).

    You might also look into how long the waiting list is for your local ADN program versus the ABSN. Typically, ADN programs have a longer waiting list (upwards of 2.5-3 years in my area).
  7. by   PostOpPrincess
    Have very good support. ABSN with SMALL kids will be very, very hard...and trust me, the PROFS won't listen to sob stories either.....
  8. by   NC Girl BSN
    Quote from mommyonamission
    Not all the community colleges in NC have a time limit on your sciences. For example, Durham Tech does not have a limit for college-level courses completed with a C or better. At least that's what I was told at their info session last week in regards to the A&P I that I took over 10 years ago. Just FYI.
    They have a time limit on chemisty. They were one of the many schools I applied to.
  9. by   mommyonamission
    Quote from NC Girl RN
    They have a time limit on chemisty. They were one of the many schools I applied to.
    Interesting - I didn't hear that, but there were a lot of steps to their admissions so maybe I missed it!
  10. by   Sarah K, RN
    You don't say your area of the country. I have my BA in French and decided to go into nursing. The University of Toledo College of Nursing (in Ohio) has a program where you can get an MSN in 2 yrs if you already have a bachelor's in something else. It's intense. I graduated a couple years ago and I thought it was pretty good.

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