Published Jul 26, 2009
Hello eveyone, I hope that I'm posting this in the right section. I was just wondering if anyone can explain to me how to go about becoming a NP? Do you first need to become a BSN or MSN...then work as a RN for 1 or two years then enroll in a NP program? Or how does it work? I really want to know what steps i will need to take. I know that it does take many years but this is what I've always wanted to do. I would like to be a Neonatal NP. Anyways any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanx,Sara
If you have a baccalaureate degree you can apply to direct entry-level MSN programs and become a Nurse Practitioner, which takes 2 to 3 years on average. Some of these programs offer a BSN/MSN degree combo. Other programs just award you the MSN. If you do not have a bachelor's degree already, you may need to get a BSN first (four years) and then later enroll in an MSN program which will allow you to become a Nurse Practitioner. Hope this helps a bit!
Yes that did help alot thanks. I knew it was a few steps to becoming one. I knew you can't just enroll in NP school lol that would be nice though! So no I do not have a BSN (4year) degree. I'm just starting off. So the route i need to go is get my BSN (4 year) degree? Then i need to enroll in an MSN program which will allow me to become a NP??
Yes, that is the route most commonly taken. However, there might be other routes that I am just not familiar with. Good luck!!
If you have your associates degree you could do an online RN-BSN program in 3 semesters. Best of luck.
"If you have your associates degree you could do an online RN-BSN program in 3 semesters."
Really? I've always wanted to be a nurse practitioner and work in either hospice or women's health. I'm starting the LPN program in 2 weeks. I would rather do ADN but the school I'm going to doesn't offer it (and my LPN will be free) so I'll use LPN as a stepping stone. I've been trying to figure out how to go about getting my NP license. Finances are a major issue for me...so, I was thinking about doing LPN, then RN (ADN), then BSN, then NP. Would you do it a different way? Is there a shorter route? Or am I just crazy? lol I'M SO CONFUSED! LOL
"If you have your associates degree you could do an online RN-BSN program in 3 semesters."Really? I've always wanted to be a nurse practitioner and work in either hospice or women's health. I'm starting the LPN program in 2 weeks. I would rather do ADN but the school I'm going to doesn't offer it (and my LPN will be free) so I'll use LPN as a stepping stone. I've been trying to figure out how to go about getting my NP license. Finances are a major issue for me...so, I was thinking about doing LPN, then RN (ADN), then BSN, then NP. Would you do it a different way? Is there a shorter route? Or am I just crazy? lol I'M SO CONFUSED! LOL
Keep in mind though since you are only starting the LPN program that there is a possiblity you will not be able to get your education done in time before they change the NP program to doctorate level. Some schools already have the DNP (Doctorate Nurse Practitioner) and apparently being mandated nationally by 2015. It seems like a long time away but I did my LPN in 1.5 years, did RN in 1+ years, took a few years to get my BSN part time will working, just enrolled in a Masters which will take me 18 months part time with no breaks, then a post Masters NP will still take 2 years or so part time...feels like school takes forever but it goes by fast. It is more expensive but it would be shorter to do a BSN right away. I did it your way but you end up taking more classes doing LPN, RN, BSN. It might also be faster to do RN to MSN then NP. Remember a MSN program is usually less than the NP as the NP requires more credits than just a Masters. You can do a RN to MSN but I have not seen a program RN to NP. There are programs available also where you can get a Post Masters Certificate for NP.
there are a few different routes!
Basically, you need at least an RN. Some schools require a few years of practice as an RN prior to beginning graduate coursework, between 1-5 from what I have seen, but your chosen specialty makes a difference in terms of how long and where you can get your degree (ie, will you need to move for a specialized school or can you do it online?). Unfortunately, I do want to impart that things are frequently not what they seem in terms of how long it takes to complete nursing education - for example, my ADN program is technically a two-year program, but between a waiting list, required classes, etc. it was 4 years before that was complete. I just finished an RN-BSN program, also listed as "can be completed in one year!" but actually takes most student 4-5 semesters. I did mine in 4 straight through and only barely had enough credits (did fall, winter, spring, summer, fall). Which is not to say that it can't be done, but ask pointedly about waiting lists, average completion times, etc. before getting too carried away!
There are also a few LPN-BSN programs, http://www.allnursingschools.com/featured/?hdr=1&program=lpn2bsn&location=&x=47&y=16 - which would be one way to get your RN and at least be closer to read to do a graduate program.
I'll also add that sometimes doing your undergraduate program at the same school as you'd like to do your graduate can be helpful, sometimes they have special opportunities.
Also to clarify, the DPN-by-2015 is a vision statement, not a hard mandate:
Which is not to say that it may not become so, but the AACN has advocated for the BSN to the minimal entry to registered nursing practice as well, and that idea hasn't quite gotten enough traction to become a mandate. Which is not to discourage you from the DPN, I myself am leaning that way, but just so you know it isn't like if you don't start practicing as an NP before 2015 your master's will be wasted.
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