Have a BS in Biology now - what's next? ASN or BSN? HELP!

  1. Hello everyone,

    I graduated from Cornell in May of 2009 with a BS in Biology.

    I now want to go on to nursing.

    Here is my predicament.

    Should I take the pre-reqs and go into an accelerated BSN program next fall or should I just start my ASN this fall and then become an RN that way? I know you take the NCLEX either way, and you're a RN either way, so I am wondering if anyone has any advice of which is better for me considering I already have a BS.

    Also, I am considering BMCC in the CUNY system or TC3 upstate, that is part of the SUNY system. If you advise me to do the ASN, where would you recommend I go?

    Thank you so much!!
  2. Visit marya.afzal profile page

    About marya.afzal

    Joined: Mar '10; Posts: 7


  3. by   damaranicole
    My personal opinion is that I don't understand why you wouldn't go straight for the BSN. It will take you the same amount of time, if not less for the ABSN. 2 years worth of course work for the ASN, two years of course work for the BSN, 14 months for the ABSN. Eventuall you will probably want your bachelors or even masters. Another consideration is that fact that with the Bio degree, you probably already have a lot, if not all, of the prereqs that you need for the BSN.
  4. by   PacoUSA
    Agree with the above post, you're better off going for the ABSN. Less time invested. The only reason I can think of that someone with a prior bachelor's will pursue an ADN is financial and needing to work during the program (in an ABSN it's almost impossible to work).

    Are you interested in graduate degrees? Since you have a BS in biology, if you pursue an ADN you may be able to apply for an MSN program once you're an RN and bypass the BSN ... and that's only because of your BS in biology. I know the MSN programs @ Columbia accept non-nursing bachelor's such as yours in lieu of a BSN.

    You also mentioned BMCC .. note that it only offers ADN, as do most community colleges. Besides, I know that's an extremely competitive program.
  5. by   Melanie19877
    Above posts are correct. It basically depends on what you want to do with your degree. Are you going to further onto a masters? Is that even a small possibility? Def go for bachelor degree.
  6. by   juliaann
    I'm in the same situation.

    I know I'm going to want an advanced practice masters at some point, so I'm waiting longer to attend an aBSN as opposed to starting the ASN program in the fall. It all pretty much evens out actually: the ASN program is 2 years and I could start this fall, so I would graduate nursing school May 2012. The aBSN is a summmer only start so I'll start May 2011, 15 month program, so I'll graduate August 2012. And then I can get to work gaining experience and planning out what kind of AP/MSN I want.

    The aBSN is definitely the logical choice in my situation. Good luck making the decision that is right for you!!
  7. by   aneres1390
    I think it all depends...if ur not able to get into the ABSN after the pre-reqs then look into the ASN..or even look into applying as a transfer student into a traditional BSN...I got into Creighton Uni. in NE for Fall 2008 as a transfer student even though I have my BS in biology, and I was told by the nursing dept. there that I will graduate in May 2011. I refused the offer because I figured I can get into the ABSN...If I knew I would have accepted the offer because 2011 is around the corner and none of the ABSN programs have accepted me yet.
  8. by   HM2VikingRN
    ABSN would be my first choice but I would apply to multiple schools (Both ABSN/ADN) to cover your options...
  9. by   TheSquire
    There are also master's entry programs out there which spit you out with either an RN or some flavor of APN alongside your MS or MSN. Additionally, you'd be eligible for additional Federal loans under the GradPLUS program since you'd be a graduate student.
  10. by   marya.afzal
    Thanks for your help everyone! It's given me a lot to think about. I really appreciate everyone taking the time to answer my questions!!

    I got an acceptance letter from TC3 for their ADN program yesterday and am waiting on BMCC/LAGCC. I'm still unsure of whether or not I will take their offers, but I am going to put down deposits just in case. If not, I will just not matriculate and take the classes I need for an aBSN.

    The only reason I am considering doing the ADN is because of money, ability to work while doing the program and the option of opting out of a decent number of classes on the curriculum. Another thing is that I am considering PA (physician assistant) school after working as an RN for a few years.

    As I figure, if I like nursing, I will stick with it, and then maybe re-matriculate for a BSN/MSN program or I can switch over to PA school given the healthcare experience hours I will get as a nurse.

    Like you all said, it's definitely better to get a BSN if I want to do graduate school (which I will if I stick with nursing), but I think there are still programs (as Paco386 said) like Columbia that will take me with an ADN and my bachelors. If not, I guess I'll end up being in school for an extra year (and a bit more) to go back and get my BSN later.

    I'm the kind of person who is worried about covering all of her bases and having back-up plans, so that is my rationale behind all of this...

    Thanks again everyone!!
  11. by   damaranicole
    Another factor that they pointed out to me for the ABSN versus the BSN, is that some people are just really thrown off by the amount of hours that you have to put in for the ABSN. I looked at the schedule and it's typically about a 21 hour course load versus a 15 hour course load. The admissions counselor said if you can put your life on hold for 15 months, go for the ABSN. I cannot - I have a kid, so thankfully he pointed this factor out to me. I have decided to aim for the BSN route (I have a bachelors already), but will apply for ASN programs as well just incase.
  12. by   marya.afzal
    damaranicole - Will it take you another 4 years to do your BSN? Was your first bachelors in a science-related field? I wasn't sure about the non-accelerated BSN because I don't know anything about the process and re-taking or opting out of classes if you already have a bachelors.
  13. by   damaranicole
    I was a music major, so needless to say, I had absolutely nothing that carried over from my previous degree to a nursing degree. However, to my knowledge, colleges will waive the typical undergrad work that you would need for 2nd degree seeking students (meaning your English, Computer, History, Humanities, etc. classes). You just have to have the prereqs for the nursing major. So, if I wasn't working full time, getting the BSN would probably only take me 3 years WITH the prereqs (1 year of prereq work and 2 years of Nurse courses). But, I am working and taking classes, so I've been pecking away at my prereqs slowly (by the time it's all over with it will have taken me 2 summer sessions and 3 full sessions to complete my prereqs with about 8 course hours each semester) and will be done with all of them at the end of the upcoming Fall semester. Therefore, it is essentially taking me 4 years to get another BSN and it would have taken me 3 1/2 to get an associates. Hopefully that makes sense.

    The thing that really sucks about these colleges is that they all seem to want different prereqs - at least where I'm at. And, as most of us have probably realized, it's very competitive as they typically only seem to offer about 50 openings each semester (100 new nursing students per year), and for the ABSN programs it's more like 30 per year. So, I've had to create myself a spreadsheet with all of the courses that I need from each college, line up when I will have them all done, and apply for all of them at the same time and just hope that I get in to the BSN program and won't have wasted money and time taking prereqs that aren't needed.

    In my experience, I've found that both programs want Micro, A&P I/II, College Algebra, Intro to Chem or HS Chem (I haven't had either of these yet).

    On top of that, the BSN programs seem to want Nutrition, Developmental Psych, General Psych, Sociology and Statistics.

    The difference with the BSN versus ABSN is that 1. the ABSN will go through the summer and BSN will not offer Nurse courses during the summer and 2. the ABSN will have you taking about 21 credits per semester versus about 15-17 for BSN. I don't know if you've ever taken 21 hours, but I did it for 3 semesters of my first college career and was burnt out, needless to say. It's like working a full time job with school on top of it pretty much. That's not to say that it can't be done. But it's like the advisor said, you have to put everything else in your life onhold. And I'm sure it's even harder when it's nursing school versus a music degree!

    I don't know if you've tried to register for any of the Biology classes, but it took me a year at my local community college until I could finally get in to one of them (this is when I got priority enrollment).

    Hope that helps a bit.
    Last edit by damaranicole on Mar 16, '10
  14. by   marya.afzal
    Why did no one tell me this!! It didn't occur to me that I could just apply to BSN programs instead of aBSN programs. The reason I am going to an ADN program is because I still need pre-reqs for an aBSN program. I know I'd graduate around roughly the same time - but I just want to be on the road to getting my nursing degree as soon as possible. If I had known I could go straight into a BSN program, I would have applied I looked around on the school sites, and no schools mentioned this!

    Anyway - good luck on your degree! It sounds like you definitely are getting things organized and such