Should I go straight to MSN right after BSN???

Nurses Career Support

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Hi all nurses and soon to be nurses!

I'm still in nursing school, but I would like to have some advices from all of you about MSN program. My school has MSN which I can take right after BSN and it just another year. I don't know whether I should take it or just BSN and a minor in psychology? Is it better to have MSN or just get BSN and work and get MSN later? Please give me some advices please !

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development.

For most people, it is better to get some actual experience as a nurse before starting graduate school. Graduate school requires the student to specialize in a specific field of nursing -- and many people THINK they know what they want to specialize in from the very beginning of their careers, but change their minds once they actually start working that field. Getting some experience in a field before you make that big committment of grad school only makes sense. Working in that field a little to make sure you like it and have a talent for it is a smart thing to do before you invest in grad school. There are too many people with too much financial debt they acquire getting academic degrees that they figure out later are not the right ones for them. Avoid that problem by working a little first.

Also, it takes a new grad nurse about a year in the work world to become competent as a practicing nurse. That experience and competence will help you succeed in grad school and help you get the most out of your program. That's particularly important if most of your classmates in the graduate program will have experience. You don't want to be "behind" your classmates in knowledge and abilities throughout your graduate program, do you? That would put you at a disadvantage in many classes. If many/most of your classmates would be new grads with no experience, you would not be at a disadvantage without work experience -- but having the experience would help you be a star performer in class. Being one of the top students would help you establish strong relationships with faculty and may help you launch your career.

Finally, optimal learning involves both "book learning" and "experiential learning." By only getting one type (book learning), you would be limiting your understanding of nursing and your ability to do nursing work. Getting the best education you can get by supplementing your schoolwork with actual practice in the field will enrich your understanding of nursing in all its dimensions, make you a better nurse in the long run, and give you credibility in any advanced roles you might want with that MSN.

So ... while others may disagree with me ... I believe that most people benefit from at least a year or two of actual experience as a nurse before graduate school. If you have the choice, choose to get the actual practice experience.

I agree with the previous post by llg. Get the experience first. It would be a different situation if you were finishing up an ADN and asking if you should immediately continue to a BSN.

Thank IIg and cali for your advices.

I understand that but I'm afraid that I wont have a chance to come back to school since I will start a family and work right after I graduate. Some people tell me to get MSN because it just takes another year instead of 2 yrs, and I will have a better chance to get job since I live in San Francisco where there are large number of nurses. I don't know if this is true or not since I havent have a real job seeking experience or things like that?. -:)

Specializes in LTC, MDS, EHR, HH, Nursing Management.

I agree, wait. There are many fully accredidated and recognized online MSN programs out there. If I had jumped right into my MSN it would have been money spent on a piece of paper. Once I was a nurse for several years, I knew what I truly had a passion for in nursing. I was able to write my Master's capstone on a topic in nursing that I loved. I was able to enjoy my project and advance my career. Because I had a passion for my topic, it shone through and I advanced my career by leaps and bounds! :-)

Thanks, now I have some ideas and I think I will wait. Thanks all for the advices!

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