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What are the differences between an ADN and a BSN?

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Pay? The work? Whats the difference? Do you think a BSN is Better?

NurseKatie08, MSN

Specializes in Geriatrics, Transplant, Education. Has 13 years experience.

Pay? The work? Whats the difference? Do you think a BSN is Better?

There are many threads on this subject, in fact, a whole forum on them---try using the search function in the upper right hand corner of your screen. HTH.

Katie

eriksoln, BSN, RN

Specializes in M/S, Travel Nursing, Pulmonary. Has 15 years experience.

I had a clinical instructor who used to drum it into our heads that ADN nusing only exists because of the shortage and as soon as they think they can, legislators will change the laws and require a BSN to practice clinical nursing.

This is the sum of what she would tell us:

Diploma/ADN nurses tend to be better prepared for the work of clinical nursing upon graduation. Statistics show that, for the first year of nursing, the percentage of revoked licenses is lower for ADN/Diploma when compared to BSN. BSNs on the other hand, after getting over the shock of the first couple years, tend to produce "better outcomes" after that period when compared to ADN/Diploma nurses. Better outcomes meaning shorter hospital stays, less frequent same day returns to the hospital after discharge and a higher percentage of desired outcomes being achieved.

I understood her point. I cant quote any studies that she was pointing out to us, I didnt look into it to be honest........I trusted she wasnt making it up. I do plan on getting my BSN once I am no longer travel nursing.

marilynmom, LPN, NP

Specializes in Adolescent Psych, PICU.

I had a clinical instructor who used to drum it into our heads that ADN nusing only exists because of the shortage and as soon as they think they can, legislators will change the laws and require a BSN to practice clinical nursing.

This is the sum of what she would tell us:

Diploma/ADN nurses tend to be better prepared for the work of clinical nursing upon graduation. Statistics show that, for the first year of nursing, the percentage of revoked licenses is lower for ADN/Diploma when compared to BSN. BSNs on the other hand, after getting over the shock of the first couple years, tend to produce "better outcomes" after that period when compared to ADN/Diploma nurses. Better outcomes meaning shorter hospital stays, less frequent same day returns to the hospital after discharge and a higher percentage of desired outcomes being achieved.

I understood her point. I cant quote any studies that she was pointing out to us, I didnt look into it to be honest........I trusted she wasnt making it up. I do plan on getting my BSN once I am no longer travel nursing.

I find that all very hard to believe honestly.

eriksoln, BSN, RN

Specializes in M/S, Travel Nursing, Pulmonary. Has 15 years experience.

Eh, it was about 3 years ago I had that instructor and I'm yet to run into anything that made me think any differently.

IDK, BSN nurses tend to be the types that stay at the nurse station solving problems with the orders and such while ADN/Diploma nurses tend to be with their pt's more. Maybe I just imagine that, IDK.

My nursing tends to be a bedside first approach, not cause I think its better, but cause thats my personality and skill set. I was a CNA for a long time before going to nursing school and while in school I moved into a tech position that required more of me. Inserting foleys or NG tubes, cleaning trachs and dressing changes came natural to me. It was following the orders and all the paperwork that dragged me down when I was new.

Most BSN nurses I know are the opposite of that. Can take hours to insert an NG tube, but do a good job of chart reviews in a quarter of the time it takes me. Their documentation and holistic approach to care tends to exceed mine too. And, since this is the thing DONs notice, they are the ones earning awards and moving on to other things.

I sometimes wish I had been able to get my BSN from the start instead of going the ADN route, IDK, I think their skill set is better suited for the modern approach to pt. care.

marilynmom, LPN, NP

Specializes in Adolescent Psych, PICU.

Eh, it was about 3 years ago I had that instructor and I'm yet to run into anything that made me think any differently.

IDK, BSN nurses tend to be the types that stay at the nurse station solving problems with the orders and such while ADN/Diploma nurses tend to be with their pt's more. Maybe I just imagine that, IDK.

My nursing tends to be a bedside first approach, not cause I think its better, but cause thats my personality and skill set. I was a CNA for a long time before going to nursing school and while in school I moved into a tech position that required more of me. Inserting foleys or NG tubes, cleaning trachs and dressing changes came natural to me. It was following the orders and all the paperwork that dragged me down when I was new.

Most BSN nurses I know are the opposite of that. Can take hours to insert an NG tube, but do a good job of chart reviews in a quarter of the time it takes me. Their documentation and holistic approach to care tends to exceed mine too. And, since this is the thing DONs notice, they are the ones earning awards and moving on to other things.

I sometimes wish I had been able to get my BSN from the start instead of going the ADN route, IDK, I think their skill set is better suited for the modern approach to pt. care.

Well that is an interesting way you put it. I'm a BSN nurse, maybe your right. I'll have to think about it. Interesting perspective! I am a REALLY good problem solver, I'm the type that can stand back and see the whole picture and what is going on easily.....to me skills (like trachs, NG tubes, etc) just came with time and practice. But I'm not sure if that had to do with my nursing education or just the type of person I am?

But then again it may be different personality types that go for a university degree over an associates (I was just watching a show on tv tonight talking about that actually called What Are You Worth or something like that...talking about different careers and college degrees, etc)? I don't know cause I have both...lol. I have a associates in Biology and a BSN and plan to go back for more :) I don't plan to stay with bedside nursing either.

Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 28 years experience.

There is a large BSN and a large ADN school here supplying new grads. Both have the same number of clinical hour requirements. Honestly I can't see a difference in the amount of time they spend at the bedside and a difference in their critical thinking skills. They call come out as entry level nurses pretty green, unsure of themselves, typical new grad.

So to answer the OP's question, as entry level bedside nurses, newly grad, taking and passing the same NCLEX RN around here, there really isn't much difference in skills and duties or job description. Some places pay a small premium for the BSN, but it usually isn't much.

The BSN will enjoy great job opportunity as experience is gained and one wants to move away from the bedside. To me this is the advantage of the BSN.

Good luck.

eriksoln, BSN, RN

Specializes in M/S, Travel Nursing, Pulmonary. Has 15 years experience.

I went to CCAC in the Pittsburgh area. PITT, the major college around there, has a BSN program. I know a great many students who graduated from PITT who will tell you their clinicals, although being the same "required hours", were a joke and focused on paperwork. CCAC, in contrast, doesnt focus so much on the book learning as much (they cram that stuff like mad, they know no one really can absorb all that at once) but had military style clinicals. ADLs, I/O's, executing activity orders (if the pt. is ordered OOB with meals, they'd better be, and dont pass it on the the CNA), medications and dressings were required of us from day one. Often, the entire unit we were on for that day was put on alert that students were attending that day and everything else that was allowed (hanging IVF, inserting foleys or NG tubes, giving meds via PEG tube, more dressing changes, drain care (JPs and all) and trach care) was all handed to us by the RNs. That is a stark contrast to what PITTs clinicals were like, as far as what was described to me.

When I was in school and still a CNA, Duquesne did clinicals on my unit. Senior students were still only required to take ONE singular pt. I was in shock. And, each day there were there, one student was assigned "charge nurse" duty. It was their job to collect paperwork (cough, gag, LOL), do D/Cs and watch the admit process (see why pt.s were placed where they were etc). Students not performing the charge nuse role did not do D/Cs, the student charge nurse did. Now, at my school, we did the D/C along with the other duties and then had to take a pt. to make up for the lost one to boot. And, my gosh, we were not given only 1 pt. since, oh, halfway through 101. By the 3rd semester, we had at least 3, sometimes 4.

My point is, having the same "required hours" of clinicals does not reflect having the same clinical experience. Not by a long shot.

I dont agree with that..I do have a BSN ..and I graduated with an ADN.

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