Which MSN route??


I know this a very individualized preference but I am interested in which route will give me more bang for my buck? I am not interested in the NP route. I have narrowed the choices down to education and administration. Can you teach with a management route and vice versa? Any insight would be helpful. Thanks in advance.

Specializes in Critical Care, Education. Has 35 years experience.

If you intend to teach (even if this is your fall-back plan) I urge you to go with an MSN in education. Education is a 'whole different thing' with a completely different knowledge/skill set. These programs should provide you with working knowledge of things like education law, program evaluation methods, test construction, etc.... that you just can't easily obtain elsewhere. With only an MSN (no post-grad or doctorate), you'll be limited to low-level (academic) teaching positions which may not have much orientation or ongoing support. So, you will need to be pretty self-reliant. But please note that an MSN alone (even in Education) is usually not enough to obtain a hospital/workplace education position - you'll also need education experience as well as clinical expertise for anything higher than entry level positions.

Every organization does things slightly differently when it comes to administration. Nurse leadership roles do require an MSN, but many employers are not particular about what kind it is. If you end up with an admin job, you will be oriented to all their operational processes. So - bottom line? If it's a choice between the two, go with Education.

Keep in mind that there are other types of graduate specialties available. I recently heard of an MSN in Quality & Patient Safety that is very attractive to potential employers. There is also the "clinical leader" MSN - sort of a replacement for the CNS role. I hope you can find the program that is just right for your interests.