Registered nursing is one of the most rewarding career fields available to those who want to work in the medical profession.
As a registered nurse you’ll be in charge of providing patients with emotional support and medical assistance in a variety of fields and settings.
Some of the responsibilities registered nurses are in charge of include recording the symptoms of their patients, keeping track of their patients recovery process, assessing the patients injury and/or illness, administering any necessary medications and/or treatments to patients, assisting patients with rehabilitation programs and working with a team of medical professionals to provide them with valuable information, which can be used to ensure that the patient receives proper medical care and attention.
While many fields within the nursing spectrum focus on patient care and direct patient interaction there are a number of fields that allow nurses to work outside of direct patient care and in a variety of roles such as administrative positions, working in a research laboratory, working as a teacher or providing legal and medical counsel to lawyers and law enforcement.
As you gain more training and experience in the nursing field you’ll be able to diversify and choose a career field you are interested in focusing on.
Upon earning your bachelors degree in nursing the number of fields you’ll be able to apply for will greatly increase giving you the opportunity to move from the general nursing field into a more specialized area of nursing.
Below you’ll find information explaining what the different degrees in nursing offer and get an idea of the career choices that are available to those who work as registered nurses.
Understanding the registered nursing degrees
Those who are interested in becoming registered nurses have the opportunity to choose from one of four registered nursing degrees.
These degrees are the associates of science in nursing degree (ASN), bachelors of science in nursing degree (BSN), masters of science in nursing degree (MSN) & doctor of nursing practice degree (DNP).
Each advancement in degree offers registered nurses more career opportunities, higher pay, better benefits and a higher degree of professionalism and career freedom.
While nurses can begin their career with an ASN degree those who are serious about advancing in their career and want to have more diversity in terms of career choice will usually go on to complete their BSN degree since most hospitals and health care facilities prefer nurses who have a higher level of education and training, especially in fields that require advanced training in patient care, legal counseling and medical research.
Those who have acquired their MSN may be able to choose a career in nursing administration, take a position as a clinical nurse leader or work as a practitioner in a specialized field such as working as a neonatal nurse practitioner, while those who go on to earn the DNP are able to start their own practice and work as a clinical care expert where they focus their education on a particular field of clinical care.
Those who have earned their DNP have the highest degree of independence and career choices among all nursing professionals.
For more information on the different types of degrees available to nursing students and existing registered nurses read this article: Types of nursing degrees
Types of nursing careers available to registered nurses
There are currently over 80 different career choices available to registered nurses that are looking for a career that fits their personality, education and training background from research and legal counseling to emergency care and mental disability nursing there is a career for every type of person interested in health care.
For a list of careers available to registered nurses be sure to check out: Careers in nursing.
In addition to the expansive amount of career choices nurses are able to choose from the number of jobs in existing fields is also continuing to grow as many of the older generations of nurses continue to retire, which means there will be more job flexibility, career stability and better pay for nurses across the board.
On the other hand those who are just starting out may be limited in the number of job opportunities available to them until they gain the experience necessary to find a career choice that fits their wants in needs, so its important to be flexible in terms of career choices and the locations that have jobs available for your current education and level of training.
Once you’ve acquired the experience you need more job opportunities will open up allowing you to focus on a field you are interested in working in.