What is a BSN | Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is a four-year academic degree that allows students to become registered nurses.

This degree takes longer to obtain than a two-year Associate Degree in Nursing.

However, it offers numerous advantages compared to the ADN degree.

It includes earning higher pay, having more career specialization opportunities, and more stable employment.

How Long is the BSN Program?

The BSN program is a four-year commitment for full-time nursing students.

In addition, students must complete the required prerequisite courses before gaining entry into a nursing program.

Some academies offer ADN to BSN programs to help students complete courses more effectively with previous education.

There are also accelerated nursing programs for students who want to earn their BSN faster.

How to Earn a BSN Degree

There are numerous steps students must take to earn their BSN degree.

It includes possessing a diploma/GED, finishing prerequisites, completing nursing school, and passing the NCLEX-RN exam.

The following section breaks down the steps necessary to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.

1. Complete Nursing School Prerequisites

Before entering a nursing program, students must have a diploma/GED.

It allows them to apply for college and take the various prerequisite courses needed to get into nursing school.

The prerequisite courses needed for the nursing program vary depending on school requirements.

However, most colleges require science, biology, English, and physiology credits.

Students may not need to complete the prerequisite at the nursing school they wish to attend.

Regardless, it’s necessary to determine if the course credits are transferable before taking classes at a particular school.

For instance, students earning credits in a community school may have trouble transferring them to an Ivy League college.

It’s beneficial to consult a counselor to ensure the credits transfer if you pursue a nursing degree at a different college.

2. Apply to an Accredited Nursing Program

When determining which college to join, students must pick an accredited college or university with a BSN program.

It ensures they receive the proper training and education needed to take and pass the NCLEX exam.

It’s also essential to determine if the nursing school takes prerequisite course credits for those who transfer from another school.

Many colleges/universities have a minimal GPA requirement for students trying to enter the program.

It varies greatly depending on the institution, student competition, and seating availability.

As a result, some students will apply to numerous colleges to gain acceptance into an available program.

3. Complete the Nursing Program

Once accepted into nursing school, students participate in a four-year program to learn about nursing.

Students will learn leadership training, nursing informatics, nursing science, anatomy, physiology, and medical research, among other topics.

4. Complete the NCLEX Examination

Upon completing the nursing program, students must pass the NCLREX-RN to obtain their license.

They must also pay all state licensing fees necessary to receive their licensure.

Graduates may begin applying for jobs in the nursing field as qualified licensed registered nurses after completing the final step.

Advantages of Acquiring a BSN Degree

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is one of the most popular degrees in nursing.

It provides a well-rounded education and more promising career specialties than an ADN degree.

Nurses who possess a BSN earn more money due to their education, training, and background.

Most hospitals and healthcare facilities also prefer to hire nurses who have acquired their BSN.

The advanced education BSN nursing students receive allows them to provide better medical care in high-risk settings.

As a result, they’re more likely to get hired for specific jobs than nurses with an ADN degree.

That said, nearly 40% of registered nurses possess an associate degree in nursing.

Many facilities are happy to hire these nurses to fill needed positions and manage their nursing shortage.

Nurse with an ADN can find excellent work up to a point.

However, operating in some disciplines beyond entry-level nursing can be challenging without a BSN.

A BSN degree allows nurses to work in research, science, education, legal consulting, forensics, and other occupations.

They can also pursue advanced roles in hospital specializations ranging from neonatal care to geriatrics.

Over 100 specializations are available for hard-working registered nurses, including many non-bedside care careers.

As a result, there are numerous opportunities for people of all personalities and preferences to enjoy being a nurse.

Benefits of an ADN Degree

In many cases, students pursue a two-year Associate Degree in Nursing to enter the field and earn an income quickly.

Registered nurses are well paid, so gaining fast entry into healthcare is beneficial for making a living.

Some students pursue their BSN while working as registered nurses to reduce their debt and cover expenses.

Obtaining an ADN degree is also excellent for those unsure whether to continue pursuing a career in nursing.

It’s less costly and time-consuming than going straight for a BSN degree only to find out nursing isn’t the right fit.

Finally, having an ADN degree helps aspiring nurses gain experience to move up the ranks quickly.’

The experience gained by working with an ADN allows students to take on more advanced roles once they’ve acquired their BSN.

With that said, it’s essential for nurses who want to move forward in their careers to earn their BSN.

It provides them with many unique opportunities to pursue disciplines beyond entry-level positions like bedside nursing.

The BSN programs provide comprehensive education and training to prepare nurses for their roles in healthcare.

It includes education in leadership training, nursing informatics, nursing science, anatomy, physiology, and medical research.

Post-Graduate Education

Registered nurses who want to pursue the most profitable careers take post-graduate education to earn an MSN or DNP degree.

Nurses with post-graduate education can become advanced practice registered nurses and specialize in one of four domains.

The four specializations include certified nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, clinical nurse specialists, and nurse practitioners.

Each specialization focuses on a distinct area of healthcare and provides services to those with particular needs.

It allows these medical specialists to provide the most comprehensive care within their domain.

For instance, nurse practitioners prescribe medications, diagnose conditions and act as primary care providers.

They also own and operate clinics to bring healthcare services to underserved populations at a more affordable price.

Nurse anesthetists provide anesthesia to patients before and during surgical operations or when needed.

It ensures that patients remain stable, unconscious, and relaxed to receive adequate care and recover properly.

Many APRNs earn six-figure incomes for their services and expertise.

Some nurse anesthetists make over 200k annually to provide anesthesia and medical care to patients.

As a result, it’s one of the highest-paying professions in the United States.

Many registered nurses in other professionals also earn exceptional salaries by ensuring patient care and safety.