If you have chosen nursing as a career, then you are probably already working towards an associate’s degree in nursing, or may even already have one. The ADN allows you to start working as a nurse once you have passed the certification to become a registered nurse, and with your ADN you can apply for entry-level nursing jobs in most medical facilities. The estimated average salary for people who have an ADN is around $48k per year, and so the career prospects are fairly reasonable, though it alone won’t grant you a high earning position in nursing.

To unlock higher earning potential and make other roles in nursing available to you during your career, you will need to get a bachelor’s degree in nursing, and then potentially consider a masters after that. 

While getting a BSN is definitely recommended for people who want to get the most out of their nursing career, it is not something you need to do immediately after becoming an RN. You can work for a while at the ADN level in an entry-level job to gain experience or try to establish in your mind what kind of specialisms you may be most interested in. You can also think about doing your BSN online, which will allow you to fit it around your current job and any family commitments, making getting a BSN more accessible for a lot of nurses.

Here are some of the advantages of BSN in nursing:

Be Ready to Apply for Better Opportunities

While there are entry-level jobs that you can be eligible for with the ADN, the BSN is the minimum requirement for far more jobs in nursing, and this will give you far better options when it comes to how much you earn, the type of environment you do your nursing in, and whether or not you can take on supervisory or managerial responsibilities, such as being a team leader. If you had an ideal job in mind when you first decided to become a nurse, for instance, you wanted to be an ER nurse or you wanted to work in a school as the onsite school nurse, then chances are the job you were shooting for will require a BSN. 

Be Ready to Specialize

Becoming a specialist in a certain field of nursing requires training all of its own, but if this is something you want to do then you will need a more advanced nursing degree than the associate’s degree to get started. There are countless specialisms a nurse can get involved in, from those related to specific conditions or areas of the body, such as cardiac nurses, to those that relate to certain roles and activities, such as community nursing or pediatric nursing, and different specialisms lead to higher pay and more interesting job opportunities. If you take your BSN, you will also get a broader and deeper education in fields of nursing you may not have encountered while getting the ADN, and this can help you to find which things interest you the most and which you might want to consider as potential specialization paths for you in the future.

Improve Your Skills and Knowledge

One of the biggest motivators for many people to become nurses is wanting to have the knowledge and skills to competently help other people. Being able to take care of people who are unwell or in pain, being able to know what to do in a medical emergency, and even being able to save people’s lives in some cases, can be among the most rewarding things someone can choose to do as a career. The far deeper curriculum of the BSN compared with the ADN will ensure that you have more knowledge and competency as a healthcare provider than ever and will also allow you to delve into topics that more basic nursing training doesn’t cover, such as patient advocacy. You are likely to find the things you learn while you are studying very worthwhile, and also very interesting, meaning that it is a degree path where everything you study is genuinely practical to your career, and to your life and skillset as a whole.

Good Pay, and High Demand

Nurses of different kinds are required not just everywhere in the country, but everywhere in the world. If you have the skills and knowledge that come with a BSN, you will find that you’ll have plenty of choice about where to work, and will also be able to relocate fairly easily, or even work overseas, if you want to. The ADN will allow you to do this to some degree, but with a BSN your options in terms of the roles you can apply for are much greater, and so whether you want to work in your home town or somewhere completely different, you’ll be able to find a suitable job. The high demand for nurses with advanced qualifications is also reflected in the average pay. The average salary for people who hold a BSN is estimated at $68k, far higher than for the ADN. This can go up a lot higher, even into six figures, when you look at the earning potential of nurses with a Masters. Nursing may not be something most people get into because they think it is a highly paid job, but it actually can be for the people with the most in-depth qualifications and skills.

As you can see, advancing your career by taking a higher level of nursing degree after you’ve obtained the ADN is definitely something that will pay off. If you are looking to move on up in your own career, or are wondering what to do when you have finished your current nursing degree, then why not look into the options for studying for bachelor and master level nursing degrees online? This could be a convenient and cost-effective way to make all of the advantages listed here yours!

 

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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