ASN vs BSN Essay

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Comparison between ASN and BSN degrees
Marie Joseph
Grand Canyon University: NRS 430V
December 15, 2014

The nursing field is a vital division in the health care industry. It is an honorable, challenging and respectable profession. RNs represent a significant portion of workers in our healthcare system. Nurses collaborate with doctors in treating and assessing patients, administering medications, and assisting with rehabilitation. Lately they are becoming more involved in public education about medical conditions and health promotion. The responsibilities of an RN vary depending on the patient population, work setting, and the nurse’s level of education. Today different educational paths are available for one to become a Registered Nurse. RN education degree requirements can range from an associate’s degree to a bachelor’s degree. In the following lines we will analyze the differences between nurses with an associate-degree as opposed to a baccalaureate-degree.

Comparison between ASN vs. BSN
ASN
The first associate degree program was begun in 1952 and since its inception the ASN program is seen as the most common type of basic nursing education in the United State (Chitty and Black, 2007). According to the department of labor (2008) there were 850 associate’s degrees in nursing programs in the USA in 2006. These programs are often seated within community colleges, universities, vocational schools or even some hospitals and are usually two years in length. The ASN curriculum prepares nurses to perform direct patient treatment or implement other specific nursing skills and responsibilities within the medical field. The ASN degree nurses are well trained to perform comprehensive bedside patient care. They unfortunately aren’t as trained to assume leadership roles or to practice in schools or community health nursing environment. The insufficiency of formation in critical care, leadership, community health nursing, and various other general education requirements, marks the difference between the ASN degree nurses from the BSN prepared nurse.

BSN The first nursing program in a university campus and the first program leading to a baccalaureate degree in nursing begun in 1919 at the University of Minnesota (University of Minnesota, 2008) Bachelor’s degree programs provide approximately 4 years of study. A total of approximately 120 credit hours, with about half dedicated to nursing courses is required. The remaining courses are in liberal arts and sciences. According to the Department of Labor (DOL) (2008), there were approximately 709 bachelor’s degree nursing programs in the USA in 2006. One significant difference between an ASN degree and a BSN degree is the inclusion of leadership courses. The baccalaureate degree enables nurses to work in the majority of medical settings. While the job environments for nurses with a BSN degree may resemble that of nurses with an ASN degree, nurses with baccalaureate degrees have additional qualifications for clinical jobs that combine management, medical personnel scheduling, administration, fiscal duties, and leadership and research roles. It’s also important to mention that, nurses with a BSN have greater opportunities for advancing their careers. A bachelor’s in nursing is needed if one desires to be accepted into a master’s nursing program, which can facilitate careers in health care administration, or specialty nursing roles. A bachelor’s degree is also well seen and most f the time required for military nursing and public health nursing and other more specialized jobs.

In the following lines, using a case scenario, we will present a situation in which we will analyze how nursing care, approaches and decision-making varies based on the education of the nurse.

Case Scenario A 46 years old female hypertensive patient has been on the medical floor for the past 2 days. During her stay she has been extremely anxious because she…