Educational Preparation Essay

Submitted By beany3421
Words: 801
Pages: 4

Educational Preparation
Grand Canyon University: NRS-430V
June 15, 2014

Educational Preparation There are many theories on the difference between Associate degree educated nurses (AND) and Baccalaureate degree educated nurses (BSN). First this paper will discuss the associate degree versus the bachelor degree academic differences. Secondly it will discuss the difference in skills and competencies that are taught between the two different degree programs. Finally a patient care situation will be discussed and the differences between the bedside nursing care, critical thinking skills and decision making process will be compared for the associate degree nurse and the bachelor degree nurse. An associate degree nurse will usually obtain a two to three year degree from a community college. Upon completion of this program they will be qualified to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), to receive their registered nurses license. A baccalaureate degree nurse attends a four to five year university or college and upon completion of their degree also qualifies to sit for the NCLEX to obtain their license as a registered nurse. Both of these programs include a “general” education and then classes in advanced sciences and nursing skills. While both programs include in their nursing curriculum critical thinking, nursing process, communication, caring, ethics and cultural diversity, on the bachelors degree side these plus additional courses are taught at a more in depth level. The BSN program also includes education on health teaching, leadership and professionalism, along with research and community health nursing. (Meyer, 1997, p.1-2) These topics were less likely to be included or just barely touched on in the AND programs. The technical skills that are taught at both the ADN and BSN programs are considered identical. Both programs teach clinical skills beginning with the basic skills of taking vital signs to beginning intravenous access lines. They also teach skills that are more advanced such as tracheostomy care and management of a patient that is hemodynamically unstable. However, it seems that the ADN educated nurse may be lacking in the in the critical analytical expertise that is needed to recognize the early changes that can affect the outcome of a patient’s health. According to Mery, BSN students show a greater critical thinking ability than the ADN students (1997, p.1). The competencies that are deemed to be missing from the ADN program are those that are taught in a more in depth manner as mentioned above in the BSN program such as critical thinking. Finally a patient care situation. An ADN nurse receives report from a certified nursing assistant that a patient under their care status post knee replacement has become anxious and restless. They may check the patient and see that the patient is indeed exhibiting these signs but they may attribute it to pain from the procedure or anxiety from being in the hospital and medicate accordingly. The BSN trained nurse, with more critical thinking skill and knowledge, will see these signs and assess the patient further for the possibility of complications of the surgery. They will take the information provided along with current vital signs and the predisposing