Schools that provide bachelor’s degrees offer training and education that is more advanced than some diploma or associate’s degree programs. Obtaining a bachelor’s degree will help to prepare you for many different types of nursing careers, as you will gain experience working in multiple settings before you even receive your degree.
Bachelor’s degree programs are typically offered through universities and four-year institutions. Students are admitted based on their high school grade-point average and college testing scores, as well as extracurricular activities. Some schools require a personal essay or interview to determine if potential students would make good nursing candidates. These programs provide a well-rounded educational experience that often involves fundamental science courses, basic math, and psychology or sociology. Students then may move into nursing classes, such as bedside care techniques and medication administration. They typically study patient care in various populations, learning about many different types of nursing, such as psychiatric nursing, pediatrics, or critical care.
Beyond the fundamentals of nursing, bachelor’s degree programs also teach students more advanced concepts related to this career. Students may take courses in nursing management, nursing ethics or research. The goal of many of these courses is to train students to become leaders within their jobs.
Clinical practice hours are required by most programs, and students may train to work in hospitals and clinics. Additionally, bachelor’s degree programs may also require students to practice in other settings as well, such as public health programs, community outreach centers or schools. These advanced clinical times offer opportunities for practice in many jobs that only hire nurses with bachelor’s degrees.
Although achieving a bachelor’s degree is a longer course than an associate’s degree or diploma in nursing, students who take this educational route will graduate with a well-rounded background. Bachelor’s degree programs provide students opportunities to learn about, and work in, situations that are beyond the standard ideas of what many consider nursing to be. In some situations, employers prefer to hire candidates with bachelor’s degrees over those without, as this advanced degree is a sign of a strong educational background. Some bachelor’s degree programs permit students who already have associate’s degrees or diplomas to return to school for an accelerated degree track. Considering the work that students have already completed, some of these programs allow registered nurses to take the courses necessary to complete a bachelor’s degree in less time.