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RN Versus BSN: The Differences


RN vs. BSN

Changes in nursing involve a major shift in higher education standards, requiring more nurses to hold a 4-year bachelor of science in nursing (BSN). The new requirements stem from research by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) that showed significantly improved patient outcomes when there was an increase in BSNs.

BSN, ADN, RN: The Difference in The Letters

Of course, all nurses are rigorously trained to provide patient care. Let’s review the different levels of training for each position by taking a closer look at the letters that come after a nurse’s name. BSN means bachelor of science in nursing, ADN means associate degree in nursing, and RN means registered nurse.

  • BSN is a diploma from a 4-year program: A person with a BSN has graduated from a four-year nursing program at a college, university, or nursing school.
  • ADN is a diploma from a 2-year program: A person with an ADN has graduated from a two-year nursing school.
  • RN is a certification: A person with the RN designation has passed a national licensing exam—after graduating from a nursing program with a BSN or an ADN. The licensing exam is called NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination), and it’s a nationwide test required to license nurses.

So, if you’re an RN with a two-year ADN, are there reasons to go back to school and earn your four-year BSN degree? Well, that depends on you and your goals. But thousands of students and nurses are getting their BSN—and many of them are doing it in direct response to the IOM recommendation for more nurses to be BSN-prepared. If the IOM says that more BSNs are better for patient health, then nurses everywhere are going to respond.

Here are 5 reasons why you might want to pursue a BSN degree:

  1. Open the doors for a teaching position;
  2. Upward mobility and career development;
  3. Salary;
  4. Stand out in the applicant pool;
  5. Be the difference and make a difference in patient care.

Sumner College’s new BSN degree program can be completed in less than 3 years. No prerequisites courses are required and we accept transfer credits. Learn more today by visiting www.sumnercollege.com

The Pulse | Summer 2024

Sumner College Newsletter | Summer 2024

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