In some cases, it may be challenging (especially for a non-professional) to differentiate between the baccalaureate- and the associate-degree levels of nursing preparation. This difficulty is aggravated by the fact that both programs require passing the same professional exam to be able to practice. Yet, there are still certain points that are non-similar in the course of education. The key differences are in the competences of care and the educational curriculum.Educational Preparation for Nurses Essay
The Associate Degree was first introduced by Dr. Mildred Montag in 1950s. During this post-war period, there was a considerable shortage of nurses. The problem was resolved by cutting the length of nursing education to 2 years, providing future professionals with a minimum sufficient educational background (O’Neal, Zomorodi, & Wagner, 2015). The program was a success since its graduates managed to pass the NCLEX exam and prove their knowledge and skills in practice.
Today, the degree is still earned after 2 years of education at a community or junior college; the current curriculum consists of nursing and Liberal Arts. Due to the shortage of time, the degree refers exclusively to applied science. Upon completion, the NCLEX-RN exam must be passed to be able to work as a nurse (Fisher, 2014). The fact that the exam is the same for any degree does not imply that all nurses are prepared equally as it is not designed to differentiate between the programs or assess all the acquired knowledge and skills (that are more numerous in the baccalaureate curriculum).Educational Preparation for Nurses Essay
During two years, future nurses are mainly exposed to various aspects of practice, including bedside nursing, disease management, safety provision, etc. with almost no research work. This accounts for the fact that nurses with the associate-degree level are often more competent in clinical settings since their training is technically-oriented (Fisher, 2014). Yet, the majority of hospitals tend to downsize the number of ADNs owing to their limited theoretical knowledge of the profession.
Baccalaureate Nursing was introduced in 1946 when GI Bill of Rights was passed to allow veterans to receive a college education and vocational training, which was highly popular among nurses returning from the war. The enrollment increased dramatically and led to the appearance of the Collegiate Nursing programs (Brandt, Boellaard, & Zorn, 2015).Educational Preparation for Nurses Essay