What’s the Difference Between an RN and a BSN?
An RN or registered nurse has successfully completed an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) program, which generally takes up to about two years of study.
Graduation times very depending on the availability of part- or full-time programs, online or in-class courses, internships, and more.
A BSN refers to a bachelor of science in nursing program. It is generally a four-year traditional college degree program. The BSN program goes into greater depth on subjects covered in an ADN education, and covers topics not addressed on the ADN route. With a BSN, graduates may also take the same national nursing exam, the NCLEX, as ADN graduates, to obtain RN credentials. However, only BSN recipients are able to work as higher-level nurses, including in roles like RN supervisor and nurse practitioner (NP).
In order to obtain any credentials, students who have successfully completed a nursing degree program must next sit for and pass the NCLEX nursing exam.
Job Descriptions for RN and BSN
Generally speaking, RNs are immersed in patient care. They work with nursing teams and physicians and other medical personnel to coordinate and deliver care to patients in hospitals, doctor’s offices, schools, and other settings. They are also expected to provide support and education to patients, their families, and the community.
BSN-holders may work as nursing directors, nurse managers, nurse supervisors, and other administrative or supervisory roles with other nurses or healthcare professionals. Nurse practitioners can work in all those same settings as RNs and perform the same tasks and duties, but have more responsibilities and legal access to patients. NPs might:
- Diagnose, treat, and help patients manage chronic illnesses
- Conduct physical examinations
- Interpret medical history
- Prescribe age-specific physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Prescribe pharmacologic treatments- Provide prenatal care, family planning services, and screening services
- Perform minor surgical procedures
- Counsel and educate patients about preventative measures
Career Outlook for RN and BSN
All manner of nurses are currently and will continue to be in high demand. RNs are incredibly valuable to the healthcare community, and BSN-holders are open to an even greater number of professional opportunities. Determining which course to pursue may entail examining personal financial goals or commitments, desired length of schooling, and long-term career