We all want to move up in life. There are many instances in which a Licensed Practical nurse (LPN) suddenly realizes that she wants a change in her career. The most obvious choice for her is to become a Registered nurse (RN). There is much that a nurse should ponder on before taking her decision.
THE FUNCTIONAL DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A LICENSED PRACTICAL NURSE AND A REGISTERED NURSE
If you have been working as a Licensed Practical Nurse, you will know that there are differences in the way a LPN and a RN function in their working environment. The main difference is that a LPN reports to the doctors and the Registered Nurses in the unit. Another stark difference between a LPN and an RN is the fact that LPNs provide basic care. They do not get to work in critical areas in the hospital.
THE OPTIONS AVAILABLE
Once a nurse decides that she wants to become a Registered nurse, she is faced with two options. She can either do her Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (BSN). Why is this piece of information important? Let’s us have a look at the difference between the two courses.
THE ASSOCIATE DEGREE IN NURSING
If you choose to do your Associate Degree in Nursing, you will have an opportunity to work as an entry level nurse. There will be situations where you may even be allowed to supervise the LPNs.
Another important aspect is the length of the course. The Associate Degree in Nursing is a one to two year course. It depends on the place you choose to study it from. This course is available in Community colleges, vocational schools and even in some universities.
THE BACHELORS DEGREE IN NURSING
The Bachelor’s course allows you more autonomy. You are more likely to receive promotions, manage other nurses and receive a higher pay. In addition to this you can also choose your specializations. There are numerous specializations that you can branch off into at a later date.
As for the length of the course, the Bachelor’s degree takes anywhere between two to four years to complete. The course is much longer and more intensive than the Associate Degree course. It is available in four year colleges and universities.
WHAT IS A LPN TO RN BRIDGE PROGRAM?
The LPN to RN bridge program has a single goal. They are aimed at bridging the gap between the two professional courses. This means that after you finish the program, you will find it so much more easier to participate in the new course that you are undertaking.
What do these programs entail? These programs consist of a set of classes that you need to go through. Some of these classes may be non nursing classes.
WHAT ARE THE LPN TO RN PREREQUISITES?
A higher level of education means that you will need to complete a certain number of prerequisites before you qualify for the course. You will find that these prerequisites will vary depending on your educational background.
These prerequisites basically encompass your knowledge about Anatomy and Physiology, your English speaking and writing skills, Biology and even some general Chemistry.
It isn’t easy to get into the course that you want. This is because you need to pass certain entrance exams based on the institution that you are applying too. The most common entrance exams are the ‘Test of Essential Academic Skills’ more popularly known as ‘TEAS’ and the ‘National League For Nursing Pre-Admission Examination. These two exams test your knowledge on a variety of subjects.
THE DIFFERENCE IN SALARY
The one thing that everyone asks when choosing a course is… What will the difference in salary be?
It is obvious that a Registered nurse earns more in comparison to a Licensed Practical nurse. The question on everyone’s mind is will a Bachelor’s degree mean a better income?
The answer is yes! People who choose to do a Bachelor’s degree undoubtedly earn more. This is simply because the tasks that they perform are more skilled and they have scope for promotions and specializations.
Change is always scary. Some people find going back to college to be terrifying. In a way, it is! This is simply because you are leaving what you know and you are stepping into the vast abscess of the unknown. If you want to become a Registered nurse, you need to be prepared for change and you need to learn to accept it. Learn to accept that with this change will also come responsibility. Be confident and handle what comes your way!