RN to BSN programs are available from a number of colleges and allow nurses to take classes to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree without taking a lot of extra classes. These schools will apply some of the class credits you earned while getting your RN degree towards your electives and other required course credits. As an RN with a good job, you might wonder whether you should go back to school. There are four key signs that indicate it’s a good time to enroll in one of these programs.
You No Longer Feel Challenged
A common complaint that some nurses have is that they no longer feel challenged at work. An RN license qualifies you to work in hospitals, doctors’ offices and other medical facilities. If you want to work in a specialized area of nursing like oncology or pediatric nursing, you usually need a higher degree and a certificate. Enrolling in a BSN program and finishing your bachelor’s degree will help you pass a certificate test and gain new skills that can help you find a job in a specialized area of nursing.
Employers Limit Your Work
If you find that your employers limit the work you can do because of your degree, it might be a good time to enroll in a BSN program. According to Peterson’s, you should pursue a BSN degree when you want a solid education that will set you up for future success. Some hospitals and facilities will also limit registered nurses to certain wards or departments and reserve other departments for nurses with higher degrees.
You Have Lots of Experience
Many RN to BSN programs let nurses skip over introductory courses and basic nursing classes to help them graduate faster. If you have more experience and feel comfortable with your medical knowledge, you can feel confident going back to school. The classes that you take will deal with administrative work and subjects that you never talked about in your RN program. The experience you have will help you share knowledge with others in your classes and better understand the new material that you cover.
You Have More Time in Your Schedule
Another sign that it might be a good time to enroll in one of these programs is if you have more time in your schedule. Many hospitals now schedule three 12-hour shifts each week to full-time nurses, which gives you more time off and more time to focus on your studies. RN to BSN programs are available online and let you take those classes and do your work from home. Some programs offer smaller classes that run for just five to six weeks, but other programs have eight-week classes. You’ll also get a few weeks off between each session.
A registered nurse can work in almost any health care facility, but you may find that your degree limits where you can work in that facility and what you do on a daily basis. If you no loner feel challenged, your employers limit you, and you have extra time or you want to make use of your experience, it might be a good time to enroll in an RN to BSN program.