To become a registered nurse you can follow many paths: getting an associate degree, completing a three year diploma program and lastly by enrolling in a school that offers either a baccalaureate degree or a baccalaureate in nursing. Recently there has been speculation towards whether a Bachelor of Science (BS) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is more prestigious in the workforce. After a great deal of research it has come to the conclusion by the University of Connecticut, School of Nursing that one is NOT more prestigious than the other. There are however, slight differences between the two degrees.
The degree title’s (BS or BSN) are determined by the board of trustees. A BSN degree is often awarded by a school whereas a BS is awarded by a University. Typically, small institutions award BSN to their students because the school’s curriculum usually does not deviate outside of nursing courses. The BS includes all general education (gen eds) courses that students are required to take; however, the School of Nursing narrows the options so that students will take gen eds that are necessary for their majors (UConn School of Nursing Dean Regina Cusson).
It is clear that a BS and a BSN are two different degrees, but are interchangeable in the workforce as long as the program that you are enrolled in is accredited. Both degrees seek to give students advanced course work in leadership and social sciences.
If the end goal of the student is to become a registered nurse (RN) then either of the three paths will guide them to success. Moving forward, it is important to distinguish that a RN is a job title and not a degree such as a BS, BSN or ASN. Those who want to become a RN must take the NCLEX-RN examination.
By Tylur Craddock
photo credit: http://nursinglink.monster.com/education/articles/6360-how-much-is-a-nursing-degree-worth