Recent events and the ongoing public health emergency caused by COVID-19 have caused many to become interested in the nursing field. Careers in medicine can be stressful, but they’re always fascinating and provide a new challenge to take on every day, which is something that many people want in their work. However, there are a variety of degrees in nursing, and choosing which one to pursue will depend entirely on your career goals. If you’re curious about what type of education you’ll need, read on to learn more about what you’ll learn in a nursing program. This guide describes everything in detail.
What will you learn in a nursing program?
First, it’s important to understand that there are many different types of nursing and even different types of nursing degrees in the United States. You’ll need to think about what your interests are and research what level of education is typically required. Some specialties only require a certification program or a bachelor’s degree, but many require a master’s degree. Fortunately, it’s getting increasingly accessible to pursue a graduate degree: you can even enroll in an FNP program online.
What you’ll learn in nursing school depends on the type of degree you pursue. The most common degree for the majority of nursing specialties is a BSN, though you may need to continue your schooling if you intend to pursue a specialty that requires high-level knowledge or additional educational qualifications. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) has a list of requirements for all BSN nursing programs.
Requirements for all nurses seeking a BSN include the following: community education, nurse management and leadership, patient education, clinical and scientific skills, ethics, decision-making, and humanistic values. Your specific curriculum will vary from school to school, but typically, you’ll start clinical rotations in your second year. When you graduate, you should be fully prepared to pass your NCLEX exam.
What are some interesting nursing specialties?
Emergency medicine and ICU nursing are two of the most popular specialties, as many people who want a career in health care are interested in working in a fast-paced environment where no two days are the same, like the emergency room. These jobs can be a little more stressful than working in outpatient care, but many people would rather be in a hospital setting.
Geriatric nursing is also a common specialty, which involves taking care of older patients. You’ll work with older adults who often have different forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, and help their family members deal with issues like memory loss and cognitive decline. You will need to be able to identify early Alzheimer’s symptoms and help those who are in more advanced stages of the disease. Understanding behaviors and symptoms of common diseases that affect the older population and how they progress will be necessary.
Cardiac care is a field where nurses are in high demand. Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the U.S., which means that having qualified medical professionals to care for cardiology patients is essential. If you’re interested in cardiac care, you can feel confident that you’ll have plenty of job opportunities all over the country, so it can be a good choice for anyone who wants to live in a specific place or have a lot of options for pursuing work after graduation.
Nursing is vital to the functioning of our health care system, which is why it’s so important that nurses receive a quality education. Anyone interested in nursing will have a wide range of specialties to choose from, so you can pursue a job that you’re specifically interested in. It’s a good idea to think about what specialty you want to work in before choosing a degree program, as different specializations require different academic credentials. No matter what field you choose, nursing is a rewarding career that provides a reliable income with quality benefits, as well as the invaluable knowledge that what you’re doing is helping people in incredibly meaningful ways.