Competency of Associate and the Baccalaureate Degree Nurse
A demand for nursing was seen in our nation at the conclusion of World War II. Upon the return of servicemen the United States entered the baby boom era, where 78 million children were born between 1946 and 1964. (Creasia & Friberg, 2011, p. 14) To meet this demand, in 1951 Mildren Montag proposed a new program to prepare nurse technicians in two year associate degree programs which allowed a quicker entry into the workforce. Also, after World War II, Congress passed the GI Bill of Rights, which allowed nurse veterans to obtain a higher degree in their profession and earn their Bachelors of Science in Nursing. (Creasia & Friberg, 2011, p. 15) At the end of the either nursing program, each future nurse must take and pass the National Council Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). The associate level and bachelor level nurse work side by side in and out of hospital settings and most people do not know that there are differences between the two nurses. This paper will discuss the difference in competencies between nurses who have obtain an associates or bachelors degree. To obtain an Associates Degree in Nursing there is approximately two to three years of education, and to obtain a Baccalaureate Degree in nursing there is approximately four years of education. An associate’s degree can be obtained at a community college level for a lower tuition rate, where as the bachelors program is usually at a university with higher tuition. Nurses who graduate from an associates degree program may have more clinical experience behind them upon entering the workforce since they do not have as many classes as the bachelors program does, so there is more clinical time spent in acute care settings. The associate’s degree nursing program is more hands on and tailored for the direct care of patients and their families. Bachelor program studies provide a more in-depth education, which one will have,...
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