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The question at hand, and that which has long been debated, is which nursing pathway provides the best education possible. Each of the pathways has both positive and negative aspects in which each nursing student must decide individually which path

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Running Head: EDUCATIONAL RIVALRY Educational Rivalry: A Closer Look at Nursing Education Steve Rowlands Shalin Hai-Jew English 102 29 July 2004 Abstract More and more students are becoming interested in the nursing field. Each of these students has the choice of three different educational pathways. The question at hand, and that which has long been debated, is which nursing pathway provides the "best" education possible. Each of the pathways has both positive and negative aspects in which each nursing student must decide individually which pathway is correct for them. Also, due to the nursing shortage, some new nursing programs have been implemented, which allows additional pathways to be looked at by students. Educational Rivalry: A Closer Look at Nursing Education Have you ever sat in a patient room with a nurse performing a normal checkup on you and wondered how exactly the nurse obtained their nursing degree? Have you ever questioned a nurse's education? Would you feel more comfortable with a nurse who went to a community college or to a university? Patients, scholars, and many others have long debated the quality of nursing education. There are primarily three different pathways that can be taken to obtain a nursing degree. The question at hand is which route of nursing education is the "best." Throughout the paper, I will explain the different types of programs that are offered to become a registered nurse (RN) as well as the advantages and disadvantages to each nursing route. I will also examine how the nursing shortage that our country is experiencing has brought about new pathways for obtaining a nursing degree to encourage the growth of nurses. Types of Nursing Education And Advantages and Disadvantages Types of nursing education. There are primarily three different routes taken to obtain a nursing degree as a registered nurse. Each of these programs varies in the type of degree, the required classes, the amount of clinical hours, and the time it takes to complete the nursing program. ...read more.


The claim was even made by Pederson (2003) saying, "A hospital's employment of nurses who have earned an associate's degree in nursing in lieu of a bachelor's degree in nursing will significantly increase that hospital's mortality rate for post-surgical patients" (p.4). This claim showed statistical data, but some upset researches investigated the statistical evidence further and found it to be inaccurate. Pederson had construed the evidence to make an opinionated claim. Statements like these are what give nursing education, other than from a university, a bad name. Nurses with BSN's are suppose to be "better" than nurses with AD's or diplomas because their education is at a higher level and because of the prestige of attending a university as opposed to a community college or hospital school of nursing. The prestige of a school is a personal opinion, but as far as education level goes, it is basically the same curriculum for each nursing school pathway. The classes are each titled differently, but they hold the same educational content. Table 1 shows a chart comparing some of the nursing classes between the University of Washington, Shoreline Community College, and Bridgeport Hospital School of Nursing. Not every university, community college, and hospital nursing school has the exact same curriculum, but other schools are very similar. Harrison (2004) says, "Diploma and degree nursing students attend the same lectures. The only difference is that they are assessed at different levels. Diploma nurses are asked to discuss results, whereas degree students have to critically analyze the results" (p. 12). Learning to become a nurse is the core topic within nursing school so this would cause many curriculums to be similar to one another. True, there are some colleges that have more advanced technology and research, but those are just some bonuses added onto the basics of becoming a nurse. Every nursing school will teach the students the necessary and basic information of nursing (Harrison, 2004, p. ...read more.


The same goes for community colleges and hospital nursing schools. To classify nurses from community colleges as "bad nurses" would be shameful since the majority of nurses in the world have associate degrees. They are the ones who have been helping people when they are in need of medical attention. Both universities and community colleges have advantages and disadvantages. It is up to the nursing student to decide which route has more advantages and is right for them. Only they hold the power to decide. Resources As enrollments surge, thousands turned away from our nation's nursing schools. (2003, December). Us Newswire. Bridgeport Hospital School of Nursing. (2003). Diploma in nursing courses. Retrieved August 10, 2004, from http://www.bhson.com/programs/courses.cfm?ProgramID=1 Fetzer, S. J. (2003, May-June). Professionalism of associate degree nurses: The role of self-actualization. Nursing Education Perspectives, 24(3), 139-143. Halter, M., & Polet, J. (2002, January-March). The place of baccalaureate nursing programs in the liberal arts setting. Nursing Forum, 37(1), 21-29. Harrison, S. (2004, June 9). Degree vs diploma: Can education to degree level really produce more confident nurses and better patient outcomes? Nursing Standard, 18(39), 12. Hurley, M. L. (1994, June). The push for specialty certification. RN, 57(6), 36-34. Increase in nursing school enrollments/graduations. (2004, May). AORN Journal, 74(5), 974. Lippman, H., & Dayer-Berenson, L. (1991 February). How hard will it be to get your BSN. RN, 54(2), 32-37. Mills, M. E., Fisher, C., & Stair, N. (2001 September). Web-based courses more than curriculum. Nursing and Health Care Perspectives, 22(5), 235. Pedersen, R. P. (2003, October 13). The bum-rap on community college nursing education. Community College Week, 16(5), 4-5. Perez, A. (2003, March 31). More, better and faster: Getting students into nursing, stat. Community College Week, 15(17), 10-11. Shoreline Community College. (2004). Shoreline community college nursing program. Retrieved August 3,2004, from http://success.shoreline.edu/shoreline/nurse0902.pdf Short, N. (2000, November). Online learning: ready, set, click. RN, 63(11), 28. University of Washington. (2004). University of Washington degree programs: BSN curriculum. Retrieved August 3, 2004, from http://www.son.washington.edu/eo/bsn_curriculum.asp ?? ?? ?? ?? Educational Rivalry 2 Educational Rivalry 1 ...read more.

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