Choosing the Right Nursing CareerRegistered Nurses are dedicated to high quality care of the patient. The job is very demanding, but well worth the effort. Higher education helps nurses advance in their career. Although an RN has much higher responsibility levels than a Licensed Practical Nurse, the career can become stunted without a higher degree. Seeking a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) or an MSN (Master of Science in Nursing), can make a huge difference in the opportunities available. Getting a BSN or MSN makes perfect sense for those who want to move up the ladder or specialize in a particular field.

What type of nurse can you become?

Nursing Assistant – A nursing assistant helps the nurse in charge care for the patient. A nursing assistant can find jobs in the hospital, nursing homes and hospice, to name a few. Nursing assistants hold an important role in caring for the patient. It is a rewarding way to help others with minimal education in the healthcare field. A nursing assistant generally takes care of tasks to free up the RN for other more difficult tasks. Duties might include things like bathing, feeding and changing dressings for a patient. This is the lowest paid nursing position.

Licensed Practical Nurse – An LPN is charged with duties such as taking vital signs, assist with bathing and dressing patients, giving routine lab tests and recording patient information such as food intake. An LPN makes a great deal more money than the average nursing assistant makes and is sometimes in charge over the nursing assistant. An LPN usually works in a hospital setting. Advancement opportunities are limited for an LPN.

Registered Nurse – Registered Nurses make about $25 an hour to start. The education level often determines the exact pay rate. Registered Nurses are charged with dispensing medications, giving shots and IV’s to the patient, keeping close records on patient progress and changes. They report to the doctor or head nurse when necessary.

Learn more about the difference between a RN and a LPN.

How do you reach higher?

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – Climbing the ladder of nursing success requires seeking higher education. A Bachelor of Science in Nursing helps advancement possibilities. The college program for receiving a BSN is four years. Upon receiving a BSN, the nurse is able to work in nearly any setting. For instance, nurses with a BSN are able to work in law offices, insurance companies, psychiatric units and home care. As with everything else, the higher the education, the higher the pay.

Master of Science in Nursing – As with a BSN, an MSN has even more advancement opportunities. A Master of Science in nursing generally allows the nurse to have a specialty field in which they work. Positions that might require an MSN are clinical nurse specialist, nurse anesthetist and nurse midwife. Specializing in a particular field allows more control over the lifetime of the career. Healthcare education is essential to the best possible career options.

View a comprehensive directory of online nursing schools offering BSN and MSN programs

What if I don’t have time for college?

Making time for college is essential if the goal is to advance in nursing. Life can make that very difficult though. Many people seeking college degrees in today’s world have families to care for and have to work while working towards an advanced degree. Technology has made it much easier to earn a degree though. Why? It is because people can now work towards a degree directly from home. Universities have seen the great need for people who have limited time available. The possibilities are limitless for anyone wishing to seek a college education. Online degrees are becoming more and more popular because of the convenience they provide.

Universities, such as the University of Phoenix, will go to great lengths to ensure the best possible experience for students. They will work with you from start to finish. They work diligently to help find funding for your education. They are there to answer any questions you might have about the program. They help set up the proper course load. Best of all, online universities give the support necessary to successfully complete the nursing program you have chosen. Be certain that you choose an accredited college while making the decision.

Whether you are already a nurse and want to further advance your career or just starting out, online colleges can help you realize your dream. Take the first step today. Make contact with an online college or university. You can’t get there unless you take the first step.